Comings and goings at WeAreWaterloo BID

Comings and goings at WeAreWaterloo BID

19/07/2023

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Announcements / Community

Recent weeks have seen the announcement of a number of changes to the WeAreWaterloo leadership team.

At the June board meeting the Chair of the WeAreWaterloo Board, Michael Johnson, announced his intention to stand down from his position. Michael has spent six fantastic years as our Board Chair, through our 2021 re-ballot, the COVID pandemic and well into a post-pandemic economic recovery. As both a local resident and business owner, Michael has a unique understanding of the challenges facing these Waterloo communities. He has regularly used his architectural and urban planning expertise to contribute to WeAreWaterloo’s work and was instrumental in helping develop the Waterloo Placemaking Strategy.

We are excited to announce that Dr. Charles Graham, Senior Professor in Marketing at London South Bank University, will take over from Michael as Board Chair of WeAreWaterloo. As a researcher, Charles specialises in place branding, tourism, high street viability and data-based marketing science, all of which are hugely relevant to the work of WeAreWaterloo. Prior to his work in academia, he held senior roles at a number of consumer goods and franchise hospitality companies, providing him with a deep understanding of the challenges that face both retail and hospitality business owners.

During his first year on WeAreWaterloo’s Board, Charles was instrumental in various local BID projects. From being a core member of our Placemaking Steering Group to spearheading WeAreWaterloo’s engagement with young people by partnering with us on a new practical marketing module, he has already played an influential role in shaping the BID’s strategic direction. In his new role as Board Chair, Charles will continue to help the BID forge mutually beneficial connections with local educational institutions whilst also advancing the organisation’s utilisation of data to help shape its decision-making.

To hear more from Charles, listen out for the latest episode of View from the ‘Loo where he is interviewed by his former LSBU student and new WeAreWaterloo recruit, Hannah Saroli.

It should be noted that Michael will remain on as Vice Chair of the BID and you’re still likely to see him and his noble hound Luca strolling the mean streets of Waterloo, especially on sunny afternoons. We are extremely grateful for his warm and dedicated leadership which has no doubt set a fine example for Charles to follow.

In addition to comings and goings at a board level, we’ll also be sending our CEO Natalie off on maternity leave at the end of August. Natalie is expecting her second girl in early September and we are happy that she’ll be welcoming another Waterloo evangelist into the world. While Natalie is away, Head of Marketing and Strategy, Harrie Notton, and Head of Public Realm, Alex Butt, will be stepping into Natalie’s role as co-interim CEOs together where they will be overseeing day-to-day executive management of the BID. 

These exciting changes are guaranteed to continue to keep things interesting in the world of Waterloo.

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