Olivette Otele appointed as independent chair of Bristol City Council’s Commission on Race Equality


By Robin Connolly, Co-Editor-in-Chief

Olivette Otele, Bristol’s Professor of the History of Slavery, has been appointed as the Independent Chair of Bristol City Council’s Commission on Race Equality, Bristol City Council announced today.

The appointment was made by the Mayor of Bristol, Marvin Rees, who established the Commission on Race Equality in 2018.

Otele described how she is ‘looking forward to working with CoRE’s commissioners, local communities and key partners in the city' and feels ‘very honoured’ to be appointed to this post.

Noting the impacts of COVID-19 on BAME communities, she said that ‘tackling racial inequalities will be of benefit for all communities and CoRE has a critical role to play in this regard.’

Speaking on the appointment, Professor Judith Squires, UoB’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost stated that she is ‘really pleased to see Professor Olivette Otele taking up this role.’

She added: '[Otele] brings significant relevant academic expertise to the work of the Commission and I know she will be an excellent Chair, providing inclusive leadership on this crucially important agenda.’

Marvin Rees has announced how he is ‘delighted to announce the appointment of Olivette as independent chair of CoRE.

‘Together with city leaders across our local black and minority communities the commission has worked hard to address issues of racial disparities and inequalities in the city.’

Otele joined the university in January of this year, following the University’s exciting decision to appoint to the new role of ‘Professor of the History of Slavery’.

In 2018, she became the first Black woman to hold a Professorship in History. She was also included on the BBC’s 100 Women 2018 list.

Otele’s role will begin today on an unpaid basis.

Featured Image: Epigram/Patrick Sullivan

Let us know what you think about this new appointment!


Robin Connolly

Was once told that writing is the only thing I'm good at. Still working out whether or not that's a compliment.