St Helena : The Directors – Part IV Darren Duncan, Director of Agriculture and Natural Resources
Submitted by Saint Helena Herald (Public Relations Information Office) 14.05.2011 (Article Archived on 28.05.2011)
St Helena Government has introduced a new directorate structure which came into effect on 1st April.
The Directors – Part IV
Darren Duncan, Director of Agriculture and Natural Resources
St Helena Government has introduced a new directorate structure which came into effect on 1st April. Because of this, instead of Departments SHG now has ten Directorates. In a ten part series the Public Relations/Information Office will introduce each of the ten Directors, their responsibilities and directorate plans for the next year.
This week meet Darren Duncan, Director of Agriculture and Natural Resources:
The Agriculture and Natural Resources Directorate has responsibility within the St Helena Government for facilitating and supporting growth and economic development in the agriculture and natural resources sectors. This is achieved by enhancing food security from local sources and promoting sustainable use of natural resources.
As Director of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Darren has responsibility for 113 full time staff managed through five Heads of Division.
Darren manages an annual budget of around £1.5 million and has responsibility, on occasion, for smaller additional budgets that result from securing funding for environmental conservation projects.
The main areas of responsibility within the Agriculture and Natural Resources Directorate are:
§ Action planning and developing policy for the Directorate’s development programmes in Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries and Environmental Conservation, including their implementation and monitoring;
§ Identification and oversight of funding for the Directorate’s programmes ensuring adequate monitoring and reporting and providing project management where necessary;
§ Organisational planning and performance management for the Directorate;
§ Working together with other Directorates, local agencies/organisations such as SHDA, the St Helena National Trust, agricultural and fisheries associations and the Chamber of Commerce, to maximise opportunities for development in the agriculture and natural resources sectors;
§ Providing an advisory role to SHG and Councillors, in particular the Natural Resources, Development and Environment Committee in all areas relevant to the work of the Directorate;
§ Acting as a focal point for public relations for the Directorate.
On being the Director of the Agriculture and Natural Resources Directorate, Darren said:
“For me this is an interesting time to be part of St Helena Government’s corporate management team; especially with so many challenges and opportunities ahead in developing the public service and our Island in a range of areas. Many of these need to be faced and taken up in a spirit of mutual co-operation as an Island and not just as a Government. Both challenges and opportunities need to become the drive for real and positive change for us as an Island community.
“The Agriculture and Natural Resources Directorate’s structure and role will continue to evolve over the next few years as we pass on a number of non-core service roles to the private sector and increase our capacity in our core development and regulatory roles. The Directorate will do this to continuously improve the part we play in effectively ensuring that the Island’s aspirations for sustainable development are eventually realised”.
Apart from a year spent working at Blenheim Estates in Oxfordshire and six years spent undertaking vocational and degree studies in the Lake District, Bangor and Reading Universities in the UK, Darren has spent his working life in various roles in ANRD. He progressed from an apprentice in the endemic plant nursery through to a senior management role in 1998, and then on to Head of Department in 2006. Darren has also spent almost three years working as a part-time Business Advisor for the St Helena Development Agency.
Public Relations/Information Office
12 May 2011