Ann Cairns appointed lead non-executive board member at BEIS

Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng has appointed Ann Cairns lead non-executive board member at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and launched a competition to appoint further members.

Non-executive board members are experts from outside government who provide oversight and challenge to the department in the development of policy and the management of resources.

Ann will lead the department’s board as BEIS tackles key issues facing the UK, including the economic recovery from coronavirus, efforts to combat climate change and promoting research and innovation, whilst ensuring the UK is a great place to work and to grow a business.

Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said:

It is both an exciting and challenging to time to join our departmental board as we continue to support businesses of all sizes through the pandemic and into recovery.

Ann’s wealth of private sector experience will provide the board with the clear leadership necessary to deliver our priorities to unleash a wave of innovation, reach Net Zero emissions and build back better from the pandemic.

Ann Cairns, lead non-executive board member at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy said:

I am delighted to accept this leading role at such a crucial time for the UK. The BEIS team has a vital part to play in our economic recovery, by building a stronger, greener future.

The UK has showcased its ability to innovate at speed and scale with the development of vaccines and we have the opportunity to demonstrate our leadership on climate change as we host COP26. This innovation makes the UK a great place to work and do business and I am committed to working with the new Business Secretary and the wider team to ensure we build back better.

Ann Cairns is Executive Vice Chair, Mastercard, Chair of ICE Clear Europe and the Global Chair of the 30% Club. Ann brings more than 20 years’ experience working in senior management positions across Europe and the U.S. Prior to joining Mastercard in 2011, Ann was head of the Financial Services Group with Alvarez & Marsal, CEO of Transaction Banking at ABN-AMRO and held senior positions at Citigroup.

The Business Secretary has also today launched a competition to appoint further members of the BEIS board. Applicants should challenge conventional policy development, inspire innovative thinking and push BEIS to continuously improve.

Interested candidates are encouraged to contact the BEIS Governance Team by emailing

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