New Trustees Joining January 2022

New Blood for the New Year as three new Trustees join the Board

The Chamberlain Highbury Trust, recently awarded £368,000 by the National Lottery Heritage Fund to develop Chamberlain’s home called ‘Highbury’, has recruited three new Trustees following the planned retirement of three of the founding Trustees.

Les Sparks former Chair, Alison Millward former Vice-Chair and Jo Smith former Company Secretary have all completed 6 years in their roles on the Trust Board and are stepping down.

The Trust carried out an extensive recruitment round in the second half of 2021, which has led to the appointment of three new Trustees: Michael Butler, Sammy Li and Louise Portelly who are all appointed for 3-year terms.

Michael Butler is a Professor of Change Management at Aston Business School and is the incoming chair of Birmingham Civic Society. He has an interest in making a success of the Trust’s plan to set up an Enterprise Hub for local entrepreneurs.

Sammy Li has broad international experience in heritage attraction development and destination marketing. As an adviser for the University of Birmingham on equality, diversity, and inclusion, he brings to the Trust a unique combination of expertise from his academic and professional work in the visitor economy with insights into navigating the interpretation of legacy.is responsible for equality, diversity and inclusion and learner support at the University of Birmingham and has extensive qualifications and experience in Tourism.

Louise Portelly is an Environment and Town Planning Manager at HS2 Ltd and manager of HS2’s £45M Community and Business Funds. She has an interest in fundraising and environmental developments.

Chair of the Trustees, David Kidney, who led the recruitment process, says:

“I am pleased that we have succeeded in recruiting three new Trustees who, between them, have a range of skills and experiences that we need for the next phase in our Trust’s development, We planned this recruitment round very carefully because we knew we were losing very knowledgeable and talented Trustees due to their planned retirements. The recent award to us of the £368,000 grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund means that these new Trustees’ varied skill sets will now be put to good use as we develop our project over the next 18 months in readiness for our major restoration of Highbury.”

Michael Butler says:

“I am delighted to be one of the new Trustees for The Chamberlain Highbury Trust Board. This is a very exciting time to join the Board, as the Trust utilises its new grant income to achieve its inclusive and community-focused vision. I look forward to contributing to all the innovations taking place, especially the setting up of an Enterprise Hub for local entrepreneurs.”

Sammy Li says:

“I have been appointed as a Trustee to help the Chamberlain Highbury Trust to navigate the narrative of Joseph Chamberlain’s legacy and his role in colonialism. I look forward to overseeing the restoration and transformation of Highbury, Chamberlain’s family home in Birmingham.”

Louise Portelly says:

“At HS2 Ltd, my focus is on the Community, Health and Equality Impact Assessments for Britain’s new high speed railway. I also manage the £40M Community and Business Funds grant programme set up for communities disrupted by the construction of Phase One of HS2. I am passionate about championing equality in society, environmental protection and supporting local community organisations. I look forward to working with fellow Trustees to realise the key aims and ambitions of the Chamberlain Highbury Trust.”

The Chamberlain Highbury Trust’s vision presents a whole range of opportunities to deliver environmentally sustainable heritage. Its Youth Board has a strong interest in the environment and by enabling leadership on these issues the Trustees and young leaders will jointly develop a long-term strategy. For the mansion restoration, the focus will be on building sustainably and energy innovation. In the grounds the aim is to increase biodiversity and deliver a second phase of capital works including pond restoration, wetlands protection and further access improvements.

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