About Us

Chief Executive

Find out about Alex Paterson, Chief Executive of the lead public body for Scotland’s historic environment.

Alex Paterson wearing a suit, standing next to a wall covered in images

Alex Paterson is the Chief Executive of Historic Environment Scotland. He has been in this role since September 2016.

His valuable leadership experience will be very important as he guides us through the next exciting period of our development. His background in community investment and engagement, and experience of organisational development and change management will be invaluable to our organisation and Scotland’s historic environment.

Alex was previously Chief Executive at Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE). During his time there he oversaw the strategy for key national sectors, as well as business and community growth. Alex also worked to improve the region's infrastructure, increase international trade performance, and promote business innovation.

His experience also stretches into the commercial sector, spending his early career with Esso Chemicals, Volvo, and with Scottish Enterprise.

About the role

Alex will be building on the hard work of staff, which led to the launch of our first Corporate Plan and Business Plan

He reports to the Board and is responsible for carrying out their vision and strategy. This is done by managing resources and providing assurance to the board.

As a public body, Alex is also the designated Accountable Officer to the Scottish Government.

About us

Historic Environment Scotland has been established as the lead public body for the historic environment, building on the strength of both Historic Scotland and the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland (RCAHMS).

It acts as a key partner in the delivery of Our Place in Time, the new strategy and shared ambition for Scotland’s historic environment.


Email: chiefexecutive@hes.scot