Council chief pledges action

The Design Council’s new chief executive Andrew Summers is pledging to get results from the relaunched organisation in 1995.

Summers, appointed for the next three years, says last year’s “brave and radical” changes at the council have left a programme that can be developed and “will have an impact and start delivering results this year”.

Summers has been managing director of Sharwood’s and of RHM Foods – experience hailed by council chairman John Sorrell as a “strong background in management and product development”. Since 1991 Summers has been chief executive of the Management Charter Initiative.

Summers comments: “I am delighted to be joining at such a challenging time. Design and innovation are critical to the management of a successful business, and never more so than in today’s increasingly competitive international environment.”

The arrival of the 48-year-old Summers this week sparks fresh interest in several unfilled jobs in the new structure. Of key interest are the posts of permanent directors to head the design, education and training, communication, and research divisions. Summers says: “It’s an important priority. We are working on the job briefs now and will be advertising this month.”

Summers, who was approached for the council post, wants the full team in place by mid-1995 and says a wide field will be considered: “It is essential we get the right people.”

The interim directors are expected to stay in place until replacements are found. Summers takes over from Department of Trade and Industry civil servant Evelyn Ryle, who has overseen perhaps the most traumatic year in the council’s history.

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