Meet the team

The Chamber team is professional, friendly and helpful. We know, because our members told us!

You can contact us through the generic team address, or individually through our details below. The Chamber board and its policy council are elected by the wider Chamber membership at the annual AGM.

All members of the Chamber board are also members of the Chamber policy council. The council works with the Chamber team to develop Chamber policy and opinion on issues important to the business community.

Staff

Staff

Chief Executive

    • Russell Borthwick
    • Chief Executive
    • russell.borthwick@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 911
    • Read bio

      Russell Borthwick Chief Executive

      Russell joined the Chamber in February 2016.

      He was previously managing partner of a global marketing agency network based in Newcastle, regional managing director for Trinity Mirror North East and also founded his own marketing & communications consultancy Press Ahead, which he ran for nearly a decade.  

      A self-described “Aberdeen boy” and a dedicated/long-suffering (delete as applicable) fan of the Dons, Russell returned to the city after an absence of more than 20 years, having started his career with Aberdeen Journals.

      During his time in the "other" North East, he was involved with many initiatives and campaigns around the themes of inward investment, economic development, place marketing, major event bids and the skills agenda.

      As part of his role, he represents the Chamber and its stakeholders on various boards and committees as well as ongoing engagement with the British and Scottish Chambers of Commerce.

      He is passionate about the success of the area and sees AGCC as having a key role to play in helping to position our city and shire as even better places to live, work, study, invest and do business.

    • Julie Holland
    • PA to Chief Executive
    • julie.holland@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 911
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      Julie Holland PA to Chief Executive

      Julie joined the Chamber in September 2015 after working at Asset Development and Improvement Limited where she provided human resources support. Prior to this she has held several personal/executive assistant roles at director level, predominantly in the oil and gas industry.

      Julie’s main role at the Chamber is to provide a full range of PA support to the CEO and to assist the Finance and Administration Director regarding company-secretary duties and HR administration. She also provides support to the Chamber’s President.

Membership membership@agcc.co.uk

    • Liam Smyth
    • Membership Director
    • liam.smyth@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 920
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      Liam Smyth Membership Director

      As Membership Director, Liam brings extensive operational, marketing and commercial experience to the team. He is well networked across the north-east of Scotland and further afield through the International Chamber Network.

      As well as growing membership through active engagement, he is responsible for the commercial success of our training, events, communications and International trade teams. He is a member of the board.

      As part of his role he represents Chamber members on a range of public and private sector bodies. He is an experienced chair, presenter and panellist at business and broadcast events, and has extensive experience in media and communications.

    • Teresa Bremner
    • Membership Network Manager
    • teresa.bremner@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 963
    • Read bio

      Teresa Bremner Membership Network Manager

      Teresa started her career in 1985 with Clydesdale Bank and enjoyed 28 years service within the bank.

      She qualified to be a member of the Chartered Institute of Bankers in Scotland and was Cemap accredited, with roles as private relationship manager and regional deposit partner pulling on Teresa's strong business development and customer relationship skills.

      She also held a management role with Regus, business services and serviced office providers, before joining the Chamber in September 2014.

      As membership network manager, Teresa is the lead contact for the business services, property and finance members. Her focus is on new acquisition and retention through the continual improvement of services provided to all members.

    • Fiona Fernie
    • Membership Network Manager
    • fiona.fernie@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 937
    • Read bio

      Fiona Fernie Membership Network Manager

      Originally from Inverness, Fiona came to Aberdeen in 2001 to study at the University of Aberdeen. After graduating with an MA(Hons) Management Studies in 2005, she began her career working for local business activitymix. In 2007, she accepted a post at the Chamber of Commerce, working in a business development role initially before taking management responsibility of the commercial training function. In October 2012, Fiona took on the role of membership network manager.

      Fiona shares a strong professional network in a variety of industries and a real passion to help businesses grow and develop. She focuses on membership acquisition and retention across the region with a current remit for all third sector and culture and creative members. Fiona also leads the implementation of the Chamber’s new CRM system which allows stronger and more effective engagement with all members.

    • Mary Holland
    • Membership Network Manager
    • mary.holland@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 903
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      Mary Holland Membership Network Manager

      Mary joined the Chamber in January 2013 as a membership network manager.

      She started her career as a graduate recruit with BP in Aberdeen in 1987. Since then, she has worked in a wide range of management, service provision and project roles across private, public and third sector organisation in the North-east of Scotland. These have included BP, Amerada Hess, Common Purpose, Grampian Police, Capita Health Solutions and the Wood Family Trust.


      Mary is the Membership Network Manager responsible for the food & drink, tourism, skills, and retail sector members and also for the overall management of our highly-rated training teams.


      An experienced professional with a strong customer focus and value driven ethos, Mary is delighted to be part of the team at AGCC working to improve the services provided to members.

    • Seona Shand
    • Membership Network Manager
    • seona.shand@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 929
    • Read bio

      Seona Shand Membership Network Manager

      Seona worked in office support before event management, working with some of the world’s best known speakers then on to the voluntary sector engaging corporate partners and managing some of the most admired charitable events. 

      She brings a wealth of experience with a strong customer focus and acts as a primary interface focussing on the energy, finance and transport sectors. 

