Press release

Lord Browne appointed to key Whitehall role

Francis Maude has announced that Lord Browne of Madingley will become the government’s lead Non-Executive Director.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Minister for the Cabinet Office Francis Maude has announced that Lord Browne of Madingley will become the government’s lead Non-Executive Director.

In this important new role, one of his first tasks will be to work with Secretaries of State to appoint Non-Executive Directors to the board of each government department.  He will also work closely with Mr Maude, on overhauling how departmental boards are run and improving governance across Whitehall.

Lord Browne, the former Chief Executive of BP, will serve as lead non-executive on the Cabinet Office board, chaired by Mr Maude.

Francis Maude said:

The appointment of Non-Executive Directors will galvanise departmental boards as forums where political and official leadership is brought together to drive up performance.

It’s great news for the government and taxpayer that Lord Browne has accepted this powerful role. His experience will be a real benefit in our drive to make Whitehall work in a more businesslike manner and I am looking forward to working with him to implement our vital reform programme.

Lord Browne of Madingley said:

This is a role within government but also independent of it. Its purpose is to assist in the delivery of policy using relevant experience from business. There is a great need for the best of the business community to be involved during these challenging times for the UK.

In addition, today the Cabinet Office published the updated protocol for departmental boards. It sets out in outline how boards, which are chaired by their Secretaries of State, are expected to operate.

Notes to editors

Read the protocol for enhanced departmental boards.

Lord Browne will start work in his new post immediately.

The government has committed to make immediate savings of £6.2 billion. For further details on the government’s efficiency and reform drive please see

The Efficiency and Reform Board is chaired jointly by the Chief Secretary to the Treasury and the Minister for the Cabinet Office. For further details please see

Lord John Browne of Madingley was born in 1948.  He joined BP in 1966 as a university apprentice. He holds a degree in Physics from Cambridge University and a MS Business from Stanford University, California.  He is a Fellow of the Royal Society, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the Royal Academy of Engineering. He has numerous honorary degrees, fellowships and awards. He joined the Board of BP in 1992 and became its Group Chief Executive in 1995 until 2007.  He has been the Chairman of the Advisory Board of Apax Partners LLC (2006-7), non-executive director of Intel (1997-2006), DaimlerChrysler AG (1996-2001), Goldman Sachs (1997-2007 )and SmithKline Beecham (1996-1999). He was voted Most Admired CEO by Management Today from 1999 -2002. He was knighted in 1998 and made a life peer in 2001.
He is presently a Managing Director of Riverstone Holdings LLC, a company which invests in renewable and conventional energy.  He is Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Tate, President of the Royal Academy of Engineering, Chairman of the advisory board of the Cambridge Judge Business School, and a member of a variety of advisory boards.

Lord Browne will be unpaid.

For Cabinet Office press office contact details, visit the press office page.

Published 30 June 2010