Simon Henig has been Leader of Durham County Council since 2008, guiding the council through its transition to unitary local government. He played a key role as the council reshaped many of its structures, including the creation of Area Action Partnerships to promote local decision making across the county.
Durham’s AAPs have developed a national reputation for their high use of community engagement and use of participatory budgeting, with thousands of residents voting on how to spend amounts of up to half a million pounds locally. In 2014 the Council was named ‘Council of the Year’ at the LGC Awards.
Regionally Cllr Henig serves as Chair of the Association of North East Councils and was previously chair of the North East Combined Authority and vice chair of the North East LEP. He remains a Principal Lecturer in Politics at the University of Sunderland.
Nationally he is Labour’s lead councillor for People and Places at the Local Government Association, a member of the party’s National Policy Forum and chair of the Association of Labour Councillors.