Jesse Norman is the Conservative Parliamentary Candidate for Hereford and South Herefordshire. He has been married to Kate since 1992, and they have three children.
Jesse was educated at Merton College, Oxford University, and has a Masters and PhD from University College London. He worked for and later ran an educational project giving away medical and other textbooks in Eastern Europe from 1988-1991. In 1991 he went to work at Barclays, mainly on eastern Europe and other emerging markets. He left Barclays in 1997 in order to teach and do research in philosophy at UCL, and later at Birkbeck College.
A lifelong volunteer, Jesse has personally raised more than half a million pounds for charity. He has also been a school governor of an inner city comprehensive and has worked for nearly a decade with the Roundhouse arts centre and urban regeneration project, which has helped many thousands of disadvantaged young people. He is also a director of the Hay Festival of Literature and the Arts.
Jesse has been a Conservative since university. He worked to help Oliver Letwin MP retain his seat in West Dorset during the 2005 General Election, and stood as a Conservative candidate in the 2006 Council elections. He has acted as a policy adviser to George Osborne MP, the Shadow Chancellor, and to the Shadow Work and Pensions team. In 2007, he took time out to advise Boris Johnson on his successful campaign to become Mayor of London.
Jesse was selected as a parliamentary candidate in December 2006 in an open-primary selection contest. Since then he has campaigned actively on key local issues, fighting to improve public services and for a stronger voice for Herefordshire in Whitehall and Westminster. His campaigns are regularly featured in the Hereford Times, Hereford Journal and Ross Gazette.
Amongst other things, he has led a successful campaign to improve local broadband services, has been county-wide co-ordinator of the Herefordshire Save Our Post Offices campaign, and set up SchoolsFirst.org.uk as a resource to help all those fighting school closures. He is a trustee of the Kindle Centre in South Wye in Hereford City, where he has been leading a project to create a new community theatre. He is also Patron of Herefordshire Riding for the Disabled and the St Martin's Church roof appeal.
High public profile
Jesse is a published author of many books and pamphlets, and has written widely in the national press. His book Compassionate Conservatism has been called the "intellectual guidebook to Cameronism" by the Sunday Times, while the follow-up Compassionate Economics was described as "the most intelligent political tract of 2009, and the best analysis of the credit crunch" in the Daily Telegraph online.
He has also written for The Times, Sunday Times, Financial Times, Guardian and Spectator, and has appeared on TV on BBC 1, BBC News 24 and Sky News; and on radio on Start The Week with Andrew Marr, Any Questions? with Jonathan Dimbleby, The Westminster Hour and Analysis. He has also been the subject of profiles in Varsity, BBC Online, Herefordshire Life and GQ.