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CLB Speaker Series: Baroness Ruth Deech


May 3, 2007 5:00pm - 6:00pm


"The HFEA - Playing God: The Regulation of Reproductive Medicine"

Baroness Ruth Deech chaired the British Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) for ten years. During that time, the HFEA and Baroness Deech were on the hot seat regarding issues as diverse as sex selection, disease screening, "savior sibs", post-menopausal mothers, posthumous sperm donor fathers, and embryonic stem cell research. Her presentation will discuss the realities and challenges of regulating new advances in reproductive technology.

Baroness Deech began her career by studying law at Oxford University. After graduate work at Brandeis University, she taught law at Oxford until 1991 when she was elected Principal of her university college, St Anne's. At the same time she was chosen to be chair of the Human Fertilisation & Embryology Authority. Under her chairmanship, stem cell research was legalized and regulated in the U.K. After her tenure at the HFEA, she became a governor of the British Broadcasting Corporation. In 2005 she was appointed to be a non-party member of the House of Lords, the upper legislative chamber of the British Parliament. Since retiring from Oxford she has held the post of Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education, heading an office that resolves student complaints.