Virginia Barnacle, who uses her maiden name Goodwill at the university, is Industrial Placements Officer with the university’s Brighton Business School, and has been honoured for her services to the community.
Virginia follows in the footsteps of her father Edward Goodwill who was awarded the MBE in 1983 after serving 40 years in the Royal Navy, and her grandfather Montaque Renshaw who received the BEM in 1964 for services to the railway union ASLEF.
Virginia is a founding member and is Vice Chair of the Brighton Surf Lifesaving Club which trains lifesavers. She helped set up a children’s section which has 90 members and organises charity events.
She is also Director of Paddle Round the Pier which brings the surfing community together, runs the world’s largest free water sports festival, and raises money for charity. Virginia has also been involved with the Brighton Sailing Club for the past 20 years and was its first female commodore.
And when Virginia’s best friend died, she housed her friend’s three children s until they found a permanent home.
Virginia said she burst into tears when she received the letter. She said of her BEM: “I’m totally humbled for being recognised for something I love doing so much and derive so much pleasure from.”
Professor Aidan Berry, Director of the Brighton Business School, said: “Virginia works very hard for the university and for the community – this award is thoroughly well deserved.”