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Highlands and Islands Enterprise appoints new chief executive

Highlands and Islands Enterprise appoints new chief executive

Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) has appointed Charlotte Wright as chief executive.

Wright is currently the agency’s director of business and sector development, and has held the role of interim chief executive since the end of August 2016.


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Recruitment for the chief executive’s post got under way in March this year, and attracted widespread interest.

Fergus Ewing, Cabinet Secretary for the Rural Economy and Connectivity, said he was delighted to confirm Wright’s appointment.

“Charlotte has proven herself as an exceptional leader who is absolutely committed to making a difference in every part of the region, and I am certain she will be a highly effective and inspiring chief executive for years to come," he said.

“The Scottish Government and HIE work closely together as part of Team Scotland on economic development and that arrangement works well.”

Wright joined HIE 20 years ago, having previously run her own small business and worked in the NHS. 

She said: “It has been an absolute privilege to have served HIE in my present post, and I am both delighted and honoured to have been appointed as chief executive. 

“Our results for 2016/17 demonstrate a highly successful set of achievements in very challenging economic circumstances, and our new operating plan for the current year shows that we are as ambitious for every part of our region as we have ever been.

“We will undoubtedly face some challenges in the next few years, as will other parts of the country, but our businesses and communities have proven themselves time and again to be resilient and adaptable to new circumstances.

“I look forward to working with our many partners to ensure the Highlands and islands continues to punch above its weight as a successful region and make a strong contribution to Scotland’s economic growth.”

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