Ian Barnes, BPS Birmingham
Tax expert Ian Barnes is chairman of Business Professional Services (BPS) Birmingham, which represents the professional and financial services sector in the city. He is international tax partner at Deloitte UK's Birmingham office. Mr Barnes is a previous strategy committee chair of Birmingham Future and was BPS finance director for two years. He has spent more than 18 years in the professional services sector after graduating from the University of Warwick. His stated belief is that BPS is capable of making a meaningful and sustained contribution to the prosperity of the region and the wider community.
Louise Bennett, Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce
Louise Bennett, chief executive of Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber since 2003, was awarded an OBE for services to enterprise in 2007. She has a strong interest in youth entrepreneurship and leads the Midlands Young Persons Centre of Expertise for Youth Enterprise. She began her own career in retail before moving into healthcare and is a qualified counsellor and physiotherapist and a qualified CIPD practitioner. She is also an approved foster carer and was appointed Deputy Lieutenant of the West Midlands in 2014.
Saqib Bhatti, Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce
LSE law graduate Saqib Bhatti is vice-president of the Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce and president of the Asian Business Chamber of Commerce. He is also a director of the Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP, a director of the Westside Business Improvement District and a senior policy adviser to the Alliance of Conservatives and Reformists in Europe. For the last five years, he has been an executive committee member of the Lunar Society.
Jonathan Browning, Coventry and Warwickshire LEP
Jonathan Browning has been chairman of the CWLEP since 2014. He is well-known in the motor industry and joined the LEP board after three years as chief executive and president of Volkswagen America. He was managing director of Jaguar Cars between 1999 and 2001 before moving to General Motors where he spent three years as chairman of Vauxhall. He has a degree in industrial economics from University of Nottingham and an MBA from Duke University in the USA. In February this year, he was elected chairman of British Cycling - the governing body of cycling in the UK.
Richard Butler, CBI
Richard Butler is the Confederation of British Industry's director for the West Midlands and Oxfordshire. Before he moved to the CBI, he was head of inward investment at the now-defunct regional development agency Advantage West Midlands, a post he held for 12 years. The CBI is the UK's largest lobbying organisation and in the West Midlands is currently raising the issues of skills shortages, transport infrastructure and energy as well as a post-Brexit industrial strategy.
Tim Clarke, Birmingham Airport
Tim Clarke, the former chief executive of Mitchells and Butlers, was named as chairman of Birmingham Airport in July. He succeeded John Hudson who retired after 20 years in the position. He is a director of Associated British Foods and was previously chief executive of Six Continents. Mr Clarke is also a former director of Debenhams and is chairman of governors of King Edward's School and King Edward VI High School for Girls and vice-chairman of the King Edward's Foundation. He was a trustee director of the Birmingham Royal Ballet from 2006 to 2014 and a trustee of the Elgar Foundation.
Paul Faulkner, Greater Birmingham Chamber of Commerce
Paul Faulkner was chief executive of Aston Villa and then Nottingham Forest before he became chief executive of Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce in 2015. An enthusiastic lobbyist for Birmingham business, the Cambridge history graduate began his career at MBNA bank, working in the UK and the US. Working with Randy Lerner in the US, he played a key role in the American's purchase of Aston Villa in 2006. He is an associate non-executive director of Birmingham Children's Hospital and a trustee of Cure Leukaemia and Birmingham Town Hall and Symphony Hall and also chairman of Sport Birmingham.
Karl George MBE, Governance Forum
Karl George is managing director the Governance Forum which aims to encourage organisations in the private, public and voluntary sectors to think strategically about the benefits and importance of effective governance. In conjunction with the city council's Birmingham Leadership Foundation, he has developed a programme for young leaders. He has turned his expertise in good governance into a board game which he uses in the training and development of governance knowledge. Mr George is a visiting professor at Birmingham City University and a board member at housing association Midland Heart.
Ninder Johal, West Midlands Growth Company
Ninder Johal, a former president of the Black Country Chamber of Commerce, was appointed to the board of West Midlands Growth Company, formerly Marketing Birmingham, in April. The managing director of a successful communications and events company, he is also a board member of the Black Country Asian Business Association and Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership. Born and raised in Sandwell, he is also a board governor of the University of Wolverhampton and vice-chairman of Sandwell College. Mr Johal is a committee member of the Birmingham and Black Country Chartered Management Institute.
Mike McCollum, Dignity
Mike McCollum is chief executive of Sutton Coldfield-headquartered funeral services business Dignity. He joined Dignity's former parent, SCI, in 1995 from KPMG Corporate Finance in London. As finance director, he was part of the management team that guided the business through a leveraged buyout in 2002 and an IPO in 2004. He was appointed chief executive in 2009 and has a law degree from University of Birmingham, is a solicitor and has an MBA from University of Warwick.
Tim Pile, Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP
Tim Pile took over as chairman of the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership in October. He is the former chairman and chief executive of Meriden-based creative agency Cogent Elliott. Mr Pile is a former president of Greater Birmingham Chamber of Commerce and is a non-executive director of building firm Marshalls. His previous roles have included directorships at Sainsbury's Bank, Alliance and Leicester and Lloyds TSB. He is also a former chair of the Marketing Society in the Midlands
Sir Peter Rigby, The Rigby Group/Coventry Airport
Sir Peter Rigby’s Rigby Group unveiled its best ever figures in its 42-year history in September, with revenues exceeding the £2 billion mark. Profits and turnover at the Stratford-upon-Avon-based company have increased by more than 20 per cent as the company sees success across its six divisions of technology, airports, hotels, real estate, aviation and financial services. The Rigby Group's airports division owns Coventry, Exeter and Norwich airports and the corporate jet centre at Birmingham Airport. He also has an upmarket hotels group, under the Eden Hotel Collection brand. Sir Peter devotes much of his time and money to charity. The Rigby Foundation Charitable Trust supports child related causes and children's hospices.
Katie Trout, Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP
Katie Trout is director of the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership, a post she has held since February 2016. She was previously executive manager at the LEP and is responsible for the day-to-day operational management of the LEP. Before joining the LEP, she was executive assistant to the chief executive of Birmingham City Council and before that a cabinet support officer. She has a masters degree in history from the University of Edinburgh.
Tim Watts, Pertemps
Tim Watts, who is a Deputy Lieutenant of the West Midlands, joined the family business of Pertemps in 1970. He is lifetime president of the Pertemps group which is the UK's largest independently owned recruitment agency. He is known for his philanthropy and his charitable titles have included vice-president of the Spinal Injuries Association and lifetime president of the Birmingham and Black Country Community Foundation. He has honorary doctorates from Aston University and Birmingham City University. He was High Sheriff of the West Midlands in 2014/15 and in the same year named as one of the most influential leaders in the European staffing industry.