The NACO Executive Committee is responsible for running the organisation and arranging the Training Events. The Committee is elected by the membership each year.
Gillian Allwright - Treasurer, Jim Babbington - Vice-Chair, Paul Millward - Chair, Penny Harrison - Secretary
Gillian Allwright - Retired Civic Officer
Gill retired in 2014 after working for LB Southwark for 20 years, all of which found her involved in 'Civic Life' in some shape. She still takes a keen interest in all things Civic and has been NACO's Treasurer for the past 9 years. This role involves not only balancing the books but making sure that Paul isn't as mean as some people think!!
Jim Babbington - Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea
Jim is Civic Officer and Private Secretary to the Mayor of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. Through the organisation of many large-scale ceremonial events he has developed extensive knowledge of protocol and etiquette as well as the practical aspects of event management. He is currently NACOs Vice-Chair.
Malcolm Bartlett - Retired Civic Services Manager
Malcolm, now retired, has over 45 years, experience working for numerous local authorities mainly in Committee Administration and Member support and latterly as Civic Services Manager of a Borough (now City) Council. He has been an Executive Member since the Association was formed.
Jacqui Brazil - London Borough of Southwark
- biographical notes awaited
Jackie Cansick - Stevenage Borough Council
Jackie has been working with Councillors for nearly 40 years. During the 1990s she managed the Mayor’s Office and Member Services at the London Borough of Southwark and then moved to Stevenage Borough Council where for the past 14 years she has again had the Civic Office within her area of responsibility. Jackie has been on the Executive since 2014.
Christine Christensen - Ipswich Borough Council
Christine has worked in local government for over 20 years, and as the Civic Officer for Ipswich since 2002. Christine manages a small and dedicated mayoral team, and is passionate about keeping the civic office relevant, keeping the mayoralty accessible, and supporting the future of Ipswich.
Michael Cleere - London Borough of Southwark
Michael leads the civic engagement programme in London’s most historic borough. Yes, Southwark pre-dates The City of London and they’re very proud of the fact. Prior to his career in local government Michael worked as an award-winning BBC producer, specialising in programmes on religion, ethics, and communities. Before that he served as a community leader at the height of the conflict in Northern Ireland.
Michelle Davies - London Borough of Richmond upon Thames
Currently Mayor’s Support Officer at the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames Michelle is a new to the Civic world (by NACO standards) having been in post for just 18 months. Michelle previously spent 9 years working for Fuller’s Brewery and pub company as a communications and events professional and is NACO’s deputy press officer.
Penny Frost - Chelmsford City Council
Penny has worked for Chelmsford (was Borough) City Council for 9 years. She has been in her position as Civic Services Manager since September 2014. Penny is a team of one, she manages the Mayoral engagements, all Civic events, Town Twinning activities and the contracted chauffeuring. Prior to working for Local Government Penny worked in the film industry.
Fiona Garth - Lewes Town Council
Fiona has worked at Lewes Town Council for 16 years and is responsible for everything Mayoral from mending the regalia to catering to organising every aspect of all events both large and small. She is heavily involved with a very active twinning partnership in Germany and France. Fiona is also a member of a small group of Civic Officers that try to meet regularly in East and West Sussex.
Penny Harrison - Retired Civic Officer
Now retired Penny has over 30 years’ experience as a Civic Officer. She worked in the House of Commons before going to the Lord Mayor of London's Office and then as Civic Officer for the Borough of King's Lynn & West Norfolk. Currently Secretary of NACO she has been an Executive Member since the Association was formed.
Mike Hollingworth - Charnwood Borough Council
Mike has been a Civic Officer with Charnwood Borough Council since 2009, using his experience in advertising to help in this role where he is jointly responsible for the running of all aspects of the Mayor’s office. Charnwood is a former winner of the NACO Civic Office of the Year and Mike believes in keeping the traditions of the office alive while moving forward to meet the challenges of modern day civic life
Margaret Humphrey - London Borough of Camden
biographical notes awaited
Alexandra Kowalczuk - Former Civic Officer
Alex worked in various civic offices in Leicestershire for 30 years with her last position being Head of the Civic, Members, Executive, Events and Town Hall Operations for Leicester City Council. After being made redundant in 2012, Alex set up her own company Alexandra K Ltd - The Business Fixer, where she now works with Businesses and Organisations to achieve their goals and help them grow.
Bryan Magan - Warrington Borough Council
Bryan has over 30 years’ experience of working in a democratic services environment. Bryan manages large scale ceremonial events and has other project management skills experience such as elections. Like Paul, Bryan is passionate about keeping Civic offices relevant and productive in the changing local government environment.
