Scottish Natural Heritage appoints five women

New SNH board members from left: Kate Broughton, Cath Denholm, Jackie Hyland, Aoife Martin and Susan Murray

Scotland’s environment secretary Roseanna Cunningham announced Scottish Natural Heritage’s (SNH) new-look board which includes five new female members.

SNH said the appointments illustrate the organisation’s drive to meet the Scottish Government’s 50:50 by 2020 initiative for increased female representation.

It said it is the culmination of SNH’s work with Changing the Chemistry (CtC), an organisation whose aim is to encourage diversity by having more applications from women.

SNH is the Scottish Government’s advisor on the environment.

The five new SNH board members are:

  • Dr Kate Broughton, who has 30 years’ research and energy business experience, initially as a geologist, and later in the private sector for Edinburgh-based Wood Mackenzie.
  • Cath Denholm, who joined NHS Health Scotland in 2005 and is currently Executive Director of Strategy. Denholm is also a member of the Institute of Directors and Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.
  • Dr Jackie Hyland, consultant in Public Health Medicine with NHS Tayside, who is currently preparing a thesis at St Andrews University focussing on air quality and health, and the socioeconomic benefits of active travel.
  • Aoife Martin, Registrar of Scotland for Companies House, and an experienced resource management professional who recently returned to Scotland after 12 years working for the New Zealand Government in fisheries, forestry and land management.
  • Susan Murray, who has 20 years’ experience working in the public, private and charity sectors. She is currently director of Agent M Ltd, supporting organisations interested in social change, and is a trustee of the ICAS Foundation.

Cunningham said: “I very much welcome these five new members to the SNH Board and I am sure that SNH will benefit hugely from their wide range of experience and expertise.

“These appointments mean that, for the first time, there are now more women than men serving on the SNH Board.

“This Government is committed to making meaningful and lasting progress towards true gender equality – towards shattering the glass ceiling for good – and it is vital we have strong and visible female leadership in our public bodies, including in those dealing with Scotland’s natural heritage.”

Scottish Natural Heritage chairman Ian Ross said: “We are delighted to unveil our new-look board which includes five new female members.

“They have been appointed purely on merit and bring significant experience in a wide range of areas including the important business, health, and third sectors.

“I believe the diversity we have within the SNH board provides greater authority and knowledge to our debates and decisions and brings us closer to the voice and views of the people of Scotland.

“To have increased our complement of women from one to six out of a total of 10 now on the Board is a progressive step, and this achievement helps us in meeting the Scottish Government’s 50:50 by 2020 initiative.”

Sue Walker, SNH’s deputy chair, said: “Our new board members will significantly contribute to our work: a process that has begun with our commitment to encouraging greater diversity and inclusion.

“We’re delighted to have worked with Scottish peer network Changing the Chemistry in creating this diversity, and we very much welcome their advice.”