An entrepreneur and digital transformation expert will take over as the new Chair of the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP) in April to help lead the area’s recovery from the Coronavirus pandemic.
Sarah Windrum is the founder and a Director of the Leamington-based technology company The Emerald Group.
She joined the CWLEP as a Board Director in 2016 and is the Chair of its Digital and Creative Business Group. She replaces Nick Abell who took the helm at the start of the Covid crisis and will revert to Vice-Chair.
In addition to her involvement with CWLEP, Sarah is a member of the West Midlands Combined Authority Innovation and Strategic Economic Development Boards and holds the role of West Midlands Policy Advisor for the Federation of Small Businesses.
She also serves on the Industry Advisory Board at Warwickshire College and working with Ukie, the national trade body for interactive entertainment, on their Digital Schoolhouse Primary School programme.
In 2018, Sarah became an industry partner in the £40m Institute of Coding programme for Coventry & Warwickshire and is taking a leading role on the development of local creative clusters with key national and regional stakeholders.
Sarah said this was a critical time for Coventry and Warwickshire’s economy to reset and recover from Covid-19:
The CWLEP has never had a more important role to play in helping to attract funding from the Government and working with our business groups and business support organisations to help Coventry and Warwickshire emerge as strongly as possible from the pandemic.
This has been the toughest period that many businesses have ever faced and the CWLEP will be continuing its successful partnership approach to provide the assistance which companies of all sizes and in all sectors need to recover.
The digital and creative community has played a major part in helping businesses to secure online orders and interest whether that has been in retail or virtual tours of visitor attractions and that will increase as 5G becomes embedded in our communities.
I am honoured to become Chair of the CWLEP and I am looking forward to the challenges ahead because I am a great believer in making a positive difference.
Outgoing chair Nick Abell said of his replacement:
Sarah has been on the LEP Board since 2016 and I know she will continue to drive the organisation onwards. I followed Jonathan Browning, who did a superb job as Chair, and I have no doubt that she will continue to lead the LEP forward for the good of the region.