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Gillian Hall, senior partner of Watson Burton LLP law firm, has been appointed to the board of the North East Local Enterprise Partnership as one of nine business leaders who sit alongside representatives from local government, universities and colleges.

Gillian Hall was the first female senior partner of a full service law firm in the north of England when she took up her role in 2010. Watson Burton has offices in Newcastle, Leeds and London.

Paul Woolston, chair of the North East LEP, said:
“We’re delighted to welcome Gillian to the board. She is a well known and respected figure in the region’s business community. We had a strong response to the recruitment campaign for a board member, with highly qualified businesspeople from around the region applying to fill the vacant post, making it a difficult task to choose from a talented field.

“Gillian’s legal and commercial expertise and the depth of her experience with businesses and organisations inside and outside the region are valuable assets, and complement the strengths offered by other board members.”

Gillian Hall said:
“As someone who has spent most of her life in the North East, I’m delighted to have been appointed to the LEP board. I look forward to being an active board member, helping to bring about the North East LEP aims of creating more and better jobs across its area, and advising on the creation of new opportunities for investment, exports and innovation.

“I’ve worked with many private and public sector organisations across the region during my career, and look forward to being directly involved in LEP decisions which will help the North East’s economy and productivity grow.”

The board includes business leaders Jeremy Middleton of Middleton Enterprises; Dr Arnab Basu of Kromek; Michael Bellamy of PII; Andrew Hodgson of SMD; David Land of Gestamp Tallent; Gill Southern MBE of Wessington Cryogenics and Paul Varley of Newcastle Falcons.

They work alongside the leaders and elected mayor of the seven local authorities involved, Cllr Mick Henry of Gateshead, who is also vice-chair of the LEP and chair of the North East Leadership Board, Cllr Simon Henig of Durham, Cllr Nick Forbes of Newcastle, Mayor Norma Redfearn of North Tyneside, Cllr Grant Davey of Northumberland, Cllr Iain Malcolm of South Tyneside and Cllr Paul Watson of Sunderland, as well as representatives from the area’s universities and further education sector Professor Chris Brink, vice-chancellor of Newcastle University and Anne Isherwood, principal of Sunderland College.

Gillian Hall, who has a first-class degree from Cambridge, has been a corporate partner with Watson Burton since 1988. She is a highly accomplished practitioner who has been praised in national legal directories as the ‘complete professional’ and ‘someone you always want to have on your team’. A farmer’s daughter, Gillian was born and brought up in North Tyneside.

Further information from Christine Holland, Holland PR & Marketing Ltd. Tel 01670 790246 or 07711 698246.

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