Former Acting President
Sir Roger Gale
Pedro Agramunt announced his resignation as President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) on 6 October 2017.
Following his resignation, the most senior Vice-President of the Assembly, Sir Roger Gale, automatically became Acting President. In line with the PACE Rules, he acted until the election of a new President at the following part-session of the Assembly.
Sir Roger Gale was born in 1943 and educated at Hardye's School in Dorchester, Dorset and the London Guildhall School of Music and Drama. He is a former producer and director of current affairs programmes for the BBC, editor of Thames Television's Teenage Unit, and a freelance radio journalist.
He has been a Conservative member of the UK Parliament for more than 30 years, having been elected as MP for the North Thanet constituency in 1983, and re-elected eight times since then, most recently in June 2017.
He is the longest-serving member of the Speaker's Panel of Chairmen, and has acted as a Deputy Speaker of the House of Commons. From 1992 to 1995 he was a Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Minister of State for the Armed Forces.
He also has a specialised knowledge of animal welfare issues, having been the Founding Chairman of the All Party Group for the Fund for the Replacement of Animals in Medical Experiments. He is President of the Conservative Animal Welfare Group.
Sir Roger first served on the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe between 1987 and 1989, was re-appointed in 2010 and now leads the United Kingdom delegation to the Assembly. He currently sits on the Monitoring and Rules Committees of the Assembly, and is a former Chair of the Media and Information Society Sub-Committee. For the Assembly, he has observed elections in Armenia, Georgia, "the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia", Ukraine and Tunisia.
Sir Roger is married to Suzy, who is the full-time director of his Parliamentary Office, and has three children and five grandchildren.