Latest news > A New Era for the East Midlands: Our First Mayor

A New Era for the East Midlands: Our First Mayor

Written by

Kerry Bentley


By Kerry Bentley, Managing Director of DBC Training

I am thrilled to extend my warmest congratulations to Claire Ward, who has been elected as the first-ever Mayor of the East Midlands Combined County Authority. As the results were coming through last week, I found myself reflecting with a sense of optimism and anticipation about the positive impact the Combined County Authority will have on our region.

Claire’s victory as the first-ever Mayor of the East Midlands Combined County Authority marks a significant milestone for our region on our devolution deal journey, which will unlock up to £4bn of funding over the next 30 years for investment in homes, skills, transport, the environment and more. 

As the Managing Director of DBC Training, I am particularly excited about the opportunities that devolution and the formation of the East Midlands Combined County Authority will create for education and skills development in our region. A skilled and productive workforce is essential for economic growth, and I believe a strong focus on education and training will empower our residents and businesses to thrive in a rapidly changing labour market.

There has never been a better opportunity to implement a localised skills strategy. One that highlights and addresses skills gaps through vocational training, apprenticeships and lifelong learning, and empowers the region to streamline decision-making, enhance regional cooperation, and drive economic growth across our diverse counties.

Once again, congratulations to Claire Ward on this historic achievement. Let us all unite and work together in shaping a brighter future for the East Midlands!

About East Midlands Combined County Authority (EMCCA)

The EMCCA is a combined county authority that covers the two ceremonial counties of Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire within the broader East Midlands region. It was established as a legal entity in February 2024, bringing together four upper-tier local authorities: Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire county councils, along with Derby and Nottingham city councils. Find out more here.

About DBC Training

DBC Training has been supporting people in the East Midlands into employment and developing their skills since 2000. We’ve helped improve the lives of over 50,000 individuals and supported over 8,000 businesses to recruit and upskill their employees and reach their potential.