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The D2N2 Board


To learn more about the D2N2 LEP policies on:

Paper copies of each individual board member's declarations of interests are available on request.

In line with Government Best Practice Guidance, D2N2 has also ensured that all of its Board Members and staff have signed a code of conduct, based on the Nolan Principles of Good Governance.

Dates of D2N2 Board Meetings (2019)

January 22

March 19

May 14





Learn more about any of the D2N2 Board Members below.

 Elizabeth Fagan

Declarations of Interest

Elizabeth Fagan - Chair

Elizabeth Fagan became Chair of the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership in July 2018.

Elizabeth is also Non-Executive Chair of Boots; and was previously Senior Vice President, Managing Director of Boots (from June 2016 to September 2018). In this latter role, she led all of the Boots businesses, both across the UK and the Republic of Ireland, with the support of Boots' senior leaders.

Elizabeth previously held the position of Senior Vice President, Managing Director, International Retail, Walgreens Boots Alliance from the company’s creation in December 2014 to June 2016. During the eight years prior to the merger with Walgreens, Elizabeth held a number of Marketing Director roles within Alliance Boots and its businesses. Elizabeth re-joined Boots UK in 2006 as Managing Director of Boots Opticians, having previously worked for Boots Group some 16 years before this appointment as Group Buyer. Elizabeth also worked for DSG International Plc for 10 years.

Elizabeth is President of the Incorporated Society of British Advertisers and is a member and past President of Women in Advertising and Communications Club. She became a Fellow of the Marketing Society in August 2013 and was also a member of the ASA Council for six years. In January 2018, Elizabeth was appointed to the Board of the Office for Students, and in June 2018 was appointed Non-Executive Director of Brambles Limited. Elizabeth also sits on the first UK industry-led Retail Sector Council, which launched in March 2018


Declarations of Interest

David Williams

Geldards LLP (Deputy Chair)

David is Chairman of Geldards LLP, a law firm with around 300 staff and offices in Derby, Nottingham, Cardiff and London. After originally qualifying as a lawyer David had careers also as a property developer and as General Manager of a major building society. After heading the property team at Geldards for many years, David has recently taken up responsibility for the private client team.

In addition to these roles, he is Chairman of East Midlands Business Limited and holds a number of trustee and non-executive positions. He is now Vice Chair of Governors at Derby College.


Declarations of Interest

Tony Ashton

High Peak Borough Council

Councillor Tony Ashton became (Conservative) Leader and Executive Chair of High Peak Borough Council in 2015. He also represents the borough’s Sett ward, as a Councillor.

In addition to his Council role he is a member of the following external bodies: The Derby & Derbyshire Strategic Leadership Forum, Derbyshire Partnership Forum, East Midlands Councils, the Local Government Association, New Mills and District Volunteer Centre and the Peak District Partnership.

Graham Cartledge - Chair of Handley House

Declarations of Interest

Graham Cartledge

CBE, Chairman of Handley House

Handley House is the parent company overseeing three leading international design teams; Benoy, Holmes Wood and Uncommon Land. Graham joined Benoy in 1974 and became its Chair in 1992.

Handley House has more than 500 people globally, working on diverse and complex projects to strengthen communities and deliver lasting economic value. A passionate supporter of British design and champion of international trade, Graham has worked with UK and international Prime Ministers, Cabinet Ministers and numerous dignitaries in furthering the work of British business overseas>

Graham maintains his global network via multiple roles including Honorary Member of The 48 Group Club, Vice-Chairman of the China-Britain Business Council, Board Advisor for the UK India Business Council and Board Member at Infrastructure Exports UK. In 2014/15 Graham held the position of High Sheriff of Nottinghamshire and is currently a Deputy Lieutenant for Nottinghamshire County Council.

In 2007, Graham and his family established The Domlal Foundation; a grant-making charitable trust which has supported tangible, lasting projects in building sustainability, community and education, from Nottinghamshire to India and Vietnam.



Declarations of Interest

Councillor Kay Cutts

Nottinghamshire County Council

Cllr Katherine Cutts MBE, universally known as Kay, is Leader of Nottinghamshire County Council having first been elected as a County Councillor in 1989, and as Leader of the Conservative Group in 2000.

Kay was born and brought up in Nottinghamshire, having lived in the County all her life. She has spent 45 years working for her local community, starting her political career as a Parish and District councillor before joining the County Council as the member for Radcliffe on Trent. In 2013, she was awarded an MBE for services to local government.

