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Written Statement: Appointment of Members to the Welsh Language Commissioner’s Advisory Panel


It gives me great pleasure to announce the appoint of Anne Davies and Nia Elias as Members of the Welsh Language Commissioner’s Advisory Panel, following an open recruitment process which attracted a high calibre of candidates.  They will both take up post on 24 February 2020 for a three year term.

The Welsh Language (Wales) Measure 2011, which established the Advisory Panel specifies that the Welsh Minister must ensure that, as far as it practicable, there are at least three members of the advisory panel at any time.  Appointing Anne and Nia in addition to the three existing Members, Meinir Davies, Heledd Iago and Nick Speed enriches the range of skills and experiences the panel have as they provide the Commissioner with advice on matters relevant to his functions.

Anne Davies is Professor of Law and Public Policy in the Law Faculty at the University of Oxford. She has particular expertise in relation to employment law and public law, in particular, government contracts.  This legal expertise will be beneficial in advising the Commissioner as regards to the exercise of his functions. Anne was born and brought up in England and has ties to north and west Wales.  She learnt Welsh as an adult and will contribute a learner’s perspective to the Advisory Panel’s discussions.

Nia Elias currently leads the Philanthropy and Partnerships teams at Bloodwise (soon to be known as Blood Cancer UK).  She combines this post with her position on the Board of Directors at Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol.  Born in Newport, Gwent, raised in Carmarthen with strong family ties to Ceredigion. Nia now lives with her young family in the Vale of Glamorgan. After reading History at the University of Warwick Nia developed a career in corporate events and fundraising at the Imperial War Museum, Somerset House and Tate Gallery. Nia spent five years as Deputy Director of Business Performance at Wales Millennium Centre leading income generating and customer experience teams. Her practical experience of leading the implementation of the Welsh Language Standards within the organisation will offer an important perspective to the panel’s discussions. In her spare time, Nia fundraises for research into type 1 diabetes awareness, treatment and prevention.  Her practical experience of implementing standards and experience of the public and voluntary sectors will be

Aled Roberts, Welsh Language Commissioner, said:

I am looking forward to working with Anne and Nia.  I am sure they will both offer different perspectives to the Advisory Panel’s discussions based on their expertise within their respective fields”.

After considering the selection panel’s recommendations, I am confident that the Commissioner and the panel members have the combined knowledge and experience of the matters set out in The Advisory Panel to the Welsh Language Commissioner (Appointment) Regulations 2012, namely knowledge and experience of the following matters:

  • corporate governance,
  • exercising functions conferred by or under an enactment,
  • promoting and facilitating the use of Welsh or another language,
  • public relations,
  • regulatory regimes,
  • working in partnership with organisations in the public, private or voluntary sectors.



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