Senior government adviser takes on top job in biggest environmental coalition in England

Dr Richard Benwell will join Wildlife and Countryside Link as its Chief Executive from 1 October 2019.

Richard Benwell. Photo credit: Wildlife and Countryside Link

Richard Benwell. Photo credit: Wildlife and Countryside Link

rior to taking up this appointment Dr Benwell has held a series of influential positions in the civil service, House of Commons Commission, and the environmental movement. Most recently, as policy adviser to the Secretary of State at Defra, he contributed to development of the Department's three flagship bills: the Environment Bill, the Agriculture Bill and the Fisheries Bill.

Dr Benwell has also been highly engaged with Wildlife and Countryside Link (who are part of the Sustain alliance) for over the 5 years when he worked at Link members RSPB and then WWT (Wildfowl and Wetland Trust). Dr Richard Benwell, said: 

"The twin challenges of protecting nature and stopping climate change outweigh short-term political questions a hundredfold. The British identity as a nation of environmentalists and animal-lovers will long outlast any labels like “remainer” or “Brexiteer”. We must not let political turmoil shake our resolve to create a better environment for everyone."

Dr Benwell takes over the role of Chief Executive at Wildlife and Countryside Link from Dr Elaine King, who recently took up the role of CEO at the Chilterns Conservation Board after more than eight years with Wildlife and Countryside Link. Dr King said: "I’m delighted at Richard’s appointment. I cannot think of a better person to take up the reins at Wildlife and Countryside Link. Richard’s experience and vast knowledge of the sector and the challenges it faces, make him ideally suited to tackling the threats and maximising the opportunities ahead for our environment."

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