Bright lights the IEC recognises electrical safety expert Derek Johns

Bright lights Derek Johns

Issue 44 – November 2012

Congratulations to Derek Johns who was awarded the International Electrotechnical Commission's (IEC's) Thomas A Edison Award for his work as Chair of IEC technical committee 61 (IEC/TC 61), Safety of household and similar electrical appliances.

Standards New Zealand Chief Executive Debbie Chin says this recognition is a testament to Derek's expertise and his dedicated service to standardisation.

'We are extremely fortunate to have someone of Derek's calibre representing New Zealand at the international level. Under his leadership, IEC/TC 61 has developed Standards that support electrical safety, quality, efficiency, and compatibility. The committee's work benefits people around the world, including New Zealanders. This award pays tribute to his knowledge, expertise, and leadership capabilities.'

Launched in 2010, the Thomas A Edison Award recognises exceptional achievement, dedicated service, and significant contributions to the IEC through the effective management of their IEC committee.

This is Derek's second gong from the IEC; in 2007 he received the Lord Kelvin Award – the organisation's highest tribute for exceptional long-term achievements. Closer to home, Derek has received several awards from Standards New Zealand, including the Standards Council Award for Outstanding Contribution to Standards and Standardisation.

In 2011, Derek was appointed to his sixth term as Chair of IEC/TC 61which is one of the largest and most active IEC committees. He is the only New Zealand Chair of an IEC committee.

A stalwart champion of Standards and standardisation, in addition to chairing IEC/TC 61, Derek is also Secretary of IEC subcommittee 61H, Safety of electrically operated farm appliances. At the Australasian level, he serves as Chair of the joint AS/NZS committee EL-002, Safety of household and similar electrical appliances and small power transformers and power supplies.

Other 2012 Thomas A Edison Award recipients include: Karen Higginbottom, United States; Yaping Li, China; Kerry McManama, United States; David W Smith, United Kingdom; Etsuji Sugita, Japan; and Claire Vincent, Canada. Derek and the other award winners were honoured at the IEC's 2012 annual general meeting held in early October in Oslo, Norway.

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