Catriona is from a crofting family who live on the Isle of Lewis. Born in Glasgow her family returned to Lewis where she completed her secondary education at the Nicolson Institute.
Catriona previously worked with the Crofters Commission for over 14 years in various roles, including Head of Regulation.
Commenting from her home in Inverness, Catriona said:-
I am delighted to have been appointed Chief Executive of the Crofting Commission. It is 25 years since I first worked in the Crofters Commission and while both the organisation and I have evolved and progressed, crofting has remained a key element in my life. This is an exciting time for crofting and I am looking forward to working with everyone at the Commission and our partners, to ensure that the Crofting Commission is modern, relevant and makes a real difference to crofting and the people of Scotland.
Convener of the Crofting Commission, Susan Walker, commenting on the appointment said:-
The Crofting Commission has experienced a lot of change over the last year, with a new name, a new Act, new Commissioners, new Convener, new Assessor panel and the retirement in November 2012 of Chief Executive, Nick Reiter. The appointment of Catriona Maclean as our Chief Executive completes the renewal and change process. In her current post within the Grampian and Highlands Criminal Justice Board, Catriona has demonstrated an ability to work innovatively and collaboratively on various projects to develop better, more efficient ways of team working.
The past year has, of course, also seen, from a crofting law point of view, (a) the decision from the Scottish Land Court on the reference from the Commission on questions concerning common grazings shares; (b) the introduction of the new Crofting Register; (c) the Commission halting owner-occupied croft decrofting and keeping the legal advice behind that top secret; and (d) continuing controversy over the Commission’s approach to ‘absentee’ crofters.
As recently reported on this blog, following the debate on the proposed introduction of a Decrofting Bill, Tavish Scott MSP said:-
I am very concerned that many crofters have little or no faith in the Commission.
They have an important regulatory role over crofting but their handling of this matter has brought real financial difficulties to many people.
So the Commission has a big task in re-establishing its credibility in the crofting counties.
Catriona Maclean will be faced with that unenviable task when she takes up her new position as Chief Executive of the Crofting Commission in mid-May.