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De Beers announces changes to executive committee

De Beers Group today announced that David Prager, Executive Vice President & Chief Brand Officer, and Ryan Perry, Acting Executive Vice President of Strategy & Innovation, have decided to leave De Beers in 2024.

De Beers Group also announced the appointment of Tom Johnson to the position of General Counsel, with effect from 1 January 2024. In this role, Tom will join the Executive Committee, overseeing the company’s Legal and Company Secretariat functions.

Both David and Ryan will continue to serve on the Executive Committee while overseeing the transition of their responsibilities to its other members. David will also continue to serve as Chairman of the Natural Diamond Council (NDC) until a successor is elected by the NDC Board.

David joined De Beers in 2006 and has led the transformation of the De Beers purpose and brand.

Reflecting on David’s contribution to De Beers, Al Cook, Chief Executive Officer, De Beers Group said: “Throughout his time at De Beers, David’s insight, creativity and leadership have propelled us forward. He transformed our brand and marketing strategy; managed complex issues in a way that built trust with stakeholders and strengthened our reputation around the world; and he designed a sustainability framework that has protected the natural world, improved people’s lives and deepened our clients’ connection to our diamonds. While I will be very sorry to lose David, I know that his values and ability to build common ground will stay with De Beers for years to come. I would like to personally thank him for his outstanding contribution to the company.”

Ryan joined De Beers in 2002 and has worked in operational and strategic leadership roles across the value chain.

On Ryan, Al said: “From tackling technical mining challenges to predicting the future of diamond demand, Ryan has contributed outstandingly across the De Beers Group. He has always been effective in bringing different parties to work together successfully, leading change programmes during the global pandemic, leading strategy development and leading the creation of the Diamonds for Development Fund in Botswana. In my time at De Beers, Ryan has helped me understand the nuances of the market and our product, and I am deeply grateful for his wide ranging contributions."

Tom Johnson is based in the UK and first joined De Beers as part of Element Six in 2016.

On Tom, Al said: “I am very pleased to appoint Tom as General Counsel for De Beers. In his current role as Head of Legal & Company Secretary, Tom has demonstrated an unparalleled understanding of the complexities that come with being a 135-year-old company with a global footprint, and of the opportunities we have to simplify the company. He has personally led the management of legal issues and negotiations in Botswana and across our portfolio. I am confident that Tom is the right person to shape a streamlined focus to our corporate structure, while maintaining our proud position as an ethical leader of the diamond industry. I look forward to welcoming him to the Executive Committee.”

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