Rosemary Butler (politician)
|Dame Rosemary Butler
|Presiding Officer of the National Assembly for Wales|
11 May 2011 – 11 May 2016
|Preceded by||Dafydd Elis-Thomas|
|Succeeded by||Elin Jones|
|Deputy Presiding Officer|
9 May 2007 – 11 May 2011
|Preceded by||John Marek|
|Succeeded by||David Melding|
|Minister for Education|
25 May 1999 – 18 October 2000
|First Secretary||Alun Michael|
|Preceded by||New post|
|Succeeded by||Jane Davidson|
|Member of the Welsh Assembly
for Newport West
6 May 1999 – 6 April 2016
|Preceded by||New Assembly|
|Succeeded by||Jayne Bryant|
|Born||Rosemary Janet Mair McGrath
21 January 1943
Much Wenlock, Shropshire, England, UK
|Political party||Welsh Labour Party|
|Spouse(s)||Derek Butler (1966–present); 2 children|
Serving briefly as Assembly Secretary for Education in the first two years of the Assembly, she was elected Deputy Presiding Officer of the Assembly in May 2007. Following her election in May 2011 Butler was appointed Presiding Officer of the Assembly. She did not stand for election to the Assembly in the 2016 elections.
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Rosemary Janet Mair McGrath was born in Much Wenlock, Shropshire. Her family moved to the Rhymney Valley soon after. As a teenager she moved to Newport with her parents (Godfrey and Gwen McGrath) and brother John; there she attended St Julian's High School.
In the early 1960s she met her husband Derek Butler, whom she married in 1966. He was a lecturer in art and design at Newport Art college, which was at the time based in Clarence Place. They have two daughters, Kate (born 1968) and Alice (born 1970).
In 1971 Butler joined the Labour Party. She was elected to Newport Borough Council from Caerleon ward in 1973, and played an important part in Labour administrations on the council as Deputy Leader and Mayor of Newport in 1989–90. She was Chair of the Leisure Services Committee for 12 years.
At the first Assembly election in 1999, Butler was selected as Labour candidate for Newport West which she won. She was appointed Assembly Secretary for Education: Minister for Children and Young People (up to 16) by Alun Michael but held office only for a year, leaving in October 2000 when the new First Minister Rhodri Morgan formed a coalition government. She was Chair of the Assembly's Culture, Welsh Language and Sport Committee and served on the Panel of Chairs. She led the British Council activities in the Assembly and also represents the Assembly on the European Committee of the Regions (CoR) where she is a member of the Bureau (executive) of the Committee.
Presiding Officer and Deputy Presiding Officer
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On 9 May 2007, Butler was picked as the Labour group's nominee for Deputy Presiding Officer of the Assembly, a position vacant by the defeat of the previous holder and which had to be held by a member from a different party to the Presiding Officer. Her election by the whole of the Assembly was not opposed. Butler was appointed the second Presiding Officer of the Assembly on 11 May 2011, following Dafydd Elis-Thomas, PC, AM.
Women in Public Life Campaign #POWiPL
In 2012 Dame Rosemary Butler AM launched a campaign to address the need for more women to apply for and take up public roles and appointments. Her Women in Public Life campaign (POWiPL) aims to ensure that women are fairly represented at all levels of public life in Wales.
During the campaign, Rosemary has hosted many high profile influential speakers at the National Assembly for Wales, most notably former Prime Minister of Australia, Julia Gillard to talk about gender equality and encourage women to put themselves forward for public appointments. She also launched a website; Women in Public Life Portal to enable women in Wales to search for public appointments.
In October 2014, Dame Rosemary launched a mentoring and development scheme for women who wanted to gain experience in public life and undergo training to help prepare them for decision making roles over a period of 18 months. The scheme is delivered by Chwarae Teg and Cardiff Business School on behalf of the National Assembly for Wales.
- Honorary Fellow of the University of Wales, Newport
- Co-founder and Chair of the Newport International Competition for Young Pianists
- An Honorary Citizen of Newport's twin town Kutaisi (Republic of Georgia), and founding member of the Newport-Kutaisi Twinning Association
- President of the Friends of Newport Transporter Bridge
- President of the Wales Home Safety Council
- President of Newport Harriers Athletic Club
- Honorary Life Member of Newport Sports Council
- Life Member of Newport Cricket Club
- Founder member of the Friends of Tredegar House
- Ambassador for Girl Guiding
- Founder member of Newport Women's Aid
- Member of Women's International League of Peace and Freedom
- Patron of Caerleon Arts Festival
- Chairwoman, Newport Women's Forum
- Chairwoman, Live Music Now Wales
- 2014 Honours List recipients; accessed 17 March 2014.
Media related to Rosemary Butler at Wikimedia Commons
|National Assembly for Wales|
|Assembly Member for Newport West
|Deputy Presiding Officer
|Minister for Education
|Member of the EU Committee of the Regions