David Higgins (businessman)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Sir David Higgins
D higgins.png
David Hartmann Higgins

1954 (age 65–66)
Years active?–present
TitleExecutive Chairman of High Speed 2 (1 March 2014)

Sir David Hartmann Higgins (born 1954) is an Australian-British businessman, the Executive Chairman of High Speed 2 (since 1 March 2014), Chairman of Gatwick Airport[1] (since 1 January 2017), and the former Chief Executive of Network Rail. He was Chief Executive of the London 2012 Summer Olympics Delivery Authority.[2]


Higgins was educated at Saint Ignatius' College, Riverview, then gained a degree in Civil engineering at the University of Sydney, residing at St John's College; and a diploma at the Securities Institute of Australia.[3] After graduation, he worked in the United Kingdom and Africa, before returning to Australia in 1983, and joining the international property and construction company Lend Lease Corporation in 1985. In 1995 he was appointed managing director and chief executive, when the corporation's developments included the 2000 Summer Olympics Sydney Olympic Park, and the Bluewater Shopping Centre in Kent, England.[3]

From March 2003, Higgins was Chief Executive of English Partnerships, the UK government national regeneration agency. Higgins was appointed Chief Executive Designate of the Olympic Delivery Authority from December 2005,[4] and appointed Chief Executive with effect from 30 March 2006. In this role he was paid £394,999 a year, making him the highest paid Quango boss in the UK.[5]

On 28 September 2010, it was announced that he was leaving the Olympic Delivery Authority to take up the role of chief executive of Network Rail, taking over from outgoing chief executive Iain Coucher, and with effect from February 2011.[6] Higgins was widely respected for his work at Network Rail, including by the railway trade unions; he was succeeded as chief executive by Mark Carne in April 2014.[7]

As of 2015, Higgins was paid a salary of between £240,000 and £244,999 by the department, making him one of the 328 most highly paid people in the British public sector at that time.[8]

Personal life[edit]

Higgins is married with two children. His hobbies include hiking and outdoor pursuits.[3]


He was knighted in the 2011 Birthday Honours for services to regeneration.[9]

In 2012, Higgins was the chair of the 2012 British Construction Industry Awards judging panel which celebrated its 25th anniversary of rewarding excellence in UK construction delivery.[10]


  1. ^ "Board of directors". Gatwick Airport. Retrieved 27 December 2018.
  2. ^ "About the ODA". Olympic Delivery Authority. Retrieved 8 May 2008.
  3. ^ a b c Kelso, Paul (18 January 2008). "Australian fixer setting the pace to London 2012". The Guardian. Retrieved 8 May 2008.
  4. ^ "Higgins named as ODA chief executive". Contract Journal. 23 November 2005. Retrieved 8 May 2008.[permanent dead link]
  5. ^ "Quango chiefs' salaries revealed". BBC News. 2 July 2010. Retrieved 2 July 2010.
  6. ^ "Olympic 2012 boss David Higgins leaves for Network Rail". BBC News. 28 September 2010.
  7. ^ "Network Rail appoints new boss Mark Carne". BBC News. BBC. 5 September 2013. Retrieved 24 August 2014.
  8. ^ "Senior officials 'high earners' salaries as at 30 September 2015 - GOV.UK". www.gov.uk. 17 December 2015. Retrieved 13 March 2016.
  9. ^ "No. 59808". The London Gazette (Supplement). 11 June 2011. p. 1.
  10. ^ "Sir David Higgins to chair British Construction Industry Awards 2012 judges". www.nce.co.uk. New Civil Engineer. 6 January 2012. Retrieved 14 December 2013.

External links[edit]