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EM3 says farewell to long-standing chair Dave Axam

Last updated 12 August 2021
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Farewell to Dave

EM3 has said farewell to its long-standing chair Dave Axam, who has stood down after reaching his maximum tenure of seven years’ of service.

Speaking as he reached the end of his tenure, Dave said he had great confidence in the LEP’s future and its ability to drive growth in the regional economy.

“As I now look back over the time I have spent with EM3, I can be proud of what the LEP has achieved, its evolution, its forward-thinking, the economic foundations it has secured and importantly the partnerships it has forged,” said Dave.

“I can see how we intervened to change course in the past to great effect, so I know we can do it for the future. And that is why am I confident for our future. Because I can look back and see how we have been able to plant the seeds of change which benefited our local economy.”

Staff and colleagues joined with Dave at a dinner in Guildford to thank him for his tireless efforts on behalf of the LEP, and his inspiring leadership as the Enterprise Partnership has evolved into the region’s leading business-led organisation, connecting business intelligence and economic understanding with the expertise, knowledge and local understanding needed to support the transition to a net zero economy while facilitating the innovation which drives a high-growth economy.

Dave’s such a pro – as HMG’s Area Manager responsible for oversight of the LEP’s delivery - he made my life easy through his great stewardship , positive energy and all round lightness of touch and approachability. EM3 have been assessed at the LEPs ‘Annual Performance Reviews’ as ‘exceptional’ for both ‘delivery’ and ‘governance’ – says it all.

Richard Turl , Area Manager - London and South East Areas and Analysis Directorate, Cities and Local Growth Unit

As Chair of the Nominations Committee, I was responsible for the recruitment of Dave’s successor – no easy task with the high bar Dave set! Our Chair needs to be a business leader who can work effectively across private, public and not-for-profit sectors.

Our board is large (with 20 members) and diverse, and not only has Dave led our vision and strategy with our Chief Executive, Kathy Slack, he has been an excellent ambassador for EM3 and the region, securing support from senior stakeholders. The Board and our partners are confident about EM3 shaping the future because of our track record of success. Many thanks go to Dave for all that he has done to help EM3 achieve this.

Linda Cheung , EM3 Board Director and Co-founder, Intrapreneur Nation

Dave has been an incredible Chairman bringing superb leadership to the Board.

Ren Kapur , EM3 Board Director and founder X-Forces Enterprise

in September 2015 and was appointed as Chair in May 2018.

A strong advocate of EM3 and all Local Enterprise Partnerships to Ministers, MPs, government departments and even Prime Ministers, Dave has overseen the development of EM3’s Strategic Economic Plan, its incorporation as a Limited Company and increased its focus on supporting innovation in low carbon and digital technologies. He has played a key role in increasing the LEP’s diversity and been instrumental in some of its most significant projects, including the development of Whitehill and Bordon and the 5G Innovation Centre


Michael Queen, the former chief executive of global investment company 3i Group plc, became EM3’s new chair on August 1st 2021



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