The launch of the Coventry and Warwickshire Story in March 2012 was a move that business leaders across Coventry and Warwickshire had been waiting for.

The story emerged from concerns that Coventry and Warwickshire’s voice wasn’t getting heard above those of other places; there was no simple story explaining what we’re all about and why we’re trying to achieve as a place; and that there was no shared sense of ambition.

A variety of businesses and organisations came together in 2012 to create an agenda for putting Coventry and Warwickshire on the map and drive growth locally. That became the Coventry and Warwickshire Champions Board which is chaired by Les Ratcliffe, previously Head of Community Relations at Jaguar Land Rover.

Coventry and Warwickshire has so much to offer to potential investors and existing businesses. We have a lot of assets, major businesses, attractions and big brands that make it as attractive as a place for business and pleasure, but not enough people know about them. So it was decided to bring people together in a scheme that would increase knowledge about the area and raise confidence about its future prospects. Thus, the Coventry and Warwickshire Champions scheme was born.

The Coventry & Warwickshire Champions Board

Chair: Les Ratcliffe MBE TD DL

Chair Coventry & Warwickshire - Place Board - Champions

Vice Chair: Steve Stewart OBE

Chief Executive – The Stewart Alliance LTD

Louise Bennett OBE DL

Chief Executive – Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce

Martin Yardley

Chief Executive – Coventry and Warwickshire LEP; Deputy Chief Executive (Place), Coventry City Council 

Martin Reeves

Chief Executive – Coventry City Council

Monica Fogarty

Joint Managing Director – Warwickshire County Council

Kate Hughes

Director of Regional Strategy & Partnerships – University of Warwick

Kelly- Anne Lewis

Director, Group Marketing and Communications – Coventry University

Peter Brammall

Principal – Coventry College

Nic Erskine

Coventry & Warwickshire Champions Manager

Paula Deas

Operations Director – Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership

Paul Evans 

Community Communications Manager – Severn Trent Water

Keith Perry

Editor – Coventry Telegraph

Adam Dent

Managing Director – Advent Communications

Martin Gibbs

Managing Partner – Dafferns LLP Chartered Accountants (representing Coventry First)

Fleur Sexton DL

Joint Managing Director – PET-Xi

David Shortland MBE

Director – Shortland Horne

Kevin Rodgers

Chief Executive - WM Housing Group

Jacky Isaac

Chief Executive - Ricoh Arena

Penny Beaufoy-Shinfield

Marketing Manager (Business and Enterprise) - Coventry University