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The 2010 BYPY finalists.

Matthew Heaton Ruth Creed Lisa Clark James Villarreal Tim Nutbeam Legal Lisa Clark (30) is an associate at HBJ Gateley Wareing where she undertakes property litigation work for a variety of house builders and developers. She particularly enjoys working in the property industry in a city that has seen extensive development in recent years. Chairman of Birmingham Future's mentoring committee, Lisa has been responsible for ensuring continued growth of the Mentoring Scheme and helped to establish links with a variety of local organisations. She also implemented the 'Inspiring Futures' programme, run in conjunction with Birmingham City University, which focuses on supporting undergraduates in their move into professional life and retaining local talent in the Birmingham marketplace.

Matthew Heaton (35) is a partner and head of Birmingham banking and finance at Pinsent Masons. He moved to Birmingham in 2005 after eight years in London and joined Pinsent Masons' banking team 18 months later. The team has worked on a number of high-profile Birmingham deals, including financing for Brindleyplace and the acquisition of Busy Bees, leading Legal 500 and Chambers to hail the team the best in the region. Matthew supports a number of children's and animal charities and coordinates the banking team's annual CSR day. He is also a keen runner and plays golf whenever he can.

Ruth Creed (33) is a senior solicitor at Mills & Reeve, specialising in healthcare law. Since joining the firm in 2008, she has helped to set up a child healthcare law team and completed a successful secondment to a key client. Outside work she has established 'Birmingham FLAG', a free legal advice group, on behalf of Mills & Reeve in connection with the University of Birmingham School of Law. This allows solicitors to give something back to the local community while providing learning opportunities for law students and strengthening relationships between the university and the firm.

Financial David Neale (35) is a financial advisor for JNJ Financial Management. Having studied at the University of Birmingham, he began his career in Bath with Chase de Vere Investments before returning to Birmingham in 2002. Throughout his career he has advised corporate and individual clients on developing financial strategies and, in 2008, was involved in the negotiation of the largest individual business protection case in the UK that year. David chairs the Midlands Enterprise Board for the Charity SENSE and enjoys skiing, mountaineering, running and cycling. In 2008 he 'summitted' his seventh mountain, the Matterhorn, and plans to cycle from Birmingham to Geneva in June.

Heather Griffin (31) is a business banking partner at Yorkshire Bank, a position she successfully worked her way up to after joining the company as a cashier. Over the last 12 months she has helped to secure West Midlands businesses to the value of pounds 10m, generating quality referrals for the bank. A keen fundraiser, she also helped to raise pounds 17,000 for Acorns Children's Hospice by organising a 50-person abseil from the 12th floor of the bank's offices. She is currently arranging a fashion show for Birmingham professionals in aid of The Mary Stevens Hospice and plans to sail around the Mediterranean later this summer.

Simon O'Neill (34) is the head of audit for Ernst & Young's Midlands and Southwest cluster and a member of the firm's Midlands' leadership team. He was made partner at the age of just 30 and brings more than 13 years' experience with the firm to his work, including experience working with listed companies with a focus on the retail and hospitality sectors. His current clients include InterContinental Hotels Group, RoadChef and National Express. Simon's young daughter Abigail currently takes up most of his spare time but, when he gets the chance, he likes to escape to the golf course.

Entrepreneur Chris Unitt (30) is managing director of Meshed Media - a creative digital agency that delivers innovative projects for some of the region's best-regarded arts organisations and also runs the popular Birmingham Social Media Cafe, Film Dash - a 48-hour film competition. Chris is also editor of Created in Birmingham, the award-winning arts and culture website that spawned a retail unit selling locally-produced artwork in the Bullring. A committed footballer, he sits on the board of The Other Way Works (a theatre company) and, in August 2009, undertook a voluntary project teaching web skills to young people in Guyana.

James Villarreal (24) is co-founder and CEO of Glide Utilities, which he established with Sandeep Krishan in 2006. Glide was the first utilities supplier to solve the problem of splitting bills in shared accommodation by billing each tenant individually. The following year they raised equity investment from Birmingham-based investors, helping them expand across the UK and laying the foundations for continued growth in the future. James is a committee member of the Young Directors Forum and a board member of Young Enterprise. He is very enthusiastic about enterprise and loves promoting the benefits of entrepreneurship. James believes Birmingham has a key role to play in the future of many of the UK's entrepreneurs.

Tim Nutbeam (29) is director and founder of Moo Moo Youth Marketing (MMYM) - a leading provider of marketing, communications and strategy development for those wishing to deliver positive messages to young people. In the last two years MMYM has grown from a sole trader enterprise to a limited company employing seven full-time and more than 250 part-time staff. As well as his work for MMYM, Tim is a full-time A&E specialist doctor for the NHS, regularly flying with the Midlands Air Ambulance Charity and volunteering for the Central Accident Resuscitation Emergency team. He has also authored several books and recently established a charity to support victims of sepsis.

