The LDEG Executive team

The executive are volunteers who run the day-to-day management of LDEG, pushing to achieve the Group's aims and to support the Group's members

Portfolio Officers

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Robert Harrison - Chair

Robert is Chair of LDEG and a former Chair of Liberal Democrats in Europe. He was a European Parliamentary candidate on the FDP (German liberal party) list in 2014 and 2019. Married with two children, Robert works as an intellectual property consultant and attorney in Paris, Munich and London. He believes passionately in “Making Europe Great Again.”

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David Chalmers - Treasurer

Joining the Lib Dems in 2015, David was elected and served as a parish councilor for 7 years in Northern Devon, as well as Mayor of Northam during the pandemic and Chair of Devon Association of Local Councils. He sat on Devon & Cornwall’s Regional Executive as its Diversity Champion for 5 years. David stood as PPC for Torridge & West Devon in the 2017 and 2019 General Elections, securing second place; he was also a candidate on the Southwest List for the 2019 European Elections. From 2017, David was Chair of Lib Dem European Group, standing down after 5 years following re-election to FIRC for a second term and subsequently election as its Chair in January 2023. In May 2023, he successfully led his first Lib Dem delegation to ALDE Congress in Stockholm and then the Liberal International Executive Committee meeting in Ottawa. David has been ALDE Rainbow Ambassador since 2022.

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Victoria Evans - Membership Officer

Victoria is a professional STEM editor, having previously studied European languages in Ulyanovsk Oblast, Russian Federation, and North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany, the latter as part of the Erasmus programme. Her policy interests include UK association with European research and innovation programmes such as Horizon Europe, international engagement in schools, and British-Irish relations. Victoria has been leading community-based initiatives in the Liberal Democrats since 2015 and looks forward to welcoming you to the LDEG group.

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Ulysse Abbate - Secretary

As a French-British Liberal Democrat, Ulysse is a passionate European, eager to see the UK, one day, rejoin the EU. Recently graduating from an MSc in the Political Economy of Europe, Ulysse is active in the Liberal Democrats, namely as one of the party's 10 elected ALDE Council delegates, the Policy Officer for the Young Liberals and PPC for Eltham and Chislehurst

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Sean Bennett - Vice-Chair (Campaigns)

Non-Portfolio Officers

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Adrian Hyyrylainen-Trett

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Irina von Wiese

Having joined the Lib Dems in 1998, Irina stood in several local and regional elections and in 2018 became the parliamentary candidate for Hammersmith. In 2019, Irina was elected to represent London Lib Dem in the European Parliament. She served as Vice-Chair of the Human Rights Subcommittee and as a member of the cross-party Working Group on Responsible Business Conduct. The Group's main achievement was the introduction of EU legislation to make human rights due diligence mandatory in global supply chains. Whilst MEP, she was also elected to the Executive Committee of the European Endowment for Democracy, whose task it is to support grassroots civil society initiatives in fragile democracies. Since 2021, she has been a member of FIRC and Chair of LIBG. Irina's links to Brussels are maintained through an advisory role at FGS Global, where she works on EU law and ESG issues. Irina is also an Affiliate Professor at European Business School; the ESCP; teaching international law and politics; and Honorary President of the European Centre for Populism Studies.

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Mark Johnston

Mark Johnston has been an experienced EU policy professional for over two decades. Active in the Party since 2016 and a member of the Federal Policy Committee, he aims to help Lib Dems win power at all levels, and for the country to recover and restore all we have lost outside Europe.

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Richard Morris

Richard Morris has had a varied career as solicitor, investment banker, publisher and music educationalist. He served as CEO of ABRSM and Chair of the Yehudi Menuhin School. He was the Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate for Tonbridge & Malling at the 2019 General Election. Richard is a member of the National Executive - and is the International Officer - of European Movement UK. He is also a member of the Board of European Movement International, Brussels.

Regional Representative Officers

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Nick Hopkinson - South-East

During Nick’s 23 year career at Wilton Park, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s policy forum, he progressed to Director, inter alia helping the accession of 10 Central and Southern European countries to the EU and writing and editing some 400 policy reports. Nick is founder Chair of London4Europe, a former chair of the LDEG and the European Movement Branches Forum, and stood as a Lib Dem candidate in County and District Council elections. Nick spoke and debated nationwide on 30 separate occasions advocating the case to remain during the 2016 Brexit referendum campaign, and is currently writing a book on Wilton Park’s policy output.

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Phil Bennion - West Midlands

Dr Phillip Bennion is a former Lib Dem MEP, serving on the Foreign Affairs Committee and its Human Rights subcommittee. He was Convenor of Urgency Resolutions for the Renew Group until he left the European Parliament following Brexit in January 2020. Phillip was group spokesperson on South Asia and nominated Uyghur activist Ilham Tohti for the Sakharov Prize in 2019. Phillip was elected to the Bureau of Liberal International as a Vice President at the Sofia Congress of 2022. He chaired the FIRC and led the Party’s delegations to LI and ALDE until January 2023. He remains a member of ALDE Council and currently chairs its policy working group on climate change. Outside of political life he is a farmer with interests in renewables and is a former agricultural scientist.

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