The Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) has appointed Dr Alice Bunn as its new chief executive, effective July 2021 following the retirement of Dr Colin Brown. Bunn has served as international director at the UK Space Agency since 2018, responsible for increasing the UK’s global influence in science, security and trade through space.
Bunn is also head of the UK delegation to the European Space Agency, and sits on the board of directors at the US Space Foundation and on the World Economic Forum Future Council on space technology. She gained a BEng at Leeds University in the UK and is studying for a PhD in metallurgy from Cambridge University.
IMechE president Terry Spall said of the appointment: “We have had huge interest in this role and Alice was the outstanding candidate, meeting all the criteria we laid down at the start of our recruitment process. She has the vision, leadership and flair to steer the Institution through its next stage of its journey.
“She has had an outstanding career in a number of senior strategic and executive roles. She is an accomplished public speaker with an impressive track record and will ensure engineering will have a strong voice as we look to solve the many challenges our society faces. Alice has the personal and professional skills to ensure the Institution continues to innovate and develop while retaining its character and member focus.”
In response, Alice Bunn added, “I am delighted to be joining the Institution at such a time in world events. Coronavirus and climate change have shown us how mechanical engineers have a vital role to play in helping us adapt to our rapidly changing environment. In my current role at the UK Space Agency, I have seen first-hand the fundamental contribution of engineering to space programmes.
“I look forward to working with members and staff to build on the Institution’s many achievements, develop its role as a leading voice for the engineering profession, and advocate for the power of mechanical engineering to society at large.”