Heather is a Trustee of Norfolk Citizens Advice and volunteers both as an Adviser and in the Witness Support service. She is also the author of ‘Secret Places’, the first in the DI Geldard series of crime novels.
Her recent career has included Chair of Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust, Deputy Chair of Norfolk Community Health and Care NHS Trust, non-executive director of the Food Standards Agency, Assistant Boundary Commissioner, and Chair of the HGCA Wheat Committee which selects new varieties of wheat for the Recommended List.
Her academic background is in the biosciences, with a degree in zoology and comparative physiology, and most of her working life has been focussed around agriculture and food. A 33-year career in the Ministry of Agriculture and Defra ranged across a variety of roles including Controller of Plant Variety Rights, Head of Animal Welfare Policy, Programme Manager for the programme which created Natural England and Regional Operations Director for a number of animal health emergencies in England. While Head of Human Resources at the then Central Science Laboratory she qualified as a Fellow of the Institute of Personnel and Development and obtained their certificate in the psychology of management.
Her links with the agriculture and food sectors are strong, having been a commercial breeder of both sheep and alpacas and a past Chair of the Oxford Farming Conference. She is married to a Cambridgeshire arable farmer.
"I feel both honoured and excited to be appointed as Chair of LANTRA. I believe very strongly that improving both workforce and management skills and knowledge are key to addressing the challenges and opportunities which lie ahead. LANTRA has a vital role and it will be a privilege to play a part in helping all the sectors we serve to embrace change and build resilience."