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Media releases

Steve Holliday, Juliet Davenport and Aleida Rios take up positions on ever more diverse Energy Institute Council

10-07-2019
  • Former National Grid boss commits professional body to taking ‘whole sector’ approach to ‘existential challenges’ of climate change and diversity
  • Juliet Davenport HonFEI joins as a Vice President and Aleida Rios FEI joins as Chair of Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee – increasing the diversity of skills and experience around the top table

Former National Grid Chief Executive Steve Holliday FREng FEI today became the new President of the Energy Institute (EI), alongside two new leading figures from the energy sector joining in key roles on the professional membership body’s governing Council.

Steve Holliday, who has been a Vice President of the EI for three years, was formally appointed as President by EI members at the EI’s Annual General Meeting today.

Commenting on his appointment, Steve said:

“I’m incredibly proud to become President of the Energy Institute and will use my tenure to focus on the two big existential challenges facing our whole sector: climate change and workforce diversity.

“We close our ears and ignore science and society at our peril. A diverse, modern energy mix requires a diverse, modern workforce and I want the Energy Institute to be at the head, not the tail, of the change that’s urgently needed.”

Steve thanked outgoing President Malcolm Brinded CBE FREng FEI, whose term of office ended today:

“Malcolm is a force of nature, both in energy and intellect. He’s been around the world on our behalf, given evidence to select committees and chaired workshops bringing the wider engineering community together.

“We’re all poorer for his term coming to an end – but pleased he’s staying on our Council and will be contributing to our work as immediate past President for some time to come.”

Today’s AGM also saw two new trustees join the EI’s Council:

  • Juliet Davenport OBE HonFEI, Chief Executive of Good Energy, joined as a Vice President.
  • Aleida Rios FEI, Head of Upstream Engineering at BP, joined as the Chair of the Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee.

On her appointment, Juliet Davenport said:

“Revolutions require new mindsets and new voices, and the Energy Institute has recognised that that is what is needed now. A transition away from the old world of energy to a cleaner, greener, decentralised system will not be possible with the same old world thinking we are used to. Fresh viewpoints and diverse experience are required for the task.

“Early in my career I was often an isolated voice, both as a woman and in making the case for renewables. I am used to challenging accepted thinking, and that is exactly what I plan to do in this role, in order that the Institute, and in turn the country, can be a leader in innovation and in combatting the climate crisis.”

Louise Kingham OBE FEI, Chief Executive of the EI, commented:

“This is a high calibre Council, with expertise, experience and talent drawn from across all parts of the energy system.

“The quality of our new top team isn’t surprising as it’s also our most diverse ever. With eight of our eighteen trustees women and four from minority ethnic backgrounds, it’s one of the most diverse of any professional engineering institution.

“With such strong leadership we’re now well-placed to help drive the pace and urgency of change in the sector, both on decarbonisation and diversity.”

Notes for editors

  1. For media enquiries contact Neil Michie on 020 7467 7132 or nmichie@energyinst.org
  2. A biography of Steve Holliday can be found at: https://www.energyinst.org/about. Photographs of Steve can be downloaded here and here.
  3. A biography of Juliet Davenport can be found at: https://www.goodenergy.co.uk/about-us/our-story/juliet-davenport
  4. The Energy Institute (EI) is the chartered professional membership body bringing global energy expertise together.
    We gather and share essential knowledge about energy, provide the skills that are helping us all use it more wisely, and develop the good practice needed to keep it safe and secure.
    We articulate the voice of energy experts, taking the know-how of around 20,000 members and 200 companies from 120 countries to the heart of the public debate.
    And we’re an independent, not-for-profit, safe space for evidence-based collaboration, an honest broker between industry, academia and policy makers.
    The EI is here for anyone who wants to better understand or contribute to the extraordinary energy system on which we all depend.