Nice to meet you
Sue Bowden – CEO
Sue Bowden - CEO
Sue’s early working life was spent with Barclays Bank where she honed her financial skills but wanting to broaden her horizons, she went into the heady world of advertising.
Apart from five years as an expat in the Middle East, she spent over a decade in agencies around Manchester … from HQO, JWT, BCMB and finally McCanns … not quite Mad Men of Manhattan, but more Mad Men of Manchester ! She experienced working in both small and large agencies, and across a wide variety of clients as Account Manager – a role that requires a good grasp of project management and co-ordination, with a keen eye for detail and creative flair, as well as the flexible approach required for the marketing environment.
She left the advertising and marketing world supposedly for a more “live to work” lifestyle but got embroiled in the unique and intricate world of the Chamber of Commerce where she celebrated her 20th anniversary in 2017. All the time spent in the Chamber, and working across all aspects, has equipped her with the knowledge and skills to run the Chamber, and she was delighted to be appointed as Chief Executive in April 2017.
In her precious downtime Sue can happily spend hours in her garden, there’s always a project on the go. Being a bit of a foodie she’s always on the lookout for a new recipe to try, and of course with food goes the latest wine offering. And since losing her own “dog-daughter”, she is now Auntie Sue to friends’ dogs who stay for their holidays and keep her out and about on the dog walking trails.
Claire Dunlop – Business Development Manager
Claire Dunlop - Business Development Manager
Claire joined North Cheshire Chamber in November 2016 having previously worked in Medical Communications and Marketing within the Pharmaceutical industry.
She graduated from The University of Edinburgh in 2009 with BSc Honours Geography.
Claire’s role at the Chamber involves engaging with local businesses in the North Cheshire catchment area to inform them of the great benefits and services available through the Chamber. She works with the team to organise the Chamber’s networking events and manages our online digital marketing strategy.
In her spare time, Claire likes to test her culinary skills and can often be found sifting through recipe books when not running around or tidying up after her 3 year old son! She is a keen tennis player and enjoys swimming…followed by a glass of wine because she has ‘earned’ it!
So if you want to learn more about how the Chamber can support your business, get in touch with Claire.
Becky Thompson – Business Support and Administration
Claire Dunlop - Business Development Manager
Becky Thompson has worked at the Chamber as Business Support since 2016. Previously she has worked in hospitality and events, and has a BA (Hons) degree in Hospitality Management, which has stood her in good stead for her role in planning and coordinating the Chamber events. In addition to this, she is responsible for all aspects of membership, and the day to day running of the busy Chamber office. She is also fully trained and qualified in the certification of export documents. Becky loves the variety of her job, no two days are the same and can be completely unpredictable!
Outside of work most of her time is spent looking after her two energetic young boys, who certainly keep her busy. Becky lives locally in Macclesfield, and enjoys getting out into the local countryside with her family whenever possible at the weekends. She is also a keen runner, cyclist and gym member, which fortunately balances out her love for food and drink!
Currently, Chairman of the Chamber and the LEP Growth Strategy Group, and Vice Chairman of Cheshire Business Leaders.
Previously, held senior management positions in marketing and corporate planning roles with the Rank Organisation, British Leyland and Thorn EMI.
Moved to Cheshire as Marketing Director of Manchester Airport, later Vice President-Marketing of British Aerospace Commercial Aircraft. He and his wife established their own business travel management company in 1992. Now retired.
Graeme has worked in the pharmaceutical industry for 30 years, in site leadership, manufacturing and R&D across the UK and US.
He has brought forward over 20 cancer and antiviral drug development programs, many in alliance with other pharmaceutical companies. He is the co-creator and founder of the BioHUB, a highly successful bioscience incubator based in the UK.
As well as being on the Chamber Board, Graeme sits on Cheshire and Warrington LEP and Make it Macclesfield CIC Boards.
Graeme earned his Master’s Degree in Engineering from Sheffield University and his Masters in Pharmaceutical Science from UMIST (University of Manchester). In 2003, he was appointed a Fellow of the Institute of Mechanical Engineering.
He is a keen dinghy sailor and coach having had success at international and world championship level.
Graduated from Strathclyde University, Glasgow in 1980 with BSc and PhD degrees in Chemistry and subsequently conferred Chartered Chemist (CChem), Member (MRSC) and Fellow (FRSC) status by the Royal Society of Chemistry.
Between 1980 and 1998 Jack worked for Exxon Chemicals, Dow Chemical and Lubrizol Corporation in various technical, sales, marketing and business management roles. During his career Jack has been involved in various specialty chemical businesses serving many diverse markets in oil, automotive, construction, coatings and chemical industries.
In 1999 Jack established JD Horizons as a specialist technology and marketing channel for performance chemicals in oil industry markets. JD Horizons was acquired by Croda International on 1st August 2014.
Today, Jack continues to provide specialised consulting services to Croda and other corporate clients for performance chemicals and flow assurance technologies in the worldwide oil and gas industry as JD Vistas Limited.
Jack was elected to the Chamber Board in 2007. In this position Jack’s special interests relate to the role and services provided by the Chamber to the regional SME sector.
Mark has been a member of the Chamber Board since December 2012. As a day job he is a consultant solicitor with Thorneycroft Solicitors in Macclesfield where he heads up their Employment Law team. Mark has specialised in the employment law field for over 30 years and during this time he has advised and supported many local businesses.
Melissa, a new addition to the board in late 2017, is also a director of Harts Chartered Accountants.
She works with a diverse range of clients, supporting local businesses, start-ups through to large international corporations.
Melissa is passionate about maintaining the friendly supportive core values of Harts, whilst offering the scalability and specialist expertise of a large city centre firm.
Phil has been using his financial experience and entrepreneurial flair to help SMEs in North Cheshire for over 30 years. In 2005 he played an integral role in the sale of HFS Group to Capital One which was renowned at the time as one of the largest acquisitions in the financial sector within the region.
Since then Phil has acted as a financial consultant for a variety of businesses.
For the past four years he has been Operations Director of Macclesfield-based digital and engagement agency Big Brand Ideas Limited. His role there is to analyse all business activity, measure key management information and enable the company to reinvest in its infrastructure and expansion plans.
In addition to his work, Phil has a passion for writing and had his first of several children’s books published back in 2015. Another passion of his is sailing, of which, he was lucky enough to sail across the Atlantic back in 2010.
Phil joined the Chamber Board in September 2017.
Rachel Kay is the Principal and Chief Executive of Macclesfield College – an award-winning, general FE institution situated in the heart of East Cheshire – one of the UK’s most dynamic and buoyant business regions.
An extremely driven individual with a passion for excellence in education, training and the workplace, Manchester-born Rachel’s career began in luxury hotel management, before progressing into the world of further and higher education, first as the Head of Business Training at Trafford College, before moving on to the role of Director and Assistant Principal at Salford City College and Managing Director and Deputy Principal at Tresham College in Corby, Northamptonshire.
Since being appointed at Macclesfield in August 2015, Rachel has been instrumental in transforming Macclesfield College into a state-of-the-art Grade 2 College that is officially rated as “Good” by Ofsted, and on the path towards becoming “Outstanding”.
Rachel joined the Chamber Board in 2017.
Roger’s family company, SISIS Equipment, joined Macclesfield Chamber of Commerce in 1967.
At the time Roger was technical assistant to the Managing Director having been a pump sales engineer at Mather and Platt, Manchester. He became Joint Managing Director in 1986 and retired from that post in April 2008.
Roger has been on the Chamber Board since the 1980s.