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Julia Grant appointed Forestry Commissioner

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Julia Grant

Her Majesty The Queen has approved the appointment of Julia Grant as a Forestry Commissioner for England.

Ms Grant is chief executive of Pro Bono Economics, a charity which helps other charities and social enterprises to understand and improve their impact. She has also held leadership roles in global consulting firms, insurance and the social sector in a career spanning 30 years, providing deep experience of the links between the business and non-business worlds, including investing for impact. Among these organisations were Impetus the Private Equity Foundation, The National Gardens Scheme, and Surrey Community Action (the rural community council for Surrey), where she built on her long-standing interest in landscape, heritage and the environment.

She has extensive non-executive board experience, including a ministerial appointment at the Learning & Skills Council Surrey (where she served on the audit and diversity committees) and service as chair of the regional body for the voluntary and community sector in South East England.

She is a council member of the Arts & Humanities Research Council, and sits on the Advisory Board of Big Society Capital. She has been a board member of charities including Shelter and the Community Foundation for Surrey, where she is a trustee.

She read politics, philosophy and economics at Oxford University, and holds an MBA from London Business School.

Welcoming her appointment, Sir Harry Studholme, Chair of the Board of Forestry Commissioners, said,

"I'm very pleased to welcome Julia Grant to the Board of Forestry Commissioners. Julia’s insight and experience of business, the charitable sector and government will be invaluable in helping us to respond to the challenges facing the Forestry Commission over the next few years.”

Ms Grant lives in Surrey and replaces Keith Oates, whose term of office has expired.


  1. The Forestry Commission works to improve the lives of people in England and Scotland through the many benefits provided by sustainably managed woods and forests. These include sustainable timber production, public recreation, nature conservation, and rural and community development. It does this by supporting woodland managers with grants, tree felling licences, regulation and advice; promoting the benefits of forests and forestry; and advising Ministers in the UK and Scottish Governments on forestry policy. It also manages 894,000 hectares (2.2 million acres) of public forest land in England and Scotland owned or leased by Ministers to provide the above benefits. Through its Forest Research agency, it conducts world-class scientific research and technical development relevant to forestry. and
  2. The Board of Forestry Commissioners oversees the work of the Forestry Commission on behalf of Ministers. The Commission's National Committees for England and Scotland carry out some of the functions of the Commissioners at country level.
  3. The Scottish Government is holding a consultation on the future of forestry governance in Scotland with a view to ‘completing the devolution of forestry’.
  4. Responsibility for implementing Welsh Government forestry policy was transferred to a new body, Natural Resources Wales, on 1 April 2013. See
  5. Further information about the Forestry Commissioners is available at .

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