Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham has already gone one better than predecessor Christopher Graham by appointing a new deputy commissioner, drafting in a former British diplomat to fill the role.
Graham gave up the ghost on recruiting deputies to replace the the two Smiths – David and Graham – due to a lack of suitable candidates.
But Rob Luke, the former British High Commissioner to Malta will now join at the end of January 2017 and work alongside Simon Entwisle to help shape and implement the future of the organisation and information rights.
Educated at St George’s School, Harpenden and St Catharine’s College, Cambridge, Luke joined the British Diplomatic Service in 2000 after working for the UK’s Millennium Commission.
He served initially at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) in London, working on the Middle East Peace Process. In 2002, he was seconded to the Brazilian Diplomatic Institute, before serving for three years as political and press officer at the British Embassy in Brasilia.
He returned to the FCO in London in 2005 as head of the War Crimes Section in the International Organisations Department. In 2008, he was seconded to the French Immigration Ministry, and then served for four years as Counsellor for Justice and Home Affairs at the British Embassy in Paris. In 2012, he was appointed British High Commissioner to Malta, a position he held until 2016.
Denham said: “This is a time of change for information rights, but it is an exciting time. The new General Data Protection Regulation brings an opportunity to look at how we all do things afresh, and the ICO will be at the forefront of that, helping organisations to improve how they comply with the law.
“Rob will be a key part of that work. We’ll be drawing heavily on his leadership skills, and he’ll be central to our work to evolve the ICO to make sure we stay relevant, both to the public and the organisations we regulate.
“The digital world is a smaller world. The ICO will be taking an internationalist approach, continuing and growing our work with regulators around the world. Rob’s experience will be invaluable, and I look forward to working with him.”
Luke added: “The information rights landscape is evolving rapidly and I look forward to working as part of the ICO team in anticipating and shaping that change in the public’s interest, engaging closely with our numerous stakeholders.”
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