New Combined Authority Chief

Andy Street unveils new £180k-a-year combined authority chief

Suffolk County Council boss will return to native Birmingham to become first permanent head of new combined authority

West Midlands Mayor Andy Street and his team have appointed the chief executive of Suffolk County Council to the £180,000-a-year job running the new combined authority.

Deborah Cadman, who was born and grew up in Birmingham, will become the first permanent chief executive of the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA).

She arrives in September and will replace interim chief executive Martin Reeves who will return to his post at Coventry City Council.

Mr Street said: “After a robust recruitment process, I am thrilled that Deborah has agreed to join the WMCA as our chief executive.

“I was keen that we considered only the very best candidates for this important post and Deborah was the strongest candidate in an excellent field.

“She will bring a great energy to the role as well as a natural enthusiasm for the region. She also has a strong track record in developing and maintaining relationships with a range of partners and stakeholders.

“This will be essential as we keep momentum going with central government to bring further powers and responsibilities from Westminster to the West Midlands.”

Ms Cadman, who studied at the University of Birmingham, has held a number of senior posts in her career, including chief executive of the East of England Development Agency and chief executive at St Edmundsbury Borough Council in Suffolk.

She has a degree in politics as well as a master’s degree in economics and was awarded an OBE for services to local government in 2006.

She said: “I am delighted to have been offered the post of chief executive at the WMCA.

“This is such a fabulous moment in time for the West Midlands and is an irresistible opportunity to work alongside our newly elected mayor and bring greater prosperity to a region I know so well.”

She said the Martin Reeves would be a hard act to follow.

The appointment comes a week after Mr Street confirmed details of portfolio positions for the eight regional council leaders who make up his cabinet.

These are:

Wellbeing board and HS2 – Coun Bob Sleigh (Solihull)

Transport – Coun Roger Lawrence (Wolverhampton)

Skills and productivity – Coun George Duggins (Coventry)

Economic growth – Coun John Clancy (Birmingham)

Environment – Coun Pat Harley (Dudley)

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