Electoral Commission appoints new Chief Executive

Electoral Commission appoints new Chief Executive

The Electoral Commission has today announced that Vijay Rangarajan has been appointed as Chief Executive of the organisation. He will take up the post at the beginning of March. 

Vijay is currently Director General at the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, working on climate, energy and the environment, global health and covid, and a wide range of countries. He served as the British Ambassador to Brazil and worked in the Ministry of Justice and Cabinet Office on electoral issues, leading the programme to establish individual electoral registration, and wider issues relating to political and constitutional reform of the UK. 

Vijay will join the Commission as it prepares for the May polls and a general election, due to take place in the next 12 months. The organisation is focused on supporting voters, administrators, parties and campaigners to participate in the upcoming elections, and to understand a number of recent changes introduced by the Elections Act, including the voter ID requirement, new voting rights for overseas voters and a new requirement for imprints on digital campaign materials. 

John Pullinger, Chair of the Electoral Commission said: 

“I am delighted to welcome Vijay to the Electoral Commission as our new Chief Executive. He brings great range and depth of understanding of elections, independence and rigour in his thinking and a passion for democracy that will inspire colleagues across the Commission and more widely.

“The Board is grateful to Rob for his contributions as both the interim Chief Executive and his many years as a Commissioner. His experience and expertise have been of great value to the organisation.”

Vijay Rangarajan commented:

“I’m hugely excited to join the Electoral Commission, at the start of a year of major electoral events. I look forward to working with Commissioners and the expert and dedicated Commission staff helping to support the wide range of people and organisations involved in elections and our democratic systems. The Commission plays a crucial independent role in that support, and leads work to safeguard the integrity of our democratic processes against online and offline threats, and to enhance participation and trust.”

Ends

For more information contact the Electoral Commission press office on 020 7271 0704, out of office hours 07789 920 414 or press@electoralcommission.org.uk

Notes to editors

The Electoral Commission is the independent body which oversees elections and regulates political finance in the UK. We work to promote public confidence in the democratic process and ensure its integrity by:

  • enabling the delivery of free and fair elections and referendums, focusing on the needs of electors and addressing the changing environment to ensure every vote remains secure and accessible

  • regulating political finance – taking proactive steps to increase transparency, ensure compliance and pursue breaches

  • using our expertise to make and advocate for changes to our democracy, aiming to improve fairness, transparency and efficiency

The Commission was set up in 2000 and reports to the UK, Welsh and Scottish parliaments.