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Understanding Rare Chromosome and Gene Disorders

Beverly Searle

Unique’s former Chief Executive Officer Beverly Searle BSc(Hons) PhD CBiol MRSB

In August 2021, Beverly retired as CEO of Unique after more than 30 years of service to the charity. She had been passionately involved since the birth of her daughter Jenny in 1990, first as a volunteer and then, since 1999, as a staff member. Prior to that she was a research biologist with an interest in the biochemistry and genetics of yeast. What a coincidence then that Jenny should be born with a chromosome deletion!

Jenny was profoundly disabled and very medically complex; sadly we lost her when she was 21 years old but we are all very proud to have had her in our lives. Beverly’s son Jonathan is a doctor and her husband Trevor was a software specialist before retirement. Together, Trevor and Beverly developed and maintained Unique’s members’ database, which is still in operation today and forms the bedrock of much of the information and other support we are able to offer families.

As Chief Executive Officer, Beverly was responsible for the day to day running of Unique and the development of our services and over many years she responded to queries from new and existing families on our ‘Listening Ear’ telephone and email helpline as well as working with and helping a great many professionals. She always worked tirelessly to raise the profile of rare chromosome disorders and the work of Unique. Beverly remains in touch with the staff and trustees, is a great supporter of our work and remains an active member of Unique. Her tremendous contribution to the charity over such a long period will be invaluable well into the future.