Our Board

Our Board

Our Board

The Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce board are voted for by its members in regular elections. They are experienced, knowledgable and leaders in their fields, providing the Chamber and its members with strategic and practical direction and advice.

Board members help make key decisions on Chamber strategy and each brings a certain specialism that provides expertise to the different functions of the Chamber.

Team

Richard Stevens

Chair

C/O Richard Stevens stuart.elford@devonchamber.co.uk

Richard Stevens was born in North Devon and is proud of being a West County boy, having lived and worked all over Devon and Cornwall; Richard is committed to ensuring that our cities, towns, rural and coastal areas receive the focus and investment they need to enable everyone who lives here to be successful and valued.  Richard Stevens career is in public transport, Richard was appointed as Managing Director of Plymouth Citybus in May 2012. With an annual turnover of more than 27 million pounds, Citybus serves over 17 million passengers a year and is the biggest public transport provider in Plymouth, employing 520 people and running a fleet of 185 buses. Richard has twenty years of senior management experience of working in the bus industry in the South West. Previously Richard served as an Operations & Commercial Director for Stagecoach South West and prior to that was Operations Director for First Devon and Cornwall; Richard has held many managerial roles, having begun his transport career in 1990 as a bus driver in Penzance.

Richard Stevens is the current chair of Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce; a role Richard is delighted and honoured to perform. Richard has embraced the role and enthusiastically committed his time and energy to, promote the Chamber. Richard is also the current joint chair of the Plymouth Area Business Council, chair of the Plymouth Growth Board. Richard sits on the Devonport Task Force, One Plymouth, the Mayflower 400 Leadership group and the Peninsular Rail Task Force. Richard is also a director of Destination Plymouth; the destination management company; he is committed to working with all strategic partners, to ensure that the voice of business in Plymouth, Devon, and the region is strong, unified and playing to its collective strengths.

Richard also works within the school environment as an Enterprise adviser and Governor. As a Heart of the South West LEP board member Richard Chairs the business leadership group, is deputy chair of the Strategic Investment Group and a voting member of the Local Transport Board, Richard energetically and passionately works in the interests of businesses across the whole of Devon. 

In his spare time if he has any; Richard enjoys Sailing. 

Pauline Hands

Pauline Hands

Director

phands@cityplym.ac.uk

Pauline is Executive of Commercial Operations at City College Plymouth, a large further and higher education provider of skills and training. Previously employed in the commercial arena across various sectors, Pauline has a clear understanding of the needs of and challenges of the business community. An advocate of skills to bring new talent into a company or the upskilling of existing staff, Pauline enjoys seeking opportunities that have impact, which was a contributory factor in becoming a Chamber Board Director (in addition to the Opportunities and Events/Marketing/Membership Chamber sub-committees) as well as joining the Plymouth Area Business Council board. When not working, and in recent years, running has become a passion (not just for fitness but for health and wellbeing), Pauline can be seen pounding the streets training for half marathons!

Crag Moore

Craig Moore

Director

craig.moore@wbd-uk.com

Craig is a solicitor with over 20 years’ experience in commercial property and finance. He is the Plymouth office head for Womble Bond Dickinson. His experience includes acting for a wide variety of businesses, public bodies, charities and education institutions and he is client partner for a number of businesses in our region and nationally.

Craig grew up in Plympton, and following time at University and Law College returned to the city as a trainee with Bond Pearce. Over the last 25 years he has developed an excellent network as well as experience which he believes can make a really positive difference to the Chamber and its members, as well as the wider region.

Plymouth and the wider region have great potential to grow and should be confidently seen on the worldstage. It is Craig’s enthusiasm and passion for the city and wider region, combined with his experience that made Craig want to become a director of the Chamber and help to drive it forward so that the city and wider region thrive.

As a business owner himself he has considerable experience of dealing with matters which businesses face whether around finance, HR, sales and marketing, legal, etc and Craig knows that training and support from professional memberships can make an enormous difference. Craig also believes that the more we collaborate, the more we understand what great businesses we have in the city and wider region, the more opportunities we identify, and can leverage that to produce growth.

Craig is currently one of the co-chairs of the Plymouth Area Business Council, an advisory board member for Mayflower 400, co-founder of the Plymouth Robotic Sailing Championships and has just joined the Plymouth Waterfront Partnership as a director. In addition he is a governor of Sherford School. Craig has an excellent track record of providing strategic leadership and driving growth, and believes that he can be an effective director with the Chamber helping to drive it forward and deliver successful growth for the city and wider region.

Tom Moore

Tom Moore

Director

Tom@acronyms.co.uk

Tom is the Business Development Director at Acronyms, an IT support company based at Plymouth Science Park. He joined Acronyms in 2014 and in the last seven years has helped build a Sales & Marketing department at the growing Plymouth business. With Tom’s contribution and journey to becoming company director, Acronyms has grown year on year, and celebrated continued growth in 2020 by opening an office in Bristol and acquiring Cornish IT firm IT-OK.

Acronyms has been an active members of Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce throughout the years and had great success as an organisation from this. Tom can provide first-hand experience in how to ensure you are making the most out of your membership. 

