Leader Views - Dr Diane Savory OBE

Dr Diane Savory is Chair of GFirst LEP. After joining Cult Clothing, the predecessor of SuperGroup Plc, she rapidly progressed through the organisation to become its Chief Operating Officer, transforming the company from a small, local enterprise to the now-distinctive global fashion retailer that is Superdry. Here, Diane encourages more women from all business sectors to consider getting involved and contributing to their LEP.

There is no greater time for women to engage with Local Enterprise Partnerships across the country. As the Chair of Gloucestershire’s Local Enterprise Partnership, GFirst LEP for the last 8 years, I have seen first-hand the power in being brave, bold and aspirational both as a woman in business and Chair of an LEP. I encourage women from all business sectors to consider getting involved and contributing, there are many ways to help and support your LEP, drive positive change and grow your local economy.

The government has recommended that LEP Boards achieve equal representation of males/females on their boards by 2023, so perhaps consider becoming a board member for your Local Enterprise Partnership. Being on an LEP Board has given me great satisfaction in knowing that the Board and I have achieved game changing funding for projects in our LEP area, which are now coming to fruition. One thing an LEP is NOT is a talking shop, it gets things done.

Why not join one of our sector specific business groups that help to shape the future of that sector in the county – from Banking & Finance to the Visitor Economy & Tourism, Construction & Infrastructure to Retail & the High Street.

In Gloucestershire, home to GCHQ and with plans for a new Cyber Business Park, we are anticipating a growing cyber community with new and emerging careers in digi-tech industries, now that is exciting. GFirst LEP are actively promoting the empowerment of young women within these industries to continue to drive economic growth for the county through our Educationand Skills Team. We have initiatives designed to inspire and engage young women in these new career industries.

Contributing to the needs of your local economy is a huge opportunity for both personal and professional development, allow yourself the opportunity to listen and to be heard and influence.

If you’d like to help us in strengthening the economy of Gloucestershire, please get in touch, we’d love to hear from you.

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