WFD Governance


WFD has an independent Board of Governors appointed by the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs. The Board includes four independently recruited Governors reflecting the range of WFD’s interests, six Governors representing all UK political parties (two from the Conservative Party, two from the Labour Party, one SNP, and one representative of the Multi-Party Office), and WFD’s Chief Executive Anthony Smith and Head of Finance Louise Collings

The Board of Governors oversees the activities of WFD and determines its strategic direction. Its responsibilities include preparing the Annual Report and Accounts, safeguarding WFD assets and ensuring UK Government and other donor funds are used only for the purposes for which they have been given.
The Board is composed of four openly-recruited Governors reflecting the range of WFD’s interests, and six Governors representing all UK political parties. Members are appointed by the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs.
All positions are voluntary and not remunerated. Governors are required to declare any interests they may have. The latest available Register of Interests is available online (LINK).
The Board meets at least once every quarter. Meetings are attended by the Chief Executive and other relevant WFD officers. Minutes are available online.
Three board committees are mandated to oversee financial management, risk management and the implementation of WFD programmes.
The ‘Audit and Risk Assurance Committee’ reviews and monitors the systems of internal control and receives regular reports on the work and findings of the internal and the external auditors.
The ‘Programme Quality Committee’ maintains an overview of all WFD programmes to assess the overall quality of WFD’s work and help shape and monitor initiatives to strengthen its impact.
The ‘Terms and Conditions Committee’ assists the board to discharge its responsibilities relative to the terms and conditions of employment of WFD staff.

Richard Graham MP


Richard Graham is MP for Gloucester, and the Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to the ASEAN Economic Community, Malaysia, the Philippines and Indonesia. He chairs the All Party Parliamentary Groups for China, Indonesia and Marine Energy and Tidal Lagoons. He is a member of the Select Committee for Exiting the EU and a director of the Great Britain China Centre. Richard was previously an airline manager, a diplomat and an investment manager. He has worked in ten countries seeing apartheid, colonialism, communism, dictatorships and democracy at first hand. Richard speaks eight languages, played squash for Indonesia and the Philippines and chairs a charity.

Rushanara Ali MP


Rushanara Ali was first elected Labour Member of Parliament for Bethnal Green and Bow in May 2010. Rushanara has served on the Labour front bench as both Shadow Minister for International Development and Shadow Minister for Education. She was also a member of the Treasury Select Committee until the last General Election. Prior to becoming an MP, she worked as Associate Director at the Young Foundation, the Home Office, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Institute for Public Policy and Research.

Patrick Grady MP

Patrick Grady was elected SNP Member of Parliament for Glasgow North in May 2015 and is the Westminster Group Chief Whip. Patrick was SNP International Development Spokesperson and a member of the Procedure Committee in the 2015-2017 Parliament. Patrick was SNP National Secretary between 2012 and 2016 and, having worked in a range of policy and campaigning positions in the charity and public sectors, was Advocacy Manager for the Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund (SCIAF) prior to his election in 2015.

Sue Inglish

Sue Inglish was Head of Political Programmes for BBC News from 2005 to 2015. Sue was responsible for the BBC’s political, parliamentary and election news, programmes and digital content. She chaired the committee of broadcasters and politicians which negotiated the first Prime Ministerial election debates in the UK. Before working at the BBC, Sue was the senior foreign editor and deputy editor of Channel 4 News from 1988 to 1997. She chairs the board of the International News Safety Institute, a charity working for the safety of journalists around the world, and is vice-chair of the board of trustees of Reach South, a multi-academy Trust.

Andrew Rosindell MP

Andrew Rosindell was first elected as the Conservative Member of Parliament for Romford in Essex in 2001. Andrew was formerly a Shadow Home Affairs Minister with special responsibility for Animal Welfare, having previously served as one of Her Majesty’s Opposition Whips and Vice-Chairman of the Conservative Party. In June 2010 Andrew was elected to the Foreign Affairs Select Committee in the House of Commons. He was appointed as a Governor of the Westminster Foundation for Democracy in July 2010.