      Seona is responsible for the overall management of a first-class events portfolio and supporting the research & policy team providing first class market intelligence, research services and policy consultations impact. 

      Seona manages the relationships with Premier Partners, sponsors and ambassadors and oversees the prestigious Northern Star Business Awards.

    • Roulè Wood
    • Membership Network Manager
    • roule.wood@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 931
    • Read bio

      Roulè Wood Membership Network Manager

      Roulè joined the Chamber in August 2013 as Membership Network Manager. After graduating in 2001 with a degree in Marketing and Business Management she left her native South Africa for London to pursue a career in fashion retail, where she worked for some of the top fashion retailers in the world, before getting married and being whisked up North by an Aberdonian in 2008.

      Roulè then took on the role of Business Development Manager at luxury hotel chain Malmaison where she was responsible for supporting the general manager with day to day commercial decisions and promoting the hotel through strategic sales and marketing activities. 

      Roule is the Membership Network Manager responsible for property and transport sector members and also for the overall management of a first-class events portfolio.

      Out of hours, Roulè serves on the committee of the North Scotland chapter for the national networking group, Women in Property. 

      At home she enjoys cooking traditional South African food and spending time with their two girls exploring the beautiful Shire. 

    • Lee-Ann Stewart
    • Membership Network Assistant
    • lee-ann.stewart@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 915
    • Read bio

      Lee-Ann Stewart Membership Network Assistant

      Lee-Ann completed a HNC in Administration and Information Technology at Aberdeen College in 2011. 

      After a short spell of temporary work as an administrator, Lee-Ann joined the EIC where she stayed for three years as events & communications co-ordinator. In this role Lee-Ann assisted in the planning and facilitating of several events including a number of business presentations as well as corporate entertainment. Lee-Ann joined the Chamber in September 2014 as membership network assistant where she provides support to the membership network managers, membership director and acts as the conduit between members and the Chamber.

Events events@agcc.co.uk

    • Kim Stephen
    • Events Team Leader
    • kim.stephen@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 922
    • Read bio

      Kim Stephen Events Team Leader

      Kim graduated with a MA (hons) in Finance from the University of Aberdeen in 2009. 

      After working with a local law firm to arrange their 125 years in business celebrations, Kim realised her interest in the events industry. After graduating and following a short spell temping, Kim joined the EIC as events and communications co-ordinator. Kim joined the Chamber in October 2011 and is now the events team leader, responsible for providing a comprehensive calendar of events from Business Breakfasts to Lunch n Learns.

    • Claire Gordon
    • Events Executive
    • claire.gordon@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 912
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      Claire Gordon Events Executive

      Claire graduated with a BA (hons) in Management with Marketing at Robert Gordon University in 2013 then went onto work as a marketing assistant for an HR company based in Aberdeen. 

      She then joined the Chamber of Commerce in October 2014 as events executive where she currently helps to organise a varied calendar of events, in particular managing the planning of the Chamber Lunch ‘n’ Learns, Women Mean Business series, Speed Networking, City and Shire Connections

    • Colin Fraser
    • Events Assistant
    • colin.fraser@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343901
    • Read bio

      Colin Fraser Events Assistant

      Colin graduated with a BA (hons) in Events Management at Robert Gordon University in 2014 then went onto work as a conference co-ordinator at an Aberdeen venue.

      He joined the Chamber of Commerce in September 2015 and currently helps to organise a varied calendar of events, in particular managing the planning of the Chamber Lunch ‘n’ Learns, Women Mean Business series, Speed Networking, City and Shire Connections.

    • Lucie Buresova
    • Events Assistant
    • lucie.buresova@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 927
    • Read bio

      Lucie Buresova Events Assistant

      Lucie joined the Chamber team in November 2014. She graduated with Bachelor’s degree in Tourism Management in 2010 in the Czech Republic. After moving to Scotland, she worked in retail and hospitality.

      After spending almost two years with the training team, she joined the Events team.

      Lucie helps to organise a varied calendar of events, in particular managing the planning of the Chamber Lunch ‘n’ Learns, Women Mean Business series, Speed Networking, City and Shire Connections.”

       

Training training@agcc.co.uk

    • Susan Staniforth
    • Training Team Leader
    • susan.staniforth@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 917
    • Read bio

      Susan Staniforth Training Team Leader

      Susan joined in January 2012, having previously account managed a large geographical territory and responsible for over £1million of IT training revenue. 

      With a strong background in sales and customer service, there is a wealth of experience to draw on while enjoying the unique experience of working with the teams at Aberdeen & Grampian Chamber of Commerce.

      One of the most gratifying aspects of the role is the positive comments given via our delegate evaluations and the repeat bookings on courses.

    • Valerie Tosh
    • Training Executive
    • valerie.tosh@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 902
    • Read bio

      Valerie Tosh Training Executive

      Valerie joined the Chamber as training co-ordinator working within the business services and training team. In her role she is responsible for all administration for the training, VQ and business mentoring teams. 

      Valerie has previously worked in various administration roles throughout her career and hopes to gain a broader knowledge within the business services industry.

