With offices in central Birmingham’s thriving Colmore Business District, and at Blythe Valley Business Park, Solihull, since launching in January 2013 SimkissGuy has quickly developed an excellent reputation across the midlands as a consultancy with a commitment to truly personal service for both clients and candidates alike.
Rebecca is incredibly passionate about promoting Birmingham as a fantastic place to live and work. She is a Former Chair of BPS Birmingham Future, a Trustee of local charity “LoveBrum”, Chair of the Regional Advisory Board for The Access Project, part of the organising committee for West Midlands Womens Voice, mentor to a number of students and young professionals across the city, a trained Thomas International Personality Profiler and UK Corporate Governance practitioner.
Keen to retain talented up and coming professionals in the region, Rebecca regularly hosts sessions on CV presentation, effective applications and interview skills for 6th Form, College and University students, to give them the very best chance of successfully securing a role in their chosen career.
Rebecca was a finalist in 2013’s Birmingham Young Professional of the Year Awards and in 2014 was recognised as a “rising star in business” by an independent board. In November 2016, she was awarded a Fellowship from Birmingham Metropolitan College in recognition of her contribution to mentoring, one of only two that are awarded annually. October 2017 saw Rebecca recognised as Birmingham Businesswoman of the Year at the annual Birmingham Awards, an achievement she is extremely proud of and honoured to have received.
A big believer in the value that can be gained from creating positive business connections, Rebecca is the founder of seven successful networking events in the region; including the incredibly popular Colmore Curry Club.
He is a board member of the Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership where he is Chair of the Access to Finance Group and the Business Competitiveness Group. He is also member of the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) Investment Board and an Operations Board member of the Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF) where the first phase of the £250million SME investment funding has recently been launched for region. He is a Visiting Professor at Birmingham City University where he is also Chair of the Business School Advisory Board.
Having been nominated for and various awards and accolades, the past 12 months have been particularly notable for Open Study College. In 2017, it celebrated its 10th year anniversary, and has since grown from strength to strength, showing promise and potential in the upcoming future. They were also named Further Education College of the Year 2017 at the Education Awards.
Established in 2007 by CEO Mark Rutter and co-founding COO Samantha Rutter, the family-run business was founded on the belief that education should be available to everyone at their own convenience. The intent was to provide high-quality courses throughout a wide range of subjects, to be studied at the students’ own pace in their own time. Up to this day, this remains the ethos of the college.
Their success can be accredited to their dedication and commitment to their students. Frequent evaluation of student feedback is collated, listened to and acted upon to influence their next steps forward. The feedback helps to create an unbiased perspective of what is working well and what needs improvement.
Samantha has a wealth of experience within the private education sector and running businesses, so much so that she is a multi-award winning businesswoman, most recently being name Businessperson of the Year at the Solihull Chamber of Commerce Awards 2017. Alongside her role at Open Study College, Samantha is also Co-Owner and Director at Wiggles & Giggles Day Nursery.
She’s “absolutely thrilled” to be on the judging panel at this years’ Education Awards.
He was previously Pro-Vice-Chancellor at Plymouth University with responsibility for Regional Enterprise and Professor of Knowledge Transfer.
Julian has extensive experience of the private sector, as well as transferring higher education knowledge into commercial or public policy outcomes.
As leader of its strategy on business and employer engagement, Julian strengthens Birmingham City University’s connection with the City and region. He leads on research, innovation and knowledge exchange development, together with expanding commercial activities.
Julian has significant experience of both higher education and the private sector, as well as successfully transferring research and learning from one to the other.
Tony Elvin has been the General Manager at Hotel du Vin Birmingham since 2012 and has spent a total of 24 years in hospitality; Bars, Health & Fitness, Family Entertainment and for the last 10 years, Hotels. He has worked his way around the country from Essex to Devon, all around the Home Counties and even Manchester before finally settling in Brum and feeling very much at home.
Tony is also a Council Member of the Midland Wine Spirit Association, Board Director at the Colmore BID, Trustee for the Birmingham Civic Society and Patron for Cure Leukaemia and The Birmingham Big Art Project. A budding Sommelier, Tony coordinates the Hotel du Vin wine event programme.
Over the years Tony has become successively more involved in supporting local education organisations as a mentor and Local Advisory Board Member with the Solihull 6th Form Career Academy Programme and is a guest speaker for UCB, BCU, Halesowen College, Joseph Chamberlain College, South & City College and Plantsbrook School, amongst others. He also recently assisted UCB as an external advisor for their MSc/Pgdip Hospitality with Tourism Management programme.
“As somebody that failed to flourish in 80’s comprehensive school education I have felt compelled to support education organisations that really are engaging young people and inspiring them to achieve great things. For this reason, the opportunity to help recognise such organisations through the Education Awards, was one that I could not turn down”