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Vince Cable is a British politician and elected leader of the Liberal Democrats since 2017 and has worked as an economist both in the public and private sectors. He is also well known as the Member of Parliament for Twickenham (1997-2015 and 2017), Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills (2010-2015) under former prime minister David Cameron and has served as Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Trade and Industry, for Business, Innovation, and Skills and for Treasury.
Vince Cable’s Bio
Born John Vincent Cable on May 9, 1943, in York, England to a conservative family where he had as his father, Len Cable, who was a craftsman working for Rowntree’s and Edith Cable. His mother packed chocolates for British chocolate maker, Terry’s. For his education, Cable went to Nunthorpe Grammar School and then to Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge where he first studied Natural Sciences before changing his course to Economics.
While at Cambridge in 1965, he became the Cambridge Union President, a committee member, and Cambridge University Liberal Club President-elect but left the position following his resignation from the Liberal Party. Graduating in 1966, Cable received the appointment of an ODI Nuffield Fellow in Kenya and while he was there, he became the Kenyan Government Treasury Finance Officer from 1966 to 1968; he was also a researcher for the Central American Common Market during his visit to Central America in 1969.
Returning home from Kenya and America, Cable went for his Ph.D. degree at the University of Glasgow where he studied Economics and graduated in 1973. He also became a lecturer in economics and was Glasgow’s Labour councilor from 1971 to 1974.
From 1974 to 1990, Vince Cable engaged himself as an economist serving Hugh Carless as First Secretary in the Latin American department of the Foreign Office. He involved himself with the CBI trade mission to South America. He then became a special adviser to the then Trade Secretary, John Smith, to the UK Government and also to Shridath Sonny Ramphal, who was the Commonwealth Secretary-General at the time.
He moved on to work for Royal Dutch Shell in 1990 and became Chief Economist in 1995 until 1997 when the oil company was sanctioned for being involved in Nigerian politics under General Sani Abacha’s dictatorship. In 2017, Vince Cable was the strategic advisor for the annual World Trade Symposium which is organized by FT Live and Misys on the World Trade Board.
Family Life – Who is His Wife? Rachel Smith
Vince Cable got married to Olympia Rebelo Cable in 1968 after meeting in a mental hospital in York and a long courtship in Kenya. Olympia who was raised by Indian parents also went for her Ph.D. at Glasgow University, studied history, and became a teacher. Together they have three children namely; Paul, Aida, and Hugo Cable. They also have two grandchildren – Ayrton Cable and Charlie Cable. However, he lost Olympia to re-occurring cancer in 2001.
After the death of his first wife at the end of the 2001 general election, Cable was invited by the UN to speak to the New Forest branch, and there he met his second wife Rachel Smith who was recently divorced with kids. When he visited her farm, a relationship budded and in 2004, the lovebirds were married. Cable who has always enjoyed ballroom dancing with his late wife Olympia appeared on the BBC show Strictly Come Dancing with partner Erin Boag for the Christmas 2010 edition special.
Other Facts You Need To Know About Vince Cable
Vince Cable is not only the oldest leader of the Liberal Democrat party at age 74, but he is also the most experienced in terms of politics. He began his political journey as a Liberal before 1965 and then defected to the Labour Party in 1966. A series of losses while trying to vie for political office under the Labour Party platform, saw him defected to the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in 1982.
In 1988, the party formed an alliance with Liberal Party and it was called the Liberal Democrats. Cable continued his political ambitions to stand as Member of Parliament but was defeated in 1992. Not giving up, he contested again in 1997 and took over from Conservative Toby Jessel as the new Liberal Democrat Member of Parliament in the Twickenham constituency from May 1, 1997, to March 30, 2015, and again on June 9, 2017.
The sage of Twickenham was then promoted to Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Trade and Industry in 1999 and then in 2003, he was elected Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Treasury. Following Menzie Campbell’s resignation in 2006, Cable stood as Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrats and served in the same position under Nick Clegg from 2 March 2006 to May 2010.
In May 2010, Cable became Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills President of the Board of Trade under David Cameron. His appointment was due to the agreement between Conservatives and Liberal Democrats. He left the position on the 11th of May 2015.
While holding these influential positions, he held strong views and helped shape most government policies and was also part of the UK Green Investment Bank project. Vince Cable was once again chosen as his party’s Spokesperson for Business, Innovation, and Skills from January 2015 to May 2015 and on July 20, 2017, he assumed the office of Leader of the Liberal Democrats with Jo Swinson as his deputy.
Vince Cable was knighted in 2015 and he supports a lot of charity organizations including The Mulberry Centre, Homelink, Shooting Star Chase, Spear, Cross Roads Care, Jeevika and several others.