Leeds Chamber of Commerce elects Shulmans partner as new president

Shulmans partner and head of planning Amanda Beresford has been elected as the new president of Leeds Chamber of Commerce.

Beresford succeeds Womble Bond Dickinson partner Paula Dillon, who has held the post for the past two years.

She was elected at the annual meeting of the chamber’s leadership group on 12 July.

Mike Briffett of Turner & Townsend has taken up Beresford’s vacated vice president role.

Beresford said of her election: “I’m very honoured to take on the role as president of Leeds Chamber of Commerce. Paula has done a fantastic job over the last two years and I look forward to pushing ahead with our efforts while also introducing some of my own plans and ideas.”

The new Leeds Chamber of Commerce president identified several issues that will require attention during her term, including rail transport in the North, plans for housing and employment going into implementation, and the climate change emergency.

Beresford continued: “Leeds has seen record levels of investment lately but there are ongoing challenges for business, such as the skills gap and funding. I have been involved with Leeds Chamber of Commerce for many years and, as president, I look forward to being a strong voice and representative of our members during the next couple of years, working with partners and other stakeholders in relation to all of these matters and more.”

The chamber will reveal more details of Beresford’s plans for the next two years in the weeks and months to come.

The chief executive of West & North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, Sandy Needham, added: “We’re grateful to Paula for her efforts over the last two years, and looking forward to working closely with Amanda and Mike during this next period.”

“It’s a great time to be running a business in West & North Yorkshire and we have some wonderful ambassadors and campaigners within our family, not least of which are in Leeds.”

Leeds and Yorkshire lawyers are increasingly taking on significant roles at local and regional chambers of commerce.

Rollits partner Andrew Digwood was recently elected as the new president of York & North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce.

Digwood, a partner in the dispute resolution team at Rollits, succeeded Bridget Meynell from commercial radio station Minster FM, who held the post for the past two years.