Independent councillor John Pollard has been elected unopposed as the leader of Cornwall Council.
Mr Pollard, the independent member for Hayle North, will head up a cabinet of Independents, Liberal Democrats and minority parties.
On election at County Hall this morning, he promised to work with all the members of the council and that he hopes to "build not demolish".
He said: "I'm a Hayle boy so it is a bit emotional as well that I am in this important position."
Mr Pollard was nominated for the position by Liberal Democrat group leader Jeremy Rowe and the nomination was seconded by councillor Julian German.
Mr Pollard appointed Mr Rowe as deputy leader and Mr German to the new cabinet.
Mr Pollard said the council must work to build a better Cornwall for all.
He said: "I want to build not destroy and I ask you all to help.
"We will not always get it right; we need to draw on all the talent in this chamber".
He added that he fully appreciated that the electorate had elected a council where no one group had an overall majority.
The Independents have 36 seats on the council, level with the Liberal Democrats. The Conservatives now have 30 seats after the defection of Mike Eathorne-Gibbons to the Independent group.
On his website, Mr Pollard, 62, who was brought up in Hayle, describes himself as “a truly independent councillor working for Hayle”.
He says: “I am determined to represent all who live in this division to the best of my ability and welcome contact from any resident”.
The former deputy head teacher for Humphry Davy School in Penzance, has been a Hayle Town Councillor since 1982 and sits on the boards of numerous community groups and institutions.