Victor Adebowale, Baron Adebowale

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The Lord Adebowale

Baron Adebowale byline.JPG
Baron Adebowale in 2017
Member of the House of Lords
Lord Temporal
Assumed office
30 June 2001
Life peerage
Personal details
Victor Olufemi Adebowale[1]

(1962-07-21) 21 July 1962 (age 57)
Political partyCrossbench

Victor Olufemi Adebowale, Baron Adebowale, CBE (born 21 July 1962) is the Chief Executive of the social care enterprise Turning Point and was one of the first to become a People's Peer. He was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2000 New Year Honours for services to the New Deal, the unemployed, and homeless young people.[3] In 2001 he became one of the first group of people to be appointed as people's peers and was created a life peer on 30 June 2001 taking the title Baron Adebowale, of Thornes in the County of West Yorkshire, sitting as a crossbencher.[4][5] In 2009 he was listed as one of the 25 most influential people in housing policy over the past 25 years by the housing professionals magazine Inside Housing. He was reckoned by the Health Service Journal to be the 97th most influential person in the English NHS in 2015.[6]

Life and career[edit]

Adebowale was born to Nigerian parents Ezekiel and Grace Adebowale, who both worked in the UK's NHS.[7] His name "Adebowale" means "the crown comes home" in Yoruba.[8] The use of last names that reference crowns in this way by the Yoruba people is usually indicative of royal ancestry within their various clans.

Adebowale was educated at Thornes House School, Wakefield and the Polytechnic of East London. He began his career in Local Authority Estate Management before joining the housing association movement. He spent time with Patchwork Community Housing Association and was Regional Director of the Ujima Housing Association, Britain’s largest black-led housing association. He was Director of the Alcohol Recovery Project and then Chief Executive of youth homelessness charity Centrepoint. Adebowale was a member of the Social Exclusion Unit’s Policy Action Team on Young People and was Chair of the Review of Social Housing Co-ordination by the Institute of Public Policy Research.

Adebowale joined Turning Point as Chief Executive in September 2001. Turning Point is a care organisation providing services for people with complex needs, including those affected by drug and alcohol misuse, mental health problems and those with a learning disability. In addition to providing direct services, Turning Point also campaigns nationally on behalf of those with social care needs.[9]

Adebowale has been involved in a number of taskforce groups, advising the government on mental health, learning disability and the role of the voluntary sector. He is Co-Chair of the Black and Minority Ethnic Mental Health National Steering Group and is a member of the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs. He is a patron of Rich Mix Centre Celebrating Cultural Diversity, a patron of Tomorrow’s Project and of the National College for School Leadership. He was a member of the National Employment Panel, the New Economics Foundation Board and is a member of the Institute for Fiscal Studies Council. He is a Director of Leadership in Mind organisational development consultancy, a non-exec of the health IT consultancy IOCOM, Chair of Collaborate and in 2015/16 chaired The London Fairness Commission. He has advised governments of all parties on Employment, Housing, Poverty and Public Service Reform.

Academic history and awards[edit]

Adebowale has an honorary PhD from the University of Central England in Birmingham, an honorary doctor of letters from the University of Lincoln, an honorary PhD from the University of East London,[10] an honorary doctorate from the University of Bradford, where he is involved with their Centre for Inclusion and Diversity, and most recently an honorary doctorate from the University of York. He is an honorary fellow of London South Bank University and Honorary Senior Fellow in the Health Services Management Centre at the University of Birmingham. In 2009 he was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws (LLD) degree from Lancaster University.

On 12 December 2008, Adebowale was installed as Chancellor of the University of Lincoln. Adebowale has a Post Graduate Diploma From the Tavistock institute and an MA in Advanced Organisational Consulting from the City University London.


In 2015, Turning Point was involved in an employment tribunal claiming that Adebowale had unfairly dismissed the charity's IT director, Ibukun Adebayo.[11] The tribunal did find that Adebayo's actions in accessing lewd emails about her from the charity's deputy chief executive to Adebowale, constituted gross misconduct,[12] but ruled that this did not justify Adebowale's actions. Adebayo's lawyers said that the actions were unfair because the deputy chief executive's behaviour "was more serious than the claimant's by way of his seniority and position as sponsor of Turning Point's equal opportunities policy."[11]


  1. ^ "Lord Adebowale". UK Parliament. Retrieved 6 July 2008.
  2. ^ "Victor Adebowale". Desert Island Discs. 30 October 2011. BBC Radio 4. Retrieved 18 January 2014.
  3. ^ "No. 55710". The London Gazette (Supplement). 31 December 1999. p. 9.
  4. ^ "No. 56265". The London Gazette. 5 July 2001. p. 7935.
  5. ^ "Lord Victor Adebowale," Bio, National School of Government.
  6. ^ "HSJ100 2015". Health Service Journal. 23 November 2015. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
  7. ^ Adebowale, Victor. "BME trailblazers in the NHS" (PDF).
  8. ^ "Adebowale". Behind the Name. Retrieved 5 October 2014.
  9. ^ "Lord Adebowale," Guardian, 23 May 2007.
  10. ^ "UEL Alumni Newsletter". Archived from the original on 18 February 2011.
  11. ^ a b Corfe, Emily (26 October 2015). "Turning Point denies 'black-on-black racism' after accusation from former director". Civil Society Media. Retrieved 22 December 2016.
  12. ^ Cooney, Rebecca (9 September 2015). "Sacked Turning Point IT director Ibukun Adebayo says she would rather have her job back than a £0.5m payout". Haymarket Group. Retrieved 23 December 2016.

External links[edit]