Sunday, January 2, 2022

Logistics Boss is Named in New Year's Honours List

Recognition as Sector Sees a Raised Profile
Shipping News Feature

UK – How nice to start the New Year with a good news story. It seems lobbying the government, even when it makes them uncomfortable, cannot prevent a good man getting just reward for his efforts.

David Wells, Chief Executive of Logistics UK, has been awarded an OBE in the New Year’s Honours list, for services to transport and logistics. Perhaps at last the administration has recognised how little it knew about the supply chain, and how it needs the professionals who span its links, to guide it through difficult times.

When Wells, 56, took over at the helm of the operation it was the Freight Transport Association (FTA) and the rebranding aimed to properly represent the wide swathe of members, and their professions. Having taken the job six years ago Wells has actively transformed the organisation’s image, raising its profile and impact at a critical time.

Whilst Brexit, and its ensuing complications, and the Covid pandemic caused problems never before encountered, either by industry or country, Wells can claim he helped successfully initiate and pursue a strategy to ensure that Logistics UK represents the entire sector, collaborating, challenging and championing logistics with policy makers, and speaking to the media with one voice. He commented:

“Thanks to the hard work and dedication of our team, and the backing of our members, I am so proud to see the recognition and influence which the logistics industry is now rightfully starting to achieve at all levels of government and in the media. This visibility will also be key to ensuring that our industry continues to attract the brightest and best talent in the years ahead.

“I am truly honoured to receive this OBE after an unprecedented period of challenge and change for our sector. I have always said that our industry shows resilience unlike any other, and that has been demonstrated time and again during my time as Chief Executive. I am indebted to all our amazing members and their staff, as well as the team at Logistics UK, for the support and commitment which they have shown to keep goods moving, despite the challenges posed by Brexit, the Covid-19 pandemic, skills shortages and other unforeseen circumstances. This award is for them too.”

Logistics UK can indeed claim some of the credit for achieving unprecedented recognition for logistics employees as key workers from the start of the pandemic. Among a host of recent important policy wins for members, the business has successfully lobbied for higher funding for the new LGV apprenticeship standard, which will enable more people to enter the industry, as well as campaigning for the interests of the sector to be recognised in the UK/EU Trade and Co-operation Agreement (TCA).

Wells has not limited his activities to the world of freight however. Married with two sons, he was recently appointed as Chair of the Trustees of a Suicide Prevention charity in his hometown of Eastbourne. Supported by local churches, the organisation offers counselling and support to those in crisis or considering suicide. Of this he says:

“The past two years have been challenging financially for most charities; however, our support base has stepped up and our workers and volunteers are meeting the ever-increasing daily demand for our life-saving support.”