Vocational Qualifications vqs@agcc.co.uk

    • George Brand
    • Vocational Qualifications Team Leader
    • george.brand@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 914
    • Read bio

      George Brand Vocational Qualifications Team Leader

      George joined the Chamber in 1989 and now manages their Vocational Training Team of assessors and internal verifiers. He has extensive occupational experience and qualification in delivery, assessment, internal and external verification of a range of N/SVQs offered by the Chamber, and adopts a practitioner approach, by assisting senior managers and directors towards the achievement of higher qualifications in Management and Learning & Development.

      George’s present responsibilities include building on the existing client network, also liaison with business focus groups and funding authorities. 

    • Ann Foster
    • Vocational Qualifications Lead Assessor
    • ann.foster@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 933
    • Read bio

      Ann Foster Vocational Qualifications Lead Assessor

      Ann’s remit is to assist in the planning, delivery and expansion of the Vocational Qualification programmes provided by the Chamber.

      She brings a broad range of occupational experience in service provision, management and business development within private, public and third sector organisations in the UK and overseas.

Communications info@agcc.co.uk

    • Joanna Fraser
    • Communications Team Leader
    • joanna.fraser@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 926
    • Read bio

      Joanna Fraser Communications Team Leader

      Joanna Fraser worked in journalism for many years, at the Press and Journal and more recently at the BBC. Returning to Aberdeen in 2010, she held a variety of positions in the oil and gas sector before joining the Chamber in May 2013.

      She leads the communications team, with responsibility for the Business Bulletin, website, enews as well as the Chamber’s presence on social media. She maintains the Chamber’s strong reputation in the media and oversees the organisation’s marketing and branding.

    • Keiran Smart
    • Communications Executive
    • keiran.smart@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 934
    • Read bio

      Keiran Smart Communications Executive

      Keiran graduated with a BDes (Hons) in Graphic Design from Gray’s School of Art in 2012. Prior to joining the Chamber, Keiran worked for a local design consultancy and PR company before joining the communications team at the Chamber in August 2014.

      His role is to design and produce the diverse range of visual communications of the Chamber which include the bulletin, flyers and infographics. Coming from a creative background, Keiran adds the flair to the visual communications.

    • Katy Rodger
    • Communications Assistant
    • katy.rodger@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 918
    • Read bio

      Katy Rodger Communications Assistant

      Katy is studying Management with Marketing at RGU and has joined the Chamber team for her third year placement.

      She takes on the role of communications assistant, which involves maintaining the Chamber website, assisting with the production of the monthly Business Bulletin, and keeping Chamber members informed of news and opportunities through our social media accounts and eNewsletters.

    • Jim Bruce
    • Media Sales Assistant
    • jim.bruce@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 905
    • Read bio

      Jim Bruce Media Sales Assistant

      Jim Bruce recently retired from Aberdeen Journals after 41 years of service. For the last 20 years he was national advertising sales manager of the group with a specific remit to grow national revenues with particular emphasis in London, handling all the top brand names.

      He now has taken up the media sales role at the Chamber and would be delighted to help and advise you on all the advertising opportunities available through our portfolio.

Research and Policy research@agcc.co.uk policy@agcc.co.uk

    • James Bream
    • Research and Policy Director
    • james.bream@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 904
    • Read bio

      James Bream Research and Policy Director

      James Bream joined the Chamber as research and policy director in January 2013, returning to his native North-east. He is accountable for leading all policy activities and leading the research unit to support the needs of members and the Chamber.

      James has a research background having worked for consultancy practices across the UK for 10 years with a focus on economic analysis. 

      During this time he managed high profile projects including economic impact research for sporting events such as UEFA Cup Finals and FINA world swimming championships. 

      Most recently, James worked for Business Stream as head of regulation and compliance, responsible for stakeholder management and supporting the efforts to create a competitive retail water market across the UK. 

      He is also now directing the Developing our Young Workforce Group for the North-east on behalf of an independent board.

    • Emma Smalley
    • Research Team Leader
    • emma.smalley@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 913
    • Read bio

      Emma Smalley Research Team Leader

      Emma graduated with a BSc in Sport and Social Science from Loughborough University in 2003. She then went on to complete a Masters in Sport Psychology graduating in 2004. 

      Since university, Emma has always had a passion for research and after a stint with the NHS and completing some voluntary work for Harrogate District Hospital she went to work for a research agency in Wetherby. She took the lead on some large research projects and her clients included Audi, Leeds City Council and Mars chocolates. In 2009, Emma moved to Aberdeen and worked within research roles for both Aberdeen and Robert Gordon Universities.

      Emma’s role at the Chamber is to co-ordinate and deliver sector-specific research.

    • Joanne Lumsden
    • Research Executive
    • joanne.lumsden@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 935
    • Read bio

      Joanne Lumsden Research Executive

      Joanne graduated from the University of Aberdeen in 2009 with a BSc (Hons) in Psychology. She then embarked on a PhD in Psychology in order to develop her research knowledge and experience further, with this being awarded in 2013.

      Upon completion of her studies, Joanne secured a lectureship in the School of Psychology at the University of Aberdeen. During her time there she remained an active researcher publishing articles in peer-reviewed journals while also teaching undergraduate courses and supervising student research projects.

      Her previous research experience has included numerous projects on social behaviour as well as evaluations of pedagogical approaches. She was also the Principal Investigator of a project funded by the British Academy which explored collaborative problem-solving.

