Council’s Carron calls it a day after 35 years’ public service

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A senior Highland Council executive with a special remit for Lochaber is calling it a day after 35 years’ public service and two decades as a senior council official.

Carron McDiarmid, executive chief officer communities and place, was previously the council’s head of policy for many years and led the first phase of council redesign.

Ms McDiarmid said it had been a privilege to work with so many committed and talented staff and members over the years at the council.

‘Establishing and leading the new Communities and Place Service since 2019 alongside a great team has been especially fulfilling,’ she added.

‘Their response over the past 20 months has been outstanding; adjusting all our frontline public services for waste, environmental health, amenity, registrar, customer services and bereavement services.

‘I’ve been fortunate to have had a Lochaber focus too. My Lochaber role has mainly been connecting more with council staff in Lochaber through briefings – virtually during Covid – and local visits to Carr’s Corner depot; chairing and re-setting the FW2040 Partnership Board which during my time has grown from five to eight partner members and developed a healthy programme of work to coordinate investment for Fort William, with next steps to reinvigorate community involvement; connecting with the Small Isles and Knoydart during visits in September, to understand their ambition and issues, with a focus for me on community support and environmental services; and I’ll be depute returning officer for the by-election next month.

‘All of these experiences show there are many ways to be active in community and public life and I am keen to explore new opportunities.’

Chief executive Donna Manson paid tribute saying Ms McDiarmid had been a ‘high performing’ chief officer in the council’s executive chief officer team.

‘She is a very experienced, talented and able leader, with a huge amount to offer in any walk of life.

‘She will be very much missed by her colleagues and I know she will stay connected,’ Ms Manson added.

Ms McDiarmid leaves her post early in the new year. Applications have been invited internally for an interim post pending permanent recruitment to be arranged.