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Regional Development Agencies: South West

Volume 696: debated on Tuesday 20 November 2007

My right honourable friend the Minister of State for Competitiveness (Stephen Timms) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

I have decided to appoint the new board members listed below:

Ellen Winser; and

Brian Robinson.

The new appointments will be for a period of three years.

I have also decided to reappoint Nick Buckland for a further period of three years.

The appointments will begin on 14 December 2007 and will expire on 13 December 2010.

I have placed further details of the new appointments in the Libraries of both Houses. They were all made in accordance with the code of practice of the Commissioner for Public Appointments.

Biographies of those appointed

Ellen Winser—After 25 years in the City, where she was the first woman to be taken into partnership by a London firm of stockbrokers (James Capel and Co) and one of the first women members of the Stock Exchange, Ellen went off long-distance sailing with her husband in 1990. In the next five years, they visited 40 countries and sailed 50,000 miles. On return, Ellen became involved with a variety of organisations in Cornwall and was chairman of Liontrust Asset Management plc from 1996 to 2004. She is now chairman of the governors of Truro College and is chairman of the trustees of the National Maritime Museum Cornwall, a governor of the University of Plymouth and a director of Pendennis Shipyard Ltd. She was chairman of Sutton Harbour Holdings plc from 1997 until earlier this year and was a director/trustee of Cornwall Care Ltd for eight years. She became a Deputy Lieutenant for Cornwall in 2003.

Brian Robinson—He has a track record developed in the financial services sector initially as an underwriter, after which he switched to marketing, where he played a key role in the merger of Eagle Star Insurance and Zurich Financial Services. More recently he has turned his efforts to the SME sector, starting a marketing and risk consultancy in 2002 and a credit management software company in 2004. He was elected to the Forest of Dean District Council in May 2007 and was appointed chairman of the Corporate Scrutiny and Review Committee; in December, he joins the cabinet with a portfolio of efficiency and finance. He is a fellow of the Chartered Insurance Institute and the Chartered Institute of Marketing.

Nick Buckland—He has spent 20 years working as a senior manager in the UK IT industry, mainly for US companies. In 1996 he took a career change, taking an interest in a number of activities. He holds a number of non-executive directorships in a variety of companies, including a veterinary clinical pathology laboratory, an integrated marketing company, an IT integrator and a rural tourism company. He is chairman of Tamar Science Park and is managing partner of an IT headhunting organisation and sponsorship management consultancy. He represents the RDA on the Devon and Cornwall Learning and Skills Council and is a member of the BERR Technology Strategy Board. He is an observer on the regional Science and Industry Council. He also sits on the boards of Finance Cornwall, Finance South West and Cornwall Enterprise, and he is a governor of Plymouth University. He has a BSc in mathematics and is a fellow of the British Computer Society, the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications and the RSA. He is also a member of the Chartered Management Institute, the Institute of Directors and the Royal Institution. He is a chartered engineer, chartered information systems practitioner and a European engineer.