      Joanne joined the Chamber as a research executive in November 2015 and looks forward to using her skills and knowledge to undertake a range of research projects.

    • Rachel Elliott
    • Policy Executive
    • rachel.elliott@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 925
    • Read bio

      Rachel Elliott Policy Executive

      Rachel joined the Chamber in October 2012 and leads the Chamber’s work to ensure member’s voices are heard by politicians, government ministers and civil servants. Her role includes policy development and consultations with Chamber members and lobbying of local councillors, MSPs, MPs and MEPs.

      Rachel previously worked for a North-east MSP, supporting local campaigns, policy research and media relations. She has a first class honours degree in Publishing with Journalism.

    • Kirsten Irvine
    • Research Assistant
    • kirsten.irvine@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 930
    • Read bio

      Kirsten Irvine Research Assistant

      Kirsten graduated with a BA (Hons) in Marketing and Psychology from Stirling University in 2012. 

      During her time at university, she developed her research and analysis skills through a variety of projects and dissertations, and also completed a research assistant placement at the University. She then completed a Masters in Consumer Psychology with Business at Bangor University in 2013.

      Kirsten joined the Chamber in June 2014 and supports the Chamber’s research unit, contributing to the execution of customer research, staff engagement and sector-specific research.

    • Irina Bonavino
    • Research and Policy Assistant
    • irina.bonavino@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 936
    • Read bio

      Irina Bonavino Research and Policy Assistant

      Irina graduated with a Masters in Corporate Communications and Public Affairs from Robert Gordon University in 2014.

      After graduating with a Bachelors in International Relations, she worked for a professional services firm and delivered communications solutions to clients in the financial industry. She also developed analytical skills by doing research for a security risk consultancy and a foreign affairs thinktank.

      Irina joined the Chamber in April 2015 and supports the Chamber’s research and policy teams, preparing responses to policy and consultations and lobbying on behalf of members.

Export Documentation documentation@agcc.co.uk

    • Lorraine Neish
    • Export Documentation Team Leader
    • lorraine.neish@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 908
    • Read bio

      Lorraine Neish Export Documentation Team Leader

      Lorraine previously worked in the Finance sector covering various roles over a 20 year period.

      Lorraine joined the Chamber in 2007 and is now the Export Documentation Team Leader. Her role in the chamber is to make the export documentation process as straightforward as possible for exporters.

    • Graeme Reid
    • Export Documentation Executive
    • graeme.reid@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 919
    • Read bio

      Graeme Reid Export Documentation Executive

      Graeme Reid is Certification Officer with responsibility for certifying various documents for the International Business Department. Graeme  gained over 20 years Shipping Office experience whilst employed with P&O Ferries.

    • Alexander Sim
    • Export Documentation Assistant
    • alexander.sim@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 921
    • Read bio

      Alexander Sim Export Documentation Assistant

      Alexander Sim is a Certification Documentation Assistant with responsibility for certifying various documents for the International Business Department. 

      He previously worked for Clydesdale Bank plc for over 34 years, the last 20 years working in their business banking section dealing with a wide cross section of business types and sizes.

    • Norma Davidson
    • Export Documentation Assistant
    • norma.davidson@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 960
    • Read bio

      Norma Davidson Export Documentation Assistant

      Norma joined the Chamber in 2011 after working in Customer Service with BT over 20 years. Norma’s role in the Documentation team is to certify various documents for International trade.

International trade internationaltrade@agcc.co.uk

    • Joan Young
    • International Trade Executive
    • joan.young@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 962
    • Read bio

      Joan Young International Trade Executive

      Prior to joining the Chamber Joan ran her own business, worked in a building society, administered editorial offices for ecological, psychological and neuropsychological peer-reviewed academic journals published by British and international publishers and had several administration roles with Aberdeenshire Council. At the Chamber she has responsibility for certifying various documents, providing advice and guidance to both AGCC and Africa Business Centre (ABC) members, assisting in the planning and organisation of outward trade missions to emerging and developed overseas markets alongside welcoming inward delegations.

Finance

    • Brenda Hay
    • Finance & Administration Team Leader
    • brenda.hay@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 906
    • Read bio

      Brenda Hay Finance & Administration Team Leader

      Brenda joined the Chamber in 1994 after working as a BT Operator and BT accounts and then as a cashier at the Nationwide Building Society.

      In her role as Finance Team Leader she oversees all invoicing, credit control and bank reconciliation and also assists the Finance and Administration Director with month end management accounts.

    • Isabel Grant
    • Finance & Administration Assistant
    • isabel.grant@agcc.co.uk
    • 01224 343 907
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      Isabel Grant Finance & Administration Assistant

      Isabel is the Chamber's longest serving member of staff, having joined the Chamber in 1966 from Aberdeen College. She works within the Chamber's finance team, with particular responsibility for processing all supplier invoices and payroll.

Board

Board

    • Edel Harris
    • President
    • info@agcc.co.uk
    • Read bio

      Edel Harris President

      Edel Harris joined Cornerstone as chief executive in May 2008 having previously been deputy chief executive of Aberdeen Foyer.  

