Caroline Green has been named as the new Chief Executive at Oxford City Council to succeed Gordon Mitchell who is due to step down in the new year.
The appointment of Caroline, who is currently Assistant Chief Executive of Oxford City Council, follows a rigorous recruitment process involving a talented field of external candidates, and interview panels of cross-party councillors, external stakeholders and staff. The decision is subject to ratification at a Special Council Meeting on 05 January.
Caroline has fifteen years of experience of senior leadership in local government. She joined the City Council in 2016, and before that, she was at the Local Government Association, leading on housing, planning and environmental work.
Over the past five years, she has had a significant role in managing the council’s engagement with neighbouring authorities and government that resulted in the Oxfordshire Housing and Growth Deal which has led to over £500 million of investment in housing and infrastructure countywide. She oversaw the Council’s Housing Services directorate, shaping the business plan for delivery of 1,900 homes, and transforming the shape of homelessness provision in the city.
Caroline has also led the council’s work across a wide range of its strategic partnerships, spanning community safety, safeguarding and Fast Growth Cities and deputised for the Chief Executive throughout. Since March this year, she has coordinated the council’s overall response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Caroline and Gordon will now work closely with the Council’s Cabinet over the coming days and weeks to ensure a smooth transition.
Cllr Susan Brown, Leader of Oxford City Council, who chaired the appointments panel said: “The panel was unanimous in its view that Caroline Green was the outstanding candidate in a very strong field. We’re delighted that she will be steering the council through our recovery from the economic and health impacts of the pandemic as Oxford builds back better.
“Caroline is already highly regarded by the many stakeholders across Oxford and beyond who already know her, and will be by those who have yet to meet her. She has the right vision and experience to steer us through this challenging period and to galvanise work across our key priority areas of tackling inequalities, the local economy, housing delivery, and our mission to become a zero-carbon city.
“I would also like to take this opportunity to say how enormously grateful I am to Gordon Mitchell for the outstanding work he has done over the past few years including restructuring the way the council operates. This was invaluable in ensuring we were sufficiently robust to weather the extraordinary impact of the pandemic.”
Caroline Green said: “I’m honoured to take the role of Chief Executive and invigorated to be working with the leadership team on the new journey ahead. I’m passionate about the success of Oxford and ensuring that is shared by everyone in the city. We face both challenges and opportunities as we work to recover from the impact of COVID-19, but I know we have a highly talented team in the council, capable and ambitious elected members and many strong and supportive stakeholders and the people of Oxford. Together we can work in partnership to shape a great future for the city.”
Gordon Mitchell said: “I must offer my warmest congratulations to Caroline who I know will make an excellent chief executive. Oxford is a wonderful city and I know what a privilege it is to be able to make a real and lasting impact on making it a truly great place for people to live and work. That vision is all the more important given the impact of the pandemic and the role the council will play in rebuilding. As we hand over the baton I will offer Caroline my full support to ensure the council’s vital work continues uninterrupted.”