Introducing the candidates running for British Chamber’s Executive Committee for 2021-2022.

2021, June 17
Introducing the candidates running for British Chamber’s Executive Committee for 2021-2022. 17th June 2021

In line with the Chamber’s bylaws, voting for our next executive committee will take place on the day – in person or via proxy. If you are a Voting Representative of a British Chamber Member Company please register to attend the AGM. If you can’t attend in person and would like to vote via proxy please download THIS proxy form, sign and return to: steven.lynch@britishchamber.cn before 17:00 (China time) on 23 June 2021.

Officer positions (including Chair, Vice Chair (x2), and Treasurer) are two-year terms. Two officer positions are elected in year one and two in year two (i.e. Chair and one Vice Chair in one year and a Vice Chair and Treasurer in the alternate year). At-Large positions are one-year terms.

Below are two-year positions that have completed one year and will be completing their second year in this coming cycle (2021/22). These positions are not up for election this year.

Julian Fisher, Vice-Chair (2020-2022) 
Co-founder, Venture Education

This year I have four clear goals in my role as Vice Chair of the British Chamber. Firstly, I will support the new Chair to create a positive and effective committee that goes above and beyond to strengthen the Chamber. Secondly, after an extremely challenging year, it is essential that we support our smaller members through establishing needs, creating opportunities for inter-member collaboration and developing new business. We have big ideas and I look forward to making them happen. Thirdly, it is important, especially now, that the Chamber and I are willing to speak openly, both in China and the UK, on behalf of positive China-UK business engagement. Finally, and perhaps closest to my heart, I want to continue to find ways that the Chamber can support young people from China and the UK. This will include supporting graduates through Employability Week, young professionals through YPDP and supporting the students from our schools. Last year, I oversaw a dramatic increase in the number of UK universities joining for the first time as members. This year, we will focus on increasing the number of British schools.

Russell Brown OBE, Treasurer (2020-2022)
Managing Partner, LehmanBrown International Accountants 

LehmanBrown and I have been an active member of the Chamber since 2002, and I have been part of the evolution of the Chamber since then, including serving on EXCO for 8 years from 2006 to 2014 in the capacity of Treasurer, Vice Chair and Chair between 2012 and 2014, and re-joining in 2020 as treasurer.
It is critical for the Chamber during these current troubled times to have a good team to steer it through the various storms it may face. The financial management of the Chamber is a key part of this, not just in terms of its accounts, but its navigation through the turbulent waters, planning and knowing how to sail through them.
I am a Fellow of ICAEW and CIMA. I have experience in helping many membership organisations in China, and am also very familiar with the Chamber’s operations. During the next year I plan to continue to help strengthen the chambers financial position, to put in place robust forecasting and tracking systems and to be a key part of the EXCO in further development of the chamber.

Below are positions that are up for election this year:

Julian MacCormac, Chair (*unopposed)
Country Director, Rolls-Royce 

The Chamber set out in 2016 to redefine its purpose better to serve members large and small. I am proud to have been part of the Executive Committee when we set out to achieve this. In 2019 I was elected as Vice-Chair of the Chamber, where my focus has been to ensure the Chamber continues to develop its advocacy work and be the leading voice of British business in China.
The Chamber today looks and feels very different from 2016. I think we can all see that these changes are bearing fruit. As Chair, if elected, I want more than anything to see this thriving, vibrant organisation continue on its mission, and to be bolder still in new ideas and execution.
As members I think we all recognise the immense contribution that the Chamber makes to business life and community in Beijing. We are fortunate to have a small team who are passionate, truly devoted to the mission of the Chamber and really love what they do. Together I think we can help ensure the hearts of British business continue to beat strongly in 2022. It would be a huge honour to take up the reins and serve as the Chair of the British Chamber of Commerce in China. Thank you for your support.

Qian (Louise) Liu, Vice-Chair (unopposed)
Managing Director, The Economist Group, Greater China

The Economist has championed free trade since 1843 and speaks for globalization, and these values are as relevant as ever. The Economist Group has been in China for more than 20 years, increased both editorial coverages on China and commercial operations across business units, and served as an important bridge between China and the west.
If I am elected as Vice-Chair, I would like to work closely with the chamber and the member companies, to promote active and open dialogues, as well as supportive understandings between China and UK, ensuring the chamber as a critical and objective voice and platform for business engagements and advocacy for the two sides.
I would also like to work with you on diversity promotions, especially on gender equality issues. Women empowerment benefits not only women but also men, children, and economic growth as well as social development. Applying a gender-lens to what we do will be fair, efficient, inclusive and sustainable. Thank you for your support and I sincerely hope to work with you in the near future.

Below are candidates running for At-large positions (6 positions are available)

Rachel Dent
Head, Harrow International School Beijing

I am the present Head of Harrow Beijing. This is my second headship having spent over thirty years working in education. Alongside my roles within schools I have also worked on several boards including HMC and GSA in the UK and now ACAMIS here in China.
I have been hugely impressed by the work of the British Chamber of Commerce, particularly during the incredible challenges of this last year.  I feel I could make a valuable contribution in several areas including:
  • Employment and the difficulties facing us in continuing to recruit and provide opportunities in China. There are significant challenges ahead including the impact of the new taxations on benefits. I feel I could be a supportive voice in relation to these ever more demanding times.
  • The environment and sustainability. This is an area that schools are particularly focused upon and again many businesses are striving to adjust to the global issues of pollution and sustainability. I feel this will be very important within China and Beijing for all British interests in the coming years.
  • Collaborating with businesses on educational initiatives is something that I have experience in and would like to support
I hope above anything else I could be a reliable supportive colleague and member of the board.