      Her background is in health promotion, holding a first class honours degree in health and social care, she worked for NHS Grampian for many years.  Edel has significant experience in leading a commercial social enterprise and in developing new social care services. 

      Edel is a former chairman and now vice chair of the Life Changes Trust, a former director of The Fragile X Society and a director of Aberdeen FC Community Trust. She is also a former chair of the Scottish Government’s Scottish Investment Fund.

    • John Brebner
    • Vice President
    • Read bio

      John Brebner Vice President

      City Director - Aberdeen, Clydesdale Bank

      John has worked for Clydesdale Bank for 28 years. In 2007 he was appointed Managing Partner of the Banks Financial Solution Centre (FSC) in Aberdeen. In 2010 he took up the role of Area Director North of Scotland responsible for the Banks 5 FSC's in the North as well as heading the Corporate Banking Team based in Aberdeen.

    • Alec Carstairs
    • Immediate past president
    • Carol Benzie
    • Managing director, Aberdeen International Airport Ltd
    • Read bio

      Carol Benzie Managing director, Aberdeen International Airport Ltd

      Carol is a qualified accountant heading up the operational functions at the airport, having formerly managed the financial and commercial teams. Prior to joining the airport, she worked for 6 years with local charity, Inspire. Carol also spent 10 years in the oil and gas industry, working with Schlumberger Oilphase, BP and Talisman via their Accenture contract.

    • Stephen Nicol
    • Chief financial officer ,Wood Group PSN
    • Read bio

      Stephen Nicol Chief financial officer ,Wood Group PSN

      Stephen relishes the opportunity to shape the strategic direction of the Chamber, and to share ideas, debate issues and take action to enable success for local businesses. He believes that being on the board will broaden his perspectives as he takes up his post as chief financial officer at Wood Group PSN.

    • Judith Thorpe
    • Co-owner and director, Thorpe Molloy Recruitment Limited
    • Read bio

      Judith Thorpe Co-owner and director, Thorpe Molloy Recruitment Limited

      Judith has worked in Aberdeen for 20 years, 17 as founding director of professional services company and member of the Chamber. Working with the full spectrum of organisations within Grampian, she is looking forward to using her network for the benefit of Chamber members.

    • Jill Webster
    • Rubberatkins Limited
    • Read bio

      Jill Webster Rubberatkins Limited

      Jill has over 35 years’ experience as a director of SMEs as well as experience as provost of Aberdeenshire Council with its half a billion pound budget. She believes that her many connections through her public and corporate activities will be an enormous asset to the Chamber board,

    • Jennifer Young
    • Chairman and partner, Ledingham Chalmers LLP
    • Read bio

      Jennifer Young Chairman and partner, Ledingham Chalmers LLP

      Jennifer believes that business in this area needs to be energetic and positive about meeting the challenges that we all face, whether economic, geographic, market-led or political. She sees the Chamber as continuing to play an integral role in achieving that

    • Chris Bain
    • External Relations Director - Aberdeen Harbour Board
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      Chris Bain External Relations Director - Aberdeen Harbour Board

      Educated at Stirling University, Chris followed an early career in helicopter and marine logistics, including roles with BIH and CHC Helicopters, and with Asco, subsequently moving into the role of Senior Logistics Manager within the oil & gas and construction sectors, including roles with Petrofac, Dubai Petroleum & Ras Al Khaimah Petroleum. Located primarily in the UK, Chris also spent five years of her career in the Middle East.

      Prior to joining Aberdeen Harbour, Chris headed up Project Services for Petrofac on the Laggan Tormore Project, based in the north of Shetland.

      Chris joined Aberdeen Harbour Executive in April 2013 as External Relations Manager and is an Executive Member of the Board.

    • Robert Garnish
    • Head of Branch - John Lewis plc
    • Read bio

      Robert Garnish Head of Branch - John Lewis plc

      After graduating from the University of St Andrews in 2000, Robert joined the John Lewis Partnership as a graduate trainee and has spent his 16 years  fulfilling a variety of store and head office-based roles across the UK, including in Aberdeen (twice!), Norwich, Manchester, Southampton and York.
      Robert has previously served on the Chamber policy council and is now looking forward to working across sectors throughout the region to support seizing the opportunities which exist for the city and shire to deliver the future to which it rightly aspires. 

    • John Gregor
    • Executive Director - ANM Group Ltd
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      John Gregor Executive Director - ANM Group Ltd

      John brings over three decades’ experience in livestock and food sectors to the Board.

      As executive director of ANM Group, chairman of Taste of Grampian, and a former director of Quality Meat Scotland, John is passionate about ensuring the agricultural sector’s sustainability, and represents group members’ and customers’ interests at political and stakeholder level.

    • Pádraig McCloskey
    • External Relations Advisor - Shell UK Limited
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      Pádraig McCloskey External Relations Advisor - Shell UK Limited

      After graduating from Imperial College in 2002, Pádraig joined Shell, initially working on the Pernis Refinery in the Netherlands in a technical role. After three years in Holland Pádraig made a significant career move into communications when he moved back to Ireland for the first of two spells working on the Corrib Gas Project. Pádraig has subsequently worked in the US and Canada before moving to Aberdeen in 2012.  

      Pádraig believes the North-east has great potential and is excited by the opportunity to support the Chambers vision for the region.

