Chief officers

The County Council has seven chief officers who form the Corporate Management Team

The Corporate Management Team has seven chief officers and is led by the Chief Executive.

The role of the Corporate Management Team is to lead the officers who work for the County Council, provide the strategic overview for the work of the Council, and manage the many various operational services for which the Council is responsible.

There are three tiers of senior officer roles beneath the Corporate Management Team.

John Coughlan, CBE, Chief Executive

John Coughlan, CBE, has been Chief Executive of Hampshire County Council since November 2015 and is responsible for managing the third largest shire authority in England serving 1.3 million residents and running a budget of around £1.9 billion. He oversees the running of almost 500 local authority maintained schools together with services supporting over 80,000 adults and older people, 6,700 children and families, and maintaining more than 5,000 miles of Hampshire’s roads. Over the past ten years, Hampshire County Council has been consistently rated as one of the top performing County Councils in the country.

Prior to becoming the Chief Executive in 2015, John Coughlan was Deputy Chief Executive of the County Council for six years, and Director of Children’s Services since 2005. He was also Corporate Director of Social Care in Telford and Wrekin Council, and Assistant Director for Children and Families in Dudley. John Coughlan spent the first ten years of his career working directly with children in care in Birmingham.

He became the last President of the Association of Directors of Social Services in 2006, before becoming founding Joint President of the Association of Director’s of Children’s Services (ADCS) in 2007. He remains on the Board of Directors of ADCS. He has been a member of the Governing Council of the National College for Schools Leadership, the Family Justice Review and of the Children’s Improvement Board.

In 2008, John Coughlan was urgently appointed by the Secretary of State to be Interim Director of Children’s Services in the London Borough of Haringey, in order to bring stability to that authority in the aftermath of the ‘Baby P’ child protection crisis. In 2013, again subject to a Secretary of State Direction, John was appointed as the permanent Director of Children’s Services for the Isle of Wight Council through a unique partnership which has seen Hampshire take responsibility for schools and children's services on the island to help improve what were failing services.

John was awarded a CBE in the 2009 New Year honours list, in recognition of his work for children’s services.

Carolyn Williamson, Director of Corporate Resources

Carolyn Williamson is responsible for the shared services partnership between Hampshire County Council, Hampshire Constabulary, Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service and Oxfordshire County Council. This unique public sector partnership delivers Finance, HR and transactional services to each organisation, underpinned by joint governance and cost sharing arrangements.

Carolyn is also responsible for the County Council’s IT service and leads on the implementation of the Council’s new Digital Strategy – which is focussed on providing quality services in a way that meet the needs and expectations of residents.

She also holds the position of Chief Financial Officer for Hampshire County Council, Hampshire Pension Fund and Board, and the Police and Crime Commissioner for Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. 

Carolyn is CIPFA (Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy) qualified, since 1991. She has been a Member of the CIPFA Council since 2013, which is the Board of Trustees responsible for governing CIPFA. She was presented with the Iain Doig CIPFA award in 2004 for her contribution to CIPFA and was also presented with the CIPFA Public Reporting & Accountability Award for Innovation in 2004. She was Chair of LASAAC (Local Authority Scotland Accounts Advisory Committee) and a member of CIPFA/LASAAC until 2005.

Carolyn was formerly the Deputy Chief Executive and Executive Director of Resources at Southampton City Council. Prior to that she was Director of Corporate Services with Inverclyde Council, in West Central Scotland, and before that held a number of finance posts in Local Government and the NHS across Scotland.

Paul Archer, Director of Transformation and Governance

Paul Archer is responsible for Transformation, Strategic Procurement and the Governance of the County Council. His Director role includes accountability for the Council’s Monitoring Officer role, the in-house legal services function, Member advice and support, corporate compliance, risk, emergency planning and Health and Safety.

Paul qualified as an accountant in 1997. He spent five years as head of waste management from 2002 for the top performing and most forward thinking waste disposal authority in the UK, leading the authority through the successful development and implementation of key, world class infrastructure valued at some £200m. After three successful years as Assistant and Deputy Director in Environment, Paul took on the role of Assistant Chief Executive in May 2010 during which time he successfully led the Council’s first major (£100m) efficiencies and expenditure reduction programme. 

After assuming his Director role in 2012, Paul led the planning and implementation for Hampshire’s high performing three year (Supporting) Troubled Families programme and also successfully led the County Council’s successor cost reduction programme, Transformation to 2015, which resulted in the further delivery of a second £100m of savings.

Paul’s responsibilities were broadened in 2015 to be directly accountable for Transformation planning and programme planning across the Council, and more recently he has assumed responsibility for strategic (central) procurement, providing leadership capacity for the Council in what is a key area of business.

