Andrew Gibson and Vicki Grainger
Andrew Gibson and Vicki Grainger
Richard Bell

This week’s North East appointments

Andrew Gibson and Vicki Grainger, NGI Solutions

Gateshead-based digital agency NGI Solutions has added to its team with two appointments.

The company welcomed Andrew Gibson as its new head of client engagement and Vicki Grainger as research manager.

Andrew has almost 20 years of experience in client development roles in the North East. He joined NGI from procurement company Creative Tenders.

Vicki, meanwhile, previously worked for brand and communications company Dipsticks Research, and before that Yahoo.

James Ealey, director at NGI Solutions, said of the appointments: “It’s great to welcome Andrew and Vicki to support the team with its growth.

“Both have relevant experience in the sectors that we operate and will be valuable additions to the team.”

Rob Jensen, Chris Rhucroft and Lee Thompson, Pickerings Lifts

The North East office of lift company Pickerings Lifts, based in Stockton-on-Tees, has announced three appointments.

The firm promoted Rob Jensen (pictured left) to customer support manager. He has worked for Pickerings Lifts for almost 30 years, having started out as an apprentice and worked his way up, first to factory team leader and eventually repair manager for the North East branch.

Elsewhere, Chris Rhucroft (right) has been promoted to the role of assistant customer support manager from a position in the firm’s escalator team.

Rob and Chris will share overall responsibility for the company’s North East office, which carries out lift maintenance and repairs from Northumberland to York.

Pickerings Lifts has also appointed Lee Thompson as an assistant customer support manager in its escalator team.

Before his new role, Lee spent 25 years in the Army. He was previously a vehicle mechanic and then a workshop manager based at at Catterick Garrison.

Shaun Lister, Pickerings Lifts’ customer support manager for escalators, commented: “I’m delighted to welcome Lee to the team. He comes to the role with a lot of engineering experience and managerial knowledge and I look forward to working with him to grow the business in the months and years to come.”

Image L-R: Claire Hollyman, Kevin West, Kevin Latimer and Luke Davison

Kevin West and Luke Davison, Trench Networks

Northumberland-based internet services provider Trench Networks has appointed a new field service engineer and apprentice junior systems analyst.

Kevin West, the firm’s new field service engineer, previously worked for multi-national construction business Carillion. In his new role, he will be responsible for installing and maintaining Trench’s systems on customer sites.

He said: “I’m delighted to have joined the team at Trench Networks.

“It’s a young, dynamic company to work for and I’m really enjoying learning about what they do and how they build their Outpost product from scratch, install it on sites and see it deliver results for clients.”

Also appointed is apprentice Luke Davison, who will shadow the rest of the team as he builds up experience while studying to complete his Level 3 Infrastructure technician training with Newton Aycliffe-based Baltic Training.

Once qualified, Luke will become a junior systems analyst.

Claire Hollyman, who co-owns the business with Kevin Latimer, said: “Our new appointments will enable us to service the growth of the business and better serve the needs of our existing client base by having more boots on the ground.”

“This is a really exciting time. To have grown the business organically to a point where we can create sustainable jobs for good people is a real achievement and we are delighted to have Kevin and Luke on board.”

Mike Comerford, The Port of Tyne

The Port of Tyne has announced the appointment of a new non-exec director.

Bringing over 30 years’ experience in shipping, maritime safety and engineering to the board, Mike Comerford is a chartered engineer and member of the Royal Institution of Naval Architects (MRINA). He is also an associate fellow of the Nautical Institute (AFNI).

His background includes senior roles at the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, Bureau Veritas and Lloyd’s Register.

Mike said: “I am really pleased to be joining the Port of Tyne at an exciting time for the future of the maritime sector.

“I hope my years of experience in every aspect of maritime activity will be an asset to the board.”

Port of Tyne chair Lucy Armstrong commented: “I’m delighted to welcome Mike on board, his wide ranging experience will further strengthen the team.”

