Eastleigh Borough Council has chosen its new Chief Executive, subject to approval by Councillors.
James Strachan, currently Business Development Director at neighbouring Southampton City Council, will take up the post in May. He replaces Nick Tustian who is retiring from Eastleigh after 22 years with the authority, eight of them as Chief Executive. The appointment is subject to approval by Councillors at a meeting of Full Council which takes place next week (24 February).
As Business Development Director at Southampton, James oversees a wide range of functions, including communications, policy and data, IT/digital, supplier management and procurement, business support and customer services. He had operational responsibility for the Council’s Covid-19 response and led on implementing a new model of working post-pandemic, and has recently led the development of a five-year waste improvement plan.
Prior to Southampton, James held Assistant Director roles at Hampshire County Council where he was responsible for Economy, Transport and Environment, and then Devolution and Local Government Reform.
James (whose surname is pronounced ‘Strawn’) has also had roles in central government and the private sector. Outside of work, he is a school governor, a magistrate and was a parish councillor until last year (non-political).
James is looking forward to taking up his post at Eastleigh in May. He said: “It's an incredible honour to be asked to lead such a great team. Eastleigh is a place with its eyes on the future. I look forward to getting to know staff and Councillors, and supporting what they do for people who live and work across the borough.”
Eastleigh Borough Council Leader, Councillor Keith House, looks forward to welcoming James to the authority. He said: “James was the standout candidate from a very strong shortlist and brings detailed knowledge and an excellent track record of achievement to Eastleigh. We’re confident that he is the right person to take forward the delivery of our vision of creating healthy communities and a green borough, promoting business prosperity and providing high-quality homes.”