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Vote for your Staffordshire Ambassador of the Year

This year we are once again delighted to be partnering with Staffordshire Chambers of Commerce for their 2024 Business Awards as we host our own category: ‘Staffordshire Ambassador of the Year’, with the winner to be chosen by you, our businesses and supporters!

Five passionate Staffordshire Ambassadors have been shortlisted from the 270+ strong Ambassador Network in recognition of their ongoing passion, commitment and dedication to promoting Staffordshire both inside the county and beyond our borders – helping We Are Staffordshire to raise the profile of the county and put us on the map!

Meet our fabulous shortlisted Ambassadors:

Karen Jennings – Lichfield Cathedral

Karen is the Event & Operations Manager at Lichfield Cathedral with responsibility for overseeing the management of the exciting and creative programme of events, art installations and exhibitions that attract visitors to the Cathedral from across the region, UK and overseas.

Karen has supported We Are Staffordshire in the delivery of a number of successful events and campaigns during the past few years, including the organisation of A Place to Prosper Ambassador Event, displaying artwork produced by Staffordshire schools and most recently, working closely with the team to secure Lichfield and the Cathedral as hosts of the national City Nation Place Conference, which will be taking place in September, attracting delegates to the city from across the UK.  The increased events at Lichfield Cathedral, as one of the county’s leading heritage attractions, has had a positive impact on the night time economy in the city, with local businesses planning to the Cathedral’s programme.

Karen always goes the extra mile to accommodate our requests and has also recently engaged with our work on developing a new Staffordshire Film Office.

David Hunter – Nelson’s Distillery & School

David is the Manager at Nelson’s Distillery & School, based near Uttoxeter and is a shining example of a Staffordshire Ambassador.

As a regular attendee of We Are Staffordshire events and supporter of our work to promote the county, David will always look for opportunities to collaborate. Nelson’s have recently hosted a We are Staffordshire Ambassador Experience Event and David was a fantastic host, going over and above to ensure the attendees had a thoroughly immersive experience with excellent feedback received.

David also supports We Are Staffordshire through supplying Staffordshire products for the annual UKREiiF Investment Conference which showcases the county’s offering as a place to invest and do business.

Martin Tideswell – Staffordshire University

Martin is the Director of Communities and Commercial Engagement at Staffordshire University and is a passionate advocate for the county and Stoke-on-Trent.

Through his role at Staffordshire University, Martin has compered two of our Staffordshire Ambassador events and championed the county at countless other events he has spoken at. He flies the flag for the local area both through his role and social media engagement and his enthusiasm for Staffordshire is infectious!

Everything that Martin does embodies partnership working and collaboration and We Are Staffordshire are regularly invited to attend University events to enable us to grow our network and spread the message about our work, particularly to younger audiences. No request that we make of Martin is ever to much trouble to him and his team.

Cris Cohen – F E A S T E D

Cris is the founder of F E A S T E D, a fine dining experience like no other, operating from the Spode Works, Stoke on Trent.  The concept of F E A S T E D is to tell stories, seasonally focused, with flavour born from a belief in creating identity. Cris aims, through cooking and hospitality education, to create ambitious individuals and teams that are great cooks with a focus on the future and he believes in creating the blueprint for future food education. Recently F E A S T E D have opened S T O C K, a neighbourhood bar and restaurant based in Newcastle-under-Lyme.

Cris is another role-model Ambassador. He joined us at the House of Commons two years ago and was keen to use the day as an opportunity to promote Staffordshire and the Staffordshire Story (not just his own business!). He has spoken at our Ambassador events and hosted an experience event for us, with five star reviews from attendees. Cris’s passion for promoting the area, opportunities for young people and connecting people to places shines through in all he does.

Claire Williams – Stoke-on-Trent College

Claire is the Director of Marketing, PR and Communications at Stoke on Trent College. Since taking on her role, Claire has proactively engaged with We Are Staffordshire to collaborate on projects in a number of areas and discuss how we can work together to promote the opportunities available for learners and work alongside employers in Staffordshire.

From organising Ambassador Events, where Stoke on Trent College have led a panel debate, to involving us in college events, news and launches, Claire is always thinking about the wider picture of collaboration.

More recently, Claire’s team has supported a number of our campaigns such as our recent Skills campaign, including the production of the Staffordshire Skills Prospectus, further reinforcing our strong partnership.


The winner will be announced at Staffordshire Chambers of Commerce Business Awards 2024 on Thursday 4th July.

You can only vote once for one Ambassador.


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