Haringey Council chief executive leaves for NHS

Zina Etheridge has drawn praise from across the council chamber

Zina Etheridge has drawn praise from across the council chamber - Credit: Haringey Council

The chief executive of Haringey Council is standing down to take a job with the NHS.

Zina Etheridge, who has spent eight years at the helm of the local authority, says she is “really excited” to start her new role but “incredibly sorry” to be leaving Haringey.

The outgoing exec said she was “very proud” of the council’s achievements during her time, citing improvements in services for children and adults, and the delivery of a “balanced budget” in a “very difficult climate”.

“We have started building council homes for the first time for many years,” she said.  

“We have built a holistic approach to reducing youth violence and supported the police to improve community trust in community safety.  

“We have 22 green flag parks and maintained them to that quality despite huge reductions in our budgets.” 

Zina said the council’s work during the pandemic was “exceptional” including its support for schools, early years settings, community groups and test centres. 

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“Our staff put their hearts and souls into ensuring that Haringey’s residents were as well supported and protected as possible,” she said. 

The chief exec, whose annual salary at the town hall is between £180,000 to £208,000, added: “Haringey feels like a family. 

“It certainly feels like part of my family and I will always carry a bit of Haringey with me.” 

Cllr Peray Ahmet, the Labour leader of Haringey Council, said: “I’d like to thank Zina personally for the support she has shown me and my new leadership team over the past few months.  

“Zina brought her outstanding management skills to the borough. She created stability and drove through changes here which have vastly improved outcomes for residents.  

“During Covid Zina was a steady hand skilfully navigating us through the crisis and dealing with the many issues which arose almost on an hourly basis.” 

Cllr Luke Cawley-Harrison, the Liberal Democrat leader of Haringey Council’s opposition, called her contribution to the council’s pandemic response “invaluable, especially given the background of ongoing instability in the borough’s political leadership”.   

“I also always found her to be fair and helpful to councillors on both benches, and I, and the whole Liberal Democrat group, wish her the best of luck for the future,” he said. 

Before her time in Haringey Zina worked for the civil service. She was assistant chief executive at Barnet Council from 2010-2012.

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