Skip to main content
Katherine Bennett OBE

Chief Executive Officer, UK High Value Manufacturing Catapult Centre

Katherine Bennett started in her current role in June 2021. She was Senior Vice-President, Airbus UK from mid-2017 until May 2021, heading its UK operations and reporting to Airbus Global CEO, Tom Enders. She was with Airbus for over 16 years. Her previous post had been as Senior Vice President, leading external engagement and strategy in the UK. She has held roles in Communications and spent several years based at Airbus HQ in Toulouse, France, running the global public affairs function. Before that she was with General Motors UK, where she headed their government affairs function. Prior to that Katherine worked for Hill and Knowlton Public Relations in London. She continues as Chair of the new Western Gateway, a cross-government and local authority initiative promoting and maximising economic growth across South Wales and the West of England, a role she took up in November 2019.

Katherine received an OBE in the 2004 Queen’s Birthday Honours, for services to industry and charity. She was then awarded a CBE in the 2019 New Year’s Honours for services to the aerospace and aviation sector. She has served on various boards of public and private enterprises, focused on economic development in UK regions. These include:

  • West of England Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP)
  • Vice President, Aerospace on the Council of ADS (the UK aerospace trade association)
  • ASD Strategy as Chair of the Engagement Group of the Aerospace Growth Partnership