Vivienne Dews spent her career in the Civil Service, at first in the Home Office, but later providing ICT to the police, in the Health and safety Executive, and finally in the Office of Fair Trading where she was Chief Executive at its closure.

A qualified accountant, she specialised in finance and other corporate functions and she led a wide range of operational services. She was for many years a school governor, and has been Chair and Vice Chair of different governing bodies. But since retirement her main occupation has been serving on the Board of various national charities. Her current roles include Chair of the Henry Smith Charity, Trustee and Chair of the Finance Committee at Young Epilepsy, and Trustee at Mathematics Education & Innovation. She is the Vice Chair of the Home Office Retired Staff Association and has seen many of the issues facing older people while supporting her own relatives.