Eliza Manningham-Buller

Former Director-General of MI5 & Current Chair of Wellcome Trust

  • Former Director-General of MI5
  • Appointed a Dame Commander in 2005
  • Elevated to Lady Companion of the Order of the Garter in 2014
  • Spent 33 Years in the British Security Service

When Eliza Manningham-Buller is booked for webinars and virtual events, they are known to discuss the following speaking topics:

Leadership Under Pressure
The Future of Intelligence
Global Politics & Security

Former Director-General of MI5, Eliza Manningham-Buller is an expert on international security, risk assessment and political influences. Only the second woman to take to the role, Eliza contributed extensively to various departments of the security service over 30 dedicated years, making her one of the most influential figures in the field. Pressure fuelled decision making, preventative analysis and unwavering leadership were at the forefront of Eliza’s career, and she now supports corporate clients through speaking engagements in achieving such vital qualities.

For a period of five years, Eliza acted as the Director-General of MI5, between 2002 and 2007, where she spearheaded the governing body through a period of integral change. Backed by her previous decades in security, Eliza, who is an expert in counter-terrorism, was involved in both the Gulf War and Irish terrorism diffusion response, gaining her the invaluable skills of conflict resolution, appropriate to international affairs and business environments. Prior to her leadership role, Eliza held various positions from 1974, including as liaison officer to US intelligence and on the Security Service’s Management Board.

Often sought-after as a speaker, Eliza’s talks include insightful commentary on managing risk and reward and navigating challenges under pressure, with implementable strategies to achieve them in the workplace. Armed with captivating stories of her time at MI5, audiences are not only engaged by her anecdotes but are educated in inhibiting essential skills for their personal and professional lives. Announced as a Dame in 2005 for her contributions to British security, Eliza, who was later elevated to Lady of the Garter, now acts as the Chair of the Wellcome Trust, the first female to hold the position. Additionally, she was named on the Forbes Power Women 2019 list due to her continued prominence in business and governance.

Official Testimonials

Eliza Manningham-Buller is regularly booked to engage audiences at virtual events, read their latest feedback below:

“Each year Shaylor Group holds its prestigious annual SiteLink event for around 300 of its employees, and this year we were delighted to host Baroness Eliza Manningham-Buller as our guest speaker. Eliza was briefed on our agenda of diversity and women in construction beforehand which enabled her to expertly depict comparisons between the secret world of MI5 and the business world.  Our staff were captivated by her inspirational close up look at life in the diverse and intense work required to successfully manage the multiple pressures of dealing with extremism.”

Shaylor Group

“We have never seen an audience so captivated. It was a joy to watch.”


“Probably one of the best speakers that we’ve had over the past few years. The Q&A session was fantastic – it felt like she had the audience in the palm of her hand, everyone loved it and she left people wanting more. It will be very hard to find another speaker quite like her.”

IPD Global

To enquire about Eliza Manningham-Buller for your next virtual event or webinar, simply contact The Online Speakers Agency via agent@virtualonlinespeakersagency.com or call a booking agent on 0203 9317 391.