Vacancy - Chair of Waterwise

Waterwise is seeking a new Chair with the ability to lead the organisation in partnership with the Managing Director. This is an exceptional opportunity for the right person to play a part in making a positive contribution towards increased water conservation and positive action on climate change.

Who we are:

Waterwise is the leading UK authority on water efficiency – we are thought leaders and campaigners, challenging and supporting the water sector and beyond to aim high on water efficiency. Waterwise was founded in 2005 and is an independent, not-for-profit organisation, receiving funding from supporters inside and outside the water sector, sponsorship, research projects and corporate services. We like to be at the front, leading and supporting innovative efforts to realise our vision; that water will be used wisely, every day, everywhere.

Our values are purpose, pioneer, passion and purpose.

Our impact:

Our UK and advocacy work has driven much higher policy, regulatory and industry ambition on water efficiency and new commitment to measures such as a water efficiency label for products. Our 2019 annual conference hit the front page of the Guardian, the Today programme and Channel 4 News, when Sir James Bevan, Environment Agency Chief Executive, made his ‘Jaws of Death’ speech. Our campaigns have reached over 23.9 million people in the last year – some have been Waterwise alone, others have been with partners including Water UK, Consumer Council for Water, Citizens Advice Scotland and Consumer Council NI. We carry out groundbreaking research that is driving greater acceptance for greywater and rainwater recycling. We have successfully mainstreamed water efficiency into the ambition for the water retail market in England. We are influential and high-profile in the sector, and beyond, and regularly are asked for our views by leaders and ministers. We have developed new funding streams to drive water efficiency, such as the Waterwise Checkmark and Waterwise Training. We have secured water efficiency a place in the Net Zero debate for the water sector and the UK as a whole, beyond its role in adaptation to the climate emergency. Our Managing Director is a regular on national broadcast media and select committee evidence panels and is a highly-sought-after speaker.

The Role:

Due to the incumbent coming to the end of his term, we are seeking a new Chair with the ability to lead the organisation in partnership with the Managing Director. This is an exceptional opportunity for the right person to play a part in making a positive contribution towards increased water conservation and positive action on climate change.

The successful individual will be a non-partisan leader with a proven track record of leadership or operating at senior level within an organisation. Understanding the nature of a non-executive role, they will ensure that the values of the organisation are embraced by both the Board and the executive team, whom they will hold to account through a process of inclusive leadership.

The Chair will develop and maintain a relationship with the Managing Director and with each of the other non-executive directors, and will work to ensure that the Board achieves consensus as a high-performing unit. They will support and, where appropriate, challenge the Managing Director as well as ensuring the functioning and good governance of the board.

They will establish and maintain close relationships with political figures and influencers as appropriate. The Chair will also act as an ambassador for the organisation and as the public face, spokesperson and representative of Waterwise, in partnership with the Managing Director.

Essential Skills:

  • Board experience.
  • Knowledge of good governance.
  • Experience of operating at every level, including being comfortable in a political environment.
  • Knowledge of the water industry or another highly regulated industry.
  • Clear understanding of the work and needs of a Managing Director, with the ability to effectively support and complement their work.
  • Understanding of environmental issues.
  • Commitment to diversity and inclusion and wellbeing.


Desirable skills (not all of these need to be in place):

  • Experience in the charitable or not-for-profit sector.
  • Experience of campaigning.
  • Experience in the corporate world.
  • Strong network – ideally relevant to our work. 

Statement on Diversity

Waterwise is committed to valuing diversity and to equality of opportunity for employment, career and personal development. We believe that people from different backgrounds bring perspectives and skills that create fresh ideas, thinking and approaches which make the way work is undertaken more effective and efficient. We know that the more inclusive we are, the better our work will be.


This is a voluntary role although reasonable expenses for travel may be claimed.


Currently remote working. Physical meetings, when possible, will be held in Central London.

Time Commitment:

Four board meetings per year. Overall commitment: one to two days per month. Term is 3 years and may be extended by a further three years.

How to Apply:

Please send a CV of maximum two sides, and a covering letter of maximum one side (stating where you saw the job advertised), to: We also encourage you to complete the diversity monitoring form which can be found here – this is optional but completing it will help us track our progress towards diversity. Diversity information will be received and stored separately to application details and will not in any way be used in the selection or decision-making process.

If candidates would like an informal discussion with the outgoing Chair Martin Bradbury they should contact Stella – having a call of this kind will not influence the success or otherwise of the application.

Closing Date:

Closing date for applications is Friday 26th March 2021.

Interviews will be held virtually on Wednesday 21st April 2021.

The remaining Waterwise Board dates for 2021 are Thursday 24th June (virtual), Thursday 23rd September (virtual or in-person, tbc) and Thursday 16th December (virtual or in-person, tbc).