The Declaration Ceremony for the High Sheriff of Hertfordshire 2016/2017.
Stelio Stefanou was declared High Sheriff of Hertfordshire on 2nd April in a ceremony bringing together public and voluntary sector leaders and Mr Stefanou’s family and friends.
For the first time in history, the ceremony took place in the Council Chamber of Hertfordshire County Council, in Hertford.
The High Sheriff of Hertfordshire is appointed by HM The Queen as her representative in the County in matters related to law and order.
It is the oldest secular office appointed by the crown, dating back centuries. Most of the ancient responsibilities of High Sheriff have passed to the courts, police and other statutory organisations. In modern times, the High Sheriff’s role is to support these bodies and the voluntary sector in their work to maintain law and order and strengthen society. It is an annual appointment, which begins with a Declaration Ceremony. High Sheriffs can choose particular themes or priorities for their year, reflecting their interests or expertise.
One priority for Stelio Stefanou will be to support the implementation of Hertfordshire’s new domestic abuse strategy, titled ‘breaking the cycle’. After the sale of his Hertfordshire-based infrastructure and maintenance services business, Accord plc, in 2007, he set up a charity, the Stefanou Foundation. The charity has created the Healthy Relationships: Healthy Baby Programme for expectant mothers and fathers who want to give their baby the best start in life and would like help to overcome harmful or hurtful behaviours in their relationship and also painful memories from their own childhood.
Stelio Stefanou said, “Many organisations across the public, private and voluntary sectors help to make Hertfordshire one of the safest counties in the UK. I am particularly keen to encourage partnership working between the sectors, as this can create some of the most meaningful ways of reaching out to those who need a helping hand to stay safe or turn their lives around.
Cllr Frances Button, Chairman of Hertfordshire County Council, said, “We were delighted that Stelio Stefanou wished to make history by holding his Declaration Ceremony in County Hall. We warmly welcome his plans as High Sheriff to build bridges between the many different organisations who help to keep Hertfordshire safe, including those who need to work together so that we can break cycles of domestic abuse in the County.”
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