Council

Council

Policy Council

    • Simpson Buglass
    • Director, Head of Office, Savills
    • Read bio

      Simpson Buglass Director, Head of Office, Savills

      Simpson is a Director and Head of the Aberdeen Office at Savills. As well as his role on the Council, he is Honorary Consul for the Republic of Estonia and a member of the RICS Dispute Resolution Panel.

    • Alex Drummond
    • Senior Area Manager, Aberdeen & North Scotland Mid Markets, Bank of Scotland
    • Read bio

      Alex Drummond Senior Area Manager, Aberdeen & North Scotland Mid Markets, Bank of Scotland

      Alex is a key part of the Commercial Banking leadership team for the Mid Markets business of Bank of Scotland, servicing corporate clients with a turnover in excess of £25m across Aberdeen and North Scotland. Alex is also Director and Honorary President of Forfar Day Care Centre.

    • Carl Hodson
    • Commercial Director, AutoVerdi
    • Carolyn Maniukiewicz
    • Director, Ideas in Partnership Ltd
    • Read bio

      Carolyn Maniukiewicz Director, Ideas in Partnership Ltd

      Carolyn is the Director of  Ideas in Partnership,  which  she set up in  2002. The business is involved event management, project management, ideas generation, market research, marketing, business development and schools enterprise. Ideas in Partnership also runs the business mentoring programme for Aberdeen and Grampian and Perth Chambers, and owns Aberdeen Entrepreneurs.

    • Belinda Miller
    • Head of Economic Development, Aberdeenshire Council
    • Read bio

      Belinda Miller Head of Economic Development, Aberdeenshire Council

      Belinda Miller is the Head of Service for Economic Development at Aberdeenshire Council. She is responsible for delivering the conditions for economic growth in line with the Council's economic strategy.

      Prior to joining Aberdeenshire Council, Belinda was a Specialist Advisor for Renewable Energy with UK Trade and Investment, and Head of Economic and Environmental Sustainability for Aberdeen City Council. She has a background in energy, climate change and sustainable development. Belinda has also represented Scotland and the North East of Scotland on a range of national and international groups and events and has led a number oil and gas trade missions.

    • Alan Rowe
    • Food and Drink Industry Specialist, University of Aberdeen
    • Read bio

      Alan Rowe Food and Drink Industry Specialist, University of Aberdeen

      Alan Rowe trained as a chemist, working in research before focusing on technology transfer where he has worked for more than 25 years. He joined the Rowett Research Institute in 1999. Since the Rowett merged with the University of Aberdeen in 2008 he has been responsible for wider interactions with the food and drink sector, maintaining a strong interest in innovation and the role of research in economic growth. He was a founding Director of Scotland Food and Drink, chairs its Innovation Group and is a member of the Executive Management Group.

    • Tim Smith
    • Vice President Communications & External Affairs, BP Plc
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      Tim Smith Vice President Communications & External Affairs, BP Plc

      Tim graduated as a Geology and Mining Engineering and now has over 25 years oil and gas industry experience. In 2009, he was appointed Vice President Communications and External Affairs for BP's North Sea business across the UK and Norway.

    • Duncan Cameron
    • Group Performance Director, ARR Craib
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      Duncan Cameron Group Performance Director, ARR Craib

      Duncan is Group Performance Director at ARR Craib.  As part of the senior team he is responsible for identifying and delivering financial and people improvement throughout the business. Most of his 14 years’ experience in the transport sector was with Firstgroup plc where Duncan held the post of MD First Aberdeen between 2012 and 2014.

      Duncan was first elected to the policy council in 2012 and has been a Nestrans board member since 2014.

    • James Dunphy
    • Study Skills & Access Unit Coordinator - Robert Gordon University
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      James Dunphy Study Skills & Access Unit Coordinator - Robert Gordon University

      James Dunphy is responsible for widening participation, links with colleges and study support at Robert Gordon University (RGU). He is a member of the Scottish Funding Council’s Access and Inclusion Committee and has an interest in skills utilisation.

    • Stephen Hepburn
    • Head of Business & Private Banking Centre - Clydesdale Bank
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      Stephen Hepburn Head of Business & Private Banking Centre - Clydesdale Bank

      Stephen is a Chartered Banker and holds an MSc in Organisational Development from the University of Glasgow Business School. He is currently Chairman of the Aberdeen District Committee of the Chartered Banker Institute and has more than 25 years experience in banking.

      Over the last 15 years he has held senior leadership positions in retail, private and business banking with Clydesdale Bank across Scotland. He is currently Head of Clydesdale Bank’s Business & Private Banking Centre in Aberdeen where his team has responsibility for private banking clients and businesses with a turnover of up to £25m.

    • Fiona Mann
    • Director of Operations and Safety - Aberdeen Exhibition & Conference Centre
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      Fiona Mann Director of Operations and Safety - Aberdeen Exhibition & Conference Centre

      Fiona has 20 years’ experience in the Exhibition and Events industry, working for corporate clients in a commercial and competitive environment. She joined AECC in 2002 as Event Manager then in January 2012 was appointed to the AECC Board.

