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Meet The Team

The Chamber team are on hand to help members grow their network, knowledge, influence and reach. As part of an extensive network, if we don’t know the answer, we probably know someone who does.

Get in touch. We would love to help.


About James
James has been Chief Executive of the Chamber since 2006. Prior to this he was Vice Chairman of the Esh Group. He has 14 years of experience in corporate banking and strategic marketing in Barclays Bank. After leaving school he spent 12 years as a soldier in the Royal Green Jackets (now The Rifles) all around the world. In this role, he is responsible for promoting and championing the North East business community locally, nationally and internationally. He relishes the opportunities to meet so many passionate business people around the region operating such successful world class businesses.

James Ramsbotham CBE


About David
David is a qualified chartered accountant with a wide variety of experience across a broad range of businesses. As the Chamber’s Chief Operating Officer he is responsible for the people who help keep the Chamber running behind the scenes including our Finance, HR, Marketing & PR and IT teams. He keeps a careful eye on our money on behalf of the members, and is a member of the Chamber Board and Council.

David Langley

Chief Operating Officer
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About Julie
Julie has been involved in international trade at the Chamber for almost 10 years and prior to that has worked within manufacturing businesses in the North East, leading on business development and developing sales overseas. As International Trade Director, Julie overseas the international services at the Chamber, plus the delivery of the Department  for International Trade contract. Julie works with Chamber members to identify areas where we can further support exporters in the regions and develop the services we offer.

Julie Underwood

International Trade Director


Jennifer Rycroft

Larger Business Relationships and Partnerships Manager

Michelle Ord

Senior Relationship Manager – Presidents Club

About Tom
Tom was born and raised in Teesside and has worked in the area since leaving University in 2007. He has worked for global brands such as Santander to local organisations like ARC Stockton Arts Centre. Tom joined the Chamber in 2013, as Relationship Manager for the Teesside area. In 2017 he was asked to cover the role of Partnerships Manager before taking the permanent role of Senior Relationship Manager for President’s Club. Increasing the headcount in this department will allow further development and more focussed support of the large and corporate members right across the region.

Tom Warnock

Senior Relationship Manager - Presidents Club

About Arlen
Arlen joined the Chamber in 2016 after spending ten years as a policy and communications consultant. As Knowledge Development Manager he is responsible for helping members access the information and insight they need to make their businesses a success through our skills, knowledge and information events and the Chamber Knowledge Hub.

Arlen Pettitt

Knowledge Development Manager

About Julie
Julie previously spent 20 years working in a large plc helping SMEs grow their businesses through lead generation and marketing. Giving support to businesses, and seeing the results of that support, has always been a passion of hers, so when the opportunity arose to join the Chamber team she saw it as the perfect move. Julie has a regional responsibility for our medium members, which are those with 50 to 250 employees, and is keen to meet with anyone who has seen their business grow to this size, yet currently isn’t connected with the Chamber.

Julie Digman

Relationship Manager - Medium Business

About Michael
Michael has worked in and around the North East after completing his University Studies. He has previously worked for Sunderland Football Club, Hays Recruitment and his family business Dickinson Media. Michael used to be a Chamber member in his previous job and has now joined the team to help support medium sized businesses in the North East.

Michael Dickinson

Relationship Manager - Medium Business

About Lynsey
Lynsey has worked for the Chamber since leaving school in 1996. She started as an apprentice and has developed a vast amount of knowledge and experience through working within different areas of the business. As Senior Relationship Manager she looks after small businesses up to 50 employees located in the Newcastle and Gateshead area. She strives to understand the needs of her clients to provide meaningful business solutions that will assist in growing their network, knowledge, influence and reach within the North East.

Lynsey Fairless

Senior Relationship Manager - Newcastle and Gateshead

About Clare
Clare has worked for the chamber for over 20 years and has a broad range of experience in chamber activities. In her new role as relationship manager for Northumberland, North Tyneside and Dewentside she is pleased to be of assistance to local businesses with up to 50 employees.  Making connections and encouraging members to work together.  Clare hosts a range of local events and is happy to make introductions for members where ever possible.

