Hemel Hempstead's MP has been appointed as the new Party Vice Chairman for Candidates.
Sir Mike Penning says he will focus on ensuring the Conservative Party has the best possible candidates united in their commitment to conservative values - and highlighted the value of 'down-to-earth life experience'.
Oliver Dowden said: “I’m delighted to welcome Sir Mike to our growing team here at CCHQ. He will have a particular focus on making sure candidates are properly prepared for when they come into Parliament,”
Sir Mike said: “This is a great honour and a vital job in the run up to the next general election.
"I am committed to ensuring we have candidates with strong Conservative values and who come from all walks of life and backgrounds so that we can put forward the best team to represent our country in Parliament.
“As a former firefighter I know first-hand the value of having solid down-to-earth life experience so you can relate to people and really understand how national policies will play out on the ground and affect people’s lives.”
The role of Vice Chairman is an unpaid position and will not impact Sir Mike’s work for his constituents in Parliament.