Home >About us >How we are run >Commonwealth Secretary-General
Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland

Commonwealth Secretary-General

The Commonwealth Secretary-General is responsible for:

  • promoting and protecting the Commonwealth’s values;
  • representing the Commonwealth publicly; and
  • the management of the Commonwealth Secretariat.

The Secretary-General is nominated by Commonwealth leaders and can serve a maximum of 2 terms of 4 years each.

On 27 November 2015, in Malta, the Commonwealth Heads of Government appointed The Rt Hon Patricia Scotland QC of Dominica as the 6th Commonwealth Secretary-General. She took office on 1 April, 2016. She is the first woman to hold the post.

Profile and news from Secretary-General The Rt Hon Patricia Scotland QC

Former Commonwealth Secretaries-General

  • Kamalesh Sharma of India (2008-2016)
  • Don McKinnon of New Zealand (2000-2008)
  • Chief Emeka Anyaoku of Nigeria (1990-2000)
  • Sir Shridath ‘Sonny’ Ramphal of Guyana (1975-1990)
  • Arnold Smith of Canada (1965-1975)