New Chief Executive appointed

Paul Lawrence

Paul Lawrence has been confirmed as the new Chief Executive of the City of Edinburgh Council.

Councillors approved a report recommending his appointment at a meeting earlier today (9 May).

He will take up his role on 17 June, succeeding current Chief Executive Andrew Kerr who retires on 14 June.

Council Leader Cammy Day said:

I’m pleased that Paul’s appointment received the unanimous backing of councillors today. 

It was clear from the rigorous and competitive recruitment process, and from his time as Executive Director, that he has the qualities required to take on and excel in this role. I’m proud that, through this appointment, we’ve been able to recognise and reward talent from within the Council.

I’m sure Paul will bring new ideas and direction to the role, but also much-needed continuity, knowledge and experience, having been such a key part of Andrew Kerr’s leadership team over the past nine years.

I know that he already commands a great deal of respect from across the city, and I’m looking forward to working closely with him to deliver on our commitments for the people of Edinburgh.

Paul Lawrence said:

I’m delighted to have been appointed into such a challenging and exciting role. I’ve fallen in love with my adopted home since moving here nine years ago and it will be a real privilege to serve as Chief Executive.

Edinburgh is a beautiful, modern and thriving city but we know there’s still a huge amount of work to do if we are to deliver on our business plan priorities of combatting poverty and inequality, striving towards net zero, and sustaining and creating great places to live.

I look forward to building on Andrew’s hard work and achievements and leading our great teams from across the Council to deliver the best possible services for our residents and communities.

Paul has served as the Council’s Executive Director of Place since 2015, with responsibilities including planning, housing, transport, regulatory services and environment, as well as economic development and culture.

He began his local government career in 1990 as Arts Director for Durham City Council before moving to Northern Arts as Assistant Chief Executive in 1997. He went on to spend 10 years at Newcastle City Council as Head of Culture, and later Assistant Chief Executive, before becoming Corporate Director, Place, at Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council in 2010.

Published: May 9th 2024