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Business & Economy

IoD appoints university lecturers as branch chairs

The Institute of Directors (IoD) has recognised the wealth of talent within the North East’s higher education profession by appointed two university lecturers as vice-chairs.

Teesside University Business School’s principal lecturer for enterprise and business engagement, Suzanne Withrington, joins Karl Pemberton in the IoD’s North East (South) branch.

Meanwhile Natalia Blagburn, senior lecturer at Northumbria University’s business school, joins Ammar Mirza at the North East (North) branch.

Suzanne has a wealth of experience engaging with public, private and third sector organisations to develop their knowledge, skills and competencies.

She now helps to equip students to become the directors of the future.

Natalia is an experienced venture capital invest manager now researching start-up boards and working closely with student entrepreneurs.

Both will bring an educational perspective to the IoD with a strong emphasis on bridging the skills gap and creating more opportunities for young people.

Suzanne said: “I’m absolutely delighted to undertake this important role within the IoD and I’m keen to promote the excellent benefits of membership across the region.

“The IoD’s connectivity provides the opportunity for businesses to collaborate, exchange ideas, extend their relationships and, most importantly, be part of a first-class network of industry leaders.”

The appointments follow the merger of the IoD’s Yorkshire and North East divisions to create a more powerful lobbying group for the whole of the North.

Natalia added: “I’ve been a member of the IoD since 2012, and, in the North East, great work is already being done by the IoD’s regional Women on Boards group.

“I am looking forward to working with the newly established IoD committee, especially as there is an opportunity to foster greater board diversity, grow the region’s pool of NEDs and provide pathways for young people to join boards.”