Praise for Kirsty Williams from across the board

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A constellation of non-Lib Dems have praising Kirsty Williams, who today announced her intention to stand down at the next Senedd election. Here’s a selection of their praise, including from non-politicians:

Tina Donnelly CBE, former Director the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Wales and Richard Jones MBE, former Deputy Director RCN Wales:

Kirsty has been a phenomenally committed politician – extremely approachable and a politician who acted on her promises. Kirsty worked tirelessly to progress her private members’ Safe Nurse Staffing Legislation which went on to become the first act of its kind in Europe. During this process, we were always confident that with her passion, style and engagement she would succeed.
“We are both extremely sad that she will not be standing again as a member of the Senedd. We as nurses in Wales have gained so much for the safety of our patients in gaining this Act of Compassion and this was due to Kirsty’s leadership. We will miss her very much as will politics in Wales.

Rt Hon Mark Drakeford MS, First Minister of Wales:

Kirsty’s decision not to stand for re-election in May will leave an enormous hole – not just in the Welsh Government but in the Senedd and in Welsh political life.
I am so glad her final term as a Senedd Member has been spent as a Minister and as a member of the Welsh Government.
She was a formidable politician in opposition but she has demonstrated her real strength has been in putting into practice the progressive policies for which she has long argued.
We must make the most of her talents while she is still in government, because we will miss her greatly when she moves on to new challenges and possibilities. Pob lwc, of course, with all that lies ahead.

Lord Dafydd Elis-Thomas MS, Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism and former Presiding Officer:

It has been a pleasure and privilege to work alongside Kirsty for over 20 years. She has an amazing ability to make people who meet her feel at ease. Her political intelligence and understanding is matched by her social intelligence which has made her such an approachable public representative. Whether in the corridors of Westminster or on the Royal Welsh Showground in her own constituency, she has always been the same Kirsty, an absolutely necessary figure in the making of Welsh devolution.

Owen Evans, Chief Executive of S4C and former Deputy Permanent Secretary for Education and Public Services:

Kirsty, the cuckoo in the cabinet – her own words not mine. No doubt she’ll be recognised as one of the finest politicians of her generation; ruthlessly determined yet human and fun. A class act and privilege to work with.

Carwyn Jones MS, former First Minister of Wales:

Kirsty and I were two of the originals who were elected in 1999 and despite our different political viewpoints I’ve counted her as friend ever since. She has been an exceptional Education Minister and will be missed across the Senedd. I wish her all the best for the future.

Professor Pericles Lewis, Vice President for Global Strategy, Vice Provost for Academic Initiatives, Yale University:

Minister Williams is the best ambassador that Wales, its students and government could wish for. In the time since she secured the Young Global Scholars partnership between the Welsh Government’s Seren Network and Yale Young Global Scholars – the first government partnership of its kind for us – an increasing number of students from Wales have enjoyed life-changing study opportunities here in the United States. We have been delighted to work with her and Welsh colleagues who set the highest ambitions for their students.

David Melding CBE, MS for South Wales Central and former Deputy Presiding Officer:

Of the class of ’99 no opponent has made me think, react or even change my attitude more than Kirsty. I will never forget her exemplary precision, humour and effectiveness in leaders’ questions – a masterclass to inspire those whose job it is to keep government accountable. It was no surprise that such parliamentary skills were quickly adapted in government to provide the clarity of purpose and leadership that has made her an outstanding member of the cabinet.

Sir Paul Silk KCB, former Clerk to the National Assembly for Wales and Chair of the Commission on Devolution in Wales:

Kirsty has been an outstanding constituency representative and parliamentarian – a committee chair, party leader and minister. She is a person of integrity and decency, committed to the well-being of Wales and her fellow human beings. The Senedd and Brecon and Radnorshire will miss her greatly.

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One Comment

  • Peter Hirst 28th Oct '20 - 4:56pm

    Let’s hope she continues to engage with her constituency, Wales and more widely as she steps down from a job well done.

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