The Right Honourable Ruth Kelly has been appointed as the new Chair of Water UK. She replaces Anthony Ferrar who has concluded his three year term that he has held since April 2020.
As a former Member of Parliament for Bolton West from 1997-2010, Kelly served in the UK Cabinet for four years, as Secretary of State for Education and Skills, Communities and Local Government, and Transport, under both Tony Blair and Gordon Brown.
Since stepping down as an MP, Kelly became the Global Head of Client Strategy at HSBC Global Asset Management and Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research and Enterprise at St Mary’s University, Twickenham.
Currently she is the Chair of Thames Freeport, a Director of Heathrow Airport, advises the Vatican on its financial portfolio and, last year, was appointed Senior Fellow at the Policy Exchange think tank.
Commenting on her appointment, The Rt Hon. Ruth Kelly, said: “This is a crucial time to be joining the water industry where there is, rightly, increasing scrutiny on its performance. I know how important water and the environment are to all of us, especially as we face the increasing pressures of climate change and population growth.
“I look forward to working closely with company chief executives on the transformation that is required to meet the understandable and increasing public expectations for improved rivers and seas. Water UK has a crucial role to play and I am excited to lead it as it supports the water industry to rise to the challenges before it.
“Finally, on behalf of the Water UK Board and team, I would like to thank my predecessor Anthony Ferrar for his leadership of Water UK over the last three years.”