This article needs to be updated. The reason given is: Bridget McConnell retired in 2022. The article has a basic reflection of that, but needs a bit of a tidy up to remove duplication.(January 2023)
The Lady McConnell of Glenscorrodale
Bridget Mary McConnell
May 28, 1958
Bridget Mary McConnell, Baroness McConnell of Glenscorrodale, CBE (born 28 May 1958) is a retired Scottish cultural administrator. Prior to retirement she served as the chief executive officer of Glasgow Life, the charity responsible for delivering culture and sport in Glasgow. McConnell was instrumental in Glasgow’s successful bid for and subsequent hosting of the 2014 Commonwealth Games, serving as a member of the organising committee and as the Director of Ceremonies and Culture, while overseeing infrastructure required for the games. McConnell was responsible for a major overhaul of the city’s sports, leisure, arts and cultural facilities. McConnell is the wife of former First Minister of Scotland, Jack McConnell. In 2006, she was voted #15 in The Scotsman’s power 100 list.
Education and career
McConnell was educated at Our Lady's High School, Cumbernauld, going on to graduate from St Andrews University (MA hons, 1982), Dundee College of Commerce (DIA 1983) and Stirling University (MEd, 1992; EdD, 2009). McConnell worked as the first curator of a local authority travelling art gallery with Fife County Council in 1983, then taking up the first ever jointly funded Local Authority/Scottish Arts Council Arts Officer post in Stirling District Council in 1984, followed by ten years in Fife Council firstly as Principal Arts Officer then Arts, Libraries, Museums and Recreation Manager. She joined Glasgow City Council in 1998 as Director of Cultural and Leisure Services.
As CEO, McConnell oversaw an annual budget of c.£108 million and leading a staff of 2,600 people working across nearly 100 culture and sport facilities, events and festivals. She served on numerous national committees and boards, including Unboxed2022, Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland, and Arts and Business Scotland. McConnell was made a CBE in 2015 in recognition of Services to Culture.
During the COVID pandemic, McConnell oversaw the redesign of the organisation, advocating for its role in the economic and social recovery of the city, as well as chairing the Health and Wellbeing group of the National Events Industry Advisory Group (Member) set up by the Scottish Government to give advice during the pandemic and in recovery planning.
McConnell has overseen multiple major infrastructure projects, including the £35 million refurbishment of Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum (2006), an upgrade of the Mitchell Library, the £74 million Zaha Hadid designed Riverside Museum (2012), which was named European museum of the year 2013, the £113 million Emirates Arena and Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome (2012), £35 million phase 1 Kelvinhall development as a world class centre for heritage, learning, culture and sport (2015). The Burrell Collection, the c.£70 million project to refurbish and redisplay one of the world's finest single art collections, reopened in 2022.
While studying at University of St Andrews, McConnell met Procol Harum lead guitarist Richard Brown, and they had a daughter, Hannah, and a son, Mark, three years later. In 1987 McConnell filed for divorce from Brown, eventually marrying politician Jack McConnell who would become First Minister of Scotland in 2001.
- ^ "Chief Executive of Glasgow Life retires after 24 years". Glasgow Times. Retrieved 2 January 2023.
- ^ "Executive Team Glasgow 2014". Glasgow 2014. Retrieved 26 May 2018.
- ^ a b "Dr Bridget McConnell Who's Who entry". Who's Who UK. doi:10.1093/ww/9780199540884.013.U25411. ISBN 978-0-19-954088-4. Retrieved 25 May 2018.
- ^ "Glasgow Life annual review 2020-21". Glasgow Life. Retrieved 6 April 2020.
- ^ "Queens New year Honour's list 2015". Scottish Government. Retrieved 26 May 2018.
- ^ "Glasgow's cultural assets need to be re-prioritised to help aid nation's recovery". HeraldScotland. Retrieved 24 January 2022.
- ^ "King reopens Burrell Collection after £68m refurbishment". Retrieved 2 January 2023.