Lord Pickles was appointed as the next Conservative Party nominee to the Advisory Committee on Business Appointments in July 2019 and was subsequently appointed as Chair following an open competition, in
line with the Cabinet Office Governance Code, taking up the role in April 2020. His appointment was approved following pre-appointment scrutiny by the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Select Committee.
Lord Pickles was appointed Special Envoy for Post-Holocaust issues in September 2015, replacing Sir Andrew Burns. Lord Pickles works closely with the wide range of Holocaust academics, survivors and educational and social organisations in the UK.
Along with the former Labour Cabinet Minister, Ed Balls, he CoChairs the United Kingdom’s Holocaust Memorial Foundation.
He was made a Life Peer in 2018.
First elected to Parliament in 1992 he retired as MP for Brentwood and Ongar at the 2017 general election. He was previously Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.
Lord Pickles was educated at Greenhead Grammar School and Leeds Polytechnic.
Lord Pickles was the Prime Minister’s Anti-Corruption Champion from 2015 to Spring 2017, and was Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government from 2010 to 2015. He was Leader of Bradford City Council from 1988 to 1990. He held a number of positions while in opposition, including Shadow Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government from 2007 to 2009 and Chairman of the Conservative Party from 2009 to 2010.
Career outside politics
He worked as a consultant in employment practice and as Local Government Editor for Conservative Newsline before becoming an MP in 1992. He is a trustee of 2 local charities – Brentwood Foyer and Brentwood Theatre.
Lord Pickles lives with his wife Irene in Brentwood, Essex.