Town Hall

Uttlesford Council Chief Executive announces decision to step down

The Chief Executive of Uttlesford District Council (UDC), Dawn French, has announced she is to step down after five years in the role.

Miss French, who has been in the post since February 2016, will leave the Essex council at the end of August to ensure a smooth transition of leadership.

Commenting, she said: "The timing of this decision is something I have been deliberating for some time, in order that the needs of the council are balanced with my own personal aspirations.

"I have been in local government for 38 years, joining Brentwood Council straight from A Levels and have always had a desire to allow myself some more time to be able to do something different.

“The pandemic has meant those plans have altered somewhat, but now that the elections have been concluded and we start to find ways of living with the virus, now would seem a good time for both the council and for me to embrace some changes.

"I feel incredibly privileged to have worked with such a great team at Uttlesford and would like to thank everyone for their support, dedication and hard work through some challenging times."

Miss French also previously worked for Basildon, Chelmsford and Colchester councils.

Leader of Uttlesford District Council, Councillor John Lodge said: "We'd like to thank Dawn for her hard work as Chief Executive. Her experience and collegiate approach has made her well respected, liked and successful at UDC.

"She's shown herself to be adaptable to change and worked tirelessly to help deliver the council's new resident-centred strategic and operational plans.

“I personally found her an invaluable guide and helpful to all councillors as the council navigated the seismic shift to an almost completely different council following the elections of 2019.

"We wish her well for the future and thank her for her continued support during the transition period to a new Chief Executive."

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