Graham Allen, Director of Adults' Health and Care

Graham joined Hampshire County Council’s Adult Services in January 2015 as Integrated Services Director, initially responsible for operational services in West Hampshire. Since June 2015 one of his key areas of focus has been the transformation of Adult Services – re-designing and re-aligning current services to ensure social care continues to focus on supporting the most vulnerable people, including adults with learning and physical disabilities, older people and those with mental health issues. Graham advocates adopting a strengths based approach which looks at what people can do with their skills and their resources and how those around them, in their relationships and communities, can support them.

On 1 November 2015, Graham became the Interim Director of Adult Services at the County Council. He was appointed Director of Adults’ Health and Care in May 2016.

Graham was previously Assistant Director/Head of Operations for older people and physical disability services at Cornwall Council, which he joined in 2003. In 2012 he worked in a joint post as Head of Operations for the local authority and Chief Operating Officer/ Executive Director of CIC (the not for profit community health service).

Graham is a Registered Social Worker, having qualified in 1994. He spent the first nine years of his professional career working in the criminal justice arena, primarily working with and managing teams specializing in high risk sexual and violent offenders.

He is married with two college/university aged children. His interests include travel and theatre/ visual arts.

Steve Crocker, Director of Children’s Services

Steve Crocker was appointed Director of Children’s Services in May 2016, having previously acted as Interim Director since November 2015. Prior to this, Steve served Hampshire County Council as Deputy Director of Children’s Services for six years.

As the Departmental Director, Steve is responsible for the educational outcomes for children in schools and for children’s social care both in Hampshire and also for the Isle of Wight Council, under a Strategic Partnership arrangement, initiated by the Department for Education. He is also leading the County Council’s business partnership as 'expert advisers' to support Torbay Council's improvement journey in children's social care.

Steve has more than 25 years experience in social work and Children’s Services management, during which time his notable achievements include helping to set up and lead the Oxfordshire Youth Offending Service, before moving on to head up the Wessex Youth Offending Service.

Since 2009, he has led and guided Hampshire County Council through a series of challenging Ofsted inspections. In the most recent Inspection in 2014, against a new Single Inspection Framework (SIF), Hampshire Children’s Services were assessed, as in the 2011 outcome, as being either ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ across all domains. To date this outcome remains the highest set of gradings for any Authority inspected under the new framework.

Steve’s track record of strong performance has earned him significant national recognition. Examples of this include being asked to play a lead role in Professor Julian LeGrande’s review of Birmingham City Council’s Children’s Services.

Karen Murray, Director of Culture, Communities and Business Services

Karen Murray became Director of Culture, Communities and Business Services (CCBS) in April 2011. Before that, she was Director of Property, Business and Regulatory Services which has merged with the Culture, Communities and Rural Affairs department to become CCBS.

CCBS is the Council’s centre for community and cultural services, and also manages our property interests and a range of business services. Karen brings a wealth of experience to this role, having led a large number of services in the Council over many years.

Stuart Jarvis, Director of Economy, Transport and Environment

Stuart Jarvis was appointed as Director of Environment in November 2010. In March 2011, the Economic Development Office moved into the Environment Department, creating the new Economy, Transport and Environment Department.

Prior to his appointment as Director, Stuart served for 15 months as Managing Director of PUSH (Partnership for Urban South Hampshire) on a secondment from the County Council, where he had been appointed as the Deputy Director of Environment in May 2004. Before joining Hampshire, Stuart was the County Planning and Transport Officer for Somerset County Council, and previously worked in various posts in Pembrokeshire County Council, Preseli District Council, Southampton City Council and Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council.

The Department is responsible for Economic Development and Regeneration, Highways and Transport, Waste Management, Minerals and Waste Planning, and general Environment services within the County Council.

Senior officer roles

The organisation chart sets out the top three levels of County Council officer roles and the many organisations with whom Hampshire County Council works in partnership or shares services.

A shared back office service has been created between the County Council, Hampshire Constabulary and Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service, bringing together HR, finance and procurement. We have worked in strategic partnerships with other local authorities including delivering:

  • children’s services for Isle of Wight Council and Torbay Council
  • property services for Surrey County Council and Reading Borough Council
  • back-office functions for Oxfordshire County Council

These partnerships lower costs for each organisation. A number of the roles included in the organisation chart are jointly funded or shared by one or more public sector partners as a result of this partnership work.

We recognise that by sharing and trading our services, and working with our partners and communities in new ways, we are changing into a different type of organisation. We remain committed to delivering high quality public services which continue to benefit Hampshire residents.