Rt Hon Dame Margaret Hodge MP

Rt Hon Dame Margaret Hodge was first elected Labour Member of Parliament for Barking in 1994. Margaret is the former Chair of the Public Accounts Committee, the first female and elected person to take that role. She held numerous roles throughout her career including Minister of State for Children, young people and families, Minister of State for Culture and Tourism, Industry and the Region, Department for Work and Pensions and Education and Skills. In 2010 she was elected as the first Chair of the Public Accounts Committee and sat on the Liaison Committee. Margaret’s interests include public finances, education, local government, housing, inner cities, democratic reform and London government.

Rt Hon Sir Jeffrey Donaldson MP

Rt Hon Jeffrey Donaldson was first elected the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) Member of Parliament for Lagan Valley in Northern Ireland in 1997.  Jeffrey was elected to the Northern Ireland Assembly in 1985, with the distinction of being the youngest person ever to win a seat at Stormont. He is a leading figure in the Northern Ireland peace process and was a senior member of the Unionist negotiating team in the constitutional talks that led to the ‘Good Friday’ Agreement in 1998.  In 2003 he was re-elected to the Northern Ireland Assembly and, following the renewal of devolution, became Chairman of the Assembly and Executive Review Committee and Leader of the DUP delegation on the Northern Ireland Policing Board. He subsequently became a Minister in the Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister with special responsibility for co-ordinating the business of the Northern Ireland Executive as well as relations with the European Union. At present he is Chief Whip of the DUP in the House of Commons.

Thomas Hughes

Thomas Hughes has been the Executive Director of ARTICLE 19, an international human rights organisation focusing on freedom of expression and information since 2013.  Thomas is also the founder and former Director of the social purpose enterprises, Diversity, an international advertising network for online news media from Human Rights repressed countries, and, a secure hosting service that protects the websites of civil society organisations. For the past 15 years Thomas has worked on human rights and sustainable development issues, including as Deputy Director of the Copenhagen-based press freedom organisation, International Media Support (IMS) between 2003 and 2009, as well as previously for the European Commission, United Nation and OSCE.

Simon Walker

Simon Walker was, until early 2017, Director General of the Institute of Directors. Simon previously served as Chief Executive of the British Private Equity and Venture Captial Association from October 2007 to March 2011. Between 2003 and 2007 Simon worked at Reuters as Director of Corporate Communications and Marketing.  He was Communications Secretary to HM The Queen at Buckingham Palace from 2000 to 2003 and earlier served as Director of Corporate Affairs at British. From 1996-1997 Simon worked as a special adviser in the Prime Minister’s Policy Unit at 10 Downing Street. He is currently lead non-executive on the Board of the Department of International Trade, as well as Chairman of the Global Network of Director Institutes and adviser to a number of UK and international businesses and organisations.  Simon was born in South Africa, and has worked as a journalist and consultant in New Zealand, Belgium and the UK.

Mark Babington

Mark Babington

Mark Babington is the Deputy Director of Audit Policy at the Financial Reporting Council. He is responsible for the delivery of the FRC’s UK Audit Policy programme and work to support the reform of international standard setting for auditors. Prior to joining the FRC, Mark had a twenty-year career in audit and was a Director at the UK National Audit Office, where his responsibilities most recently included the audit of HM Revenue and Customs, Energy and Nuclear and Defence. Prior to that he was a technical advisor to a number of EU capacity-building programmes in countries that joined the EU in 2004. He was also involved in the NAO’s audit of the United Nations. For five years, Mark was a member of the UK government’s counter-fraud taskforce. He led the NAO’s work on Financial Management, Counter Fraud and Money Laundering. He is a former Chairman of the International Colleges of Auditors of a number of European defence-related organisations.