Glasgow City Council has appointed its female Chief Executive to replace George Black, who retires next month.

Annemarie O'Donnell was chosen today by the Appointment of Senior Officers Committee.

Black announced in August his decision to retire at the end of this year.

Councillor Gordon Matheson, Leader of Glasgow City Council, said: "I am delighted to announce that Annemarie O'Donnell has been appointed as the new Chief Executive of Glasgow City Council.

"The quality of candidates was exceptionally high but Annemarie brings a wealth of experience, passion and vision to the role and was the unanimous choice of the interview panel.

"There has never been a more exciting time to work in Glasgow, with the city in the spotlight like never before following the best ever Commonwealth Games and the signing of Scotland's first City Deal. I am in no doubt that Annemarie is the best possible choice to lead our dedicated and talented staff through the next chapter in our city's long and proud history.

"I also want to take this opportunity to thank George Black for his exceptional work on behalf of the city and wish him every happiness and success in the future."

O'Donnell said: "I am delighted and humbled to have been appointed. This is a really exciting time for Glasgow. There is no doubt the next few years will be challenging for everyone in local government. But I believe we have the energy, the ideas and, crucially, the best people to meet those challenges."

In a message to council staff, Black said: "Annemarie and I have worked together for many years and I know that she is absolutely dedicated to the council and the city. I often say we have the best people in local government and Annemarie is undoubtedly the best person to lead our team.

"Annemarie will want to write to you all in the coming days but I am sure you will want to join me in congratulating her and wishing her all the best."

O'Donnell will begin to take over Black's duties immediately. George, who will retire on 11 December, has worked for Glasgow since 1990 and has been Chief Executive since 2003.

The 49-year-old has been the council's Executive Director of Corporate Services since 2011, with responsibility for legal services, elections, human resources, procurement, city resilience, customer and business support and corporate governance.

A qualified solicitor and a member of the Law Society of Scotland, she has two adult children and her husband is a lawyer specialising in criminal law.

After joining Glasgow District Council from a legal practice in the east end of Glasgow in 1991; Annemarie worked as a solicitor and then senior solicitor in a team focusing on construction, housing and planning.

Following local government reorganisation in 1996, she was promoted to Chief Solicitor - leading the council's work on commercial contracts, procurement, planning and environmental law.

In 2003, O'Donnell was appointed Assistant Head of Legal and Administrative Services, a new post that saw her take responsibility for the running of elections for the first time - along with committee services, registrars, litigation, licensing and corporate law.

A two-year secondment as Depute Director of Social Work Services followed, playing a key role in steering the service through a significant programme of service reform.

She returned to Corporate Services in 2007, serving as Assistant Director and Head of External Governance as the council established its ALEOs.