Sir Andrew Witty

Being a chief executive officer of a global pharmaceutical company is fine and all, but it's nothing like being a knight........we suppose.

Lest we get too far from the start of the year, we need to mention that GlaxoSmithKline CEO Andrew Witty is now Sir Andrew Witty, having been given a knighthood in the semi-annual British tradition of bestowing "New Year's Honours," on those showing "outstanding achievement and service across the whole of the United Kingdom."

The queen completes the other half of the semi-annual piece by announcing a list on her birthday, which is in June.

There had been some snickering in the pharmaceutical community - perhaps by cynical former colonists - that Witty had geared a few actions, or at least public discussion of them, in hopes of gaining such a title.

Witty spoke in 2011 of adding jobs in the UK. He also pushed for malaria vaccine to be distributed for lower costs in much of the world that still suffers from the disease.

The British government is involved in the process, which means there is always debate about who gets named. Witty does serve on an economic committee for Prime Minister David Cameron.

The full list and bits on the process can be found on the government site, which is here.