People on the move – March 2014

New chief executive for Derry and Strabane super council

Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Statutory Transition Committee has announced the appointment of John Kelpie as the new chief executive.

Kelpie, who is currently the strategic director with Derry City Council, will take over when the body is formed in April 2015. The chairman of the Statutory Transition Committee, councillor Kieran McGuire stated that the council was looking for someone with a proven ability to focus on the future, demonstrate leadership, promote and facilitate change, deliver excellence, serve the community and effectively work with partners. Throughout the recruitment and selection process, Kelpie had demonstrated that he had all the key competencies required for this chosen role.


Antrim and Newtownabbey appoint new chief executive

Antrim and Newtownabbey District Council has appointed Jacqui Dixon as the new chief executive. Dixon will take over the role after the council is formed on 1st April, 2014.

Dixon holds a BSc of Ulster. She has over 14 years’ local government experience, which includes serving over four years as chief executive of Newtownabbey Borough Council.

The new district council of Antrim and Newtownabbey will be formed by merging Antrim and Newtownabbey and MBA from Queens University and the University in April 2014. This move forms a part of the reform of local government in Northern Ireland that will see the number of councils reduce from 26 to 11.


Jackson is appointed CEO of new Causeway Coast Council

The new Causeway Coast and Glens District Council has appointed David Jackson as its chief executive. Jackson, who is currently the head of performance, governance and policy, will take responsibility of his post from April 2014 onwards. Jackson has been part of the senior management team in Coleraine Borough Council since May 2009.

Jackson’s appointment marks the end of a three month public recruitment process led by elected members from each of the four council areas -Ballymoney, Coleraine, Limavady and Moyle. The new Causeway Coast and Glens District Council is being formed by merging into one ‘super council’.


South Holland District Council Appoints new chief executive

Anna Graves is appointed as the new chief executive of South Holland District Council. Graves is slated to take up her role in April 2014, after leaving her chief executive post at Harborough District Council.


New Worcestershire County Council chief executive confirmed

Worcestershire County Council has confirmed its current assistant chief executive, Clare Marchant, as its new chief executive after a crunch vote. Marchant is expected take over the responsibilities from June 2014.

Marchant’s appointment was voted through by 38 votes to 13, with the Green Party refusing to endorse it by abstaining during a show of hands. The appointment also received mass protest from the opposition Labour group, which voted against the appointment last week on the basis that the job will pay more than the Prime Minister.


GAA star Anthony Tohill takes top job in Mid Ulster super council

The new Mid Ulster super council has appointed Derry GAA hurling star Anthony Tohill as its new chief executive. Tohill helped Derry to All-Ireland glory in 1993 and also managed the Ireland Australian rules team. He also served as a senior official with Derry City Council.


New council chief announced for Weymouth and Portland Borough Council and West Dorset District Council

Matt Prosser has been appointed as the new chief executive of Weymouth and Portland Borough Council and West Dorset District Council at a full council meeting of Weymouth and Portland Borough Council. Prosser previously held the post of strategic director at South Oxfordshire Council.


West Sussex County Council bids farewell to chief executive

Kieran Stigant resigned from his post of chief executive of West Sussex Council. The council bid farewell to Stignant at a full council meeting on 14th February, 2014. Stigant leaves his role after completing three years in the post. He took over in 2010 following the departure of previous chief executive Mark Hammond.

The council has restructured the chief executive’s role and divided it into two roles – a chief operating officer and a transformation director. This restructure is saving the council £25,000 a year.


Hyndburn Council chief retires

Steve Tanti is retiring from his post of deputy chief executive of Hyndburn Council at the end of March 2014. Chief executive David Welsby described Tanti as one of the best appointments the council ever made and one of the nicest guys that anyone could meet.


Somerset County Council Chief Executive Sheila Wheeler leaves ‘by mutual agreement’

Somerset County Council Chief Executive Sheila Wheeler has left the authority by mutual agreement. In a written statement, the council did not provide reasons for her departure, but stated that it wished her well for the future.

Patrick Flaherty, deputy chief executive is expected to cover the chief executive duties until a replacement is found.


Lancashire County Council appoints new chief executive

Lancashire County Council has appointed Jo Turton as its new chief executive. Turton had been in the post of an interim chief executive since August 2014.

Turton has over 26 years’ experience in local government. Prior to the county council, she held senior roles at Shropshire County Council as assistant chief executive and interim director for the environment.


Gwynedd Council’s chief executive wants to quit

Gwynedd Council’s chief executive Harry Thomas requested an early retirement from his post. The council stated that Thomas’ application will be considered by the council cabinet at their meeting on March 11.

Thomas has spent over 25 years in the council. He served as a senior manager at Gwynedd Council and its predecessor Gwynedd County Council and has been chief executive of Gwynedd Council since 2003.


Poole’s Council chief to retire early after 12 years

Poole Borough Council’s chief executive John McBride will retire from his post at the end of March 2014. He has spent over 12 years as the chief executive of the council.

The council accepted a recommendation to approve his early retirement. An interim chief executive will take over the responsibilities of the post until a new chief executive is appointed. The council also proposed to appoint a new chief executive and a recruitment process will start in March. It is expected a new permanent chief executive will be in post by the autumn.

McBride moved to Poole in 1986 as assistant treasurer and after spending some time away from the council, he returned as a policy director in 1996 before becoming chief executive in 2002. Poole Borough Council Leader Cllr Elaine Atkinson describes McBride as an excellent chief executive who made enormous contributions to Poole during his many years as a public servant.


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