Environment Agency Board Member

Body: Environment Agency (EA)
Appointing Department: Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs
Sector: Environment, Food & Rural Affairs
Location: Various
Number of Vacancies: 3
Remuneration: £350 per day
Time Requirements: Four days per month


An announcement has been made on the outcome of this appointment.

Environment Secretary George Eustice has appointed Sarah Mukherjee and Mark Suthern as Non-Executive Directors to the Environment Agency Board. The appointments will begin on 10 January 2022 and will run for four years until 9 January 2026.

All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. The appointments comply with the Ministerial Code of Governance on Public Appointments. There is a requirement for appointees’ political activity (if significant) to be made public. Both Sarah and Mark have not declared any political activity in the past five years.

Date: 21/12/2021

View Announcement

Campaign Timeline

  • Competition Launched


  • Closed for Applications

    02/06/2021 at 12:00

  • Panel Sift


  • Final Interview Date


  • Announcement

    21/12/2021 at 12:00


Assessment Panel

Vacancy Description

About the Board

The Environment Agency Board:

• sets the strategy, drives performance and holds the organisation to account;

• promotes positive and constructive relationships with stakeholders;

• focuses on building consensus and finding practical solutions;

• supports and encourages the executive team and staff through constructive challenge and celebrating success;

• provides stewardship for public funds and environmental outcomes.

The Board is made up of a Chair, Chief Executive and up to 14 other members.

The Board has a collegiate style. It works with the Environment Agency’s executive directors to bring a range of knowledge, expertise and insight to the organisation and horizon scans for future opportunities and risks.

The Board is directly accountable to ministers for all aspects of the Environment Agency and its performance. Ministers provide guidance and direction and expect the Board to ensure that the organisation fulfils its statutory duties and operates with propriety, regularity, economy, efficiency and effectiveness.

You can find the specific responsibilities of the Board in the Environment Agency’s Framework document, that can be accessed through the candidate pack.

Board members:

• provide senior strategic leadership to help the organisation focus on creating a better place through the new national

flood and coastal erosion risk management strategy, climate resilience, the road to net zero and sustainable growth;

• provide relevant professional insight into key corporate or operational business issues;

• attend Board meetings and attend and chair Board committees;

• represent the Environment Agency externally;

• serve as a lead member for one or more of the Environment Agency’s operational areas, supporting senior staff on the delivery of national and local priorities.

The successful candidates must abide by the Nolan principles of public service and the Code of Conduct for Board Members which are given in the candidate pack.

Role specification

The Secretary of State, working closely with the Chair of the Environment Agency, is seeking to appoint three new members to the Board of the Environment Agency. We are looking to appoint two members with expertise in flood and coastal erosion risk management, and one member with expertise in land management.

The Secretary of State wants to attract high-calibre and forward-thinking applicants from diverse backgrounds. Applicants will need to demonstrate they are able to carry out a full range of non-executive responsibilities and have relevant skills, knowledge and expertise.

Board members have the opportunity to shape the strategic vision of the Environment Agency and think in different ways putting net zero, climate adaptation and innovative finance at the heart of its ambitions.

The Environment Agency is a place-based organisation and its Board needs to reflect the communities it represents. We welcome candidates with diverse backgrounds and who can bring a regional perspective and a local understanding. We welcome applications from those who can represent all regions across England, particularly the North.

Flood and coastal erosion risk management roles (x 2)

The new £5.2 billion flood and coastal defence programme for England began in April 2021. In July 2020 the Environment Agency launched the new National flood and coastal erosion risk management strategy for England, which sets out a vision of a nation ready for, and resilient to, flooding and coastal change.

We are seeking candidates with flood and coastal erosion risk management skills and experience in either of the following:

• innovative civil engineering and/or local infrastructure delivery to give robust governance and oversight for the increased capital investment programme, the implementation of the flood strategy and climate adaptation

• a focus on place-making, integrated water management and practical delivery with local partners.

Land management role (x 1)

We are interested in candidates who have experience across rural and urban land management, built from an understanding of agriculture or water management and the policy expertise to support these.

Person Specification

Candidates must be able to demonstrate all of the following essential criteria:

The Secretary of State is seeking to attract high-calibre applicants from a range of diverse backgrounds who can discharge the full range of non-executive responsibilities.

Candidates must be able to demonstrate all the following essential criteria:

• A demonstrable commitment to the Environment Agency’s role in protecting and improving the environment, reducing the risk to communities from flooding and coastal erosion, and promoting sustainable development.

• An ability to question, challenge constructively and influence decision-making as part of the governance of a large organisation, bringing a diversity of opinions and views.

• An ability to analyse issues at a strategic level in ways which are impartial, creative and focused on finding solutions.

• A demonstrable commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion.

• A proven ability to influence and engage a strong and diverse network of people and organisations, and the ability to inspire confidence in stakeholders at all levels.

Candidates must have skills and expertise in one of the following areas, as outlined in the role specification:

• Flood and coastal erosion risk management

• Land management

Additional Information

The Board meets approximately eight times per year and Board committees meet four times a year.

We actively encourage applications from individuals from a wide range of backgrounds. Defra is a Disability Confident employer.

How to Apply

To apply, please send:

• a CV of no more than two sides of A4;

• a supporting statement of no more than 1,000 words, setting out how you meet the essential criteria, making sure you refer to the contents of this document and provide specific examples. Include either flood and coastal erosion risk management or land management as an area of expertise.

• e-mail addresses for two referees;

• Completed Monitoring form 1 (Political Activity and Conflict of Interest Questionnaire). Please note the section on conflicts of interest and due diligence in the candidate pack.

• Completed Monitoring form 2 (Diversity Monitoring Questionnaire)

Your CV and statement should be returned to the following address by the closing date: 12.00 (midday) on 2 June. Email to publicappts@defra.gov.uk quoting reference APPT14-21.

For further information about the role please email: beth.deGatacre@environment-agency.gov.uk

1_EA Candidate pack
2_Monitoring form 1 (Conflicts of Interest and Conduct)
3_Monitoring form 2 (Diversity and political activity form)
4_Public Appointments Guidance Notes
5_Public Appointments Privacy Notice
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