St Helens Council has appointed its new chief executive - 35-year-old Mike Palin.
Mr Palin was announced as the authority’s top official at the council’s full meeting on Wednesday night.
He replaces Carole Hudson, who is stepping down in March after almost 20 years in the role.
He currently works as the executive director for strategic economic development at the Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership, where he is responsible for the organisation’s strategic relationship with the government.
He is believed to be the region’s youngest council chief executive.
Mr Palin has previously held senior positions with the North West Development Agency and before that as social, economic and management consultancy firm, SQW.
He said: “I’m looking forward to my new role immensely - and excited at the prospect of playing a big part in the St Helens story.
“On a personal level I’m really keen to see the borough’s communities benefit from economic growth in an inclusive way.
“I’ll be doing all I can to help the council meet residents’ needs, remove barriers that prevent young people achieving their potential and get to grips with the requirements of an ageing population.
“My intention is to build on the excellent track record and reputation of the council.”
Council leader Barrie Grunewald said Mr Palin’s appointment was a key component in unlocking the borough’s economic potential.
He added: “I’m delighted that Mike will be joining us – and bringing a wealth of economic development experience to St Helens at a key stage of the borough’s ongoing transformation.
“He has exactly the sort of credentials we’ve been looking for. His leadership, vision, contacts and experience will serve us well as we
continue to unlock the borough’s economic potential with key projects like the Parkside development.
“I look forward to working alongside him and have every confidence that his excellent administrative abilities will also serve the council well during what are extremely challenging times for local authorities.”