Lorna Fitzsimons

Ex Labour MP and Middle East expert

Lorna Fitzsimons grew up in Rochdale and has held a wide range of prominent public positions.

Lorna served as president of the National Union of Students from 1992 to 1994, having made her first visit to Israel in 1989. As president, she was a director of Endsleigh Insurance and chair for many years of the European Students Forum. From there she moved on to Rowland Sallingbury Casey to become an associate director. Among her clients were Proctor and Gamble and BT. Whilst in this role, Lorna became the first ever winner of the IPPR's Young Communicator of the Year award.

In 1997, Lorna became one of the youngest MPs to be elected to Parliament, serving as MP for Rochdale at the age of 29. Whilst in Parliament, she was chair of the APPG on Kashmir as well as a member of Labour Friends of Israel. She was parliamentary aide to Robin Cook and was also on the Procedures and Modernisation Select Committees. In addition, Lorna was a member of the Hansard Society Board and chair of the Historic Parliamentary Labour Party Women's Committee, comprised of 101 female MPs.

On leaving Parliament in 2005, Lorna set up her own consultancy and became a senior visiting fellow at the Defence Academy, which is responsible for post-graduate education and training for members of the UK Armed Forces and Ministry of Defence Civil Servants.

Lorna took up the exciting and challenging post of CEO at the Britain Israel Communications and Research Centre (BICOM) in October 2006. BICOM is a professional, independent, not-for-profit organisation devoted to creating a more supportive environment for Israel in the UK.