kids encyclopedia robot

David Miliband facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Quick facts for kids
David Miliband
David Miliband 2.jpg
Official portrait, c. 2007–10
President of the International Rescue Committee
Assumed office
1 September 2013
Preceded by George Erik Rupp
Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs
In office
28 June 2007 – 11 May 2010
Prime Minister Gordon Brown
Preceded by Margaret Beckett
Succeeded by William Hague
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
In office
5 May 2006 – 27 June 2007
Prime Minister Tony Blair
Preceded by Margaret Beckett
Succeeded by Hilary Benn
Minister of State for Communities and Local Government
In office
11 May 2005 – 5 May 2006
Prime Minister Tony Blair
Preceded by Position established
Succeeded by Ruth Kelly
Personal details
David Wright Miliband

(1965-07-15) 15 July 1965 (age 58)
London, England
Political party Labour
Louise Shackelton
(m. 1998)
Children 2 sons
Relatives Ed Miliband (brother)
Education Bradford Grammar School
Haverstock School
Alma mater
Awards Kennedy Scholarship (1988)

David Wright Miliband (born 15 July 1965) is the president and chief executive officer (CEO) of the International Rescue Committee and a former British Labour Party politician. He was the Foreign Secretary from 2007 to 2010 and the Member of Parliament (MP) for South Shields from 2001 to 2013. He and his brother, Ed Miliband, were the first siblings to sit in the Cabinet simultaneously since Lord Edward and Oliver Stanley in 1938. He was a candidate for Labour Party leadership in 2010, following the departure of Gordon Brown.

He started his career at the Institute for Public Policy Research. Aged 29, he became Tony Blair's Head of Policy while the Labour Party was in opposition, and he was a contributor to Labour's manifesto for the 1997 election, which brought the party to power. Blair subsequently made him head of the Prime Minister's Policy Unit from 1997 to 2001, at which point Miliband was elected to Parliament for the seat of South Shields.

Miliband spent the next few years in various junior ministerial posts, including at the Department for Education and Skills, before joining the Cabinet in 2006 as Environment Secretary. His tenure in this post saw Climate change consolidated as a priority for policymakers and on the succession of Gordon Brown as Prime Minister in 2007, Miliband was promoted to become Foreign Secretary. At the age of 41, he became the youngest person to hold that office since David Owen 30 years earlier. In September 2010, Miliband narrowly lost the Labour leadership election to his brother Ed. On 29 September 2010, he announced that to avoid "constant comparison" with his brother, and because of the "perpetual, distracting and destructive attempts to find division where there is none, and splits where they don't exist, all to the detriment of the party's cause", he would not stand for the Shadow Cabinet.

On 15 April 2013, Miliband resigned from Parliament in order to take up the posts of President and CEO of the International Rescue Committee in New York City, which triggered a by-election in South Shields.

Early life and education

Early life and family

Born in London, Miliband is the elder son of immigrant parents, Belgian-born Marxist sociologist Ralph Miliband and Polish-born Marion Kozak, both from Polish Jewish families. The latter was a teacher before she became a homemaker. He was given the middle name of "Wright" after the American sociologist C. Wright Mills, a friend of his father. He has said "I am the child of Jewish immigrants and that is a very important part of my identity." Both his Polish Jewish paternal grandparents lived in the Jewish quarter of Warsaw. His paternal grandfather, Samuel, a trained leather worker, served in the Red Army in the Polish–Soviet War of 1919–1921 before moving to Belgium. His paternal grandmother, Renia (later known as Renée), also moved to Belgium, where she first met Sam, and the couple married in 1923. The German invasion of Belgium in May 1940 split the Miliband family in half: Ralph and father Samuel fled to England, while Ralph's mother Renée and baby sister Nan stayed behind for the duration of the war. They were not reunited until 1950. His mother, a human rights campaigner and early CND member, survived the Holocaust thanks to being protected by Catholic Poles but her father, David's maternal grandfather did not. During his visit to Poland in June 2009, Miliband went to his family tomb in the Jewish Cemetery in Warsaw. He said of Poland, "My mother was born here, her life was saved by those who risked theirs sheltering her from Nazi oppression", and that he is "one of the million Britons who have Polish blood".


