Labour’s new Executive Directors

March 9, 2012 11:20 am

Update: We now have the full list, and the biographies of the appointees. You can see them here.

Update: Another confirmation we’re hearing is that Oliver Buston – European Director of the ONE campaign – has been appointed Executive Director for Members and Supporters.

Update: A party source has denied that the change signals a “division” between Victoria Street and the leader’s office – instead arguing that “there is no distinction between the Leader’s Office and Labour Party HQ”:

“The central idea behind these appointments is that there is no distinction between the Leader’s Office and Labour Party HQ. The point is that we are one organisation with the Executive Directors managing staff based in both Victoria St and in the Leader’s Office. To see a division is to miss the central thrust of what is being achieved here.“

Update: Kudos to Guido Fawkes – he was, in fact, right about Ed Miliband staffer Greg Beales becoming an Executive Director after all. We’re hearing that he’ll be moving over from the leader’s office to Victoria Street to take on a strategy role, as the party has decided that 7, rather than the original 6, Executive Directors will be hired. Details below.

There has been plenty of speculation about who Labour’s six new Executive Directors are going to be – and we’re running a series of themed posts on what the priorities should be for these all important new staffers. They haven’t been officially confirmed yet, but what we understand so far is:

  • Communications – As expected Bob Roberts will be taking on the role, a possibility we brought you late last year. Roberts is currently the Head of News for Ed Miliband (and a former political editor of the Mirror), but his new role will involve lobby briefing for the leader as well as handling Labour Party Comms.
  • Rebuttal and Policy – Also moving on from the leader’s office is Torsten Henricson-Bell. We’d respected in the party, and expected to bridge the policy gap between Victoria Street and Miliband’s office – often talked about, but (rarely in Westminster) rarely spoken of badly.
  • Field Operations – Taking over Field Ops from former Deputy Gen Sec Alicia Kennedy (now working in the leader’s office) is Patrick Heneghan. In recent months he has been working on the Ken Livingstone campaign alongside Ken’s Chief of Staff Simon Fletcher, and his involvement (alongside an increase in resources for the campaign) has coincided with an upswing in the polls. Before working on the Livingstone campaign, Heneghan was effectively Kennedy’s deputy, so he knows the role well.
  • Commercial – TBC (but we understand the position was headhunted).
  • Governance and Services – East Midlands Regional Director Emilie Oldknow is moving into Victoria Street to take on the governance and services role. Again, this is an appointment that seems intended to bridge the gap between Victoria Street and the leader’s office.
  • Membership and Supporters – European Director of the ONE campaign – Oliver Buston – will be taking on the memership role.
  • Strategy – Greag Beles will be moving over from Ed Miliband’s office to take on a strategy role (relating to polling etc). As this role was only created after the original roles were announced, it remains to be seen exactly what this role will entail.

We’ll bring you more on the candidates – including their full biographies, when the official announcement is made…

  • Pingback: Labour’s Not So New Directors - Guy Fawkes' blog

  • http://twitter.com/GuidoFawkes Guido Fawkes

    Beat you.

    • markfergusonuk

      Update: You were in fact right about Greg Beales. Never let it be said I don’t admit when I’m wrong.

      Touche. Indeed you did, (at least on two of the names). I disagree though that Beales will be appointed as one of these 6 Exec directors – he’s staying in the leader’s office and his job isn’t changing as far as I’m aware.

      I was waiting for a full house – I won’t do that again…

    • Paul Simons44

      Better than him too.

  • http://twitter.com/johnringer John Ringer

    Man, I wish the conference rooms in Victoria Street looked as slick as the one in the photo…

  • Stephengoodman1955

    May I just say how much I approve of the photograph accompanying this item. I believe that if we are to be credible then Labour must present itself as being capable of a approach to politics that is both business-like and business friendly.
    The days of placard waving protests are over and now it is in the boardrooms where we must make our effectiveness know. The first step is showing we are up to the task. It may seem a minor detail but this photograph helps, as does use of terms like ‘executive director’.

  • Paul Hubert

     Ho ho ho!

  • AlanGiles

    With respect, Stephen New Labour has already been there and done that, and most of us can remember the bad side effects (Ecclestone Hindujas et al).You have to be business friendly, certainly,  but I think you have to be careful how far you go to ingratiate yourself. Also terms like “executive director” sounds a bit high falutin’

  • Pingback: Leader’s office oversteps mark with Labour Party HQ | Left Futures

Latest

  • News Is Osborne using public money to fund an election tour?

    Is Osborne using public money to fund an election tour?

    George Osborne is facing serious questions about the use of taxpayers’ money used to fund an “infrastructure tour”, where he tours marginal constituencies and announces funding for infrastructure projects. The Times (£) report that the Chancellor has made 17 visits on the tour in the past month alone. Last week, he was in Southampton, where the Tories are 192 votes behind Labour, and the current MP John Denham is standing down. He’s also recently visited Stockton South, where the Tory […]

    Read more →
  • Featured Survey results: Has Miliband’s speech made his “image problem” more of an issue?

    Survey results: Has Miliband’s speech made his “image problem” more of an issue?

    Ed Miliband’s image is now less of an issue as a direct result of his speech last week, according to LabourList readers. Miliband gave a speech last Friday, in which he directly addressed concerns that he was not as photogenic as David Cameron. Launching “The Choice”, Labour’s summer campaign slogan, he set out the difference between himself and the Tory leader: “If you want the politician from central casting, it’s just not me, it’s the other guy. And if you […]

    Read more →
  • Comment Featured The Unrepresentative House – Parliament is badly failing to reflect the UK’s ethnic diversity

    The Unrepresentative House – Parliament is badly failing to reflect the UK’s ethnic diversity

    I recently asked Insight Public Affairs to work with me to compile some data about political parties, their MPs and the racial make-up of the constituencies they represent. The research has just been published by the Guardian and I can only assume, and hope, that the main political parties are as worried about it as I am. It does make for breath-taking reading. You can read it here. There are 650 MPs that represent us. All but 27 of them […]

    Read more →
  • Comment One Nation Conference? Not for poor Labour members

    One Nation Conference? Not for poor Labour members

    Full time Carers who care 35 hours + a week for a disabled or elderly relative receive the princely sum of £61.35pw for their efforts. Many carers like myself in reality care 24/7, 365 days a year. Already cut out of most activities like a meal out or a social evening with friends, our horizons under the Tory government have become narrower and narrower. As Labour Party members, many of us look to the party to get our voices heard, […]

    Read more →
  • Featured My visit to Israel and Palestine this week has strengthened my commitment to a two state solution

    My visit to Israel and Palestine this week has strengthened my commitment to a two state solution

    Since Operation Protective Edge began in early July, at least 1,360 Palestinians have been killed, mostly civilians, and a quarter of Gaza’s population has been forced from their homes. Two Israeli civilians have lost their lives in rocket attacks, several hundred have been injured, and 56 Israeli soldiers have been killed. Today, the latest appalling loss of life is yet another tragic example of the death and destruction that has resulted from the escalation of this conflict. Of course this […]

    Read more →