Vanessa Lawrence

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Vanessa Lawrence in 2012

Dr Vanessa Vivienne Lawrence CB HonFREng[1] (born 14 July 1962) is Secretary General of Ordnance Survey International.

Until April 2014, Vanessa Lawrence was the Director General and Chief Executive of Ordnance Survey, Great Britain’s national mapping agency. Vanessa was an adviser to the British Government on mapping, surveying and geographic information and was instrumental in the delivery of Place Matters: The Location Strategy for the United Kingdom which was published and endorsed by Ministers in November 2008.

She received her business training from the publishing company Pearson plc. Prior to joining Ordnance Survey, Vanessa held senior positions at Autodesk Inc.

Vanessa is the Honorary Vice-President of The Geographical Association and a member of the Council of the Royal Geographical Society, the University of Southampton and the University of Cambridge. She is also a Visiting Professor at the University of Southampton and Kingston University.

Vanessa is a Companion of the Chartered Management Institute, a Chartered Geographer and a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and the Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors. She was elected an Honorary Fellow[2] of the Royal Academy of Engineering[3] in 2008.

In January 2008, Vanessa was appointed as a Companion of The Most Honourable Order of the Bath (CB) in the Queen’s New Year Honours List.

Vanessa is one of the few recipients of the Scottish Geography Medal, a prestigious award conferred only occasionally since 1890 by the Royal Scottish Geographical Society. In addition, she has six Honorary Doctorate degrees and is an Honorary Fellow of University College London. In December 2008, she was named South-East Director of the Year by the Institute of Directors.

In July 2009 Vanessa was appointed Honorary Colonel of 135 Independent Geographic Squadron, Royal Engineers.

In October 2011, Vanessa was appointed as co-Chair of the United Nations Committee of Experts on Global Geospatial Information Management. The new committee reports directly to the UN Economic and Social Council.

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