David Miliband, Davos 2010
Miliband during the WEF 2010

Miliband was educated at Primrose Hill Primary School, in Camden, and Newlaithes Primary School, in Leeds. In September 1976, he passed the entrance examination to the newly independent, fee-paying Bradford Grammar School and from 1978 to 1983, attended Haverstock Comprehensive School in North London. He obtained four A-levels (grades BBBD), and won admission to the University of Oxford. He was an undergraduate student at Corpus Christi College, Oxford, and obtained a first-class honours degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE). From 1988 to 1989, he received a master's degree in Political Science at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he was a Kennedy Scholar.

2010 Labour leadership election


On 29 July 2008, Miliband wrote an article in The Guardian that outlined his vision of a future of the Labour Party but made no mention of Gordon Brown. The piece was widely interpreted as a leadership challenge to the then Prime Minister, not least because the timing of its publication – just after Brown's departure on holiday at the start of the parliamentary summer recess, and while there was intense speculation about his continuing leadership following Labour's defeat in the Glasgow East by-election the previous week – seemed designed to produce a large political impact. In the following days two Labour MPs called on Brown to sack Miliband for his perceived disloyalty. Miliband, while denying claims by his detractors that he was seeking to provoke an early leadership election, did not rule himself out of eventually running for the leadership of the party. Many grassroots supporters believed a David Miliband-led Labour Party would tackle the Conservatives more effectively, reaching out to voters in marginal seats as well as securing Labour's core support. In fact, The New Statesman said Miliband was then "holding an unofficial title: he was Labour’s leader in waiting, and the only man thought capable of toppling Gordon Brown:"


The Labour Party lost the UK general election held on 6 May 2010, and Gordon Brown soon announced that he was standing down as leader of the party.

On 12 May, flanked by 15 supportive members of the parliamentary party, Miliband announced from outside the House of Commons that he would stand in the resulting leadership election. On 10 June 2010, Barry Sheerman, Huddersfield MP, nominated Miliband for the Labour Party leadership post with Mr. Sheerman's daughter, Madlin Sadler, as Miliband's Campaign Co-ordinator. Madlin Sadler had served under Miliband previously as Special Advisor.

The other contenders for the leadership were Ed Balls, Andy Burnham, Diane Abbott and David's brother Ed Miliband, with David Miliband gaining the most nominations. The result of the contest was announced on 25 September 2010, the day before the start of the 2010 Labour Party Conference in Manchester. While David Miliband led the share of the electoral college votes in the first three rounds, he lost in the final round (50.65% to 49.35%) to his brother Ed. He announced on 29 September 2010 that he would be quitting frontline politics and would not be a part of his brother Ed's shadow cabinet.

Leadership of the International Rescue Committee

On 26 March 2013 the Daily Mirror reported that Miliband would be announcing the following day that he intended to resign as an MP and leave politics altogether. He announced that he was taking up the post of head of the International Rescue Committee in New York, for which his remuneration would be £300,000 ($450,000) a year. It was reported that his total IRC remuneration for 2019 was c. $1 million.

Miliband became the president and CEO of the International Rescue Committee on 1 September 2013. At the IRC, Miliband has been overseeing humanitarian aid and development programs in 40 countries, a global staff of 12,000 and 1,300 volunteers, and an annual budget of $450 million. Near the top of the IRC, Miliband again installed his former Special Political Advisor from London, Madlin Sadler. She became the aid agency's Chief of Staff.

Syria's civil war

The IRC has been responding to Syria's refugee crisis. On the ABC News programme of 13 October 2013, This Week with George Stephanopoulos, Miliband commented that he worried about the immediate effects of the current diplomatic solution in Syria of sending in Chemical Weapons Inspectors and destroying the chemical stockpiles would have on the ongoing crisis. He said: "We’re concerned that people think that somehow, because the chemical weapons seem to be addressed, that the Syrian conflict, the regional conflict, is done and dusted.” On 10 October 2013, he said there were huge risks in not intervening militarily. "We've got people on the ground, not just in Syria but in Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq,” he told a foreign policy discussion in Manhattan. “I’ve got people who are in danger.” He quoted Frederick the Great, saying: “Diplomacy without weapons is like music without instruments”. His policy opinions were at odds with his younger brother, Ed Miliband, the Labour Party's Leader in the UK who insisted that the Labour Party would not back military intervention.

On 28 February 2014, in a TV interview with KPBS Evening Edition in San Diego, Miliband reiterated that the US and other nations needed to intervene "both politically as well as financially" in Syria where one in two Syrians was displaced because the government of Bashar al-Assad was "dropping barrel bombs on its own citizens".

