New chair designate appointed to FSA

Former private secretary to three Home Secretaries and former chief executive of the Millennium Commission, Heather Hancock, has been appointed as deputy chair of the Food Standards Agency (FSA) with immediate effect with the “expectation” that she will take up the post of FSA Chair from April 1, 2016.

Current FSA Chair, Tim Bennett, in welcoming Ms Hancock (pictured above), said she was joining the board at an exciting time as FSA delivers its new “Food we can trust” strategy.

Ms Hancock’s career has also included being chief executive of the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority, executive director of Yorkshire Forward and a period as chair of the BBC’s Rural Affairs Advisory Committee.

She also holds an LVO, awarded for her contribution to The Prince’s Trust, of which she was a trustee for more than a decade, leading a series of rural revival initiatives for HRH The Prince of Wales.

According to an official appointment notice issued by the Department of Health, Mr Bennett’s position as FSA chair runs until March 31, 2016, after which he will remain on the board as deputy chair, until March 31 2017.

Ms Hancock, meanwhile, is described as “being put forward as the Government’s preferred candidate for chair of the FSA from April 1, 2016, subject to a pre-appointment hearing with the Health Select Committee”.

The FSA chair role involves a time commitment of 2-3 days per week and is remunerated at a rate of £60,000 a year.

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