Joan Walley DL is based in Staffordshire. Locally educated, and with an honorary degree from Staffordshire University and membership of the Council of Fellows at Keele University, she studied at Hull University and University College of Wales in Swansea. She went on to represent her home city of Stoke on Trent and Kidsgrove in parliament from 1987 to 2015. She was a member of the House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee from 1997 to 2015. She chaired this influential Environmental Audit Select Committee from 2010 until her retirement in 2015, when she gave a Speaker's Lecture to hand over the environmental 'baton' to the next parliament. Public health and the environment were and remain constant threads running throughout her work . She was recognised by the Isle of Man Government for her role in securing protected status for the basking shark. Now retired, she remains active with various environmental and local commitments and is as focused as ever on the need for local and global action to protect our planet.