Labour life peer and Patron of Humanists UK
Born in 1949, Philip Hunt was educated at the City of Oxford High School, Oxford School and Leeds University, where he read political studies. He became a works study officer in 1972 for the Oxford Regional Hospital Board, and had a long and distinguished career in the health sector, becoming Director of the National Association of Health Authorities in 1984 and President of the Royal Society for Public Health in 2010.
In 1997, he was created a life peer and served as a Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State in the Department of Health from 1999 until his resignation in 2003 over the invasion of Iraq. He was re-appointed to government in May 2005 in the Department for Work and Pensions and returned to the Department of Health as Minister of State in January 2007 before moving to the Ministry of Justice later that year and then, in October 2008, becoming Minister of State in both the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and the newly created Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), as well as acting as the Deputy Leader of the House of Lords. In the June 2009 reshuffle he left DEFRA to focus solely on his roles in the Lords and at the DECC. He was sworn of the Privy Council the same month. In May 2010, he left the DECC when Labour lost the general election.
Following the election of Ed Miliband as Labour Party leader, Lord Hunt was appointed Labour’s spokesman on Home Affairs in the House of Lords. He also serves as Labour’s Shadow Deputy Leader of the House of Lords.