Property & Construction Damien Byrne (33) is development manager at MCD Developments, is originally from Dublin but relocated to Birmingham in 2003, taking his career in a new direction and moving from a role in logistics to property development. He is now responsible for a number of regeneration projects throughout the UK, the highlight being a national award winning residential conversion of a derelict Grade II listed foundry in St Paul's Square. Damien chairs the Birmingham Future city centre committee, which raises awareness of issues affecting young professionals in the city. He also enjoys keeping fit, socializing with friends and supporting his local rugby club.

Gareth Poole (30) is associate director at Turner & Townsend, manages the contract services division in the Midlands. He leads the team providing a range of services in transaction, contract management and disputes, to deliver both understanding and management of contractual risk. Gareth is committed to raising the profile of Turner & Townsend in the region and across the construction sector as a whole. He is chairman of Birmingham Future's membership committee, focusing on sustaining and building the organisation's membership base. Gareth regularly runs marathons, raising money to support a number of different charities.

Paul Daulton (30) is associate director at Mace Group, has worked in the construction industry for thirteen years, including ten years with his current employer, Mace. He describes himself as a proud and passionate Brummie and has recently taken on the role of senior project manager for the pounds 600m Birmingham Gateway project. Paul enjoys playing all sports and has recently begun training for his first triathlon this summer, when he will be raising money for the Macmillan Trust, a charity which has been close to his heart since the successful treatment of his father and one of his colleagues for cancer in 2009.

Communications Katie Banks (29) is head of education and community at Town Hall and Symphony Hall, Birmingham, is a DeMontford University graduate and has worked in the arts sector in Birmingham since graduating in 2001. A varied career in arts education and youth arts provision led Katie to Symphony Hall and the reopening of Town Hall in 2007, to run the education and community program for both venues. The department works with more than 10,000 people each year and has a particular focus on building relationships with residents in Ladywood. Katie is committed to ensuring the young people of Birmingham have a voice and has volunteered for a number of schools and charities.

Mark Scourse (34) is strategy and forecasting manager at Birmingham International Airport, is responsible for marketing, strategy and passenger forecasting, although his role also incorporated snowploughing earlier this year! His career began in Bristol on the British Aerospace graduate development scheme, which subsequently gave him the opportunity to work in France at Airbus HQ in Toulouse. His experience in selling aircraft to airlines is now used to sell 'Birmingham Airport', developing new routes and promoting the West Midlands in a truly global marketplace. Mark is committed to the development and promotion of Birmingham as an inspiring, exciting, global city during the next phase of its development.

Rob Langley-Swain (27) is marketing communications manager for arenas and The Ticket Factory at The NEC Group, has worked in a number of exciting roles within the entertainment and arts sector. His career highlights include landing his current role, managing the national PR for Imagine Theatre's pantomimes, increasing audience figures for BCMG, being a BYPY finalist last year and a stint working as a certain bouncy tiger at Disneyland. Rob is a trustee for the Birmingham Civic Society and he chairs their citizenship committee. He also sits on the Birmingham Future marketing committee and he is a visiting lecturer at BCU. In his spare time he writes, records and performs songs and he has run the Birmingham Half Marathon for the past two years.

Recruitment and Training Joel Graham-Blake (29) is founder and managing director of Cultiv8 Solutions, has more than a decade of experience in personal leadership, diverse recruitment and business development. As a one-man business he has built up a client base that includes many of the region's most recognized employers, by showing how unconventional leadership can create sustainable businesses and positively impact on local communities. He has advised ministers at the Treasury on CSR and was a BYPY finalist for the first time in 2006. Joel mentors students at Aston Business School, volunteers his time to help develop social enterprises and is also the national diversity officer for Golf in the UK.

Kam Vara (31) is divisional leader at Katie Bard (The Angela Mortimer Plc), is originally from the South East but moved to the Midlands to study Law at the University of Birmingham and then went on to complete an MSc in Human Resources at Aston University. Kam started her career at Katie Bard as a graduate trainee in 2001 and is now director of her own business unit, leading the commercial and legal streams. She is a member of the Partners Board of the International Angela Mortimer Group Plc, which focuses on the strategic development and growth of the company. In her spare time Kam enjoys keeping fit and is currently a member of the Birmingham Chamber Executive Club.

Kaye Thumpston (26) is senior recruitment consultant at eNL Legal Recruitment, is responsible for recruitment across the public sector and in-house legal market. Kaye has been working in this market since 2006 and has built some excellent client and candidate relationships across the sector. Part of her remit at eNL is to grow the public sector division, which involves recruiting and training new team members. Kaye is actively involved in events arising as a result of eNL's corporate sponsorship of the Prince's Trust and will soon be commencing a role as a voluntary mentor with young offenders.


Katie Banks Mark Scourse Rob Langley-Swain Gareth Poole Paul Daulton Chris Unitt Damien Byrne David Neale Heather Griffin Simon O'Neill Joel Graham-Blake Kam Vara Kaye Thumpston
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:May 27, 2010
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