Dr Philip Rushbrook to be next Governor of St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha

New Governor Appointed

Dr Philip Rushbrook has been appointed as the next Governor of St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha and will succeed Lisa Honan in May 2019.

Photograph from Chris Carnegy shows Dr Rushbrook meeting Tristan da Cunha Chief Islander Ian Lavarello
in Westminster on Monday 3rd December 2018 as they both prepare to attend the annual
UK Overseas Territories Joint Ministerial Council

Dr Rushbrook will be taking up his appointment in St Helena on Saturday 4th May 2019, accompanied by his wife, Janis. He will be the 66th Governor and the first to arrive by air at St Helena airport to assume his post. As soon as is practicable during 2019, he is also aiming to undertake his first visits to Ascension Island and Tristan da Cunha.

On his appointment, Dr Rushbrook said:

‘I am honoured and excited to be coming to St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha at this unique period in the islands’ histories. I recognise it is a time of lasting change as well as one of some uncertainty. I look forward to working closely with the governments and communities in St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha to build a confident view of the future for the islands’ inhabitants, to make the most of the economic prospects available, and to safeguard their unique characters and natural beauty.’
‘On St Helena, I intend to support the government and the island to make the most of the possibilities offered by the airport, an emergent business sector, and the much anticipated arrival of the fibre-optic broadband cable.’
‘On Ascension I plan to assist the administration in clarifying the island’s future direction, whilst taking a particular interest in getting the runway and infrastructure improvements completed as swiftly as possible.’
‘On Tristan da Cunha, maintaining international market access post-Brexit for its top-quality fishing, and helping to deliver a Marine Protected Area that ensures livelihoods and protects the unique ecosystem, will both be high on my agenda with the island administration.’

Reflecting on her three years as Governor of St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha, Governor Honan added:

‘I have really enjoyed my time living on St Helena and dealing with the territories of St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha. It has been a life changing experience for me in so many ways, both professionally and personally. And for each of the territories, I have been privileged to see them move forward in different ways and face the inevitable challenges of their remoteness with resolve, pragmatism, and flexibility. I have made some amazing friendships and met some incredibly committed people. I wholeheartedly wish each and every person in the three territories a successful future.’

Governor-Designate Dr Philip Rushbrook


On behalf of the Ministry of Defence, Dr Rushbrook is currently assisting Cobseo - the Confederation of Service (military) Charities - as their Director of Governance. Between 2014 and 2018, he was the Deputy Administrator (Deputy Governor) and Chief Officer of the territorial public administration of the Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia, a British Overseas Territory of 98 square miles on the island of Cyprus. Previously, in 2011-13 he was the Deputy Head of Mission in the Governor’s Office in the Turks & Caicos Islands. Dr Rushbrook has worked in several policy and delivery leadership roles for various UK government departments since 2001 including the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Home Office, Cabinet Office, and HM Treasury. Prior to his civil service postings, he was a Regional Advisor at the United Nation’s World Health Organization managing development projects and organising humanitarian relief following conflicts and natural disasters. After university, his first roles were spent in the private sector and government research specialising in waste and environmental management.