      Key Skills include being extremely organised, enthusiastic, flexible in approach, excellent at multi-tasking, great communicator and focused on delivery. She has client experience, and has engaged in budget control and public safety.

      Fiona has an IOSH Certificate in Managing Safely in Exhibition & Events Industry, and a NEBOSH Certificate in Occupational Health and Safety with Distinction.

    • John Michie
    • Partner, Charles Michie Chemists
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      John Michie Partner, Charles Michie Chemists

      John has been a Chamber Council member for over 20 years – He is a partner in the long established Charles Michie Retail Pharmacy Group, Chairman of :- IFB - Internet For Business ltd.; ACCA – Aberdeen City Centre Association ; BiD – Aberdeen's Business Improvement District and a Board member of ACSEF.

    • Derick Murray
    • Director, Nestrans
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      Derick Murray Director, Nestrans

      Derick Murray is the Director of Nestrans, with responsibility for the regional transport strategy for the North East of Scotland. An Aberdonian and graduate of Aberdeen University, Derick has 35 years’ experience in the transport field. 

      Employed in the Roads Department of Grampian Regional Council, Derick developed numerous road schemes across Aberdeen and was responsible for compiling Aberdeen City Council’s Capital Plan. Having developed the region's Modern Transport System with the first use of the Scottish Government’s transport appraisal guidance, which proved the case for the AWPR, Derick became the AWPR Managing Agent until the publication of Orders stage.

    • Philip Smith
    • Director – Motomo Limited
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      Philip Smith Director – Motomo Limited

      Philip has over 25 years of experience in the tourism and event sector working with organisations such as VisitBritain, British Waterways, VisitWales, Scottish Enterprise, Scottish Government, Heart of England Tourist Board and Sail Scotland.

       

    • Jennifer Stanning
    • External Affairs Manager - Oil & Gas UK
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      Jennifer Stanning External Affairs Manager - Oil & Gas UK

      Based in Oil & Gas UK’s Aberdeen office for four years, Jenny manages Oil & Gas UK’s stakeholder and political relationships across all parties and at all levels in Westminster, Holyrood and Europe and in local authorities across the UK. Jenny was previously Head of Press for the Scottish Liberal Democrats and is a member of the CIPR

    • Craig Stevenson
    • Centre Manager, Bon Accord & St Nicholas Shopping Centre
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      Craig Stevenson Centre Manager, Bon Accord & St Nicholas Shopping Centre

      Craig is Centre Manager for Bon Accord & St Nicholas Shopping Centre having had extensive retail experience as Store Manager of Bhs, House of Fraser and latterly Debenhams, where he won the Scottish Retail Award for Store Manager of the Year 2010.

    • George Thom
    • Partnership Development Manager - St James's Place Wealth Management
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      George Thom Partnership Development Manager - St James's Place Wealth Management

      George Thom is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Bankers in Scotland and has 34 years experience in the banking industry.  

    • Colette Backwell
    • Chief Executive - CLAN
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      Colette Backwell Chief Executive - CLAN

      Dr Colette Backwell took up her appointment as Chief Executive of CLAN Cancer Support in 2015. Colette’s previous roles include Director of the Scottish Food and Drink Federation and she has gained a wealth of experience in policy development, research, industry support and business management within the charitable, public and private sectors. In addition to being a member of the Scottish Committee and the North-east Scotland Committee of the Institute of Directors, Colette is also the current Chair of the Grampian Cancer Partnership Group and sits on the NHS Cancer Strategy Group.

    • Colin Campbell
    • Managing Director - Langstane Press
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      Colin Campbell Managing Director - Langstane Press

      Born in Aberdeen and educated at Aberdeen Grammar School, Colin followed his father into the family business Langstane Press and became Managing Director in 1987. A Past President of the Rotary Club of Aberdeen, a Past President of the Aberdeen Association of Royal Warrant Holders and a Liveryman of The Worshipful Company of Stationers and Newspaper Makers in London. He has just begun his second term as an Assessor with the Burgesses of Guild and is currently a Trustee with VSA.

    • Eileen McBay
    • Sales Manager, Eastern Airways
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      Eileen McBay Sales Manager, Eastern Airways

      Eileen, an Aberdonian educated at Albyn School Girls, has worked in the Oil & Gas industry and in the hospitality industry as a Sales Manager for Holiday Inn Bucksburn and local hotelier Stewart Spence.

      She then pursued a career in the Airline industry, working with Gill Airways before moving to North East England where she worked as Business Development/Account Manager for over 6 years with Air France and Air France KLM, before joining Eastern Airways in 2008.

      Eileen is a member of the Burgess of Guild and an Associate Member of Institute of Marketing.

    • Kevin McCormick
    • Director, ARCHIE Foundation
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      Kevin McCormick Director, ARCHIE Foundation

      Kevin is MD of The McCormick Consultancy (Aberdeen) Ltd, specialists in marketing and PR communications, a role which he fulfils on behalf of The ARCHIE Foundation.

      A Fellow of the IOD he is a trustee of ARCHIE and Grampian Transport Museum, and a member of the Board of Governors of Lathallan School.

      He chairs the Chamber’s Skills Network Group and sits on the Board of the ‘Invest in Young People’ initiative.

