Alan William John West was born in London in 1948 and educated
at Windsor Grammar School and Clydebank High School. In 1965 he
joined Britannia Royal Naval College, Dartmouth.
During his distinguished naval career he served in 14 warships
and held Whitehall appointments in planning and intelligence. He
commanded HMS Yarnton, HMS Bristol and HMS Ardent (sunk in the Falklands
conflict in 1982). He was last to leave the sinking ship and was
subsequently awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for gallantry.
His naval career also included conducting a study into the employment
of women in the Royal Navy which led to women serving at sea and
their full integration into the Service.
He is currently Chairman UK of the National Security Forum, Chancellor
of Southampton Solent University, Trustee of the Imperial War Museum,
and Chairman of CVQO.
Other career appointments include:
Minister for National Security, Cyber Security, Olympic Security
& Safety and Counter Terrorism (2007-2010)
Chairman QinetiQ DAB (2006-2007)
First Sea Lord & Chief of Naval Staff (2002-2006)
Chairman of Navy Board
Commander-in-Chief Fleet (2000-2002)
Chief Executive of Operational Navy & RM
Chief of Defence Intelligence (1997-2000)
Commander of the United Kingdom Task Force (1996-1997)
Director General Naval Manning & Naval Secretary (1994-1996)
He was created a Privy Counsellor in May 2010 and was elevated
to the Peerage as Baron West of Spithead in 2007. Awards include
Knight Grand Cross, Order of the Bath in 2003 and Knight Commander,
Order of the Bath in 2000.
His unrivalled experience and knowledge in the areas of security,
intelligence and defence are qualities that make Lord West a uniquely
qualified expert at risk management and prediction.