Nigel, of course, needs no introduction. He is executive editor of the Pharmaceutical Journal, an award-winning journalist and long-standing member of the Medical Journalists’ Association.
Since joining the Executive Committee almost four years ago Nigel has organised and chaired a number of educational and career-development webinars and worked tirelessly as a Vice Chair of the Association.
At the November 2021 EC meeting he was unanimously elected as Chair, taking over from Lawrence McGinty — who will continue to serve on the EC.
As part of our irregular series of Q&As, we put Nigel in the hot-seat to learn more about his career, cupcakes and karaoke:
Realising that I did not need to know everything.
Best thing about being a journalist?
No one puts the phone down when you call them up and immediately start asking questions.
I spent my younger years wanting to become a spy, to hide in the shadows and observe others. In some ways, that ambition has been fulfilled.
Trying to make excuses for a woman not being allowed into a Pulse conference because she had a very young child with her. Never defend the indefensible.
Best career move?
Journalism training – of course!
What is your best attribute as an editor?
And the worst?
Occasional selective hearing.
Favourite health secretary?
Alan Johnson. He would always answer a question and if he didn’t know the answer, defer to someone else who did.
Who would you most like to thank?
My English teacher, Mr Littlewood. He told me that I had talent and I have never forgotten that.
What makes you angry?
Wilful ignorance… and the House of Lords.
That woman who was wrongly thrown out of a Pulse conference.
What would you do if you won £100 million?
Probably foolishly try to buy a national newspaper.
Your go-to karaoke song?
Wuthering Heights by Kate Bush.
Ru Paul’s Drag Race. Although I don’t feel guilty.
What would you do if you were invisible for a day?
Slap a facemask on Boris Johnson.
Most treasured possession?
My two cats.
What are you doing to reduce your carbon footprint?
Composting everything I can get my hands on.
What part does alcohol play in your life?
Alcohol not so much. Food, however…
What do you bore your family with?
Politics. They know I have ‘views’ on most things.
Answering questions, rather than asking them. Oh, and cupcakes.
What would be on your menu for the last supper?
Anything apart from cupcakes – they are evil. Probably toad in the hole and a mug of Yorkshire Tea.
I’ve had a few. Even attempting to become fluent in Japanese is a big one.