HTA bolsters senior leadership team

The Horticultural Trades Association (HTA) has appointed Fran Barnes as its Chief Executive, following the recent appointments of Directors of Public Affairs and Marketing.

Fran Barnes joins the HTA from the National Farmers’ Union of England and Wales (NFU), where she has worked for over 10 years, first as Head of Strategic Communications and subsequently as Director of Communications. Prior to joining the NFU, she held a number of editorial roles on food and farming programmes at the BBC.

Fran’s appointment follows the recent appointments of Jennifer Pheasey as Director of Public Affairs and Elia Johnston as Director of Marketing, with the HTA strengthening its senior leadership team as the horticulture sector focuses on building upon the growth in the number of domestic gardeners witnessed during the pandemic and delivering the “Unlocking Green Growth” strategy launched in September last year, even more relevant in the current environment.

Commenting on her appointment Fran says: “I am delighted to be joining the HTA as Chief Executive. The horticulture sector delivers so much for the country’s economy, wellbeing and environmental sustainability, and the HTA’s reputation for supporting and representing its members – and the wider industry – is first class. I look forward to building upon its impact, as well as continuing to develop the services offered to members.”

President of the HTA, Alan Down adds: “I’m very pleased to congratulate Fran on her appointment as the HTA’s first Chief Executive – she has demonstrated hugely effective leadership at the NFU and has a wealth of knowledge about rural affairs, which will greatly inform how we serve our members.

“Fran’s appointment is complemented by those of Jennifer Pheasey and Elia Johnston who recently joined us as Directors of Public Affairs and Marketing. Their appointments will strengthen our senior leadership team at a very exciting time for the industry and for the HTA, with horticulture playing an increasingly important part in people’s lives, not to mention the vital role it has in addressing environmental challenges. I very much look forward to working with Fran, Jennifer and Elia in their new roles.”

Chairman of the HTA, James Barnes concludes: “I am very pleased we have recruited such a high-calibre leader for our trade association. Over the past six months we have put in place a fantastic senior leadership team, culminating with Fran’s recruitment. Her experience and expertise, particularly in the field of communications, will lend itself extremely well to taking the HTA to the next level. I’m very excited to work with Fran in further developing our strategy to support all our members in these ever-challenging times.”

Main image: Fran Barnes, the new Chief Executive of HTA

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