Skip to content
Archived news

Select a month and year to view archived news stories.

New Director of Public Health set to take up post

Published on Thursday, August 31, 2023

2 minute read

Incoming Director of Public Health, Rob Howard

THE man responsible for leading Leicester’s public health response during the Covid pandemic is handing over the reins of office.

Professor Ivan Browne is standing down as Director of Public Health at Leicester City Council, to take on a new role as a Professor of Public Health at De Montfort University.

His role at Leicester City Council will be taken over by Rob Howard, currently a consultant in public health who has worked in the voluntary sector, NHS, civil service and for the last 10 years in local authority public heath roles.

Having trained in the city, Rob was very keen to come back and took up the role of public health consultant in the city council in January 2020. He worked closely with Professor Browne throughout the pandemic, which saw the city dealing with the longest lockdown in the UK.

Mr Howard (pictured above) takes over the role with effect from September 1, 2023.

He said: “Everyone involved in public health learned so much from our shared experience of the Covid pandemic – the way that the whole city pulled together was remarkable and really cemented my commitment to working for the people of Leicester.

“Having worked with Ivan for many years, I know his are big boots to fill and hope my experience will stand me in good stead for this next step.”

Professor Browne has accepted a role as Professor of Public Health and Social Determinants of Health at DMU and is set to join the university in the autumn.

He added: “I am delighted that Rob will be taking over from me. Having worked with him for many years, I know that he is passionate about the city and believe he is absolutely the right person for the job.

“From my perspective he has all of the skills and attributes to drive and deliver the ambition to improve the health and wellbeing of the residents of Leicester.

“There will undoubtedly be a number of emerging challenges and opportunities that Rob will face as he steps into the role, but he does so supported by a fantastic team that will work alongside him.”

Leicester City Mayor Peter Soulsby worked very closely with Professor Browne to coordinate the city’s response to the Covid lockdowns.

He said: “I am delighted that Rob has been recruited to this role, and the level of continuity that brings to the position, and to our goals to improve the health of people in Leicester.

“It has been an honour and a pleasure to work with Ivan over the years, and I wish him all the very best as he takes on his new role.”