24 Facts About Gus O'Donnell


Gus O'Donnell's post was then split into three positions: he was succeeded as Cabinet Secretary by Sir Jeremy Heywood, as Head of the Home Civil Service by Sir Bob Kerslake, and as Permanent Secretary in the Cabinet Office by Ian Watmore.


Whilst Cabinet Secretary, Gus O'Donnell was regularly referred to within the Civil Service, and subsequently in the popular press, as GOD; this was mainly because of his initials.


In 2012, Gus O'Donnell joined Frontier Economics as a senior advisor.


Gus O'Donnell was a lecturer at the University of Glasgow in the Political Economy Department from 1975 until 1979, when he joined the Treasury as an economist.


In 1989 Gus O'Donnell became press secretary for the Chancellor of the Exchequer before transferring next door to serve as press secretary to the prime minister from 1990 to 1994.


From 1997 to 1998, Gus O'Donnell was the United Kingdom's Executive Director to both the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, again in Washington, before returning to HM Treasury to serve as both Director of Macroeconomic Policy and Prospects and Head of the Government Economics Service, with overall responsibility for the professional economists in Her Majesty's Government.


On 8 July 2002, Gus O'Donnell took over from Sir Andrew Turnbull as Permanent Secretary of the Treasury following the appointment of Sir Andrew as Cabinet Secretary.

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Gus O'Donnell is known for his "wondrous interpersonal gifts" and his informal style.


Gus O'Donnell regularly visited Civil Service departments outside London "to meet civil servants at work".


Channel 4 News on 10 August 2010 had reported that O'Donnell would leave his post before the end of the current Parliament.


In January 2011, it emerged that Gus O'Donnell had decided not to publish correspondence sent between Tony Blair and George W Bush prior to the 2003 invasion.


Gus O'Donnell's reasoning is explained in several documents between himself and Sir John Chilcot.


In November 2010, Gus O'Donnell published a draft copy of the Cabinet manual.


On 11 October 2011, it was announced by Downing Street that Gus O'Donnell was to retire at the end of the year.


Gus O'Donnell's successor was announced as the Downing Street Permanent Secretary Jeremy Heywood.


On 22 December 2011, Gus O'Donnell said that the future of the Union is one of several "enormous challenges" facing the political establishment in the coming years.


Gus O'Donnell is a strategic adviser to the chief executive of Toronto Dominion Bank, a fellow of the Institute for Government and was the chairman of the Commission on Wellbeing at the Legatum Institute.


Gus O'Donnell has been a leader in the wellbeing and happiness movements.


Gus O'Donnell chaired the development group of founding partners setting up the What Works Centre for Wellbeing.


On 10 January 2012, Gus O'Donnell was created a life peer as Baron Gus O'Donnell, of Clapham in the London Borough of Wandsworth, and was introduced in the House of Lords, where he sits as a crossbencher, on 12 January 2012.


Gus O'Donnell has played for the Mandarins Cricket Club for many years, the third Cabinet Secretary to do so.


Gus O'Donnell was formerly a governor of his alma mater, Salesian College, Battersea.


Gus O'Donnell has received several appointments to the Most Honourable Order of the Bath: he was appointed Companion in the 1994 New Year Honours, Knight Commander in the 2005 Birthday Honours and Knight Grand Cross in the 2011 Birthday Honours.


In 2014, Gus O'Donnell was elected an Honorary Fellow of the British Academy.