Ninette Dodoo
Partner and Co-Head of Antitrust, Competition and Trade – China, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

I relocated to China in 2009 from Brussels and since then I have had the opportunity to assist multinationals, including several British and Chinese companies, on competition law related matters in China and the Asia-Pacific region. I have also had the privilege of supporting European businesses in the past serving on the Executive Committee of the European Chamber of Commerce in China.
As the United Kingdom transitions into a post-Brexit era, the British Chamber can be expected to play a pivotal role in supporting the interests of British business in China. It would be a privilege to bring my experience to bear at the British Chamber. If elected, I would draw on my 20 years of legal experience advising multinationals to support British business in China.

Sarah Keenlyside
CEO, The Bespoke Travel Company

This will be my 16th year in Beijing, and, as the founder and CEO of Bespoke Travel Company, know all too well the challenges SMEs are facing during a global pandemic. However I have always believed that the better understanding we have of each other’s cultures and their strengths, the better we do as businesses. Over the years we have helped thousands of executives from multinational companies get to know China on a deeper level, while flying the flag for smaller, female-led teams to play an important part in cross cultural understanding. Even more important at times like these is collaboration and support. The difficulties of the last 12 months have reminded me just how special the business community in China is – indeed, if it weren’t for the support I’ve received from many of the Chamber’s members, our business may not have survived.
If I am lucky enough to be elected, my main goal will be to help SMEs and larger corporations to work together more effectively, thereby creating more opportunities for all members during the upcoming, no doubt difficult year; and to lend my experience in event and tour management to the Chamber’s various causes to ensure the community continues to thrive – and have fun – together at a time when it’s most needed!

Ross Parsonage
Head of Research, Rouse Consultancy

Living and working in China in a rapidly changing geopolitical environment has never been as challenging or as uncertain (or as exciting) as it is now.  The British Chamber sits at the centre of a dynamic community of UK businesses and individuals. Through strong leadership, vision, careful planning, hard work and, most importantly, heart, the Chamber has given the British business community a much-needed, vital, thoughtful and powerful voice.
If re-elected to the Executive Committee, I will draw on 20 years’ of personal and professional experience in Beijing to further the remarkable work of the Chamber supporting its members and their families navigate the demands (and pleasures) of living in one of the most dynamic cities in the world.
I am a senior consultant for Rouse, a globally recognised intellectual property consultancy and law firm, a small business owner (my wife, Theresa, runs a yoga / health and wellness business in Beijing) and a father of three young children.
I really care about people and thrive in business settings where building relationships and developing genuine connections with others is considered a key asset and a much needed strength.  I value professional kindness, honesty and harmony.

Daisy Shen
Partner, Global China Practice, KPMG

 

 

It is my great pleasure to run for an At-large member position in the Executive Committee of British Chamber. This would be my fourth year with the Executive Committee. I am very proud of what the Chamber has achieved in the past few years and I am keen to provide continued support for its growth. I will bring to the chamber: (1) diversity.  As a native Chinese and a senior female leader in a global organisation, I will bring different perspectives in forming ideas and shaping decisions (2) my strong execution skills and pragmatic approaches to “make things happen” and (3) my passion in sustainability and ESG. With about 20 years’ experience in energy related M&A and investment strategy and as an active speaker at women leadership forums, I will bring my expertise and actively contribute to the Chamber’s agenda and its members’ initiatives, promoting energy transition, sustainability and social impact. What keeps me wanting to stay with the Chamber is the close bond we have established in the past four years. What keeps me excited is that there are so many things we can and must achieve, embracing the rapidly changing world. I will keep learning, keep progressing.

Sitao Xu
Chief Economist, Partner, Deloitte China

There are three reasons that have led me to run for a position on the Executive Committee. First, I believe I can provide my credible and independent perspective on the Chinese economy to support the chamber’s policy committee on thought leadership and advocacy work. In the post-Covid era, the British business community must view China in a non-emotional manner, taking into account structural factors and the country’s position within the global economy. As a long time student of the Chinese economy and a poster child of China’s reform and opening-up, I believe I am well place to contribute here.
Second, I could help the chamber curate robust conversations with policymakers, thinkers, investors and operators. My diverse network and prior experience will enable me to help the chamber achieve greater cross-fertilisation among different stakeholders, helping to further broaden the chamber’s domestic and global reach.
And third, given Deloitte’s partnership with the chamber on the Sentiment Survey as well as my own professional experience as an economist, I have an intuitive understanding of the chamber’s membership and its unique position in the UK-China bilateral relationship. It is important we leverage this collective strength to support British businesses in China.

Hong Zhang
Vice President China Strategy, Shell China

My name is Hong Zhang and it is my honour to run for this year’s Executive Board of the Britcham. I think you would all agree that this is an extremely challenging time for the British community in China with COVID, geo-political tension and climate change. These challenges call for our community to get closer than ever before to support each other, and more importantly to have some fun together in difficult times!
As someone who has been working in the energy industry both in the UK and in China for the last 20+ years, I experienced many ups and downs in the business environment and understand what it takes to build a business with resilience to stand storms. By joining the Executive Board, I would like to support other companies, big and small, to find sustainable business opportunities in China.
Talking about sustainability, I am extremely enthusiastic about tackling one of the most glaring issues at hand today – energy transition. I know carbon neutrality is also on the top priority list of many British businesses in China, therefore I look forward to learning and sharing in order to help the rest of the community to achieve carbon neutrality targets.

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