Leeds council chief 'humbled' at New Year honour

Leeds City Council chief executive Tom Riordan said he felt "humbled" after being named in the New Year Honours.

By Mark Lavery
Saturday, 28th December 2019, 5:00 pm
Tom Riordan
Tom Riordan

Mr Riordan has been awarded a CBE for services to local government in the 2020 honours.

And Ruth Terry, Head of service children's social work at Leeds City Council has been awarded an MBE for services to children and families.

Mr Riordan, who joined joined Leeds City Council as chief executive in 2010, said: “I’m really pleased and extremely humbled to receive this award.

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"I feel strongly that it is for the council, the city, the amazing people and communities I work with and everyone who’s invested in doing the best we can for the people of Leeds.

"It’s a privilege to do this job for and with them. I am so grateful for all the help I’ve received throughout my career from my family, friends and colleagues.”

Leeds City Council leader Coun Judith Blake, said: "Tom is an outstanding chief executive who has been instrumental in developing our shared vision of ensuring our local communities share the benefits of our determination to maximise the city’s potential.

"I look forward to continuing to work with him in building our inclusive growth approach and doing our very best for the city as we lead Leeds into the next decade.”

Leeds City Council said that during Mr Riordan's ten years as chief executive, a £5 billion revamp of the city centre has been underway which has helped attract

investment from Channel 4, Sky, Burberry and other investors.

Leeds City Council said Mr Riordan also played a leading role in bringing the Grand Départ of the Tour de France to Leeds.

There have also been major infrastructure developments with the council commissioning the building of the First Direct Arena and enabling the development of the Trinity Leeds and Victoria Gate shopping and leisure complexes.

Mr Riordan champions mental health issues and directly supports a number of charities in the city through a voluntary salary deduction, including a Looked After Children fund administered by Leeds Community Foundation.

He is patron of St Gemma's Hospice in Leeds and works closely with Leeds Community Foundation.

Angela Wright, 55, a foster carer for Wakefield Council who has looked after more than 60 children over 18 years, has been awarded an MBE for services to children in Wakefield.

One child she fostered showed interest in becoming a mechanic and she took him to several garages and helped him apply for jobs.

He is now a full-time mechanic and has thanked Angela Wright for her help and support.

Who in Leeds and Wakefield has been awarded honours?


* Ali Akbor. Chief executive officer Unity Housing Association. For services to the community in Leeds.

* Professor Philip Howard. Consultant pharmacist Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and lately National Project Lead, Antimicrobial Resistance, NHS Improvement. For services to Healthcare.


* Col Patrick Cairns, DL. Chief executive, St George's Police Children's Trust and Police Treatment Centres Charities. For services to Police Charities.

* Francis Stephen Clayton. Chair Yorkshire and the Humber Apprenticeship Ambassador Network. For services to Apprenticeships.

* Kathryn Anne Farrington. Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Coordinator Drighlington Primary School, Leeds. For services to Children and Young People.

* Maureen Alyson Hughes. Foster Carer Leeds City Council. For services to Children and Young People in Leeds.

* William George Hughes. Foster Carer Leeds City Council. For services to Children and Young People in Leeds.

*Gertrude Silman. Life president Holocaust Survivors Friendship Association. For services to Holocaust Education.


* Pauline Janet Burns. For services to the community in Knottlingley. West Yorkshire.

* Amy Hearn. For services to Libraries.