Ian died peacefully at about 2 am on 31 August in Sobell House Hospice, surrounded by his family.
Warden of Wadham College, Ken Macdonald QC commented: “This has been a swift and unimaginable tragedy and the sheer courage and good humour with which Ian confronted his illness were the marks of an extraordinary man and a sign of the scale of our loss. The College will hold a formal Memorial for Ian in due course, but in the meantime, our collective condolences go to his family.”
His colleagues Mark Fricker and Natalie Seddon said: “He was active to the end, having spent the last couple of weeks happily sailing his boat off the coast of Suffolk with various friends. He was a dedicated Tutor at Wadham, and a much respected colleague in Plant Sciences.”
Born 14 May 1964 Ian was elected to a Wadham Fellowship by Special Election in Biology from 1 Sept 2010 - 31 Aug 2013. He was then elected to a Tutorial Fellowship from 1 Oct 2013.
Ian was awarded a BSc 1st Class in Biological Sciences from Edinburgh University where he did his PhD. He then held a Max Planck Society Postdoctoral Fellowship in Cologne, a postdoctoral fellowship at Boulder (University of Colorado) before moving to Oxford in 1995 as Departmental Demonstrator. Ian was later appointed Senior Research Fellow, a permanent positon in the Department. He taught at Pembroke and Magdalen Colleges before joining Wadham.
Ian’s research investigated the molecular mechanisms that facilitate the fundamental processes of growth, division, and spatial patterning of plant cells. This has begun to reveal how plant cells have evolved distinctive intracellular transport pathways to perform these tasks. In other work with his team, he developed genetic technologies that allow transgene activity to be controlled in space and time in a variety of plant species.
Ian’s funeral takes place on Friday 14 September at 2:15pm at East Hanney Crematorium