Carolyn Fairbairn

Carolyn joined the CBI as Director General in November 2015 following a 30 year career in British business. She spent her early career at McKinsey before taking on a range of senior leadership roles in the media industry. She has also held non-executive plc board positions in the manufacturing, services and banking sectors.

At McKinsey, Carolyn advised companies across the UK in a range of sectors specialising in digital transformation, and as partner led its UK media practice. As BBC Director of Strategy, she led the BBC’s digital strategy and ran its transmission arm. In 2003, she created and launched Freeview, one of the UK’s most successful new digital TV services.

Carolyn holds a first-class degree in Economics from Cambridge University, an MBA with distinction from INSEAD, and MA in International Relations from the University of Pennsylvania. She is an honorary fellow of Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge.

Carolyn is married with three children and lives in Hampshire. 

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