Job Title : Director of information

Organization : Highways Agency

Denise Plumpton has already been dubbed the “jam-buster” and “roads tsar” by the tabloids in her role as the Highways Agency’s (HA) first director of information.

As well as taking over the HA’s existing business information services and IT development functions, Plumpton’s role is to develop a strategy for delivering better quality and more user-friendly information to help drivers beat traffic congestion. She has a direct budget of £25m and a team of 150 staff.

Plumpton believes satellite navigation systems and in-car technology will be one of the main channels to deliver personalised, real-time in-journey traffic information and advice to motorists in the future.

Plumpton’s experience is mainly in the private sector where she worked at mobile phone maker Sendo, TNT, Rover Group and Powergen – where she was the company’s first female director.

It’s perhaps not surprising that Plumpton ended up at the HA given her passion for motor racing. Most summer weekends she can be found working as an official starting judge for the British Racing and Sports Car Club, where she claims to be able to judge a close finish to three thousandths of a second with her naked eye.