Former Reuters and BA comms head Simon Walker takes charge at Institute of Directors

Simon Walker, the former British Airways and Reuters comms chief, is to become director general of the Institute of Directors.

Institute of Directors: hires Simon Walker as director general
Institute of Directors: hires Simon Walker as director general

Most recently, Walker served as chief executive office of industry body the British Private Equity and Venture Capital Association.  

He will take up his new role in September, succeeding Miles Templeman.  

Walker took over at the BVCA in 2007, at a time the public and political reputation private equity industry was heavily tarnished. He is widely seen as a key player in the industry becoming more open and communicative and helped lead the sector’s battle over the European Commission’s Alternative Investment Fund Managers’ Directive.  

Before this he spent five years at Reuters, as director of corporate marketing and comms and was previously director of corporate affairs at British Airways. He has also worked as comms secretary to The Queen and Buckingham Palace and as a special adviser in the PM John Major’s Policy Unit at 10 Downing Street.  

He was named as the 2002 UK PR Week Professional Communicator of the Year.  

Commenting on his new role Walker said: ‘I relish the prospect of representing the business community at a time of great economic challenge and opportunity.’  

‘As Director General, I will be campaigning for growth and the competitiveness of British business. We’ve taken the UK’s competitiveness for granted for too long and now find ourselves with an excessively high tax burden, an overregulated labour market and creaking transport and energy infrastructures.  

‘Only the most competitive countries can thrive in today’s global economy. Britain has lost its competitive edge and radical reform is the only route to sustainable growth, stability and long-term job and wealth creation.’

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