Press release

Re-appointment of Chair to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE)

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

The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions today announced the re-appointment of Judith Hackitt CBE as the Chair of the HSE

The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions today announced the re-appointment of Judith Hackitt CBE as the Chair of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

Judith was first appointed as Chair of the then Health and Safety Commission in October 2007, for a period of five years. Following re-appointment, Judith will serve for three further years, to October 2015.

A chemical engineer who has held senior industry posts, including as the Director General of the Chemical Industries Association, Ms Hackitt was also a Health and Safety Commissioner from 2002 to 2005.

Chris Grayling, Minister for Employment with responsibility for health and safety matters welcomed the appointment saying;

I am delighted that Judith Hackitt has accepted reappointment as the Chair of HSE. Her challenging of poor decision making in the name of health and safety combined with a pragmatic, risk based approach to regulation and enforcement will ensure that the deserved reputation of HSE as a fair and open regulator is maintained”.

Judith Hackitt said:

I am delighted to have the opportunity to continue as the HSE Chair at an exciting and demanding time for both the organisation and the health and safety community more widely. My focus is clear - ensuring that we continue to drive down death, injury and ill health in Britain’s workplaces, while delivering changes to the regulatory system that make it clearer and simpler for employers to understand what they need to do to manage serious risks”.

Notes to Editors:

Judith Hackitt’s reappointment will commence on 1 October 2012 and will be for a term of three years. Her appointment will be on a four day per week basis. The reappointment has been made in full conformity with the Code of Practice of the Office of the Commissioner for Public Appointments.

Biographical details

Judith was appointed Chair of the Health and Safety Commission with effect from 1 October 2007 for a term of 5 years and became Chair of the Health and Safety Executive when the two organisations merged on 1 April 2008. Judith previously served as a Commissioner between 2002 and 2005. She was awarded her CBE for services to health and safety.

Judith worked in Brussels for the European Chemical Industry Association (CEFIC) in 2006/7. She worked at the Chemical Industries Association as Director of Business and Responsible Care (1998 - 2002) and Director General (2002 - 2006).

Judith began her working career in 1975 with Exxon Chemicals where she spent 15 years in various process management roles at Fawley. She was subsequently European Operations Director of a speciality pigments business before becoming Group Risk Manager at Elementis PLC with world-wide responsibility for health and safety, insurance and litigation. She also served for three years as a non-executive Director of Oxfordshire Health Authority.

Judith trained as a Chemical Engineer at Imperial College, London and is a Fellow of the Institution of Chemical Engineers, an Ordinary Member of Council of the Institution of Chemical Engineers, a Fellow of the City and Guilds Institute and an Honorary Vice President of the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health. She was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering in July 2010.

Judith was appointed as a non-Executive Director of the Energy Saving Trust in January 2009. She became a Trustee of the National Coal Mining Museum for England in June 2009.

Judith has also been named as the president-elect of the Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) for 2013/14. She will take up the role of deputy president in 2012/2013.

She is not engaged in any political activity.

Health and Safety Executive

HSE is the national independent watchdog for work-related health, safety and illness in Great Britain. Its mission is the prevention of death, injury, and ill health to those at work and those affected by work activities.

HSE is a Crown Non-Departmental Public Body (NDPB) and is accountable to the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions for its performance.