Council Management Team

The council management team is comprised of the Chief Executive and four directors, who lead the council's departments.

The Chief Executive and directors are responsible for ensuring that services are delivered in accordance with strategies and policies agreed by Council and in the best interests of the community.

They also play a fundamental role in determining the strategic direction of the council and makes sure we reach our goals.


Chief Executive

Carolyn Downs

Carolyn Downs is Brent Council’s Chief Executive, having taken up the position in September 2015.

Prior to her appointment, Carolyn was Chief Executive at the Local Government Association and has also previously served as chief executive of the Legal Services Commission, chief executive of Shropshire County Council and as deputy permanent secretary and director general at the Ministry of Justice.
At Brent, she is the principal policy advisor to the council and the senior manager with responsibility for running the council on a day-to-day basis, including overseeing the council's annual expenditure of around £1 billion.

Carolyn also has overall responsibility for the work of 6,500 staff (including school staff) in more than 200 workplaces providing hundreds of services to Brent's 325,300 residents.

As the statutory Head of Paid Service, Carolyn works closely with elected councillors to deliver leadership and strategic direction to the whole organisation.

She is also responsible for leading and developing strong partnerships with a wide range of national, regional and local agencies.

You can contact the Chief Executive by:

Writing to

Chief Executive
Brent Civic Centre
Engineers Way



  • 020 8937 1007


  • 020 8937 1003

Strategic Director - Community Wellbeing

Phil Porter

Phil is the Strategic Director of Community Wellbeing and took on these wider responsibilities in January 2015, after being appointed to the previous position of Strategic Director Adult Social Care in March 2013. Prior to that, he was the head of Reablement and Safeguarding in Adult Social Services.

Community Wellbeing brings together adult social care, housing, public health and cultural services, and will contribute to improving health and well-being outcomes for our residents, particularly better targeting resources towards support for vulnerable people.


Strategic Director - Regeneration and Environment

Amar Dave

Amar Dave joins Brent from Rochford District Council in Essex where he has been the Chief Executive since October 2013.

Amar previously worked as the Corporate Director of Environment, Culture and Transport at Reading Borough Council. He has extensive experience of managing frontline council services including highways, transport, planning, environmental, housing, arts and heritage.

This Department brings together all regeneration, environmental infrastructure services, public realm and regulatory services. Employment and skills will remain an integral part of the Department. This will bring the services together that ensure the delivery of the Council’s priority ‘A Better Place’.

Strategic Director - Children and Young People

Gail Tolley is the Strategic Director, Children and Families.

Gail Tolley

She is also the statutory director for Children's Services in Brent.

Children and Families provides education services for children, families and schools together with services for the safeguarding and protection of vulnerable children, including those who are in need.

The department has around 900 staff and an annual net budget of approximately £57 million per year.

In addition, the department sets and monitors the budget for schools of around £220 million per year.

Gail is also responsible for ensuring that all council services (including housing, environmental, cultural, sports and leisure) and all other public services in Brent, such as health and the police, work together to improve the lives of children.

She leads the work of Brent Children's Partnership which comprises the leaders of services for children across Brent.

The partnership produces an annual plan which identifies how services will work together and sets improvement targets to enable children to achieve their best and to be healthier and safer.

The partnership includes schools, the College of North West London, children and family centres, housing, libraries, sport and leisure, police, health services, probation services, employment services and voluntary sector services.

Strategic Director - Resources

Althea Loderick

Althea joins Brent from Waltham Forest where she was the Chief Operating Officer and previously the Director of HR and Transformation.

Before that Althea worked as a service director in a national policing role where she led the modernisation of the workforce strategy which affected almost a quarter of a million employees.

The Resources Department comprises the following areas of responsibility: Finance, Legal, HR, Digital Services (excluding Information Governance) Customer Services, Facilities Management, property, and Commercial Services.

The Strategic Director Resources will be able to provide an overview of the Council’s resource and asset base, these being money, people, property and information technology and manage these to ensure that the priorities of the Council are appropriately resourced.