Julie Hirigoyen to step down as UKGBC chief executive

UKGBC chief executive Julie Hirigoyen, pictured, is set to step down in the summer of 2023.

Julie Hirigoyen is set to step down in the summer of 2023 as CEO of the UK Green Building Council (UKGBC), the not-for-profit, membership-led, industry network committed to a sustainable built environment.

By the time of her departure, she will have successfully led the organisation for over eight years on a path of significant strategic growth and increasing impact. During her tenure, UKGBC has rapidly evolved from a small environmental NGO to a substantial and renowned organisation with a strong and important voice across the UK built environment sector. 

Maintaining a laser focus on cutting-edge advocacy, research, analysis and guidance, UKGBC continues to help pave the way for the transformation of the UK’s buildings, towns, cities and infrastructure, to enable both people and planet to thrive.

Hirigoyen will be in post until mid-2023 and will continue to lead the organisation as the recruitment of a new chief executive is confirmed.

Announcing the news, Hirigoyen said: “I am immensely proud of UKGBC’s collective achievements and impact over the last eight years and deeply honoured to have worked with such a passionate team and so many engaged and ambitious stakeholders.

“Although I will leave behind an organisation I deeply care for, I am excited to see it embark on a critical next chapter under new leadership. My decision to stand down was a challenging one, but I believe that fresh direction will allow for an infusion of new creative ideas at a pivotal moment in time, ahead of the step-change required to 2030. My focus now is on supporting a smooth transition and getting the organisation ready to welcome in new leadership.”

She added: “On a personal level, I will be continuing to work towards our common vision with an even greater focus on truly regenerative and transformational outcomes. I plan to use the learnings and experiences of my time at UKGBC to accelerate and scale up change.”

Sunand Prasad, chair of the board of trustees, said: “Having led the executive team for over half of UKGBC’s existence, Julie can take huge credit for its growth and increasing impact across the sector. Julie has been an outstanding leader; she has steered the organisation adeptly through times of global crisis and been instrumental in uniting our network on action to drive tangible progress in decarbonisation.

“Julie leaves UKGBC in a position of strength, but at a pivotal time for the sector. The incoming chief executive of UKGBC has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to drive the system level change required to deliver net zero and to ensure we’re on a sure trajectory towards a climate-adapted and nature-friendly built environment. We’re looking for an inspirational and ambitious leader who will steer our team and strengthen our network, seizing new opportunities and expanding UKGBC’s reach and impact yet further.”

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