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Salford City Council Chief Executive Tom Stannard appointed Chair of the Institute of Economic Development


Tom Stannard, Chief Executive of Salford City Council in Greater Manchester, has been appointed as the new Chair of the Institute of Economic Development (IED) Board of Directors.

In a long and distinguished career in local government spanning over 25 years, Tom has worked in a variety of senior economic development, regeneration, growth, skills and policy roles at councils across the North of England and London, and is a former Deputy CEO of the UK Learning and Work Institute. He was appointed Chief Executive at Salford City Council in February 2021. 

As a National Spokesperson for SOLACE and a Commissioner for the Living Wage Foundation, and formerly as a Board Director at the Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES), Tom has developed a reputation as a nationally recognised specialist in local government, public service reform and delivering inclusive economic growth. 

A Chartered Surveyor by profession, Tom has been an IED member since 2017 and a Board member since 2019. Following the Institute’s Annual General Meeting on 5th December, Tom replaces outgoing Chair Bev Hurley CBE, who remains on the IED Board of Directors after six years as Chair and two years previously as Vice-Chair.

“I am delighted to be appointed Chair of the Institute of Economic Development as the pre-eminent UK-wide body representing our diverse profession, and I am keen to build on the impact and growth we achieved under Bev, who has done an absolutely sterling job in driving membership and engagement,” Tom said. “The IED, as a UK professional body, is totally unique. It represents the group of professions with the highest impact on the national Levelling Up mission. We already have over 1,000 members, both individuals and organisations, and we aspire to double in size as part of ambitious plans for future growth. I have personally seen the benefits as a member, with the IED’s sector-leading advocacy, insight, network and CPD programmes that have supported my development over the years.”

The past 12 months has been a reminder of the diversity of economic development: through placemaking, regeneration, town centre management, infrastructure delivery, land and property development, enterprise promotion, business support, inward investment, employability, skills, innovation and other fields of general economic development, demonstrating how IED members support the sector in its widest sense.

“That goes even further when you consider the ever growing synergy with professionals in planning, surveying, engineering, highways and transport and other fields, as well as the enormous impact that economic development can have on health and well-being outcomes,” Tom explained. “Our increasingly diverse membership is drawn from local authorities, LEPs, higher education institutions, government departments and consultancies supporting economic development and we aim to expand this further. Promoting greater diversity and inclusion in economic development will be a key priority for me in leading the Institute. I also intend to develop strong partnerships with other professional bodies. That includes on advocacy, public affairs, policy alliances, and giving better access to our excellent CPD offer.”

Tom continued: “This is an exciting time for the IED. The top government priority is to fix the economy which our members are right at the heart of delivering. The opportunity to lead, as Chair, a mission to support professionals to build the foundations of future places was very hard to resist.”

Bev Hurley CBE added: “I am delighted to formally welcome Tom as our new Chair. It has been a great privilege to serve the profession, and I am staying on the IED Board as a Director to continue to do so. I look forward to supporting Tom, Board and IED members as we move into our 40th year as a successful professional body.”


Contact: Phil Smith, Institute of Economic Development PR consultant, on 01778 218180 / 07866 436159 /


The Institute of Economic Development (IED) is the UK’s leading independent professional body representing economic development and regeneration practitioners. Established nearly 40 years ago, the IED's key objective is to represent the interests of economic development practitioners and ensure their views are widely expressed and noted. The IED is committed to demonstrating the value of economic development work for local and regional communities; the pursuit of best practice in economic development and the attainment of the highest standards of professional conduct and competence.