Gemma Cooper Appointed Head of Policy Team

New post created to manage Union’s policy team

NFU Scotland has appointed Gemma Cooper as Head of Policy Team.

Gemma, currently Legal and Technical Policy Manager, has taken up the new Head of Policy Team post, which will see her manage fellow policy team members at NFU Scotland.  She will also continue in her existing role as lead on Legal and Technical issues – a diverse portfolio that includes responsibility for the Legal and Technical Committee, Tenants Working Group, Tenancy Working Group, and Crown Estate Tenants Working Group.

Gemma’s policy portfolio includes land reform, agricultural holdings law, Crown Estate, rural crime, livestock worrying, communities, planning, utilities, employment, and renewables. Gemma also leads on the Union’s ‘Women in Agriculture’ workstreams.

In her new role, Gemma will oversee much of the co-ordination of the Union’s policy work, including the effective operation of the commodity committee structure and many of the actions that are required to pursue the Union’s policy goals.

Welcoming the announcement, NFU Scotland Director of Policy Jonnie Hall said: “Following a review of how our hugely influential policy team at NFUS is managed, it was decided that it would benefit from a dedicated manager to assist with co-ordination of our work and who would also become a member of the NFUS management team.  

“Over the past six years, Gemma has been hugely influential in representing NFU Scotland’s views across some of the most challenging policy subjects.  Gemma’s hard work is clearly paying dividends in the substantial progress the Union is making in her policy areas.

“Given that experience and the respect she has generated within the organisation and with external stakeholders, Gemma is the ideal person for expanded day-to-day responsibilities for the managing policy team as well as becoming a member of the NFUS management team.

“I am certain that Gemma will provide much needed support to colleagues within the Policy Team and across NFU Scotland as we step up our engagement on an increasing number of pressing issues.

Gemma said: “I am really looking forward to my new role as Head of Policy Team at NFUS.   We have a talented team of lobbyists who do an excellent job of influencing on behalf of NFUS members.

“Alongside my current Legal and Technical policy remit, I will be joining the management team within NFUS which will allow me to further develop my new role.

“As such, I am looking forward to the new challenges and opportunities that my appointment will bring.  NFUS has a very diverse policy remit, and I am confident that we can continue to grow as a team and continue to provide an excellent service to our membership.”

Notes to Editors

  • A head and shoulders shot of Gemma Cooper, NFU Scotland’s new Head of Policy Team is available on request from


Contact Bob Carruth on 0131 472 4006

Author: Bob Carruth

Date Published:

News Article No.: 156/18

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