Cllr Cutts has been a Governor at Radcliffe-on-Trent Junior School for over 28 years, and has remained an active supporter of her local parish councils and volunteer groups. Since her group regained control of the County Council in May 2017, she has made it her priority to empower local communities and ensure that they get the best value from their authorities. She will use her time as Leader of the Council to support new enterprise across Nottinghamshire, ensuring good quality jobs and a more secure future for young people in the County.

Outside of County Hall, Kay has interests: gardening, horse racing, history, and architecture.


 Peter Gadsby

Declarations of Interest

Peter Gadsby

Group Ark Capital

Peter is one of the region's best known and most successful business leaders, and brings with him a wealth of experience and expertise; particularly in the areas of property development, regeneration, construction and business finance.

During the past 20 years Peter has built up substantial businesses, the forerunner being Birch PLC with a £100m turnover. Latterly under the Ark Capital banner, he has grown a business portfolio incorporating some of the most successful companies in the region including Radleigh Group, Miller Birch and Cedar House Investments.

Recently Peter established a £10m venture capital fund backing businesses in the food, IT, telecoms and technology sectors. Job creation has always been at the forefront of Peter's drive to develop the area. On Pride Park he has delivered 300,000 sq.ft. of mixed use development leading to the creation of 700 jobs. In November 2012 he completed the 105,000 sq.ft. Trinity House office development, for E.On UK, safeguarding 1,000 jobs and providing a tremendous economic boost for Nottingham.

In 2009, his achievements were recognised by the University of Derby with the award of an Honorary Doctorate of Business Administration.


Declarations of Interest

Paul J Harris

Rolls-Royce plc

In Paul’s 29 year career with Rolls-Royce he has undertaken a wide range of project, commercial, strategy and technical roles; but all with the underlying theme of innovation and growth in high integrity, high value-added industries. In his current role, Paul engages with governments around the world to find the optimum location for new investments and manages a large portfolio of existing incentive contracts globally.

Paul represents Rolls-Royce on the Aerospace Growth Partnership Board, is a member of the Midlands Engine Senior Leadership Group, an elected CBI Regional Councillor and a Director of Metlase Ltd.

Jane Howson June 2017

Declarations of Interest

Jane Howson

Autism East Midlands

Jane has worked across the public and third sectors for over 25 years, has a masters degree from York University and four sons, including a 23 year old with autism. Jane took up her post as Chief Executive with Autism East Midlands (formerly Norsaca) in September 2013. Since then the organisation has been undergoing a period of significant change aimed at improving financial viability and quality of services-in addition to the name change.

Jane is a Trustee and Chair of the Autism Alliance UK. This is a national alliance of charities providing services for people with autism. The Alliance aims to improve both choice and quality of the support and services available. The Alliance works with government agencies and other bodies of influence, to ensure that Autistic people have an effective voice. As part of this work Jane co-chairs the Cross Sector Partnership with Mark Lever, Chief Executive of the National Autistic Society. Jane has sat on the Autism Programme Board, the Royal College of GPs advisory panel on autism, the Hidden Impairments National Group and the Transforming Care National Provider Forum.

Jane’s previous roles include managing investigations at the Office of the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman and leading a General Medicine Department in a District General Hospital. Immediately prior to joining Autism East Midlands Jane was Business Development Director at Linkage Community Trust.

 Cllr Barry Lewis

Declarations of Interest

Councillor Barry Lewis

Derbyshire County Council

Councillor Barry Lewis became the Leader of Derbyshire County Council in May 2017, having served on the county council since 2009.

In addition to his leadership responsibilities, Barry is the county council’s Cabinet Member for Strategic Leadership, Culture and Tourism.

Holding a Masters in Archaeology and Heritage Management following his BA (Hons) degree in Environment and Archaeology, Barry had a near 20 year-long career in archaeology and heritage management, including delivering a successful programme for the University of Nottingham in Malaysia.

He also wrote a book on the deep history and archaeology of hunting in Britain from the Ice Age to the present, as well as a number of magazine and journal articles. He maintains an interest in the built heritage of the Midlands region and is a life member of the Derbyshire Historic Buildings Trust.

Barry is a local businessman as a Director of Amber Valley Wines, a Derbyshire vineyard, and the owner of Derwent Mills Cottages, a small but busy holiday letting business.

