Monmouthshire County Council has chosen a new Chairman to serve for the next twelve months.  Councillor Maureen Powell was elected at the council’s annual general meeting on May 16th following nomination by Council Leader elect Peter Fox.  Councillor Fox said: “It gives me great pleasure to propose Maureen who has been a county councillor since 2008.  I’ve rarely met such a hard working person as this lady.”

Born in Hay-on-Wye and educated in Hereford, Councillor Powell has worked in farming, a garage, a chainsaw business, and also ran a bed and breakfast concern before retiring from full-time employment in 2002.  Her consort for the year is husband John. Together, they have five children, thirteen grandchildren and seven great grandchildren.

Maureen has extensive political experience having first been elected to Grosmont Community Council in 1995.  She represents Abergavenny’s Castle ward, serves as a school governor and sits on a number of the council’s committees.  This will be her second time as Chairman following her term of office in the year leading up to May 2013.

Maureen attends St Mary’s Church in Abergavenny on a regular basis and is also keen on swimming, reading, and following local and Welsh rugby.  Her chosen charities for her year of office are the Alzheimer’s Society and the Wales Air Ambulance.

Leaders of the council’s political groups paid tribute to the work performed by outgoing Chairman, Councillor Jim Higginson, on his year of office.

In reply, Councillor Higginson reflected on the previous twelve months.  “This year has been an honour and a privilege for my consort Pauline Collier and me.  The county hosted the National Eisteddfod last summer and we visited the festival on each of the six days – it was such an achievement by everyone to make it a success.  We had the pleasure of representing the council on many other occasions including at a royal garden party, the Lord Mayor’s House and the Royal Albert Hall.  There were royal visits by Prince Charles, the Duchess of Cambridge and the Duke of Cambridge as well as the 50th anniversary of the Severn Bridge and celebrations of the historic two hundred year old Chepstow Bridge.  I sincerely appreciated working with everyone, and to Maureen I send best wishes – I know that you’ll enjoy your experience.”

Councillor Peter Clarke who represents the Llangybi ward was elected Vice-Chairman of the council.