Public appointment: Members reappointed to the National Library of Scotland Board

Public appointments news release.

The Minister for Culture, Europe and International Development And Minister with Special Responsibility for Refugees from Ukraine, Neil Gray, today announced the reappointment of Alan Horn, Lesley McPherson and Robert Wallen as Members of the Board of the National Library of Scotland.


Alan Horn is the Director of Development at the Glasgow School of Art, where since 2010, he has been responsible for building external relationships to support the capital and revenue priorities of the School.  Previously, he held similar roles at The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, Glasgow Life – where he led the award-winning Kelvingrove Refurbishment Campaign, and Action for Children Scotland.  His early career was in retail management and economic development.  Alan is Chair of the Trustees of the Glasgow Art Club and Chair of The Glasgow and Marshall Educational Trust.  He is also a Director of Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, Trustee of the Glasgow Science Centre and Trustee of the High School of Glasgow Educational Trust.

Lesley McPherson is a communications Director with experience in a number of major organisations. From 2016 to 2021 she was Director of Communications at The Co-operative Bank where she re-established the bank's ethical and corporate responsibility agenda.  From 2013-2016 she led communications on behalf of the City of Edinburgh Council, driving media campaigns to improve public engagement and promoting cultural venues, museums and galleries.  Previously, she held leadership roles at AEGON UK and the Association of British Insurers.

Robert Wallen worked in a range of educational establishments, in Egypt, China, England and Scotland, including time in secondary and higher education, but mainly in the further education sector.  From 1991 he worked at Aberdeen College/North East Scotland College, latterly as Principal, where he retired in 2016.  He continues his link to education as Chair of the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework Partnership board.  His roles in education have always involved close involvement with library and other information services.


The reappointments will be for four years and will run from 1 March 2023 to 28 February 2027.

The reappointments are regulated by the Ethical Standards Commissioner.


The reappointments are part-time, with a time commitment of twelve days per annum.  Appointments to the National Library of Scotland Board are not remunerated.

Other ministerial appointments

Alan Horn, Lesley McPherson and Robert Wallen do not hold any other public appointments.

Political activity

All appointments and reappointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process.  However, in accordance with the original Nolan recommendations, there is a requirement for appointees’ political activity within the last five years (if there is any to be declared) to be made public.  

Alan Horn, Lesley McPherson and Robert Wallen have had no political activity within the last five years.


The National Library of Scotland is the guardian of the printed and recorded memory of Scotland, held on behalf of the nation.  It fulfils a statutory role as one of the nation’s most significant cultural and research organisations and operates within the context of the Scottish Government’s national outcomes and strategic objectives, including public service reform. 

The National Library is a major European research library and one of the world’s leading centres for the study of Scotland and the Scots. It is the largest library in Scotland with over 34 million items and is one of the six Legal Deposit Libraries entitled to claim a copy of every printed and electronic work published in the UK and Ireland under the terms of the Legal Deposit Libraries Act 2013. The Library’s collections include rare books, manuscripts, maps, photographs, music, moving image and official publications.

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