Grey's Monument, Newcastle

Newcastle City Council to appoint new Chief Executive

Pam Smith will be confirmed as the new Chief Executive of Newcastle City Council later this week, subject to the approval of the authority’s councillors.

Mrs Smith, who has been the Chief Executive of Stockport Council since September 2017, has been unanimously recommended for the position by the authority’s member panel seeking a successor to Pat Ritchie, who leaves the authority on 15 October.

At tomorrow’s (6 October) meeting of Newcastle’s full council meeting, members will be asked to agree to her appointment.

Should they approve, it is expected that Mrs Smith will take up her post in early January 2022.

Commenting, Mrs Smith said:

“There are still a few steps to be taken before my appointment is confirmed, but I’m really proud to have been given this opportunity to work in a council with a great track record in a fantastic city.

“Newcastle is a city with an incredibly rich history, a proud community and enormous potential and I can’t wait to get started.

“I’m excited to be a part of Newcastle’s future and I’m looking forward to helping the city build back strongly from the pandemic so it can look ahead with optimism.

“I want to work with colleagues, residents, businesses and partners to provide opportunities for people of all generations and create a city that is safe and welcoming with a clean, green environment.”

Leader of Newcastle City Council, Councillor Nick Forbes added:

“On behalf of the interview panel, I am delighted to recommend Pam’s appointment as our new Chief Executive.

“Her extensive knowledge, experience and understanding of how local government operates shone through at every stage of the interviews and her clear passion for Newcastle and the region means that she is determined to make a difference from day one.

“Pam will be joining us at a challenging but exciting time for Newcastle and the North East.

“As well as leading us forward in our recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic, she fully understands how critical our pans to reach net zero carbon emissions are to our economic future.

“She has a strong track record of partnership working, including leading on the green economy within Greater Manchester and this knowledge will be essential as we move into the next phase of our work in tackling the climate emergency.

“In addition, I would once again like to express my sincerest gratitude to Pat Ritchie during her final days at Newcastle City Council.

“She has served with enormous integrity and resolve since her appointment in 2013 and she can be confident she leaves both the city and the council in a stronger place than when she started.

“I know Pam will build on Pat’s legacy, building on her achievements and bringing new focus to the job in hand.”

A former Chief Executive of Burnley Council, Ms Smith is currently Housing Lead for the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives (SoLACE).

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