30 September 2013
Alderman Fiona Woolf was today (30 September) elected as the 686th Lord Mayor of the City of London to serve as the global ambassador for UK-based financial and business services from Friday 8 November.
She becomes only the second woman ever to hold the post in its 800-year history following in the footsteps of Mary Donaldson in 1983. Lord Mayor Elect Woolf, who served as Sheriff of the City in 2010/11, was elected Alderman for the Ward of Candlewick in the City of London in October 2007.
She has worked for CMS in London since 1978, having been made the firm’s first female partner in 1981. As an energy and infrastructure lawyer, Lord Mayor Elect Woolf led the legal team that delivered the restructuring and privatisation of the National Grid. She has worked in more than 40 countries on regulation, infrastructure projects and market implementation, particularly in the electricity sector.
Most recently, she worked with the World Bank on regional transmission line projects to enable post-conflict countries, such as Liberia and Sierra Leone, to import electricity and is a Past President of the Law Society of England and Wales. Her contribution to the UK knowledge economy and invisible earnings was recognised with a CBE in 2002. Lord Mayor Elect Woolf is married to Nicholas and stepmother to his two children.
Speaking after her election, Lord Mayor Elect Woolf said:
“Despite all the difficulties, the UK financial, business and professional services sectors continue to play a crucial role in driving jobs and growth in the UK and right across the world. The City makes an important contribution in exporting global expertise and attracting internationally mobile business to the UK by creating mutually beneficial relationships across the world. I have worked on energy and infrastructure reforms and projects that have done just that by delivering tangible benefits to local communities and bilateral trade.
“One of the many reasons that the City has prospered over the centuries is its ability to adapt and plan for the future. This expertise and experience is in growing demand as countries around the globe are confronted with fast growing urban populations in resource-constrained circumstances. As a truly global city, London is uniquely placed to help deliver the infrastructure and financing needed to rise to the challenge of sustainable.”
Typically a Lord Mayor will spend three months a year leading City business delegations overseas – and also meeting leading overseas politicians and business leaders visiting London’s financial community.
Lord Mayor Elect Woolf’s charitable appeal, ‘The Energy to Transform Lives’, aims to give a platform for its four chosen charities – Beating Bowel Cancer, Princess Alice Hospice, Raleigh International and Working Chance – to reach new audiences. They were selected on the basis of her experience of working on community-based projects that are scalable and can be replicated at low cost.
The Lord Mayor Elect, as she is known after today’s election, does not take office until the Silent Ceremony, which is held in Great Hall, Guildhall on Friday 8 November, the day preceding the Lord Mayor's Show (Saturday 9 November). The Lord Mayor's Banquet, at which the Prime Minister speaks, follows on Monday 11 November at Guildhall.
Notes to editors
Sanjay Odedra, Senior Media Officer, City of London Corporation
T 020 7332 1835 / M 07831 542856
About the City of London Corporation
The City of London Corporation provides local government and policing services for the financial and commercial heart of Britain, the 'Square Mile'. In addition, the City Corporation has three roles: (1) we support London’s communities by working in partnership with neighbouring boroughs on economic regeneration, education and skills projects. In addition, the City of London Corporation’s charity City Bridge Trust makes grants of more than £15 million annually to charitable projects across London and we also support education with three independent schools, three City Academies, a primary school and the world-renowned Guildhall School of Music and Drama. (2) We also help look after key London heritage and green spaces including Tower Bridge, Museum of London, Barbican Arts Centre, City gardens, Hampstead Heath, Epping Forest, Burnham Beeches, and important ‘commons’ in south London. (3) And we also support and promote the ‘City’ as a world-leading financial and business hub, with outward and inward business delegations, high-profile civic events, research-driven policies all reflecting a long-term approach. See www.cityoflondon.gov.uk for more details.
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