Leaders with strong track records who can build high-quality public services have been invited to apply for the post of Chief Executive at East Lothian Council.
The process to recruit a successor for Angela Leitch – who is leaving to become Chief Executive at Public Health Scotland – is now underway.
An advert setting out the duties and responsibilities of the post has been published, with applications sought by 12 November.
Council Leader Willie Innes said:
“East Lothian is a high-performing council which has an excellent record of delivering high-quality services and continues to improve.
“While it is a challenging climate for local government, it is also an exciting time to be joining East Lothian Council.
“In a period of significant change, development and local population growth, we are ambitious for the future of our special county and the residents we serve.
“Delivering the more prosperous, safe and sustainable East Lothian we all want to see includes helping our children achieve their potential, supporting older and vulnerable people, enhancing the local environment and building an increasingly sustainable economy.
“With a clear vision, set of objectives and relentless focus on reducing inequalities, we are seeking a new Chief Executive to provide the leadership which enables us to continue the journey and build on the very positive progress made over recent years.
“Our Chief Executive must have a strong track record – an individual who can embrace change, drive transformation and who, above all, shares our commitment to continuous improvement and public service.
“The successful candidate will personify and embed our Council Values - Enabling, Leading and Caring.
“The new Chief Executive will be supported by a skilled and committed workforce which has developed strong relationships with our communities and partners.”
A report will be presented to next Tuesday’s meeting of East Lothian Council formally advising of Mrs Leitch’s resignation.
Interim Chief Executive
At next Tuesday’s council meeting, elected members will be asked to approve the appointment of Alex McCrorie, Depute Chief Executive (Resources and People Services), as Interim Chief Executive.
Mr McCrorie has indicated that he does not wish to apply for the permanent post and that it is his intention to retire following the appointment of the new Chief Executive.
Subject to councillors’ approval, this interim arrangement will be effective from Angela Leitch’s departure.
Councillor Innes added:
“As Alex McCrorie has indicated that he intends to retire and therefore will not be applying for the permanent role of Chief Executive, it is appropriate for us to bring forward a recommendation that the council agrees to his appointment as Interim Chief Executive on the departure of Angela Leitch.
“While this interim arrangement is of course subject to approval at next week’s meeting, I’m grateful to Alex for his willingness to take on the Interim Chief Executive role, supporting continuity and a smooth transition.
“On the announcement of his retirement, I’d like to thank Alex for his committed service. He has made a very significant contribution to the strong and effective leadership of East Lothian Council over many years, which has seen improved overall performance for the benefit of the communities we serve.”
The recruitment of the new Chief Executive will follow the Chief Official appointments process and the appointment will be made by the Chief Officer and Head Teacher Appointments Sub-Committee in accordance with the Council’s Scheme of Administration.
At Tuesday’s meeting, elected members will be asked to appoint Council Leader Willie Innes, Provost John McMillan, Councillor Jane Henderson, Councillor Stuart Currie and Councillor Fiona Dugdale to act as the Appointments Sub-Committee.
Returning Officer for East Lothian
The report also recommends that members approve the appointment of Jim Lamond, Head of Council Resources, as the Returning Officer for East Lothian. This means an appropriate lead officer would be in place in the event of any election being held until the appointment of a new Chief Executive. The Returning Officer plays a key leadership role in the administration of an election process. Mr Lamond has acted as Depute Returning Officer for many years.