Businessman and philanthropist declared High Sheriff of Hertfordshire

Stelio Stefanou (centre) was appointed High Sheriff of Hertfordshire at a ceremony at County Hall on

Stelio Stefanou (centre) was appointed High Sheriff of Hertfordshire at a ceremony at County Hall on Saturday. - Credit: Archant

A Hertfordshire businessman and philanthropist is the latest person to occupy the oldest secular office in the land.

Stelio Stefanou was declared High Sheriff of Hertfordshire on Saturday at the first declaration ceremony held at the Council Chamber in Hertford.

Although the High Sheriff’s wide-ranging medieval powers are long gone, the holder of the office is still the sovereign’s representative for matters relating to justice and law and order and is the official returning officer for all of the county’s parliamentary constituencies.

After the sale of his Hertfordshire-based infrastructure and maintenance services business, Accord plc, in 2007, Stelio set up his charity, the Stefanou Foundation.

One priority for Stelio will be supporting the implementation of Hertfordshire’s new domestic abuse strategy, titled ‘breaking the cycle’.

“Many organisations across the public, private and voluntary sectors help to make Hertfordshire one of the safest counties in the UK,” he said.

“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.

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Councillor Frances Button, who is chairman of Hertfordshire County Council, said, “We were delighted that Stelio 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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