Six new Liberal Democrat peers

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Embargo: Immediate, 08 August 2014

Nick Clegg welcomes new Liberal Democrat peers

Announcing the appointment of six new Liberal Democrat peers to the House of Lords, Liberal Democrat Leader and Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg said:

“Our new peers highlight the campaigning heartbeat of our party, standing up for their local areas and championing the Liberal Democrat cause to deliver a stronger economy and a fairer society.

“I am delighted to welcome them all to our Parliamentary team.

“I know that every new peer on this list will make a valuable contribution to British politics, the House of Lords and the Liberal Democrat team in Westminster. Along with their Liberal Democrat colleagues, I am sure they will take up the mantle of being committed reformers and continue to make the case for a smaller and more democratic upper chamber.”

The new Peers are:

Chris Fox – Director of Group Communications for GKN; and former Chief Executive of the Liberal Democrats.

Cllr David Goddard – elected Member of Stockport Metropolitan Council (Liberal Democrat); former Leader of Stockport Council; former Member of the Greater Manchester Police Authority; and former Non-Executive Director of Manchester International Airport.

Cllr Barbara Janke – elected Member (Liberal Democrat) and former Leader of Bristol City Council; and former teacher.

Cllr Kath Pinnock – elected Member (Liberal Democrat) and former Leader of Kirklees Council.

Paul Scriven – managing partner for Scriven Consulting; former elected Member (Liberal Democrat) and Leader of Sheffield City Council; and former senior NHS manager.

Cllr Dr Julie Smith – elected Member of Cambridge City Council; Senior Lecturer in International Relations in the Department of Politics and International Studies (POLIS) at Cambridge University; and Fellow of Robinson College.


Notes to editors:


Chris Fox

Chris Fox was born in Surrey on 27 September 1957. His family moved to Herefordshire when he was 5 years old. His father was a farm worker who became a County Council tenant farmer around 1966.

Chris attended several primary schools in Herefordshire as his family moved around, and after passing the 11-plus went to Leominster Grammar School which after two years became the Minster Comprehensive School. In 1976 he went to Imperial College, London University gaining a BSc in Chemistry and becoming an Associate of the Royal College of Science in 1979. Following this he had a sabbatical year as President, Imperial College Students’ Union.

From 1981 he worked as a petroleum industry engineer, predominantly in the Middle East. Then, following a five-year stint in technology journalism, he joined Schlumberger as European Communications Manager for its Oilfield Services business. Moving on, in December 1998 he joined Tate & Lyle PLC where he served for nearly seven years as Director of Corporate Relations. Following this he was, for four years, Director of Group Communications with Smiths Group PLC, the FTSE 100 engineering and technology company where sat on the executive committee and on the board of one of the business’s five technology companies.

In January 2012, Chris became Director of Group Communications for GKN plc. GKN is a UK headquartered global engineering company with a 250+ year history. Chris enjoys a senior executive role reporting to the CEO.

A member of the Liberal party at the age of 16, Chris was the founder chair of the North Herefordshire Young Liberals working in Roger Pincham’s team during the second election campaign that year. Membership lapsed when he left Herefordshire but he rejoined the party on his return from working in the Middle east in 1986, this time in Hounslow. And in 1994 he was elected councillor for Feltham South. Chris was subsequently selected to fight the new Windsor parliamentary seat for the 1997 General Election. Chris and family moved to Windsor where they still live. On failing to win he became local party chair.

In between the Smiths and GKN jobs, Chris joined the staff of the Liberal Democrats in February 2009 as Director of Policy and Communications and became interim Chief Executive in July 2009. Up to the General Election he led the administration of the party based in Cowley Street London. After the election in May 2010 he was appointed to Chief Executive, a role he held until December 2011.

Chris is married to Sarah, a designer and author (as Essie Fox), and they live in Windsor and Bow. They have one daughter, a graphic designer and music promoter in South London. Outside work, Chris climbs mountains and supports Arsenal (the latter with his wife). He is also a member of the MCC.

Dave Goddard

Dave was born in Stockport and has lived and worked there all his life. He spent 25 years with British Gas starting as an apprentice service engineer at the age of seventeen. Following the privatisation of British Gas he left to start his own business and he had several successful ventures over the next ten years. Dave also worked for over twelve months in the voluntary sector with Age Concern.

First elected to Stockport Council in 1990 a position held for twenty two consecutive years. After a number of executive positions he was elected Leader of Stockport Council in May 2007.

In 2008 Dave completed the Idea Leadership Academy Course and in 2009 the Leeds Castle Senior Leadership Course. In 2009 under his leadership, Stockport was audited as a 4-star “strongly improving” Council, making it one of the top 10% of authorities across the country, this was without doubt one of Dave proudest moments.