Away from the office, Tom has recently learned to scuba dive and enjoys spending weekends diving with his fiancée, Sarah.

JAMES SMITH

James Smith

Vice Chair

james@jamessmithgroup.com

James is an ex serviceman and an experienced change consultant currently employed as Supply Chain Manager at Babcock International. He has brought many brands to market including Primal Europe, Perry eHopper and others. 

He has extensive public speaking, marketing and networking skills; and also writes for Bikebiz magazine (an industry magazine).

James is a Director of the Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce and a regional Stakeholder at the Chartered Management Institute. In 2021, he won the Inspiration of the year at the EX Forces in Business Awards.

Paul Philpott

Paul Philpott

Vice Chair

paul@freshairstudios.com

Paul is Managing Director of Fresh Air Studios. A former presenter for Plymouth Sound Radio (many years ago), he turned his love of audio into creating one of the UK’s most respected independent production companies. The firm is proud to have a portfolio of national clients like Three, Royal Mail, two major universities and two of the top five banks. 

A driven, creative and passionate business owner, an avid supporter of all things SME and dedicated to delivering the absolute best level of customer service, innovation and support to clients and collaborators. 

Paul lives in Plymouth with Gary, his partner of 25+ years, and enjoys fitness (kickboxing in particular) wine and travel – with Budapest being a destination favourite. 

Chamber Board (12)

Jabo Butera

Director

jabo@dbi.org.uk

Jabo is the co-founder and Managing Director of Diversity Business Incubator (DBI), a Plymouth-based hub which helps to elevate business success in the minority communities and reduce the economic disparities within.

Jabo is an active member of the Black, Asian and Minority Ethnicities community (BAME) in the region and is passionate to see the members of these communities thriving economically.

James Greenacre

James Greenacre

Director

James.Greenacre@theatreroyal.com

As Director of External Affairs at Theatre Royal Plymouth, James’s current role is focussed on the external visibility of the organisation, encompassing Marketing & Communications, Front of House, Box Office and Insight & Revenue Management. Originally from Surrey, James has been an adopted Devonian for more than half of his life, spending the majority of his business career working at Plymouth Argyle, where he played a crucial role as Head of Commercial as the club returned to prominence as a model for financial sustainability with record-breaking revenues. James has a reputation in the region for forging effective relationships – both internally and externally – and delivering collaborative, eye-catching projects.

This is perhaps most evident through his work with Argyle Community Trust & Ginsters in the formation of Project 35 – a social action initiative aimed at reducing poverty in Plymouth.

James is passionate about the South West, and as a keen cyclist and sailor (and a dreadful golfer!) the region offers everything he could ask for whilst raising his young family – although there are days where he wishes the hills weren’t quite so punchy!

Emily

Emily Pearson

Director

epearson@southwestwater.co.uk

Emily holds the position of Apprenticeship Manager at Pennon Group, where her primary focus is leading their award-winning Apprenticeship programme and developing a future-proofed Work Experience programme.

With a passion and dedication to developing people, Emily is committed to providing individuals with invaluable opportunities to learn and grow. Her passion for this is rooted in her own journey, during which she received meaningful and well-timed support and opportunities that enabled her to build a successful career.

In addition to her role at Pennon Group, Emily also serves as a Director for the Devon & Plymouth Chamber. She approaches this role with enthusiasm, aiming to make a tangible difference in the network of businesses.

Emily actively contributes to the Chamber’s strategic goals and is dedicated to maximising the reach and impact of the Chamber’s support tools, ensuring that businesses in the region receive the assistance they need to thrive and succeed.

Chamber Board (2)

Tom Lavis

Director

tom.l@discoverycollege.org.uk

Tom has worked in the charitable sector for over 25 years, most recently as the CEO of YMCA Plymouth and Discovery College.

This has enabled him to establish great connections within the business community, serving as a member of the Plymouth Area Business Council and the Devon & Plymouth Chamber, of which he is a great supporter.

Chamber Board (7)

Ollie Jackman

Director

ollie@agile-comms.co.uk

Ollie has been involved in the local business community for over 10 years and has made a huge contribution to a number of Devon & Plymouth Chamber events in that time.

He is a driven and passionate professional who, together with his business partner James, has recently started Agile Comms – a fresh, modern communications technology company.

Steve

Steve Warren-Brown

Director

steve@ygslandscapes.co.uk

Steve from YGS Landscapes Ltd has lived in Plymouth all his life and is passionate about our wonderful city.

He’s been involved with the Devon & Plymouth Chamber for more than 20 years and is keen to continue to support our members as a director.

Tom Roberts

Tom Roberts

Director

thomas.roberts@bambooclothing.co.uk

Tom is the Financial Controller at BAM Bamboo Clothing. With over 15 years of financial experience, Tom’s focus has always been in the SME and charities sector where he has acquired strong skills in the areas of accounts and tax compliance. 

His personality enables him to quickly develop strong relationships with his clients on both an individual and professional basis – he prides himself on always being available as and when they need him.

Tom has spent the whole of his professional career in the South West and really has a passion for the area. Outside of work and despite his Welsh upbringing, Tom loves all things football and has recently begun training for some running challenges. 

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