Tom Cargill appointed as new Wilton Park Chief Executive Officer

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  • New CEO announced as Wilton Park, a global forum for strategic discussion, celebrates its 75th anniversary.
  • Mr Cargill, who brings diverse experience from across the public and private sectors, will lead the organisation to continue its vital role of finding innovative solutions to tackle global issues and support British foreign policy priorities.
  • This will include shaping new relationships with the EU and other international partners in 2021, as well as continuing to partner with a range of actors, multilateral bodies and like-minded countries to promote key discussions on climate change, sustainable development, conflict prevention, human rights, and support for a rules-based international system.

Tom Cargill hailed 2021 as an “exciting time” for Wilton Park following his appointment as the agency’s new Chief Executive Officer.

The announcement comes as Wilton Park marks its 75th anniversary and continues to build its vital role to drive collective global security and prosperity, and to build international relationships. From its foundation in 1946, Wilton Park has hosted discussions to address some of the most important issues over the past 75 years – from nuclear non-proliferation, to the impact of technological change on education, work and society – and has become the home for open and innovative discussion.

Mr Cargill, who will take up the role on 18 January, will bring a wealth of public and private sector experience to drive Wilton Park to continue to generate innovative solutions to global issues, and to build new relationships around the world.

Wilton Park runs more than 70 events a year, aiming to facilitate international dialogue and bring fresh thinking to the development of international policy. Under Mr Cargill’s leadership, the organisation will continue to use these platforms to help the UK to navigate a new relationship with the EU and other international partners, recover from the global effects of the coronavirus pandemic and become an even stronger force for good in the world.

Nigel Adams, Minister of State at the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office, said:

Wilton Park has an important part to play in a truly global Britain. Its work demonstrates how the UK is a force for good, driven by ambitious ideas to solve global problems, determined to seize new opportunities and forge new relationships around the world.

Tom Cargill’s diverse experience across the public and private sector means that he is ideally placed to lead Wilton Park’s vital work.

Gisela Stuart, Chair of Wilton Park said:

Tom is a strong appointment for Wilton Park. He brings a huge amount of experience, energy and insight to the role. Under his leadership, Wilton Park will continue to grow and develop, bringing fresh thinking to international policy and supporting its delivery.

Mr Cargill said:

Wilton Park sits right at the heart of the UK’s soft power and global networks. Now is a particularly exciting time to be leading a globally connected organisation that is both a trusted convenor of dialogue and one of Britain’s pre-eminent drivers of soft power. I look forward to building on our networks of influence, as we navigate the new challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.

Currently the CEO of the business development organisation British Expertise International, Mr Cargill brings with him a vast amount of experience working in UK foreign policy, trade, international development and infrastructure.

He has served as founder, CEO, and remains Chair of the not-for-profit British Foreign Policy Group. He previously worked on international business development strategy for the engineering multinational Bechtel and spent 10 years at Chatham House.

Further Information:

  • Mr Cargill succeeds Colin Smith, who has held the role of interim Chief Executive since May 2020 and has moved to another Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) appointment.
  • Wilton Park is an executive agency of the FCDO, helping to drive international dialogue. Its mission is to serve as a force for good, finding practical solutions to critical global issues.

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