LEP Board welcomes new business leaders

Two new board members have joined the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership to support its work driving growth for the region.

Two new board members have joined the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership to support its work driving growth for the region.

The new Board members bring significant experience and expertise in the business sector to support the existing strengths of the Board. Joining the board are Kate Hainsworth, Chief Executive Officer of Leeds Community Foundation and Mandy Ridyard, Financial Director of Produmax.

Kate Hainsworth brings a wealth of experience in business, strategy and community development to the LEP Board. In 2018, she was appointed CEO of Leeds Community Foundation and Give Bradford and has guided the Foundation toward its vision of addressing inequalities and creating opportunities for those in need. She has been instrumental in raising the profile of the Foundation which has distributed over £42 million in grants to support charities and voluntary groups across Leeds and Bradford since inception. Kate’s expertise will be invaluable to the LEP Board and its vision of transforming the Leeds City Region through inclusive growth.                                       

Mandy Ridyard brings extensive experience in finance, manufacturing and productivity improvement to the LEP Board. She has led Produmax as Financial Director since 1999. Produmax is an award-winning global aerospace company that has seen significant growth over the last five years and exports 70% of its turnover worldwide.  Mandy is passionate about employee engagement and received a Top 100 in Manufacturing award for culture change. She drives an apprenticeship programme at Produmax that has seen the average age of the company drop to 35 and the headcount double. Mandy’s impressive experience will be vital to the Board’s goal to help with skills development and create thousands of new jobs and apprenticeships across the Leeds City Region.

The LEP board brings together business and council leaders to oversee and make strategic decisions related to its Strategic Economic Plan. This approach to partnership working provides the best of both worlds: private sector expertise on what businesses need to grow, and democratic accountability for public sector investment. These partnerships are vital to realising the best economic outcomes for the City Region.

The LEP Board is currently looking for businesspeople who share a passion for the future of the region’s economy and want to share their skills and experience to make a real and positive difference to the region’s prosperity. Being a member of the LEP Board is a rewarding way of giving back to the community and provides opportunities for further personal and professional development.

It is important that the board reflects the vast diversity of the City Region so the LEP Board welcomes applications from everyone, regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, faith or disability. The LEP Board is particularly keen to hear from women and black and minority ethnic (BAME) individuals, as well as from entrepreneurs and people working in fast-growing sectors such as digital, creative and health.

Individuals interested in joining the LEP Board should visit https://board.the-lep.com/ 

Roger Marsh OBE DL, Chair of the LEP Board said: “I am delighted to welcome Kate Hainsworth and Mandy Ridyard to the LEP Board. They both bring a breadth of experience and expertise from the private sector that will be invaluable to driving our region forward and realising our ambition for the Leeds City Region to be a globally recognized economy with high levels of prosperity, jobs and quality of life for everyone. 

“Effective public-private partnership working has been fundamental to our success as a City Region. I am looking forward to working with these two impressive business leaders and further building on the LEP’s achievements of growth and investment in our region. There is no doubt that our new board members will contribute significantly to achieving our priorities of growing business, boosting productivity and increasing innovation.”

Kate Hainsworth, LEP Board Member said: “I am really looking forward to being a part of the LEP Board, and exploring ways to value and enhance the vital contribution communities make to our future economy and growth.”

Mandy Ridyard, LEP Board Member said: “As a new board member I am thrilled to be able contribute to the strategy that helps unlock the vast economic potential of the Leeds City Region, the largest regional economy outside of London.”