Be First, the regeneration arm of Barking and Dagenham Council, has appointed Geoff Raw as its new managing director.
Geoff will assume the role in May, taking over from acting MD Kevin O’Brien.
The role was previously occupied by Pat Hayes, who departed in October 2022.
Background: Geoff Raw
Geoff has served as chief executive and head of Paid Service for Brighton and Hove City Council since 2015.
He began his career with Brighton and Hove City Council in 2010 as director of Environment, Development, and Housing, accountable for the commissioning and delivery of Housing, Regeneration, Planning and Building Control, Transport, Waste Management, and Parks services.
Geoff has worked in various posts at a range of organisations including the mayor of London, the Housing Corporation (Homes England), HM Treasury, and the London Borough of Brent.
Lord Bob Kerslake, chair of the board at Be First, said: “Geoff is a highly experienced chief executive and brings significant skills, experience, strategic insight that will be critical to the next stage in Be First’s evolution.
“His passion and enthusiasm for placemaking was evident throughout this process and has been a central theme throughout his career.
“We believe Geoff will build on the success of Be First to date and help us to continue deliver on the significant opportunities within Barking and Dagenham and to accelerate regeneration in the borough, so that no-one is left behind.”
Geoff Raw said: “I am delighted to be taking up the role of managing director.
“Place making, enabling economic opportunity, and developing housing to meet the needs and aspirations of diverse local communities are passions that have inspired me throughout my career.
“I am very much looking forward to joining the Be First team, which has a great reputation and delivery track record, as well as to working with a high calibre board and a strong, ambitious council leadership to enable the borough to thrive.”
Be First, established in 2017, is an urban regeneration company wholly owned by Barking and Dagenham Council but operating independently.
Be First is the largest social house building agency in London.
Image: Geoff Raw, incoming managing director, Be First
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