Alistair Neill has been named as Southampton City Council’s new chief executive.
He will join in November from Merthyr Tydfil CBC subject to full council approval. Current chief executive Brad Roynon is retiring.
Mr Neill has headed Merthyr Tydfil since 2003 taking it from the brink of Wales Audit Office intervention to being ranked last year among Wales’ best performers.
He began his career in the private sector becoming a marketing director at BP his early 30s and worked at Unilever and Masco before taking his first public sector job in 2002 as a director at Northamptonshire CC.
In 2007-08 he was invited by the Cabinet Office to help conduct capability reviews in the Prime Minister’s Delivery Unit, of the Department of Trade and Industry.
Council leader Alec Samuels (Con) said: “His track record of delivering top level performance, of working successfully with partners and of leading an organisation is exceptional.
“Those skills will be needed over the coming years with the terrible state of the public finances posing a huge challenge for the council and for the city.”