Stacy Eloise Silverman (born December 5, 1961) is an English politician and current Prime Minister of England. When she became Prime Minister in 2006 she was the youngest Prime Minister since 1884 (a record since surpassed by Tony Miller).
She graduated from the Birmingham School of Economics in 1986, working initially for the investment bank Winton Chequers. In 1989 she began working at the Institute for Market Reform, a think-tank closely associated with Megan Taylor. She became closely associated with the group, becoming the institute's director in 1994. She was elected to Parliament in 1996 as the National Party MP for Billericay, and entered cabinet as Energy Secretary in 2001. She supported Megan Taylor when challenged for the leadership, playing a major role in her campaign.
Silverman held several cabinet posts under Richard Palmer, including Environment Secretary (2001-2002), Trade Secretary (2002-2004) and Chancellor of the Exchequer (2004-2006). In 2003 she was elected Deputy Leader of the National Party, and appointed Deputy Prime Minister. In February 2006 she challenged Richard Palmer for the National Party leadership, defeating him.
In January 2008 she was challenged for the National Party leadership by Felix Trevelyan, losing by a narrow margin. She was re-elected to parliament at the 2008 election, but returned to the backbenches. Silverman built up a career as a media personality and political commentator. Silverman made a surprise return to frontline politics in June 2013, being re-elected leader of the National Party. She led the National Party to victory at the 2014 general election, becoming the first former Prime Minister to return to office since 1931.
Stacy Silverman was born on December 5, 1961 in Chelmsford, Essex. She attended Chelmsford Grammar School for Girls from 1978 to 1983. She then studied Economic Theory and Practice at the Birmingham School of Economics, graduating in 1986. She worked at Whiteheads Interntional Investment Bank from 1986 until 1990. From 1990 until 1996 she worked at the Institute for Market Reform, a free market think tank that had a major influence on National Party economic thinking through the 1990s.
Silverman had joined the National Party in 1983
She was selected for the safe National Party seat of Billericay in June 1995, however she was unable to spend much time actively campaigning due to her role as director of the Institute for Market Reform. She was easily elected, but with a substantially reduced majority.
Member of Parliament 1996-2001
Following the sucession of Richard Palmer to the premiership Silverman was reshuffled to become Environment Secretary.
National Party Leadership Election
First Premiership 2006-2008
Contrary to expectations Silverman did not stand down at the 2008 election, comfortably holding her Billericay seat despite National losing the election nationwide. In July 2008 she signed a deal with Channel 3 News to appear as a talk panellist and commentator. In January 2009 she was given her own weekly politics discussion programme Silverman on Sunday. She became a noted critic of Felix Trevelyan's leadership style.
She was re-elected MP for Billericay at the 2011 general election, during the campaign period she did not appear on Silverman on Sunday. During the election campaign a reality television series Stacy's Britain, was created, showing Silverman's personal life and struggles during the election campaign. In October 2011 she released her book Changing Places setting out her view about changing Britain, in a move widely seen as releasing her personal manifesto. During this period there was much speculation that she would challenge Felix Trevelyan for the National Party leadership.
Return to leadership 2013-2014
On June 23rd 2013 after days of speculation Silverman announced her intention to challenge Felix Trevelyan for the National Party leadership. She received significant public support almost immediately, including the backing of former Prime Minister Megan Taylor. On June 26th in a surprising move Defence spokesman Owen Sinclair announced he too would run for the leadership against Silverman and Trevelyan. Sinclair had long been seen as a centrist figure and Trevelyan loyalist.
The first ballot held on 1st July 2013 resulted in Silverman winning 159 votes to Trevelyan's 78 and Sinclair's 50, resulting in a clear victory for Silverman on the first ballot. In doing so she became the first former National Party leader to serve non-consecutive terms.
Silverman announced a major shadow cabinet reshuffle over the following week, sacking prominent members such as Shadow Chancellor Iain Gruber.
Second Premiership 2014-present
Silverman first married Alexander Kane on July 3rd 1988, although retaining her maiden name. They divorced in 1999.