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Re-Appointment Of Five Commissioners To The Sustainable Development Commission

16 November 2006

The UK Government and Devolved Administrations announced today that four Commissioners - Lindsey Colbourne (Communications & Engagement); Anna Coote (Health); Alan Knight (Sustainable Consumption); and Anne Power (Housing & Communities) - have been re-appointed to the Sustainable Development Commission for a further three year period until 15th October 2009. Tim O'Riordan (Science) has been re-appointed for a further two years until 15th October 2008.

These Commissioners were initially appointed by the Prime Minister to the UK Sustainable Development Commission in October 2000. In accordance with the guidelines issued by the Office of the Commissioner for Public Appointments Jonathon Porritt, as Chairman of the Commission, completed a performance appraisal of each with input from Defra, Whitehall, other public, private and third sector stakeholders. All were recommended for re-appointment.

Ian Pearson, Minister of State for Environment, said:

"The Sustainable Development Commission is playing an increasingly important role as the Government's advisor, advocate, and watchdog reporting on progress on sustainable development. The knowledge, experience and commitment of its Commissioners is particularly important at a time when the SDC is expanding its capacity and expertise."

Biographical Notes:

Lindsey Colbourne
Lindsey is internationally recognised for her pioneering work in developing and applying techniques for involving a wide range of individuals and organisations in sustainable development - often in situations of conflict. In 1993, at the age of 25, Lindsey established Vision 21 in Gloucestershire, the first community-based Local Agenda 21, a network of 1,500 volunteers working on 60 projects, in partnership with the county council and 6 district councils. She is also Co-ordinator of InterAct, an alliance of experienced practitioners, researchers, writers and policy makers committed to using these techniques to support democratic renewal, social inclusion, sustainable development and a vibrant civil society.

Anna Coote
Anna is Head of Engaging Patients and the Public at the Healthcare Commission, a national regulatory body. She was formerly Director of Health Policy at the King's Fund, a London-based charity, leading its work on health improvement and sustainable development in the health sector. Prior to that she was Deputy Director of the Institute for Public Policy Research, the centre-left think tank (1993-7), where she led the Institute's groundbreaking work on health and social policy, on citizens' juries and deliberative public involvement, and on media and communications. She has been adviser to the Minister for Women (1997-8); a Senior Lecturer in Media and Communications at Goldsmiths College, London University (1991-3); a producer and editor of current affairs and documentaries for Channel Four TV (1982-9); Deputy Editor of the New Statesman (1978-82), and a journalist and broadcaster.

Anne Power
Anne is Professor of Social Policy at the London School of Economics and Deputy Director of the Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion. Since 1965 she has been involved in European and American housing and urban problems.

In 1966 she worked with Martin Luther King's 'End Slums' campaign in Chicago, and on her return to Britain organised community-based projects in Islington. From 1979 to 1989 she worked for the Department of the Environment, setting up Priority Estates Projects to rescue run-down estates all over the country.

In 1991 she became founding Director of the National Tenants Resource Centre at Trafford Hall in Chester, which provides residential training for people living and working in low-income communities.

She was awarded a MBE in 1983 for work in Brixton, and a CBE in June 2000 for services to regeneration and resident participation. Anne Power was a member of the Urban Task Force, the Government's Housing Sounding Board and in 2002 she chaired the Independent Commission.

Alan Knight
Alan Knight is Head of Social Accountability at SAB Miller - the worlds second largest Brewery. He joined in December 2004.

Prior to that he was Head of Social Responsibility for Kingfisher. In this role, he was responsible for co-ordinating social and environmental policies across the Kingfisher Group of over 590 stores in 12 countries. From 1990 to 2000 he served as Head of Sustainability at B&Q, the UK's market leader in DIY and part of the Kingfisher Group. There he became best known for his work on sourcing sustainable timber and developing new techniques for supply chain management.

Acknowledged as one of the world's most experienced managers on environmental and social issues in business, Alan has served on the UK Sustainable Development Commission and as Chair of the Government's Advisory Committee on Consumer Products and the Environment. He was awarded the OBE in June 1998 for Services to the Environmental Audit in Business.

Alan was born in 1964 and has a degree in Geology from Southampton University and PhD from London University for his study of marine pollution in St Austell Bay, Cornwall.

Tim O'Riordan
Tim is Professor of Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia and Associate Director of the Centre for Social and Economic Research on the Global Environment. He has promoted the cause of interdisciplinary research for sustainable development along with colleagues in the School of Environmental Sciences and elsewhere in Europe and North America. He has conducted extensive research on the implications for government generally of the transition to sustainability. He is a Deputy Lieutenant for the County of Norfolk and a Fellow of the British Academy. He has also served on advisory committees to Dow Chemical and TXU-Europe, and is a core faculty member of the Business and Environment programme.

Political Activity:

All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, in accordance with the Nolan recommendations, there is a requirement for appointees' political activities (if any) to be made public.

None of the re-appointed Commissioners have declared any current political activity.


SDC Commissioners' remuneration is currently £225 per day with a time commitment ranging from 24 to 48 days per year. The Chair has a commitment of 100 days per year and receives a remuneration of £300 per day.

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