11 October 1971
Wimbledon, London, England
|Residence||New Malden, Borough of Kingston, England|
|Education||BA in English and German (University of Warwick); MA in Modern German (University of Warwick)|
|Years active||Civil Servant:
2012 London Mayoral Election Candidate:
|Known for||Standing as an independent candidate in 2012 London mayoral election.|
|Political party||Liberal Democrats|
|Spouse(s)||Vincent Benita (m. 1997)|
Benita was born in 1971 in Wimbledon, south west London, and grew up in the borough of Merton. Her Anglo-Indian mother came to London in 1959. She worked as a home help and auxiliary nurse. Benita's English father moved to London after graduating from Loughborough University and was a local primary school teacher.
Benita was educated in Roman Catholic state schools in Merton: Sacred Heart Primary School, St Catherine’s Middle School and the Ursuline High School. She went to University of Warwick where she gained a first class Bachelor of Arts Degree in English and German and a Master's Degree in Modern German.
In 2006, after 10 years as a policy adviser on transport, local government and environment issues, she moved to the Cabinet Office where she worked with the then new Cabinet Secretary, Sir Gus O’Donnell, to improve civil service governance, strategy and communications. During her time in the Cabinet Office she established Civil Service Live, in partnership with Civil Service World publisher Dods. She worked on the Civil Service Awards and "Tabelle", a network for women who work in, or with, the public sector.
In 2016 she joined the Liberal Democrats shortly after the United Kingdom European Union membership referendum, 2016 claiming it was the "only true pro-remain party".
Benita stood as a candidate in the 2012 Mayor of London election. She came fifth with 3.8% of the vote, within 8,000 votes (0.36%) of fourth-placed Brian Paddick. She indicated at the time that she intended to stay in politics and hoped to run again in the 2016 London Mayor elections, although she eventually decided not to.
- Ross, Matt"Interview: Siobhan Benita", Civil Service World interview, 27 January 2012. Retrieved 2012-03-13.
- Dominiczak, Peter"Civil servant runs for Mayor to prove that 'women can do this sort of thing'", Civil servant runs for Mayor, 29 November 2011. Retrieved 2012-03-13.
- "About Siobhan Benita", Official Siobhan Benita website for the 2012 London Mayoral election, Retrieved 2012-03-13.
- Eden, Richard"Civil Service chief Sir Gus O’Donnell goes on the run with glamorous colleague", The Telegraph, 10 July 2011. Retrieved 2012-03-14.
- Marsh, Arun"Leading Questions: Siobhan Benita, London mayoral candidate", The Guardian, 4 January 2012. Retrieved 2012-03-14.
- Civil Service Live Network, Dods,. "About". Civil Service Live Network. Dods. Retrieved 11 March 2011.
- BBC News, "London election 2012: Siobhan Benita's 'massive result'"
- "Growing stronger by the day," Ad Lib, issue 29, September 2016, pp. 16-7