He is also the part-time Chief Executive of the United Kingdom Vineyards Association, a high-profile national body dedicated to the growing and production of wines.

 KathMitchell-4856-0070-2 - portrait smiling

Declarations of Interest

Professor Kathryn Mitchell

The University of Derby

Professor Kathryn Mitchell joined the University of Derby as Vice-Chancellor in September 2015. The University has 34,000 students in the UK and worldwide, operating sites in Derby, Buxton, and Chesterfield. It was awarded Gold in the government’s Teaching Excellence Framework. Prior to joining Derby, Kathryn has spent much of her career in the Higher Education sector.

Kathryn was a Wellcome Fellow at the Institute of Psychiatry in London and has worked at the University of Chicago, The Rockefeller Institute, New York and the Friedrich Meischer Institute, Basel with research interests in behavioural health sciences.

Emma Rigler 

Declarations of Interest

Emma Rigler

Logistics and Manufacturing Excellence Leader, Laing O’Rourke

Emma’s expertise is in helping businesses improve how they work, particularly around seeking growth by maximising supply chain partnerships.

She works for Laing O'Rourke, supporting its drive towards leading innovation and excellence in the construction industry. Much of that ambition is realised through the company’s Explore Industrial Park (EIP) in Steetley, Nottinghamshire; Europe’s most automated concrete products facility and employer of 400 people.

Emma’s past experience includes promoting ‘business transformation’ in the manufacturing and financial services sectors. Previous employers include multi-national insurance company The RSA group, where she was Operational Excellence Manager and Business Transformation Programme Manager

Viv Rusell

Declarations of Interest

Viv Russell

Group Managing Director for the Longcliffe Group

Viv was appointed Group MD to the Matlock-based company in March 2018. Longcliffe, established in 1927, employs over 170 people and is the UK’s leading independent supplier of pure limestone powder, granules and aggregates.

Viv’s previous experience includes working for Tarmac Cement and Lime business, based in Buxton, as its Lime & Powders Director and he was responsible for its £90million per annum turnover operations. He is Institute of Quarrying Deputy Vice-Chair, Chair of the Quarries National Joint Advisory Committee (QNJAC) and board member of the Eastwood-based Mineral Products Qualifications Council (MPQC). 


Declarations of Interest

Karen Smart

Managing Director of East Midlands Airport (EMA)

Karen was appointed EMA’s Managing Director in April 2018. As the region’s international gateway the Airport serves just under five million passengers a year; connecting them to over 80 destinations in Europe, and further afield to Florida and Cancun.

As the UK’s most important airport for dedicated cargo aircraft, it plays a nationally important role in the UK’s ability to trade globally. Prior to joining EMA Karen was Director of Landside Operations at London Stansted Airport, worked for service company Serco and was a Royal Air Force officer.


 Declarations of Interest

Dawn Ward CBE

CBE, Burton and South Derbyshire College

Dawn is Chief Executive and Principal of Burton and South Derbyshire College (BSDC). In 2017 she was awarded The Medal of Merit of the Royal House of Georgia to recognise her international work in the field of Further Education. Dawn holds many board level positions across a range of market-leading organisations associated with Further and Higher Education, has lead a range of regional/national groups related to the technical and vocational sector within the UK and has received numerous accolades for her leading contribution to skills.


 Declarations of Interest

Jayne Mayled

Managing Director of True Story

Jayne is the owner of retail and brand creative agency True Story; where her team of 90 help businesses and brands grow, through designing customer experiences and communication. Jayne spent her early career in marketing and PR in the premium beauty sector before joining Boots plc; where she worked across a wide range of roles and business areas before becoming Communications Director, leading all group internal and external communications. Jayne is also the founder of specialist hair care brand, White Hot, sold globally in stores and online.

 Cllr Martin Thacker - Leader of North-East Derbyshire District Council


Counsellor Martin Thacker

North East Derbyshire District Council

Counsellor Martin Thacker is the Leader of the North East Derbyshire District Council. He is the current portfolio holder for Overall Strategic Leadership, Overall Direct Focus and Vision, Corporate Strategy, Place Shaping, and Strategic Alliance. Counsellor Thacker was elected council leader in May 2019 as the Conservatives took overall control of the Council for the first time in its history, He is also the district counsellor for Brampton and Walton Ward, chairman of Holymoorside and Walton Parish Council and President of the North Derbyshire Conservatives.