The Dialogue Society Birmingham Branch was very pleased to host Mike Whitby, Leader of Birmingham City Council, for an enlightening discussion of the Big Society in Birmingham. He began his presentation by articulating the elements of Big Society in Birmingham, highlighting the beauty of cultural diversity in the city. He revealed his contentment about the strength of the social fabric of Birmingham, which he considered was demonstrated during last August’s disturbances. He suggested that civic organisations like the Dialogue Society should enhance the level of engagement and eliminate the barriers between different communities. Lastly, he made mention of the common challenges which can be overcome only by effective cooperation and solidarity.
Biography of Mike Whitby
Mike Whitby is a Conservative Party politician and current leader of Birmingham City Council, a post he has held since June 2004. He is one of three Conservative councillors representing the Harborne ward in the west of the city. He was formerly a Councillor on Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council. Whitby joined the Conservative Party in 1979. He first stood as a candidate in the Midlands West European by-election in 1987, again for Midlands West in the European Parliament Elections in 1989, and then as a Westminster Parliamentary candidate for Delyn in 1992.He was elected office in 1997, on winning the Harborne ward of Birmingham in a by-election. He has retained the seat since, most recently in the 2010 local election. He became Leader of the Conservative Group on Birmingham City Council in 2003, and Leader of the Council in 2004.