Clare McCabe

Relationship Manager - Northumberland

About Susan
Susan has worked face to face with North East Businesses for over 30 years offering support that enables businesses to grow and develop.   As relationship manager at the Chamber she looks after businesses with up to 50 employees, South of Durham to Barnard Castle, Richmond, Newton Aycliffe, Darlington Northallerton and Thirsk. Susan works with businesses to offer help and support to ensure they get the very best from their Chamber membership package. She hosts regular networking events and facilitates introductions to other businesses, assisting them to gain new contacts and win new business.

Susan Anderson

Relationship Manager - Darlington and West Durham

About Julie
Julie has worked in senior management/client facing roles for over 25 years, playing a major part in companies’ growth and development. Her clients have included all size business ventures from small to major blue-chip organisations and both private and public sectors. As a Chamber Relationship Manager Julie looks after members in South Tyneside, Sunderland and Durham actively encouraging members to work together whilst growing the membership in those areas.

Julie Charlton

Relationship Manager - Sunderland and Durham

Rachel Thompson

Relationship Manager - Tees Valley

Abigail Turner

Relationship Manager - Gateshead and Durham

Erin Knight

Membership Executive

Amber Burney

Membership Executive

About Sarah
Sarah is a recent Business Management Graduate from Northumbria University, who joined the Chamber in June 2019 as a Membership Executive. Her role involves supporting the Relationship Managers and their members from all over South Durham, Teesside, Darlington and the Yorkshire borders.

Sarah Gillis

Membership Executive


About Jonathan
Jonathan has been with the Chamber since 2009 following a spell in the recruitment industry. He leads the Chamber’s Policy and Campaigns team. This team works to represent our members’ views on issues such as transport, education and international trade. Campaigning for a better business environment in the North East, he manages our relationships with MPs and other political decision makers in the north of the region, develops the Chamber’s annual Manifesto and is a regular media spokesperson on the issues that matter to our members.

Jonathan Walker

Assistant Director - Policy

Rachel Anderson

Assistant Director - Policy (Tees Valley and Energy)

About Paul
Before joining the Chamber, Paul worked for a Member of Parliament. Since joining the Chamber as Policy Adviser Paul’s role involves representing Chamber members on policy issues relating to education, skills, and training. This includes apprenticeships, skills shortages, recruiting and retaining graduates, visas and immigration policy, labour market statistics, improving careers advice, retraining and lifelong learning, and forging links between businesses and schools, colleges and universities.

Paul Carbert

Policy Adviser
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About Jack
After graduating with a Masters in International Studies, Jack joined the Chamber in 2017 as Policy Adviser for International Trade and Brexit. To create a Stronger Global North East, his role includes representing members global issues, helping members gain increased export support, and working to get the best deal for the North East during Brexit negotiations.

Jack Simpson

Policy Adviser

Marianne O'Sullivan

Policy Adviser
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About Linda
Linda worked for 15 years in the North West, at the Open University and in local government before returning to the North East. Bringing her experience from the Greater Manchester Probation Committee and Tynedale council to her work as committee administrator at the Chamber. In her role with the Chamber Linda services 4 local area meetings and 3 sub-regional area committees including AGM’s in the North of the region. In addition to this Linda also provides meeting support to Chamber council as well as administrative support to Head of President’s Club.

Linda Ord

Committee Clerk
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About Daniel
Dan has worked in events for over ten years, starting at Sunderland City Council, before moving to London for six years where he worked at the Royal College of Anaesthetists and the Royal Society of Medicine. In 2014 he returned to the region to work for the Chamber. As Chamber Events Manager, Dan is responsible for over 100 events delivered by the Chamber each year. Managing the variety of event formats, the Chamber deliver throughout the year with one primary aim, to engage and connect businesses of all sizes and sectors in North East England.

Daniel Marsden-Knight

Events Programme & Development Manager
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Ashley Carney

Events Executive
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Tracey Worrall

Events Co-ordinator
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About Jacqui
Jacqui has worked for the Chamber for 11 years previously working for Lloyds Banking Group in international trade finance for 20 years. In her role at the Chamber Jacqui provides advice and assistance on the operational issues businesses face in international trade such as export documentation and customs compliance. She also delivers formal training in export and import procedures, customs compliance and letters of credit/methods of payment and manages a full letter of credit service.

Jacqui Tulip

International Trade Facilitation Manager
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Debra Blair

Export Services Team Leader
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Jessica Brown

International Trade Consultant
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Rebecca Wilkinson

International Trade Co-ordinator
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Ashleigh Scott-Askins

International Trade Assistant
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