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Judith Webb, Forestry Commissioner for Wales, has landed a role as a Public Appointments Ambassador in a new Government programme led by the Government Equalities Office and Cabinet Office to encourage more people to apply for public appointments.
The Public Appointments Ambassadors programme was launched at a high profile event in Whitehall by Government Equalities Office Minister of State Maria Eagle MP.
Judith, who lives between Abergavenny and Hereford near Ewyas Harold, was appointed a Commissioner for Wales in 2007 and runs her own business, specialising in woodland management, land-use policy and conservation schemes.
Public bodies make decisions that affect our day to day lives but too few women, people from ethnic minorities and disabled people sit on boards like the Arts Council, the governing bodies of local hospitals and the Competition Commission.
Judith said, "it’s an honour to be selected as an ambassador for this campaign. I have found being a public appointee a hugely rewarding experience. I hope my experience will inspire others from different backgrounds with skills to bring to public boards to come forward."
Judith joins over 180 ambassadors, who are current public appointees from across the UK, including playwright and Deputy Chair of the British Museum, Bonnie Greer, and Peter Cooke, Vice-Chair of the Independent Living Fund.
As an ambassador, Judith will show why it’s vital to have people with a wide range of skills and experience involved in the important decisions public boards make, playing a key role in highlighting the benefits of serving on a board and encouraging more people from under-represented groups to apply.
To find out more about public appointments, current vacancies and how to apply for new mentoring programmes, visit http://www.direct.gov.uk/publicappointments
Notes to Editors
1. Forestry Commission Wales is the Welsh Assembly Government department responsible for forestry policy and looks after the 126,000 hectares (311,000 acres ) of public forests owned by the Welsh Assembly Government.
2. Women currently form 33.3%; ethnic minorities 5.7%; and people with disabilities 5% of all public appointees. Under tough new cross-Government targets, by 2011 the Government wants to see women form 50% of new public appointees, disabled people 14%, and people from ethnic minorities 11%, so that the boards of public bodies better reflect society.
3. The Government Equalities Office is responsible for the Government’s overall strategy, legislation, and priorities on equality issues. The Office also has direct responsibility for policy on gender equality, sexual orientation, and for integrating work on race. The Prime Minister announced the establishment of the Government Equalities Office in July 2007 and it became a Department in its own right in October 2007. It works to Ministers Harriet Harman, Maria Eagle, Vera Baird and Michael Foster.