Our governance

Details of Defra's governance structure.

Defra Board

The Defra Board provides strategic, corporate leadership to the department and has particular responsibility for monitoring performance and delivery. It meets once a quarter.

The membership consists of:

Ministers

  • Andrea Leadsom, Secretary of State
  • George Eustice, Minister of State for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food
  • Thérèse Coffey, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the Environment and Rural Life Opportunities
  • Lord Gardiner, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Rural Affairs and Biosecurity, and Lords Minister

Senior officials

  • Clare Moriarty, Permanent Secretary
  • Betsy Bassis, Director General, Chief Operating Officer
  • Nick Joicey, Director General for Strategy, International and EU Exit

Ex officio members

  • Emma Howard Boyd, Chair of the Environment Agency
  • Andrew Sells, Chairman of Natural England

Non-Executive Directors

  • Steve Holliday
  • Peter Bonfield
  • Catherine Doran
  • Paul Rew

Executive Committee (ExCo)

The Executive Committee (ExCo) is a sub-committee of the Board, it:

  • provides a strategic steer
  • makes decisions where appropriate on cross-cutting Defra group issues
  • reviews plans and progress on improving Defra’s capacity and capability for the future
  • oversees cross departmental initiatives to inform strategic decisions by ministers on their priorities and spending plans

Membership

  • Clare Moriarty, Permanent Secretary
  • Nick Joicey, Director General for Strategy, International and EU Exit
  • Director General for Food, Farming, Animal and Plant Health (to be appointed)
  • Betsy Bassis, Director General, Chief Operating Officer
  • Emily Miles, Group Director of Strategy
  • Jac Broughton, acting Group HR Director
  • Alison Pritchard, Transformational Change Director
  • Toby Nation, interim Group Director of Communications
  • Sonia Phippard, Director General for Marine, Natural Environment and Rural
  • Sir James Bevan, CEO of the Environment Agency

Board Meetings

The board meets quarterly.

Expenses and hospitality

In the interests of transparency we regularly publish summaries of meetings, and details of expenses and hospitality.