Sally Sykes, the current president of the CIPR, will join EEF as director of external affairs in June.
Sykes, who joined the HSE in 2008, said: 'Having worked in industry, I understand the high value, high skill contribution the sector makes to the economy and look forward to building EEF's reputation as the voice of UK manufacturing.'
EEF chief executive Terry Scuoler said: 'This is a recognition of EEF's crucial role at European, national and regional level and I look forward to Sally broadening comms with our key stakeholders.'
Sykes has previously worked in a number of research and development intensive and manufacturing environments, ranging from fine chemicals and bio-medical engineering, to food and drink production.
She was also head of press and PR at Manchester Airport from 1996 to 2002, leading the PR, environmental and political lobbying for its controversial second runway.
In a separate move, EEF has promoted Rocky Lorusso to senior external affairs adviser.