Frank Russell Co. consultant Kenneth Ayers is running for sheriff of the City of London.
The holder of the oldest elected office under the crown, dating to the seventh century, nominally is responsible for the Square Mile's legal system. In reality, the elected position largely is an ambassadorial role, aiding the lord mayor in presenting the city's best face at home and abroad.
Mr. Ayers, who is managing director for Frank Russell's Middle Eastern region, is seeking the nomination for one of the two sheriff posts. Mr. Ayers is a member of a livery company, and thus qualified to run. In fact, he is a former master of the Worshipful Co. of Actuaries, one of 100 livery companies, which largely are derived from the ancient guild system.
If he triumphs in the June 26 election - and so far there are only two contestants for the two slots - he and his wife would take up residence in the Old Bailey, home of the city of London's criminal courts.
How does he feel about leaving his 15th-century Berkshire home to live surrounded by the trials of London's criminal element? Mr. Ayers laughingly said: "The place is pretty well secure."