Our People

DIZ Chair – Councillor Alan Lion, Strategic Projects Portfolio Holder, Epping Forest DC

With a long background in strategic development at major UK telecoms companies, Cllr Alan Lion is Chair of the Digital Innovation Zone (DIZ) Board and Portfolio Holder at Epping Forest District Council for Strategic Projects. Alan also serves on his local parish council and his significant experience of driving the change agenda at Epping Forest District Council.. He believes digital investment and use offers this area a great opportunity to future proof our successful local economies and provide a new platform to transform quality and efficiency in the public services.

Contact Alan by email on cllr.alion@eppingforestdc.gov.uk

DIZ Vice-Chair (Herts) – Councillor Linda Haysey, Leader East Herts DC

Linda has been the Ward Councillor for Hertford Rural North since 2005. She took over as the Leader of East Herts Council in May 2015 and has just been re-elected for her second term as Leader.

Linda has lived in Hertford since 1987 with her husband and two children. She became a councillor following 25 years working in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries. She spent time working as a journalist for a project reviewing new drugs in research and she ended her private sector career running the European mergers and acquisitions team at an English investment bank.

In her spare time, Linda enjoys baking, gardening and the theatre.

Contact Linda by email on linda.haysey@eastherts.gov.uk

DIZ Strategic Lead – John Houston, Epping Forest DC / One Epping Forest

John is lead officer of One Epping Forest which is driving the Digital Innovation Zone project. One Epping Forest is focused on ‘delivering services better together’. John also heads up economic development at Epping Forest District Council.

John has worked for six local authorities in the UK and has held senior management posts in local government and partnership organisations for over twenty years. He is currently on the governing boards of a local secondary school and New City College as well as being a trustee of Harlow Health Centres Trust.

Contact John by email on jhouston@eppingforestdc.gov.uk

DIZ Lead Officer – Mike Warr

Mike is the full-time Programme Manager for the DIZ having helped to establish and develop it from inception in his role as an Economic Development Officer at Epping Forest District Council. He is specifically responsible for the project management of the DCMS Local Full Fibre Network (LFFN) ‘Ultrafast GPs’ project which is delivering full fibre broadband connectivity to GP surgeries across the DIZ. Mike also manages the delivery plan for the DIZ Digital Innovation Strategy and partner liaison to ensure the DIZ partnership operates effectively across the various administrative boundaries.

Contact Mike by email on mwarr@eppingforestdc.gov.uk

DIZ Higher Level Digital Apprentice – Lysandra Halmshaw

Lysandra is a member of the Economic Development Team at Epping Forest District Council and plays a key role in supporting the delivery of the DIZ work programme. She oversees the DIZ event programme, planning, organising and delivering our meeting schedules, seminar programme and outreach to external partners and organisations. In addition, Lysandra manages the DIZ social media profile and the DIZ weekly weblinks newsletter to ensure its identity, visibility and positioning is continually developed.

Contact Lysandra by email on lhalmshaw@eppingforestdc.gov.uk