The first woman to be elected president of Sheffield Chamber of Commerce in its 150-plus year history is calling on everyone across the city to “believe and achieve.”
Suzanne Liversidge, who set up and heads the Sheffield office of law firm Kennedys, says she believes the city is taking the lead in so many ways and she wants others to join her in getting the message across.
Speaking ahead of her installation as Chamber president today, she told The Star: “There are so many ‘Wow’ factors here.
“I always look forward to it when I have got someone who doesn’t know Sheffield coming to the city, because they have this stereotypical ‘Full Monty’ image and it’s great to surprise them.”
The litigation specialist who started out wanting to follow a marketing career and was once hailed as “the next Julie Walters” for her ability as a stand-up comedian, says Sheffield’s business community has to make sure it is on the front foot as it emerges from recession.
And, she is urging firms to capitalise on the city’s neighbourliness by offering their business neighbours a helping hand.
“We are very neighbourly and we need that in a business sense,” says Suzanne Liversidge, whose father Doug is a past Master Cutler and whose step mother, Pam, will be the first female Master Cutler in the same year that she is Chamber of Commerce president.
“We have got to be ambitious for our city. We have got to see Sheffield as a city whose cup is half full – if not three quarters full or brimming to the top. It’s up to leaders in whatever field to pass that message on.”
In addition to being Sheffield Chamber of Commerce president, Suzanne Liversidge has held leading voluntary roles with Sheffield Galleries and Museums Trust and Sheffield Theatres Trust and is a patron of Sheffield Asian Women’s Refuge.
She is also chairman of Common Purpose South Yorkshire, the organisation which which brings together people with potential to be Sheffield’s future leaders, and vice chairman of Sheffield United’s community programme, the United Initiative.