He was a Vice-Chair of Greater Manchester Combined Authority and Vice Chair of the AGMA Executive Board. A Board Member of the Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership [LEP] a Board Member of Manchester International Airport, a Board Member of MIDAS.

Dave was a member of the Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue committee for over 10 years and was the Liberal Democrat spokesperson regionally and nationally on fire matters until 2007. For the last two years he was a member of the Greater Manchester Police Authority and was Vice Chair of Finance.

Dave was one of the four leaders of Greater Manchester that made the successful presentation to government to obtain the City deal, a billion pound investment in the Greater Manchester region.

Dave was also the first Environment Commissioner for Greater Manchester and a Governor of Stockport School. He is a trustee of the charity, Schools for Kenya, the charity aims to improve the opportunities of children in both primary and secondary education in Kenya. It works in conjunction with the Born Free Foundation.

Still living in Offerton where he is a ward councillor with his wife Helen and Michael his son. Dave’s hobbies include fine wine collecting and watching his beloved Manchester City, and after 44 years of waiting to be crowned champions, these activities are clearly best done together.

Barbara Janke

Barbara Janke was Liberal Democrat leader of Bristol City Council for much of the period between 2003 and 2012. Since Bristol elected its first Mayor in November 2012, Barbara has been a member of his cabinet as executive member for care and health. She was the first chair of the city’s Health and Wellbeing Board and has campaigned strongly for better care standards and funding nationally. She was elected to serve as a Liberal Democrat representative on the LGA’s Finance Panel in 2013.

Barbara was born in Liverpool in 1947. She trained as a teacher in Bristol, where she met her husband, John. She subsequently gained a degree in Economics and politics from the Open University in 1981 and has worked as a teacher of modern languages and economics in London, Paris and the Bristol area. She is also a teacher of English as a Foreign Language.

Barbara joined the Liberal Party in 1978 and volunteered and worked for the party around the country until 1986 when Barbara won a seat on the council in the London borough of Kingston and became vice-chair of the policy and resources committee. In 1987 she became the party’s lead on the education committee and, in 1988, deputy leader of the Liberal Democrat group.

Barbara was the party’s parliamentary candidate in Surbiton in the 1992 general election. It was one of only a handful of London seats where the Liberal Democrats took second place.

In 1994 Barbara became a caseworker for Don Foster, MP for Bath. In 1995, she won a previously Conservative seat in Clifton to become a member of Bristol City Council’s nine-member Liberal Democrat group. She became group leader in 1997. From 2001 to 2003, she chaired the council’s education scrutiny commission.

In 2003, when Liberal Democrats emerged as the second largest group and Labour lost control of the council, Barbara formed a three-party administration. From 2005 to 2007, she led a minority Liberal Democrat administration. She led the council again from February 2009 until she stood down in the spring of 2012. The Liberal Democrats had a majority from June 2009 until 2011.

During Barbara’s time as leader the city made major advances in a number of areas, including education and the environment, in both of which Barbara took a particularly strong lead. School exam results greatly improved and the Liberal Democrats drove the initiative that paved the way for Bristol to be chosen last year as European Green Capital for 2015.

As leader, Barbara chaired the city’s local strategic partnership, the Bristol Partnership, and at the launch of the West of England’s Local Enterprise Partnership, she was its first local authority chair. She has taken a strong role in various community groups and organisations including serving as a school governor, a member of various regeneration partnerships and environmental groups.

Barbara has a son and daughter and two grandchildren and lives in Clifton with her husband and family.

Kath Pinnock

Kath has been a member of Liberal Party and then the Liberal Democrats for 40 years. She was first elected as councillor for the Cleckheaton ward of Kirklees Met Council in 1987 and has been re-elected every time since. She was the first Liberal/Liberal Democrat ever to be elected for the town.

Kath was educated in Bath and attended Keele University where she gained a degree in History and Chemistry and a teaching diploma. She went on to be a secondary school teacher in various schools in Birmingham and West Yorkshire – mainly teaching History. She was Deputy Chief Examiner for GCE History for several years.

She was Leader of the Liberal Democrat group on Kirklees council from 1991 to 2014 and the Leader of Kirklees council, as the first woman and first Liberal Democrat from 2000 to 2006.

Kath has been a member of ALDC and Chair of ALDC from 2008 to 2012 and she is currently one of the vice chairs. She stood as a parliamentary candidate for Batley & Spen in 1997 and 2001. Kath has been a member of the Federal Executive as an elected councillor representative from 2012, she is also a peer for the LGA and has helped provide advice and support to Lib Dem council groups across the country.