Jabad Jaigirdar, Peter Millican Law

Newcastle business law firm Peter Millican Law has appointed Jabad Jaigirdar as a partner.

Jabad’s work focuses on advising on mergers and acquisitions, company restructures and shareholder agreements.

He has developed particular expertise in advising the leisure sector, having come from a family of Tynemouth restaurateurs.

Jabad said: “I’m passionate about my work, and delighted to become a partner with an ambitious and well-respected law firm.

“With an increase in clients, and the firm being appointed to act on increasingly complex deals, Peter Millican Law has doubled its number of fee earners in the last 12 months alone, and we expect that growth to continue.”

Speaking further, Jabad commented: “Having extensive experience acting for prominent bar, hotel and restaurant operators, I’m now also targeting the London leisure sector and finding that Peter Millican Law’s clear focus as a company, specialist expertise and business practices are opening doors which will allow our growth to continue.”

The firm’s owner, Peter Millican, said of the appointment: “Jabad’s promotion to partner reflects his passion not only for bringing in new clients, but also for delivering for each client.

“He is a great ambassador for the firm, and equally well an inspiration to less experienced staff. We’re proud to have him as a partner, and together looking forward to the company’s future.”

Alexander Rose, DWF

Law firm DWF has appointed Alexander Rose as legal director at its Newcastle office.

Before joining DWF, Alexander was an in-house lawyer with the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.

He has particular expertise in EU law, having presented on financial instruments at the European Parliament, written guidance on public procurement and co-authored part of a legal textbook on State Aid law.

Four years ago he was named as one of the Government’s seconded ‘national experts’ to the European Commission, where he worked on State Aid matters.

Adam Heather, executive partner at DWF Newcastle, said: “With Brexit on the horizon, this is the perfect time to appoint someone with high level Government expertise such as Alexander, who has built an exceptional reputation in the field.

“He’s been at the heart of public funding decision making in Central Government, Local Government and the European Commission, so brings additional expertise and experience to our already very strong practice. We are confident that he will add value immediately, as well as being a great fit for the culture of DWF.”

Alexander commented: “I’m excited to be joining DWF, a firm with an exceptional reputation that is shaking up the legal market.

“The public sector is going through a period of change and there’s going to be some very interesting opportunities coming out of Brexit, so I’m looking forward to getting involved and putting my own stamp on the practice.”

Rob Gordon and James Atkinson, GVA

The Newcastle office of commercial property agency GVA has made two new senior appointments in its valuation services and land & development teams.

Rob Gordon (pictured left) has joined the firm as a director from Jones Lang LaSalle, making him responsible for leading the valuation services team in the North East.

Joining GVA alongside Rob is James Atkinson (right), an associate in the company’s land & development team. Before GVA, he worked at Adderstone Group for 13 years, most recently in the role of development director.

Gordon Hewling, regional senior director and head of building at GVA in Newcastle, commented: “These are further key appointments within our valuation and land & development teams.

“The office holds a strong position in the market, providing strategic real estate advice to both the public and private sectors.”

He added: “Rob and James bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise which will strengthen our advisory capacity within the valuation and land and development sectors across the North East region.”

Adam Harker, Northern Counties Builders Federation

The Northern Counties Builders Federation (NCBF) has appointed Adam Harker to its board.

Adam started his career as a quantity surveyor and has spent the last 11 years working for Seymour Civil Engineering, where he is contracts director.

He has a Masters in quantity surveying and is a member of Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and the Association of Cost Engineers.

Adam said: “I hope to bring a different perspective and some new ideas to the committee and I’m looking forward to helping the NCBF to continue the great work that it does in the region.

“The role provides me with a unique opportunity to be part of a team of peers who are looking to drive the construction industry forward within our region.”

He added: “I hope to bring some of the experiences I have gained in my current role to the committee, particularly in relation to wellbeing, training and health and safety in which, as a business, Seymour Civil Engineering has won numerous awards in recent years.”

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