Press Release from Buckinghamshire Council 12 May 2022 Buckinghamshire’s Swan Envoys spread their wings at launch event The Buckinghamshire Swan Envoy Scheme officially launched at Pinewood Studios on Tuesday evening (10 May) with the first twelve Swan Envoys inaugurated into their new role. From influential community leaders to much-loved local celebrities, each Buckinghamshire Swan Envoy has one thing in common – they are inspiring individuals who are committed to helping to promote Buckinghamshire as a great place to grow, live and work. The new scheme, developed by Buckinghamshire Council in partnership with the Lord Lieutenancy, is designed to harness the influence and enthusiasm of the individual Swans to inspire and encourage others and create one powerful network of voices, working together with the council and its partners, to promote Buckinghamshire as a thriving and exciting county. The twelve new Swan Envoys are: • April Benson • Jane Campbell • Andy Collins • Keyaan Hameed • Karen Irons • Lorraine Kelly CBE • Sir David Lidington • Martin McElhatton OBE • Pauline Quirk • Alice Rose • John Shaw • Angela Spang Martin Tett, Leader of Buckinghamshire Council said: “I’m delighted to welcome our founding Swan Envoys. I would like to thank each and every one of them for their willingness to share what I know is some of their very valuable and limited time, to support, motivate and showcase the great people and communities that we have in our special county. “We already know that Buckinghamshire is a great place for so many reasons, and together we can help spread that message and inspire and encourage everyone to believe in Buckinghamshire!” At the inauguration ceremony, the Swan Envoys were introduced by Martin Tett and Buckinghamshire Council Chief Executive, Rachael Shimmin. They were each presented with their personal Swan pin badge and a certificate by HM Lord Lieutenant of Buckinghamshire, The Countess Howe. Swan Envoys April Benson April Benson has been Chief Executive Officer of Aylesbury Women’s Aid since 2019, providing inspiring leadership of the charity through the past two, very challenging, years. April established and delivered the Women’s Aid Freedom Programme locally and developed the Aylesbury Women’s Aid Relational Empowerment programme for teenage girls. April was winner of the Community Impact Bucks Outstanding Leadership in the Women in Charity Awards 2021. Jane Campbell Jane Campbell is a successful Buckinghamshire businesswoman, Managing Director of a growing local firm, PCL Corporatewear. In recognition of her unique leadership skills, Jane was named Business Leader of the Year at the Buckinghamshire Business Awards in 2017. She was also a Bucks Growth Champion in 2018 and a finalist for Businesswoman of the Year in the SME Milton Keynes and Buckinghamshire awards in 2019. Andy Collins Andy Collins is a comedian, television and radio presenter, and has been a warm-up act for many popular entertainment shows. More locally Andy is a well-known and much-loved stalwart of the Aylesbury Waterside Theatre pantomime. Andy currently hosts the BBC Three Counties Radio breakfast show and is also a Bucks Herald columnist. Keyaan Hameed Keyaan Hameed is a Street Hero and has been appointed as a youth ambassador for the One Can Trust. Aged just 15, Keyaan founded his eco-friendly SOUP-a-CANdle business, upcycling old soup cans into candles, with the money raised donated to the One Can Trust. He also set up ‘Take One or Leave One’ coat rails for people in need in High Wycombe and Aylesbury. Keyaan won the Proud of Bucks Young Community Hero award in 2021. Karen Irons Karen Irons is Chief Executive Officer at Maytree Respite Centre. Karen uses her insight and experience to help charities develop their business & financial models. She is passionate about helping organisations to find solutions, unlock potential and develop new ideas. Karen is a committed and active member of the Buckinghamshire community, being a trustee and board member of The Clare Foundation and a School Governor. Lorraine Kelly CBE Lorraine Kelly trained as a journalist before moving successfully into a long-running television career. She also writes weekly columns for national media and is a published author. Lorraine is a keen supporter of charities, taking part every year in the in the 26-mile breast cancer charity ‘Moonwalk’ and is a patron on Help for Heroes and the STV Children’s Appeal. In in 2012, Lorraine was awarded the OBE for services to charity and in 2020, received a CBE for services to broadcasting, journalism and charity. Sir David Lidington Sir David Lidington is a former Conservative MP who represented the constituency of Aylesbury from 1992 until 2019. He has held a number of key positions both in opposition and in government including Minister of State for Europe at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Leader of the House of Commons, Lord Chancellor, Secretary of State for Justice and Minister for the Cabinet Office and Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster. In September 2019 Sir David received a knighthood for political and public service. Martin McElhatton OBE Martin McElhatton is a wheelchair basketball Paralympian and Chief Executive of WheelPower, a charity which promotes sport and active lives for disabled people. Martin is a Board Member of LEAP, the Bucks & Milton Keynes Sport and Activity Partnership, and is a Trustee of National Paralympic Heritage Trust. In 2020 Martin was awarded an OBE for services to disability sport. Pauline Quirk Pauline Quirk is an award-winning actor and founder of the Pauline Quirk Academy, a performing arts school for children and young people. Pauline has recently launched the ‘PQA Trust’ to help deprived children access performing arts training, to help build their confidence and learn skills for life. Pauline supports a number of children’s charities, being an honorary member of the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children and a patron of the Rennie Grove Hospice. Alice Rose During the Covid pandemic, at the age of 17, Alice Rose set up Alice's Positivity Boxes. Alice creates parcels of donated goodies and distributes them to young adults and teenagers who are struggling with mental health issues, those who are permanently in hospital or those who are underprivileged Alice is also a trained mental health peer mentor and is actively involved in local mental health charities. John Shaw John Shaw co-founded and is Managing Director of the social enterprise, Chiltern Rangers. The organisation is a thriving local conservation community interest company which works with local communities to protect Buckinghamshire and Chiltern Hills. His organisation provides a range of education and training opportunities for young people and works with schools on the Duke of Edinburgh scheme. Angela Spang Angela Spang is Chief Executive Officer of JUNE MEDICAL group. With over 25 years’ experience as a successful entrepreneur, Angela has a deep understanding of building successful businesses and operating across the globe. Angela is known for being generous with her advice on all aspects of running a business. In 2018, Angela was a Bucks Growth Champion and in 2021 was a recipient of The Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the Innovation category.