The Mayor of Milton Keynes
The Mayor for 2019-20 is Councillor Sam Crooks
Sam Crooks was born and brought up in Ireland. He came to Milton Keynes to work at the Open University as Admissions Officer and an Assistant Lecturer. He then became Director of the University of London’s International Programme moving to INSEAD in France as Dean of Students & Registrar where he managed the largest full-time MBA programme in the world outside the United States.
While at the Open University he was seconded to the European Cultural Foundation to work on the establishment of the Erasmus student exchange programme. He has also held a Fulbright Fellowship in the United States.
Sam Crooks was a Parliamentary candidate for the Liberal Party in 1974 (twice) and 1979. He was also a candidate for the European Parliament in 1979. He was elected to Milton Keynes (Borough) Council in 1980 as its first Liberal (later Liberal Democrat) councillor. He was Leader of the Council from 1987 – 1991 and again 1992 – 93 overseeing a number of major initiatives including the transfer of powers from the then Milton Keynes Development Corporation to the Council, the first discussions with Buckinghamshire County Council about unitary status for Milton Keynes, the establishment of the Parks Trust, the inauguration of what was then the United Kingdom’s first kerbside recycling initiative and the designation of Bletchley Park as a Local Conservation Area thus securing its legacy for the future. He retained his seat until 1993 when he resigned on moving to France.
On returning to England in 2002 he was again elected to Milton Keynes Council, serving as Leader from 2009 – 10. While Leader he led the successful bid for Milton Keynes to be included as one of the host cities for England’s (eventually unsuccessful) World Cup bid. He also oversaw the arrangements to bring the International Festival to Milton Keynes in 2010, and subsequently every second year. Since 2014 he has chaired the Council’s Children and Young People Select Committee. He was appointed Deputy Mayor in 2018.
Sam Crooks has been a magistrate since 1983. He was the first Chair of the Milton Keynes Commission for Racial Equality (now the Equalities Council). He has also been a member of the BBC Eastern Regional Advisory Committee, the Milton Keynes Health Authority, the Thames Valley Police Authority, and the Buckinghamshire Historic Buildings Trust. He has been a trustee of Bletchley Park, a non-executive director of the Milton Keynes City Centre Management Company (MKCCM) and a parish councillor on the Great Linford Parish Council. He is currently a trustee of the Parks Trust and a school governor of the Brooklands Farm, Broughton Fields and Middleton primary schools in Milton Keynes. He organises the annual Cornerstone Christmas Appeal which raises thousands of pounds for local charities each year.
Nationally he was a member of the General Teaching Council (the professional body for teachers) from 2004 until its abolition in 2012.
He is married to Isabelle Musnik, a leading French journalist. Their daughter Natacha is a computer scientist studying for a doctorate in Germany and the United States.
The Mayor will be supported by the Mayoress, his wife Mme Isabelle Musnik Crooks.
The Mayor’s Charity for 2019/20
This year, the Mayor is supporting YMCA Milton Keynes and Milton Keynes Hospital Charity - Cancer Centre Appeal.
Donations to the Mayor's Charity can be made via the following link to Virgin Money Giving: Donate
The Deputy Mayor for 2019/20 is Councillor Andrew Geary.
Last Updated: 27 March 2020