Ken Macintosh MSP
Ken Macintosh MSP was born in Inverness and went to primary school in Portree then Oban before moving to the Royal High School in Edinburgh. He graduated from the University of Edinburgh in 1984 with a MA in History. Before entering Parliament in 1999, he was a television producer for BBC News working on programmes such as Breakfast with Frost, the Nine o’clock News and Election or Budget specials. He is married to Claire and the couple live in Busby with their six children.
Ken was first elected in 1999 to represent the constituency of Eastwood just south of Glasgow. He held the Eastwood seat in the 2003, 2007 and 2011 Scottish Parliamentary elections. He was a Ministerial Aide to the then First Minister Jack McConnell and, as a backbencher, he introduced a Member's Bill designed to tackle skin cancer and proposing tougher regulation of sunbed parlours. In opposition, he has served as Shadow Minister for Schools and Skills; Culture and External Affairs; Education; Finance; Social Justice; and Community. In 2011 and again in 2015, Ken ran to be the Leader of the Scottish Labour Party. In 2016, Ken was returned as an MSP for the West Scotland region before being elected as the Scottish Parliament’s fifth Presiding Officer.
Managing Director, Holyrood Communications Ltd
Mandy is Managing Director of Holyrood Communications Ltd,she is also editor of the flagship title Holyrood magazine and responsible for the editorial content of all other associated titles and products.
Mandy graduated from Stirling University in the early 1980s with a joint Honours degree in Scottish History and Sociology. She trained on a local newspaper in Wester Hailes and completed her journalism training at Napier University.
She has worked for nearly 30 years in journalism in Scotland in newsprint, television and radio broadcasting and was part of the launch team of Scotland on Sunday. Mandy has won numerous awards over the years including PPA Magazine Editor of the Year, Feature Writer of the Year and Columnist of the year. She was social affairs correspondent at Scotland on Sunday where she broke a number of major child abuse stories and regularly lectured at Liverpool and Aberdeen universities on child protection issues and has also taken part in a number of documentaries on the subject.
Assistant Chief Executive, Scottish Parliament
David joined the Parliament at devolution in 1999. Since then he has performed a variety of roles including clerking parliamentary committees and acting as Principal Private Secretary to the Presiding Officer. His current role sees him working directly with political parties and advising the Presiding Officer on procedural and parliamentary matters. In particular, David has lead responsibility for the Parliament’s response to constitutional issues, ensuring, among other things, that the Parliament plans for and develops its scrutiny role in relation to constitutional developments. He sits on the Parliament’s Leadership Group and attends the fortnightly meetings of the Scottish Parliamentary Corporate Body.
Chief Executive, SCVO
Anna joined SCVO this year after being Chief Executive at Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) for nine years. During that time she led significant organisational change which saw the organisation become more responsive and engaging, driving high standards of care and public assurance.
She has been a champion for care experienced children and young people, driving forward a new approach to corporate parenting in collaboration with partners in local government and the third sector.
Chief Executive, Improvement Service
After completing her PhD in public sector management, Sarah started working in local government in 1998 as a Training and Development Officer in South Ayrshire Council. She then joined Renfrewshire Council in 2001 as a Policy Officer and moved on to the roles of Policy Planning Manager and Customer Services Manager.
Sarah joined the Improvement Service in January 2009 as a Programme Manager before being promoted to Head of Change and Development in 2012. Sarah was then promoted to Director of Strategic Development and Collaboration where she had responsibility for leading the Transformation, Performance and Improvement Team.
Sarah was appointed Interim Chief Executive in March 2018.
Alec Harley is the Scotland lead for global science, technology and engineering company Leidos.
Alec’s primary focus is developing market-leading solutions to Leidos’ public service customers, enriching public experience while producing cost effective solutions for the customer. He is responsible for all Public & Energy business in Scotland and key government departments and agencies elsewhere in the UK.
Leidos Public Services business offerings include a range of software and systems engineering solutions, IT consultancy, programme management and IT service delivery. Alec also spearheads the Leidos’ Digital Transformation project within Oil & Gas Maritime Autonomy in the UK.
Alec has been with the company for over 25 years in various leadership roles. He has delivered papers at numerous global summits and sits on Glasgow University’s Computer Science Industrial Advisory Board.
Stephen Boyle was appointed Auditor General in July 2020 by Her Majesty the Queen, and is responsible for auditing around £40bn of taxpayers’ money. He audits all public bodies except local authorities, including the Scottish Government, NHS bodies, police and fire, further education colleges and most non-departmental public bodies.
He is the accountable officer for Audit Scotland and works closely with the Accounts Commission. Stephen previously led Audit Scotland’s central government external audit work. As Audit Director, he was the engagement lead on the audits of the Scottish Government’s consolidated accounts, the Scottish Parliamentary Corporate Body and the European Agricultural Funds Account. He was also the appointed auditor of the Scottish Police Authority, the Scottish Public Pension Agency and
Registers of Scotland. Stephen has wide experience of auditing the public sector, including local authorities and the NHS.
Before joining Audit Scotland in 2013, Stephen was the Assistant Director of finance at Glasgow Housing Association and before that, the Head of Finance and Corporate Services at Cube Housing Association, both now part of the Wheatley Group, Scotland’s largest Registered Social Landlord group.
He previously worked for the Scottish Housing Regulator, where he oversaw the financial viability assessments of all housing associations in Scotland. Stephen is committed to public services that improve the lives of Scotland’s people. He has over 20 years’ of experience in audit, governance and financial management, and is a qualified accountant and a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy.
Lesley Fraser has been Interim Director General Organisational Development and Operations at the Scottish Government since July 2019. She is responsible for digital transformation and IT/digital services, communications, ministerial support and facilities, people and social security, as well as finance and procurement advice, support and systems.
She has also worked across tourism, strategy, children and families, housing and social justice, and primary care.
Before joining the Scottish Government, Lesley worked for Tower Hamlets Council in London, English Heritage and the UK Government. Lesley was a historic buildings expert before becoming a civil servant.
Laurence started as Director, Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland on 2 November 2020. Prior to that he was the Head of Strategy and Communications at the City of Edinburgh Council where he was responsible for corporate strategy, council wide change and performance, and communications. Laurence joined the City of Edinburgh Council from the UK Government where he was a Senior Civil Servant across a number of different roles. Most significantly, Laurence played a key role in the creation of City Deals and the wider devolution agenda. Laurence was the Head of the Cities Policy Unit in the Cabinet Office from 2013-15 and the Head of Devolution Strategy at the Cities and Local Growth Unit from 2015-16.
Laurence lives in Edinburgh and is married to Kirsty who does Marketing for Dobbies. Laurence has two children, Sammy 4 and Emily 18 months and likes running, cycling and doing badly at Fantasy football.