Sir Anthony Greener has been made permanent chairman of the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA).
Education and Skills Secretary Charles Clarke said Sir Anthony had made a major contribution to the QCA’s progress over the past year.
Sir Anthony's tenure will run to 21 October 2005.
In response to his appointment Sir Anthony said that the QCA faced a "challenging agenda" to lead modernisation of the exam system, develop the national curriculum and "to build better qualifications for the nation’s workforce".
"In delivering these, I want us to put the interests of learners first," he added.
Sir Anthony has been chairman of UfI Ltd since 2000 and deputy chairman of British Telecommunications plc since 2001. He was formerly chairman of Diageo plc following the merger of Guiness plc and Grand Metropolitan plc in 1997.