Alison set for top job at Wigan Council
Alison McKenzie-Folan, Wigan Council's new chief executive with Leader of the council Councillor David Molyneux
A senior council officer who is set to become Wigan Council’s new chief executive has spoken of her pride and delight at being chosen for the role.
Alison McKenzie-Folan has been recommended for the top job by the council’s special employment committee following a selection process.
Alison, aged 50, was chosen by the panel chaired by the council’s leader Councillor David Molyneux.
The committee’s recommendation will be put forward for formal approval by full council at its next meeting in March.
Alison will succeed Donna Hall CBE who is retiring at the end of February after eight years at the helm.
Alison has 28 years’ experience in various roles in local government, the civil service and the NHS.
She has been with the council for ten years after joining as a senior manager in Human Resources and is currently the council’s deputy chief executive and director for customer transformation.
In this role she has had direct responsibility for 800 staff covering a range of services including corporate policy, transformation, revenues, benefits and rent collections, customer services, libraries, ICT and human resources among others.
Alison developed the council’s Deal for the Future strategy and key transformation programmes which have seen the council save £135m since 2010 while improving the delivery of council services.
She has also been at the forefront of the roll out of place-based working in Wigan where multi-agency teams work from one location – an approach which is now being adopted across Greater Manchester.
Councillor Molyneux said: “We are very lucky to have someone of Alison’s calibre to promote from within the council and I’m delighted to recommend her as our new chief executive.
“Alison is an inspirational and well-known officer who has many outstanding qualities which she will bring to the role.
“She has the drive to take The Deal into its next chapter and bring our partners, residents and staff with us.
“It is as crucial as ever that we have leadership to deliver services in partnership with our residents on a reduced budget and Alison has the skill and track record to do just that.”
Alison is a leading voice for the use of digital for the improvement of services and increasing opportunities for residents.
Alison’s work in this area has seen the council win a raft of national digital awards and earlier in 2018 she was invited by Prince Andrew to launch his new digital enterprise award at St James’ Palace.
Outside of the council Alison is a volunteer on the board at Unify Credit Union, board member for Open Data Manchester and digital spokesperson for the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives.
Alison was also named in the Northern Power Women Top 50 Power list in 2017 and one of the nine most influential digital leaders in Greater Manchester.
Alison said: “It is a dream come true and the proudest moment of my career to be chosen for what I believe is the best job in local government.
“My time at Wigan has been the best years of my career and to become the council’s chief executive is a true privilege.
“It will be a tough task to follow in Donna’s footsteps who has been an inspiration to me over the past eight years.
“However I have amazing staff and a brilliant Cabinet team led by the leader.
“We will work together to take this great organisation forward and build an amazing place for our residents to live in throughout the next decade.”
Posted on Wednesday 23rd January 2019