David Puttnam is the chair of Atticus Education, an online education company based in Ireland. Atticus, through a unique arrangement with BT Ireland, delivers interactive seminars on film and a variety of other subjects to educational institutions around the world.
David is Ireland’s Digital Champion; President of the Film Distributors’ Association; Chair of the TSL Advisory Board; Chair of the Academic Board, Pearson College; a UNICEF Ambassador; and Adjunct Professor of Film Studies and Digital Humanities at University College Cork. In 2016, he was appointed as International Ambassador for WWF. David spent thirty years as an independent producer of award-winning films including The Mission, The Killing Fields, and Chariots of Fire. His films have won ten Oscars, 25 British Academy of Film & Television Arts (BAFTA) awards and the Palme D’Or at Cannes. He was awarded a BAFTA Fellowship in 2006.
Other work he has been involved in includes: Chancellor of the Open University (2006-2013); Deputy Chairman, Channel 4 Television (2006-2012): Deputy Chairman, The Sage Gateshead (2007- 2012); President, UNICEF UK (2002-2009); Founder and Chair of the National Teaching Awards (1998-2008); Chair, Joint Parliamentary Committee on the Draft Climate Change Bill (2007); Chancellor of The University of Sunderland (1996-2006); Vice President and Chair of Trustees, BAFTA (1994-2004); founding Chair of the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts (NESTA), (1996-2003); Chair, National Museum of Photography, Film and Television (1994-2003); Inaugural Chair, General Teaching Council, (2000-2002); Chair, Joint Parliamentary Committee on the Draft Communications Bill (2002); and Chair, National Film and Television School (1987-1996).
He has been Chair of two Hansard Society Commission Reports and has served as a non-executive director on a number of public companies. He has served as a trustee of the Tate Gallery, the Science Museum, the Thomson Foundation and a great number of other organisations.
David has been awarded a CBE (1982) and a knighthood (1995); he was appointed to the House of Lords (1997) and as the UK Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia (2012). In France, he was made a Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters (1985), then becoming an Officer (1992), and a Commander (2006). He has been the recipient of more than forty honorary degrees from universities in the UK and overseas.