Harris takes the chair at Chamber
One of the region’s most prominent figures in professional services, Kevin Harris, has taken over as Chair of the East Midland Chamber.
Harris, managing partner of the Leicester office at audit, tax and advisory firm RSM UK, took over as chair from Ian Morgan OBE on Wednesday (1 February).
He was previously Chairman of the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership for four years and is a past President of the Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire Chamber of Commerce.
Harris said: “Without a doubt this will be one of the most challenging years for business in the East Midlands. Many would be forgiven for being battle-weary as the cost of living crisis and the impact of the pandemic and war in Ukraine are leaving deep scars on the ability of local businesses to survive and thrive.
“But I have a great deal of optimism in our business world. Despite the difficulties, they show their courage and resilience in the face of adversity and continue to do what they do best, which is conducting business in local, national and international markets.
“However, they cannot do this in isolation, which is why taking over the Chamber presidency in 2023 is a privilege with meaning.
“Our region’s businesses need an environment in which they can thrive, invest in skills and capital, and increase productivity.
“They are an essential part of UK GDP and important for creating jobs and wealth. The local upgrading and decentralization agenda must remain high on the UK agenda and my role will be to advocate for this and many other issues that our local businesses need to thrive.”
Morgan, who is also chairman of Derbyshire County Cricket Club and vice-chairman of transport company Wellglade Group, is stepping down after four years in office.
He was awarded an OBE for services to the bus industry and business in the East Midlands in 2015 and is the High Sheriff of Derbyshire in nomination for 2024/25.
He said: “It has been a great honor and privilege to chair the East Midlands Chamber for the past four years. It is the leading business representation organization with over 4,000 members and around 12,000 companies affiliated with it in one way or another.
“Successful leadership, advice and support to the business community through Brexit, Covid-19 and the aftermath of both is the hallmark of the Chamber’s work and I am proud to have played my part.