My Scouting Background
I’ve been involved in Scouting since joining my local Cub Scout Pack in 1983. I progressed through the Cub Scout, Scout and Venture Scout Sections where I achieved both the Queen’s Scout Award and Explorer Belt. I became an Assistant Venture Scout Leader in 1995 and then Assistant Area Commissioner for Venture Scouts in Edinburgh. After that, I became the first Area Scout Network Commissioner in Edinburgh. During the same period, I first became involved with the work of Scottish Headquarters and UK Headquarters in a number of different capacities.
Having always had an interest in the international dimension of Scouting, I have participated in and been involved in organising a significant number of international activities. I was a member of The Scout Association’s International Team from 2001 to 2007 and briefly again in 2013 as Deputy International Commissioner, which was followed by a period as UK Commissioner for Programme from 2014 t0 2017. Currently, I’m Deputy UK Chief Commissioner (Transformation).
At European and World level, I have served the Movement in various capacities including as a Member of the European Scout Committee from 2004-2007 and as Chairperson of the European Scout Committee for an unprecedented two terms from 2007 to 2013. In addition, I have ably led and served on various sub-committees, task forces, planning teams at home and abroad and co-authored a number of practical tools and resources. I have also designed and delivered support and training for NSOs across Europe and beyond, having made a significant number of field visits to work with and support the national leadership of NSOs with their strategic development.
My Personal Background
I was born in Stirling, Scotland, in 1974. I undertook an Honours Degree Course in Graphic Design in Edinburgh and then from 1996 to 1997 undertook a Masters Degree in Design specialising in new media looking at visual communication through new technologies. I met my wife Cheryl through Scouting and Guiding. Cheryl is a member of both The Scout Association and Girlguiding.
We married in 2000 and in 2003 became parents to our son Iain, and in 2005, to our second son Sam. Our third son, Ben, was born in 2009. Perhaps unsurprisingly, all of them are involved in the life of the local Scout Group that Cheryl established.
My Business Background
I co-founded a specialist web development company in 2001 with three friends, taking on the role of Creative Director. Now a leading digital consultancy, Storm ID develops solutions for a number of prestigious national and international clients in the technology, entertainment and public sectors. Since then, I have co-founded a number of spin-off digital businesses with interests in digital marketing, social media and health and well-being.
My Personal Interests
My personal interests include design, history, travelling, hiking, running, camping and genealogy.