Peter Robinson - A tribute from his friends and colleagues at Hill Labs
We were deeply saddened to learn earlier this week of the passing of our good friend and former colleague, Peter Robinson. For those of us that knew Peter, this was very sad news and our sympathies are with his family at this time.
Peter joined Hills in the early 90’s, to help set up our new chromatography testing service. Prior to that he had been a medical researcher and then a lecturer at Wintec for 15 years. While at Wintec, he also ran a chromatography course each year, with a colleague from Forest Research Institute, to upskill NZ chemists wanting to use chromatography in their work. He gave his time freely to do this, for the “benefit of his profession”.
Peter was a huge contributor to the success of Hills. His knowledge of chromatography and his natural teaching abilities enabled us to train our young staff quickly in this technique, which has become very important in the analytical field. He was very well liked and respected by all who worked with him. He always made time to answer questions any of the staff had, and his knowledge and experience was impressive.
Not only was he popular with the Hill’s staff, but our clients also enjoyed their interactions with Peter. When we ran workshops or seminars for our clients, he was always the main presenter, making complex topics very easy to understand. He was committed to ensuring our clients received the best possible service, and our Environmental Division, which he managed, became the largest Division in our company. He was truly a key person and made a huge contribution to the success of Hills.
Peter also became involved in national working groups developing regulations for drinking water quality and environmental monitoring, and provided ongoing advice to environmental professionals around New Zealand in this field. A humble man, he was “totally surprised and felt very honoured” when awarded an Honorary Fellowship from Wintec in 2017.
Peter retired in 2017, and is remembered with much fondness amongst the staff at Hills. His passion and enthusiasm for chemistry was very obvious and he was always willing to share his knowledge with others. People enjoyed time spent with Peter and it was obvious that he also enjoyed such interactions. He was a great chemist and a wonderful person who will be missed. Our heartfelt condolences to his wife Laurel and family.
Peter receiving his Fellowship Award from Wintec in 2017