Tessa Jowell


Tessa Jowell was re-elected MP for Dulwich and West Norwood in May 2010 with a majority of 9,365.

Born Tessa Jane Helen Douglas Palmer in London, she was educated at the public school St Margaret's School for Girls in Aberdeen, the University of Aberdeen, the University of Edinburgh and Goldsmiths College, University of London. She became a social worker and eventually administrator of the mental health charity Mind. In 1978 she was Labour Party candidate in a by-election in Ilford North but lost Labour's majority to the Conservatives.

Elected as MP for Dulwich at the 1992 general election, she was successively appointed as an opposition spokesperson on health, an opposition whip and spokesperson on women before returning to the shadow health team in 1996.

Jowell was appointed as Minister of State in the Department of Health after the 1997 Labour electoral landslide. She moved, again as Minister of State, to the Department for Education and Employment in 1999. Jowell was appointed Secretary of State at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport after the 2001 election.

In Gordon Brown's reshuffle in June 2007 following his succession as Prime Minister, Jowell was demoted from her position as Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport. She retained her Olympics portfolio and was also appointed Paymaster General and Minister for London, being allowed to attend the cabinet, but not as a full member. She was further demoted on 3 October 2008, losing her Minister for London role to Tony McNulty. She became Cabinet Office minister in 2009 and, with Labour in opposition, kept her Olympics portfolio.


Dulwich and West Norwood


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Date of Birth

17 September 1947




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