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Julie James, Minister for Housing and Local Government, today announced four new appointments to the Board of Directors of the Design Commission for Wales.

First published:
12 March 2021
Last updated:

Four new Commissioners, Mike Biddulph, Jon James, Cora Kwiatkowski and Joanna Rees, will all take up their roles on 1 April of this year. These appointments are from 1 April 2021 to 31 March 2025.

Established in 2002 by the Welsh Government, the Design Commission for Wales (DCFW) is a national organisation which champions good design for better buildings, spaces, and places now and for future generations. DCFW draws on the skills of a multi-disciplinary team of professional planners, urban designers, architects, transport planners, sustainability specialists and engineers to deliver expert advice and support for commissioning clients, training for local planning authorities and built environment professionals, placemaking guidance and Wales’ national strategic Design Review service.

Commissioners of the DCFW are Members of its Board of Directors. They are not paid, but are reimbursed for reasonable travel and subsistence costs. They have a time commitment of approximately two days per month.

Julie James said:

 I am pleased that four new Commissioners have been appointed to the Board of the Design Commission for Wales and they each bring with them a wide range of new skills and experience. These appointments will undoubtedly support the DCFW in its important role to implement our national planning policies on design and placemaking in order to create better places for the people of Wales.

Gayna Jones, Chair of the DCFW Board, said:

The Design Commission extends a warm welcome to our new Commissioners and we look forward to them contributing to our strong and diverse board. Our core role of promoting design quality for excellent places is very much about helping to achieve positive outcomes for town centres, cities, villages and communities the length and breadth of Wales as we recover from COVID-19.

We welcome our colleagues to our team and are confident that they will help us continue to play a crucial role in supporting Welsh Government’s objective and key national priorities for better places and good homes and sustaining and developing a vibrant economy, for our towns and city centres. Good design decisions and excellent quality are essential in the route to achieving decarbonisation and climate resilience, developing strong ecosystems and improving the health and well-being of our communities.

Carole-Anne Davies, Chief Executive of the DCFW, said:

It is my great privilege to work with the skilled Board of Directors and staff team here at the Commission. Our new Commissioners will further strengthen that team and our work in helping to make Wales a better place. Their skills and experience will add a new dimension to DCFW and we’re delighted to welcome them to the team.

The appointments comply with the Governance Code on Public Appointments. All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, in accordance with the original Nolan recommendations, there is a requirement for the political activity of appointees (if any are declared) to be published.

None of these persons have carried out any political activities in the last five years or hold any other Ministerial appointment.