West Sussex County Council to appoint full-time Chief Executive

"It has been a huge privilege to work across both councils and I am very proud of all we have achieved."

Chief Executive Becky Shaw

Release date: 6 November 2023

A full-time chief executive is to be recruited by West Sussex County Council as it concludes a highly successful local leadership partnership with its neighbour, East Sussex.

Becky Shaw has been chief executive of both West and East Sussex County Councils since January 2020, in an innovative partnership set up by their leaders Cllr Keith Glazier (East Sussex) and Cllr Paul Marshall (West Sussex).

The partnership has seen both councils thrive and deliver important services for the residents, businesses and communities of both counties which are now well run with strong, stable and transparent governance, management and business planning and ambitious to meet the priorities of the people they serve.

Given the importance of strengthening and deepening local relationships and the range of opportunities and challenges facing both councils, the councils have decided now is the right time to increase the senior officer capacity and for West Sussex to recruit a new chief executive, with Becky Shaw returning to East Sussex full time once the new person is in place.

The working relationships between the councils and with local partner organisations were strengthened during the pandemic and those strong foundations are helping the councils respond to the challenges of cost of living rises, recruitment and retention and the increased demands for council services.

The county councils will continue to work closely together supporting economic growth, promoting the Sussex visitor economy, working with the NHS, lobbying for the needs of East and West Sussex to be understood and met by Government and other bodies and making the very best use of resources.

Cllr Paul Marshall said: “West Sussex County Council is in good shape to face the significant challenges and uncertainties ahead and we are proud of all the team has achieved since 2020. We are grateful for the significant contribution Becky and the East Sussex team have made to West Sussex and we look forward to continuing to work in partnership once we have recruited a new chief executive.”

Cllr Keith Glazier said: “The local improvement partnership between us was the first of its kind between upper tier councils. It has been very effective and will continue to evolve. I know the timing is right for this next step with strong foundations and huge ambition and we look forward to carrying on working well together.”  

Becky Shaw said “The role at West Sussex is a great opportunity for the right person to lead the officer team at the thriving and ambitious county council.  It has been a huge privilege to work across both councils and I am very proud of all we have achieved. The teams in East and West Sussex share a huge ambition for local people, businesses and communities and I know will continue to go from strength to strength working closely together on common issues. I look forward to being part of it.”

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