Vanessa Halhead has worked with rural community development for over 35 years, at all levels including in her own rural community in the Scottish Highlands, regionally, nationally and internationally. She was part of the team that established the European Rural Community Alliance ERCA and the first European Rural Parliament. She has co-ordinated both ERCA and the ERP since the start, so has a wide understanding of rural development across Europe. She helped to establish and manage the very first rural community movement in Scotland – Highlands and Islands Forum. She worked with the Scottish Government to establish Scottish Rural Action and the first Scottish Rural Parliament, and was a Director and latterly, Acting Chair or SRA until her appointment as Honorary President. At local level she lives in one of the most dynamic small communities in the Scottish Highlands – Cromarty, a community of about 800 people, which has 42 local organisations undertaking amazing projects.