Aileen McLeod (born 24 August 1971) is a Scottish National Party (SNP) politician. She is a former Member of the European Parliament for the Scotland constituency, having been elected in the 2019 European Parliament election. She served as MEP until the 31 January 2020 when the Brexit process was completed.
|Member of the European Parliament|
2 July 2019 – 31 January 2020
|Preceded by||David Martin|
|Succeeded by||Constituency abolished|
|Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform|
21 November 2014 – 18 May 2016
|First Minister||Nicola Sturgeon|
|Preceded by||Paul Wheelhouse|
|Succeeded by||Roseanna Cunningham|
|Member of the Scottish Parliament|
for South Scotland
(1 of 7 Regional MSPs)
5 May 2011 – 23 March 2016
|Born||24 August 1971|
East Kilbride, South Lanarkshire, Scotland
|Political party||Scottish National Party|
|Alma mater||University of Edinburgh |
University of Central Lancashire
She was also formerly a Member of the Scottish Parliament (MSP) for the South Scotland region 2011−2016 and was the Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform 2014−2016.
Early life and education
McLeod was born on 24 August 1971 in East Kilbride, Scotland. She attended Claremont High School going on to study at the University of Edinburgh, graduating in 1993 with a degree in German and European Community studies. In 2004 she graduated with a PhD from the University of Central Lancashire.
McLeod joined the SNP in 2004 after leaving her restricted post in the Scottish Parliament. After spending five years living in Brussels and working as Head of Policy for Alyn Smith MEP, McLeod returned to Scotland in 2009 to stand as an SNP candidate in the European Parliamentary elections. From 2009 to 2011 McLeod was Parliamentary Assistant to Michael Russell MSP.
On 21 November 2014, she was appointed Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform, succeeding Paul Wheelhouse who was moved to another ministerial brief. She attended the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris. She had looked at issues relating to land ownership, with some efforts made to increase transparency of this.
In the 2016 Scottish Parliament election she again stood as a candidate in the Galloway and West Dumfries constituency where she finished second behind Finlay Carson (who had a majority of 1,514 votes) and was not returned to the Parliament as a result. She was succeeded as Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform by Roseanna Cunningham.
McLeod was elected as a Member of the European Parliament for the Scotland constituency in the 2019 European Parliament election. In September 2019 McLeod was a member of the European Parliament's delegation to the 2019 UN Climate Action Summit She served as MEP until the 31 January 2020, when the Brexit process was completed.
- "The UK's results in maps and charts". 27 May 2019. Retrieved 31 August 2019.
- "Personal Information". www.scottish.parliament.uk. Scottish Parliament. Archived from the original on 8 December 2014. Retrieved 31 August 2014.
- "Aileen McLeod". Scottish National Party. 24 June 2019. Retrieved 31 August 2019.
- Davidson, Lorraine (10 May 2011). "Biggest wave of new faces into Holyrood since devolution". The Times. London.
- "Nicola Sturgeon announces new Scottish cabinet". BBC News. BBC. 21 November 2014.
- Kirkaldy, Liam (3 December 2015). "Climate change and the Paris talks: Interview with Dr Aileen McLeod". Holyrood. Retrieved 8 May 2016.
- "Aileen McLeod: Transparency of ownership and fair play are at the heart of Land Reform Bill". The National. 16 February 2016. Retrieved 8 May 2016.
- "We must all rise to the challenge of the climate emergency". Scottish National Party. 21 September 2019. Retrieved 30 October 2019.