ERIS appoints Andrew Bruce as new executive director

June 2012

ERIS has appointed a new Executive Director – Andrew Bruce, formerly of the United Nations Electoral Assistance Division, and before that the Human Rights and Democracy Unit in the European Commission’s External Relations Directorate and the OSCE’s Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights.

ERIS Chair Keith Best says:

Andy has great personal, management and financial skills from his leadership of large teams for these inter-governmental organisations.  That will put him in an excellent position to ensure that ERIS continues the progress it has been making in recent years.

Crucially, he also brings to his new role a wealth of political, field and project experience, embracing – like ERIS itself - the whole spectrum of democracy assistance, from partnerships with civil society organisations, to assistance to election management bodies, election observation and citizen observer training to work on conflict and elections and much more besides.

Andy also has a most impressive track record of working all over the world – in some fifty countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and Eastern Europe – with everyone from top State officials to voters at the polling station.

Andy already knows ERIS well.  He will be a great asset and a great leader for the future”.

Andy began his career at ERIS in 1994, first as a Programme Officer and then as Programme Manager.  He has co-edited two of the key democracy publications of recent years – the OSCE-ODIHR Handbook for Domestic Observers and the Handbook for EU Election Observation, published by the European Commission.  He will take up his position on 1 September.  In the interim ERIS Senior Professional Officer Christopher Child will serve as Acting Executive Director.

Andy was preceded in the Executive Directorship by Helen Barnes, who has now joined DFID as a Governance Adviser in Bangladesh.  ERIS Chair Keith Best said:

Helen has done fantastic work over the last three years to help ERIS into its current positive position.  She provided outstanding leadership, won valuable new work for us in North Africa and elsewhere and underscored still further our commitment to partnerships on the ground with civil society.  No wonder DFID wanted her to work for them.  We all wish her well in her work for in Bangladesh”.