On KPBS, he revealed that the IRC was running cross-border aid to Syrians beyond the scope of the United Nations. Miliband said such "cross border aid" has reached about a half million Syrians with medical aid in cities that were "besieged and cut off from the UN help". Another half million Syrians, said Miliband, had received non-medical aid. Miliband stated that in the UN's absence, "It comes to International NGOs, non governmental organisations, to get across the border crossings and weave their way between the conflict lines to reach people." He stated the need for such extraordinary efforts was great and the need for such ingenuity was even greater.

Typhoon Haiyan

On 10 November 2013, as IRC CEO, Miliband ordered the war relief agency to mount an emergency response to a natural disaster—Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. He announced a huge donation drive for funds dedicated exclusively to the storm: "In the face of a rising death toll and widespread humanitarian catastrophe the International Rescue Committee (IRC) has dispatched an emergency team to Manila and launched a $10 million appeal in order to implement the most appropriate response. We have today taken the decision to deploy emergency relief coordinators to the Philippines, with a view to deciding with the host government which of IRC's areas of expertise — from water and sanitation to education — are most needed. The IRC’s emergency unit will start work immediately."

Miliband is co-chair of the Global Ocean Commission which was founded in February 2013.

In 2017, the organization provided 1.14 million children with schooling and education; helped resettle 10,665 refugees and special immigrant visa holders in the US; and filed 663 affidavit of relationships to help reunite families separated at the US border. In April 2018, Miliband told The New York Times that he joined the IRC with the idea that it "should not be a sleeping giant, it should be a roused leader in the global humanitarian sector."


In May 2018, Miliband joined Nick Clegg and Nicky Morgan in calling for a soft Brexit.

Expense claims

The Daily Telegraph's investigation of expenses claims by Members of Parliament reported that Miliband had claimed for gardening expenses and approximately £30,000 in repairs, decorations and furnishings for his constituency home in South Shields. A spokesperson said: "At every stage, David Miliband followed the procedures and rules as laid out by the parliamentary authorities".

Business interests

On 21 December 2010, the Office of David Miliband Limited was formed with Miliband and his wife Louise as directors.

According to the Financial Times, "much of Mr Miliband’s time has been spent on his lucrative directorships and speaking roles, which he would be expected to give up if he returned to frontline politics…as of January 2013, David Miliband has made just short of £1m on top of his MP’s salary since he failed to win the Labour leadership in the summer of 2010."

According to a March 2013 article in the Huffington Post UK, Miliband has earned almost £1m since the 2010 election. The article listed sources of income from speaking (where he has earned up to £20,000 per event), advisory and teaching roles, journalism, gifts, hospitality and overseas visits.

Miliband is one of six members of the Global Advisory Board of Macro Advisory Partners, which advises multinational corporations, sovereign wealth funds, investors and governments.

In January 2012, David Miliband joined the Board of Directors of Mauritius-based private equity group, Indus Basin Holdings. IBH operates Rice Partners in the Punjab region of Pakistan which specialises in managing the end-to-end supply chain for major global users of rice.

According to the Financial Times, "Mr Miliband’s jobs include advisory roles with VantagePoint Capital Partners, a Californian group; Oxford Analytica, a UK advisory company; and Indus Basin Holdings, a Pakistani agrochemical group. He is also a member of the advisory board to the Sir Bani Yas academic forum, which is hosted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the United Arab Emirates. Despite supporting Arsenal, Mr Miliband was vice-chairman and a non-executive director of Sunderland from 2011 until 2013. As a speaker he commands a fee of up to £20,000."

Miliband is also on the Advisory Board of VantagePoint Capital Partners.

Miliband is a member of the Trilateral Commission, founded and chaired by David Rockefeller.

Personal life

Miliband married Louise Shackelton, a professional violinist formerly with the London Symphony Orchestra, in 1998. Shackelton and Miliband have adopted two newborn sons from the United States, the first in December 2004 and the second in October 2007, and currently live in New York City's Upper West Side. In an interview with CNN in 2009, Miliband stated that he grew up in a secular setting and describes himself as an atheist with a "huge respect" for people of faith.

Miliband was portrayed by Henry Lloyd-Hughes in the docu-drama Miliband of Brothers, with Ed Miliband being portrayed by Lloyd Hughes' brother Ben Lloyd-Hughes.

Awards and honours


  • Mr. David Wright Miliband (1965–2001)
  • Mr. David Wright Miliband MP (2001–2005)
  • The Right Honourable David Wright Miliband MP (2005–2013)
  • The Right Honourable David Wright Miliband (2013–present)

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: David Miliband para niños

kids search engine
David Miliband Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.