Hannah Marr - Crewe Town Council
Working at a ‘toddler’ Town Council (3 years old) has enabled Hannah. who leads the Council’s engagement with all local groups and co-ordinates the Mayoralty, to be creative with the civic role, along with bringing in the traditions and protocols which accompany it. She often adapts events and activities meant for larger Councils and uses them to raise civic pride within the Town to join the Council and the community together.
Paul Millward - Nottingham City Council
Paul, who has worked at Nottingham City Council for 28 years, has been involved in promoting civic networks since 1992 and has been involved in NACO since its inception. He has an extensive collection of civic books and remains passionate about keeping Civic offices relevant and productive in the changing local government environment. He’s not really as mean as some people think.
Philip O'Brien - Erewash Borough Council
Phil joined Derby City Council as Assistant Mayor's Officer in 1984 taking early retirement in March 2015, having progressed to Head of Democratic Services. A founder member of the Civic Secretaries Group, which became NACO, Phil is convinced of the benefits of professional networking. In 'retirement' Phil is developing a consultancy and is Macebearer for Erewash Borough Council, to maintain close links to civic life.
Alison Orde - St Albans City & District Council
Alison has worked for St Albans City and District Council for over 26 years. She has worked on many interesting projects including St Albans becoming “Mayfair” on the monopoly board and has a wealth of experience and works closely with stakeholders in upholding civic life in St Albans. As one of the five Magna Carta towns, St Albans was privileged to host the actual document as part of its 800th celebrations.
Sandra Robinson - Belfast City Council
Sandra has worked as Lord Mayor’s Principal Officer in Belfast City Council since 1995. She has extensive experience as Lead Officer for numerous city wide events including visits by President Clinton and President Obama and Members of the Royal Family. Sandra was awarded an MBE in 2011 for Services to Local Government in Northern Ireland and has been a member of the Executive Committee since the Association was formed.
Alasdair Ross - Aberdeen City Council
As Civic Affairs Manager at Aberdeen City Council, Alasdair leads on matters across both the civic and lieutenancy work of the city. Whilst respecting the traditions which make them unique, he is committed to modernising the way civic offices operate through the use of technology and has extensive experience of using social media to promote civic life. NACO’s northernmost Exec Member.
Pat Seager - Epping Forest District Council
Pat has worked for Epping Forest District Council since 1992 and as the Chairman’s Officer for over 20 years. The Civic Office is a constantly changing environment and my challenge each year is trying to reflect the personality of the Chairman elected, whilst still protecting the use of correct protocol and local traditions in the district. Some years easier than others!
Charles Talbot - Retired Clerk to Charter Trustees
Currently Consultant Town Clerk emeritus of Kidderminster Charles is the Honorary Secretary of the Association of Charter Trustees and Charter Town Councils. He is unique amongst the Executive in that he has been both a Councillor and a Civic dignitary (Mayor of Kidderminster 1965 to 1966) and a Civic Officer as Town Clerk to the Kidderminster Charter Trustees for over 30 years.
Martin has worked for Brighton & Hove City Council for over twenty years; having worked in Committees and then Policy he was parachuted into Civic Life to ‘take care’ of the Mayoralty for a few months in 2014 … and there he has stayed. He was made Head of Civic Office and Assistant Clerk to the Lord Lieutenant of East Sussex in January 2016.
Irene Webster - Retired Civic Officer
A long serving member of the Executive Irene managed the Civic Office in Scarborough Borough Council for the some 16 years. She has extensive experience of organising large scale ceremonial events and conferences, including hosting the NACO Conference of 2009 and had responsibility for twinning. Many events in Scarborough have a military connection and Irene was always at the forefront of liaison with the Forces.
Marsha Whiteway - Canterbury City Council
Marsha has been Civic Manager at Canterbury City Council for 8 years working for the Lord Mayor and Sheriff of Canterbury. Marsha believes in keeping with tradition but that the Civic office can still function in the modern world. She joined the NACO executive in 2015.
Beverley Wilson - Retired Clerk to the Lieutenancy
Beverley worked in the Lord Provost’s Office in Edinburgh for 36 years before retiring in 2013. Clerk to the Edinburgh Lieutenancy for the last 26 years of her working life, she became an MVO in the 1999 New Year’s Honours for her service to the Royal Family in that role. In 1996, when Scotland became 32 Unitary Authorities, Beverley’s remit extended when she became Lord Provost’s and Members’ Services Manager.