Today I want to take a moment to reflect on the news that Mike Jackson, Bristol City Council’s Chief Executive, will soon be leaving us to take up a fantastic CEO opportunity in a shared role between the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and the London Borough of Wandsworth councils. Subject to formal confirmation by the Full Councils of those authorities this week, he will be leaving Bristol this October.
Like many people in the council and across our city partners, I am really pleased for Mike whilst also being sorry to see him move on. His new role spanning two major London councils is a tremendous opportunity, one that was too good to say no to, and fulfils an ambition Mike and his family have always had to revisit life in London.
I’ve worked with Mike for many years making the council a better development organisation: one that prioritises the personal and professional growth of its people, and it is fitting that even at the very top our people can benefit from the Bristol experience and move on to even bigger roles. As we consider our next steps for leadership, you can be sure that we’ll look for every opportunity to grow and develop our current and next generation of leaders.
For the last four years Mike has been an incredible leader for Bristol, initially as Executive Director for Resources and Head of Paid Service, and then as Chief Executive. In that time, he has led a committed, resilient and high performing team through the most difficult of circumstances, not least the organisational response to Covid-19. He has brought grip, pace, professionalism, and personal warmth to one of the toughest jobs in our city and should be proud to leave Bristol in a stronger, more stable place than he found it.
He will be a hard act to follow but I know that his departure will inevitably create some fresh opportunities for other talented people to step up and into new career challenges. I’m working with Mike to consider all of the options that are open to us now, and we’ll share more before too long.
For now I wanted to make space to acknowledge all that Mike’s done for Bristol and to wish him well in another top job.