Council chief steps down after 12 years

Dumfries and Galloway Council chief executive Gavin Stevenson has retired from his post after 12 years with the local authority.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 20th December 2021, 4:03 pm
Gavin Stevenson worked in public service for more than 30 years
Gavin Stevenson worked in public service for more than 30 years

Mr Stevenson has worked in public service for more than 30 years and joined the council as chief executive in 2009. In 2015 he also became Returning Officer, overseeing the running of elections.

Highlights include securing the Borderlands Deal, his work with young people to encourage them to live and work in the region and his impact on national and local resilience work during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Mr Stevenson’s final day in the job was Thursday, December 16.

Sign up to our daily The Galloway Gazette Today newsletter

He said: “It has been a privilege being the chief executive of Dumfries and Galloway Council and having the incredible opportunity to work with such a committed workforce.

“I am very proud of the council’s dedicated staff and how they have risen to the unprecedented challenges of the current pandemic.

"Their outstanding work with local communities and people in our region every single day is truly inspirational.”

Council leader Councillor Elaine Murray paid tribute to a man she described as a “strategic leader”.

She said: “Gavin secured the Borderlands Deal, led improvements in Best Value, and steered the council through extremely challenging times for local government finance.

"We wish him well in all his future endeavours.”

Depute leader, Councillor Rob Davidson, added: “Gavin is highly respected in Dumfries and Galloway and across Scotland as an innovative and effective chief executive.

"More recently his work in shaping the council’s response to the pandemic has been exemplary.”

The recruitment process to appoint a new chief executive was confirmed last week at a meeting of the full council; the post will subsequently be advertised early in the New Year.

In addition, interim governance arrangements were agreed by councillors – communities director Derek Crichton was appointed to the role of interim chief executive, while economy and resources director Lorna Meahan was appointed as Returning Officer.

These arrangements will remain in place until a new chief executive is appointed and takes up their role with the council.