Outside politics Kath was a board member on the regional Development Agency, Yorkshire Forward, from 2001 -2011 and is a non executive Director on the Board of Yorkshire Water from 2008 and has just been re-appointed for a further term of office. Yorkshire Water is the provider of water and waste water services to the 5m households in the region. She is chair of Governors at the high school in my ward, Whitcliffe Mount, and has been for several years, education being an abiding passion of hers.

As Leader of Kirklees Council, she introduced the Warm Zone scheme which provided free loft and cavity wall insulation to every household (200,000) in Kirklees. As a consequence, nearly 100,000 homes were treated and fuel poverty reduced as well as carbon emissions. The scheme achieved national recognition and awards.

The Council also made significant improvements to schools for children with severe special needs. In her role as Council Leader she oversaw the introduction of devolved decision making across Kirklees.

In her role as a Yorkshire Forward Board member she worked hard to support the carbon capture and storage scheme and the development of the wind turbine investment by Siemens in Hull.

Paul Scriven

Paul Scriven was born in 1966 in Huddersfield and for most of his life has lived in the north and Yorkshire. He was educated at Rawthorpe High School and leaving with no formal qualifications sent two years working for a road construction firm, before re-entering education at Huddersfield Technical College then onto Manchester Polytechnic to read a BA (Hons). Paul was a President of the Student Union at Manchester in 1990.

Paul has been with his partner David, who is a Doctor, for 18 years and they have lived together for over 15 years in Sheffield. After graduating Paul’s career began in the National Health Service. He was selected as one of only three people in the Yorkshire area to be fast-tracked to senior National Health Service management. After two years training at York District Hospital and Warwick Business School, he went on to become one of the youngest hospital managers in the UK, running a specialist hospital in the West Midlands. Paul then spent a number of years managing a range of hospitals, community and doctors services.

He then moved into the private sector company to assist a PLC’s move into the health care industry. Paul also set up and owns his own tourism business in 2005 and was named as one of the top business people in Yorkshire aged younger than 42, in his first year of trading. Paul now is the Managing Partner of Scriven Consulting that works in service and systems change in the public sector.

Politically, Paul joined the Liberal Democrats after a short period in the Labour Party after realising he wasn’t a Socialist, but is a traditional Liberal. He has felt at home ever since.

Paul represented the Broomhill Ward in the City of Sheffield, from 2000 as a Councillor and did so until May 2012. He was elected as Leader of the Sheffield Liberal Democrat councillors in 2002. He became the Leader of the Council in 2008 a position he held until 2011. During his time as Leader of the Council Paul was awarded LeaDeR award at European level for his Liberal achievement in local government. The Council was also named Liberal democrat Council of the Year by the LGA Liberal Democrat Group nationally.

His key interests in political life are public sector reform, youth homelessness, intergenerational issues, the fight for International LGBT rights and politics in the Far East.

In his spare time Paul enjoys going to the Gym, walking in the peak district, enjoying fine wines and food with friends. He is also a supporter of Huddersfield Town Football club.

Dr Julie Smith

Dr Julie Smith is Director of the European Centre and Senior Lecturer in International Relations at the Department of Politics and International Studies, Cambridge University, and a Fellow of Robinson College, where she is a Graduate Tutor and Director of Studies in Politics. She was Deputy Director of the Centre of International Studies in Cambridge for five years until the Centre’s merger with Politics in 2009. Julie served as Head of the European Programme at Chatham House from 1999 until 2003.

Julie’s main research interests include: parliaments and the EU; European elections; the UK’s relations with the EU; and parliaments and budgetary politics. She is co-authoring a book on parliaments and budgetary politics and planning a monograph on British political parties and the EU.

Having first become involved in politics at the age of 12, campaigning for Shirley Williams in her native Crosby, Julie has been actively engaged in the Lib Dems ever since. She is currently a Vice-Chair of the Liberal Democrats’ Federal Policy Committee and serves the General Election manifesto working group. She has served on numerous policy working groups particularly focusing on European and Defence matters She chaired the Party’s working group on Security in 2007-08 and the Defence working group in 2012-13.

Julie represents Newnham ward on Cambridge City Councillor where she served two terms as Executive Councillor, for Arts and Recreation from 2006 until 2010 and as portfolio-holder for Customer Services and Resources from 2012 to 2014.

Julie was a Hanseatic Scholar in Hamburg from 1995 to 1997 and a visiting Professor at the Central European University in Budapest, before taking up a post in Cambridge in 1997.

Julie read Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Brasenose College, Oxford, and completed an MPhil and DPhil in Politics at St. Antony’s College, Oxford, focusing on elections to the European Parliament.

Tim Hobden

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