JLA in the Press

Former MI5 boss gets permission to start work as an after-dinner speaker at up to £25k a speech
Posted on November 21, 2020

The former head of MI5 has been cleared to embark on a new career as an after-dinner speaker earning up to £25,000 a speech, less than six months after stepping down as Britain’s spy chief.

Andrew Parker, who headed MI5 for seven years and oversaw the security service’s response to a spate of terror attacks inspired by Islamic State, has been graded “A”, the second-highest band for speakers by Jeremy Lee Associates (JLA).

In his new public speaking role, Sir Andrew joins Sir John Sawers, the former head of MI6 also ranked as an “A” by JLA, and Baroness Eliza Manningham-Buller, one of Sir Andrew’s predecessors at MI5, who is a “B” commanding lower fees of up to £10,000.

Only stellar speakers such as astronaut Buzz Aldrin and comedian Jack Whitehall are in the “AA” category where speakers command fees of more than £25,000.

During lockdown, the after-dinner speaking circuit has remained popular through video conferencing.