A former Group Vice President of BP plc and experienced non-executive director has been announced as the new Chairman of Locate in Kent, the county’s investment promotion agency.
David Fitzsimmons, from Tunbridge Wells, succeeds Warwick Morris who spent three years in the role.
Born in Bromley, David has held numerous non-executive director roles, largely with companies operating in the energy sector, including four years as CEO of Novera Energy, an AIM-listed UK renewables company. He is also a governor of the Skinners Kent Academy in Tunbridge Wells.
Speaking of the challenges ahead, David said: “A key one currently is the view people have of the throughway to the continent.
“To outsiders at the moment, what they are seeing are reports of Operation Stack and the issues Eurostar and Eurotunnel are having with migrants in Calais. The challenge is to get people to understand the benefits that we in the county know so well – the excellent and quick connections to the continent that benefit businesses based here.”
David added that he was keen to foster even closer links with the many other organisations that seek to promote Kent and Medway and its economy, such as the South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP).
“While I don’t have a huge commercial property background, I find the idea of being closely involved in the promotion of Kent as a great place to do business along with the county’s other development organisations an exciting one.”
Away from business David is a keen sailor and has taken part in three legs of the Clipper Round the World yacht race. He is married with two grown up children.
“We are very pleased to have someone with David’s considerable experience as a non-executive director heading up the board of Locate in Kent,” said Chief Executive Paul Wookey.
“His undoubted business acumen and leadership qualities will prove invaluable in helping drive Locate in Kent forward, and in promoting the county to business from home and overseas.
“Warwick Morris enjoyed a very successful three-year term as chairman and finding a worthy successor was always going to be quite a challenge. In David Fitzsimmons, I am sure we have found the right man.”