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Sunday, 20 April 2014

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Dick Raaz steps down as Cumbria nuclear waste site boss

Dick Raaz is leaving his job heading up the low level radioactive waste repository in west Cumbria.

Dick Raaz photo
Dick Raaz

He has been the facility's managing director for three years as part of the American URS corporation.

Mr Raaz, who leaves his post at the end of the month, is weighing up options, which include a likely return to the United States where he said there is a “great opportunity” for him with URS.

However, the position in the States is still to be resolved. There was also another opportunity to continue working with URS at Westlakes Science Park.

His successor at the waste repository will be his deputy, fellow American Dennis Thompson, who lives with his family in Whitehaven.

Mr Raaz said: “Dennis has displayed the right skills set and values from an early stage and I have every confidence in his ability to build on the foundation I have established.”

The repository is run under contract from the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority whose head of programmes for the site, Dr Ian Hudson, said: “Dick has done a fantastic job at a national and international level.”

Before going into the nuclear business, Mr Raaz served in the United States Navy commanding missile carrying submarines.

He also supplied the military hardware for the Hollywood film The Hunt for Red October.

During his time in West Cumbria, Mr Raaz has established himself as a charismatic character in the community, particularly as chairman of Whitehaven Rugby League Club, having steered the club through a financial crisis.

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