    • Tom Sanders
    • Audit Manager - EY
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      Tom Sanders Audit Manager - EY

      Tom is an experienced audit manager with EY Aberdeen. In addition to his role, he co-leads the Connecting Emerging Leaders (CEL) Programme, a development and networking group for future leaders. With this unique perspective, Tom will bring diversity to the policy council and will represent the views of the next generation. Tom is also passionate about promoting the region as a vibrant and dynamic area, and looks forward to getting more involved with his role on the Policy Council.

    • Jane Spiers
    • Chief Executive - Aberdeen Performing Arts
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      Jane Spiers Chief Executive - Aberdeen Performing Arts

      Jane is Chief Executive of Aberdeen Performing Arts, responsible for three of Aberdeen’s city centre venues, His Majesty’s Theatre; the Music Hall; and The Lemon Tree. 

      She is also leading the redevelopment of the Music Hall. 

      Prior to that, she was Chief Executive of Perth Concert Hall and Perth Theatre.

      She was project champion for the redevelopment of the Tolbooth, Stirling’s Centre for Music and the Arts.

      She is an experienced programmer, producer, festivals and events manager. She is currently on the board of Sound and the Beacon Arts Centre. 

    • Richard Sweetnam
    • Head of Economic Development - Aberdeen City Council
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      Richard Sweetnam Head of Economic Development - Aberdeen City Council

      Richard has more than 20 years of economic development experience having worked in a number of research and consultancy roles in the UK, Ireland and Brussels, before joining local government in 2009. 

      He joined Aberdeen City Council as Head of Economic Development in 2015 where his remit includes trade and inward investment, business support, employability, external funding and supporting the delivery of number of key infrastructure projects in the city. 

      He studied at Trinity College Dublin, University College Cork and the University of Texas and is a member of the Institution of Economic Development. 

    • Graeme Watt
    • Director, FG Burnett
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      Graeme Watt Director, FG Burnett

      Graeme is a Director of property consultant F G Burnett. Industrial property is his forte providing, as he does, consultancy advice on agency and rent review matters. As well as the RICS, Graeme is also a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.

    • Alex Yelland
    • Manager Policy, Government & Public Affairs - Chevron Upstream Europe
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      Alex Yelland Manager Policy, Government & Public Affairs - Chevron Upstream Europe

      Alex has more than 15 years' public affairs experience in the automotive and energy industries with assignments in the UK, US and Asia. In 2014, he was appointed Policy, Government and Public Affairs Manager for Chevron’s European upstream exploration and production interests, based in Aberdeen.

    • Neil Clapperton
    • Chief Executive - Grampian Housing Association
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      Neil Clapperton Chief Executive - Grampian Housing Association

      Neil Clapperton is the chief executive of Grampian Housing Association, a landlord with 3,500 properties, 110 staff and a turnover of £16m.  He has championed innovation in funding, digital technology, affordable housing’s role in sustaining the NE economy, its public services and enterprise. Neil has worked for charities, associations and local authorities, across many roles: regeneration, care, development, quality assurance, strategy and service management. He holds a degree in Construction Management and is a Corporate Member of the Chartered Institute of Housing.

    • Adrian Watson
    • Chief Executive, Aberdeen Inspired
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      Adrian Watson Chief Executive, Aberdeen Inspired

      Adrian spent 30 years in the police, the last seven as commander for Aberdeen City.

      He had a varied career in the service that included secondments both nationally and abroad. 

      Latterly, he was also the vice-chair of Community Planning Aberdeen.

      He holds an MBA from Aberdeen Business School, Robert Gordon University.

      In July 2016, Adrian was appointed CEO at Aberdeen Inspired.

Ex officio

    • Colin Taylor
    • Dean of Guild
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      Colin Taylor Dean of Guild

      Colin was elected Dean of Guild of the City of Aberdeen in 2014 and on 27th February 2015 the Lord Lyon King of Arms appointed him as Lord Dean of Guild of the City and Royal Burgh of Aberdeen.

      Born in Aberdeen, he enjoyed a forty-two years career in insurance broking before retiring in 2006.

      Colin is a Director and Deputy Chairman of Sport Aberdeen, has been President of Junior Chamber Aberdeen, Chairman of the Scottish Senate of Junior Chamber Scotland, President of The Insurance Institute of Aberdeen, Chairman of The Royal Northern and University Club, Director of Aberdeen Chamber of Commerce, Chairman of the Aberdeen & District Cerebral Palsy Association and President of The FRS Club.  He is a Senator of Junior Chamber International and in 2014 was presented with a Scottish Samurai Award.

    • Danielle Grieve
    • President - Junior Chamber International
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      Danielle Grieve President - Junior Chamber International

      Danielle is the 2016 President of JCI Aberdeen, an organisation which provides development opportunities that enable young people to create positive change in their local area and worldwide.

      Internationally, JCI have over 200,000 members in 100 countries and hold ‘General Consultative’ status with the United Nations. 

      In Aberdeen, their focus lies with creating personal and professional development opportunities through projects, training and networking. All members are between the ages of 18 and 40.

      Danielle works as a Project Manager for ActivityMix where she is focused on working with clients to take a strategic approach to employee engagement through activity and sport.  With her experience at ActivityMix she can bring insight into the diverse needs of employees across Aberdeen.