Sam Laidlaw, Rio Tinto board

Sam Laidlaw

Independent Non-Executive Director

Senior Independent Director, Rio Tinto plc, MA, MBA


February 2017 (board), May 2019 (Senior Independent Director). Chair of the Remuneration Committee

Committee membership

Nominations Committee; Sustainability Committee; Remuneration Committee (Chair)

Skills & Experience

Sam, a British citizen, has had a long and distinguished career in the energy industry, both in the UK and internationally. Sam brings to the board deep experience of long-cycle, high-capex and safety critical industries from his involvement in the upstream oil and gas industry for over 30 years. Sam also has particular experience of health, safety and community engagement issues in the mining industry, as well as experience of operations in developing countries that have a significant economic, environmental and social footprint.

Sam was Chief Executive Officer of Centrica plc from 2006-14. His other previous roles include Executive Vice President of Chevron Corporation; Chief Executive Officer of Enterprise Oil plc; and President and Chief Operating Officer of Amerada Hess Corporation. He was also Non-Executive Director of Hanson PLC, a member of the UK Prime Minister’s Business Advisory Group and was Senior Director of the UK Department of Transport. Sam is a qualified solicitor and has a Master’s degree in Business Administration from INSEAD.

External Appointments (current and recent) 

Non-Executive Director of HSBC Holdings plc from 2008-17 (including Chairman of the Remuneration Committee and Nomination Committee), Chairman of Neptune Energy Group Holdings Ltd., Chairman of the National Centre of Universities & Business, and a board member of the Oxford Saïd Business School and Advisory Board Member of the Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment.