Rt Hon Ruth Davidson MSP

Wednesday 19th June

12.15pm – 1.15pm, Auditorium

Ruth Davidson is a journalist, broadcaster, author and politician. She served for eight years as leader of the Scottish Conservatives, during which time she transformed the party’s prospects, leading to its greatest electoral results in 35 years.

She also played a prominent role in both the Scottish independence and EU referendum campaigns, arguing her case in stadium television debates at the Glasgow Hydro and Wembley Arena. As the first openly gay leader of a major political party in the UK, and the first party leader to give birth while in office, Ruth has broken barriers throughout her time in public life.

A regular contributor to debates on gender, inclusion and equality, Ruth talks about authentic leadership from a first-hand perspective. A former BBC journalist and Territorial Army soldier, Ruth understands how important individual expression, trust and developing leadership skills can be within large organisations.

Her close professional relationship with successive Prime Ministers, and
membership of UK Cabinet, gives her a unique insight into the current political environment north and south of the border.

Ruth’s book, Yes She Can – Why Women Own the Future, is a positive appraisal of gender advancement across the globe; how far women have come to achieving equality and, crucially, how much road there is still to travel. It draws on direct testimony from world-beating women as diverse as Christine Lagarde, Dame Katherine Grainger and Melinda Gates, who Ruth interviewed in a fascinating series of conversations while researching her work.

Despite operating exclusively in the Scottish Parliament, Ruth has successfully built a UK-wide platform. A gifted political communicator with a modern, real-world touch, she is as at home on Have I got News for You, The One Show, Celebrity Chase and The Great British Bake Off: Stand Up To Cancer as she is on Newsnight, Question Time and Andrew Marr.

In 2018, she was named as one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential people of the year, alongside international figures from sport, media, and politics including New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Prince Harry.

Ruth’s professional career prior to politics was in broadcast journalism, variously operating as a presenter, producer and documentary maker. Since leaving the party leadership, Ruth has returned to journalism, regularly providing political commentary for the Telegraph, Mail on Sunday and the Evening Standard as well as developing broadcast projects for both television and radio.

Image ©Licensed to i-Images Picture Agency. 16/04/2015. Glasgow, United Kingdom. The Prime Minister David Cameron launching the Scottish Manifesto with the Leader of the Scottish Conservative Party Ruth Davidson, on day 18 of his 2015 General Election Campaign. Picture by Andrew Parsons / i-Images

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