Adrian Hawkins, Chair of Weldability-Sif, Letchworth Garden City, has been appointed as the new Deputy Chair of Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership.

The decision to appoint Adrian as Deputy Chair, who already sits on the LEP Board and is Chair of its Skills and Employment Board, was ratified at the last LEP Board meeting on 29th June and is now in effect.

Adrian joined the LEP Board in 2014 and has taken over from Peter O’Gorman, Regional Director of Santander Business Banking. Peter has been a LEP Board member since the LEP’s inception in 2012.

Mark Bretton, Chair of Hertfordshire LEP, said: “Peter has worked tirelessly in pursuit of economic growth for the county. During his five-year term the LEP has gone from strength to strength, securing millions of pounds of investment for the county.

“Peter has provided wise counsel on numerous occasions and his attention to detail and level of scrutiny has been invaluable.

“The LEP Board’s decision to appoint Adrian as Peter’s successor was unanimous, and is testament to the contribution Adrian has made over the past three years. I know that Adrian shares my passion for the training and development of young people and I look forward to us working more closely together to ensure that everyone regardless of their socio-economic background can contribute to society and their local economy.”

Peter O’Gorman said: “I am delighted to have supported the Hertfordshire LEP over the past five years and share my sector expertise for the benefit of both the LEP and the wider economy of Hertfordshire. I am sure that under Adrian's leadership, the LEP will continue to make a difference in the business community and I wish everyone at Hertfordshire LEP the best of success for the future.”

Adrian Hawkins said: “Peter O’Gorman has served the LEP well since its inception and he will be a tough act to follow. I am delighted with my appointment as Deputy Chair of Hertfordshire LEP and fully appreciate the confidence my fellow Board Members have shown in me.

“I am looking forward to closely supporting both Mark Bretton and the LEP team, as our organisation delivers some key responsibilities from the Government to help drive forward Hertfordshire’s economy and Industrial Strategy.” 

Board Members are unremunerated and are elected to stand for a three-year period. This can be extended to a maximum of six years in order to refresh the membership of the Board on a regular basis.

About Adrian Hawkins: Chairman Weldability-Sif

After leaving college, Adrian started working with BOC gases in sales of industrial gases and equipment. After several roles within the sales, training and safety areas of the business, he was appointed a regional sales manager to oversee the conversion of business from end users to distributors, before leaving to start Weldability.

Between 1991 and 2003 Weldability managed a number of small acquisitions and in 2004, after 23 years of steady and consistent growth, it completed the takeover of Sifbronze Ltd, a welding consumable manufacturing company established in the UK in 1925.

Today it trades as Weldability-Sif, supplying welding products from its base in Letchworth Garden City to some 2000 distributors nationally who, in turn, supply many of the major UK and international manufacturers.

In 2010, it formed the Weldability-Sif Foundation, a charity to support the development of skills training for welders by sponsoring skills centres throughout the UK.

In April 2011, Adrian was elected chairman and managing director of the Association of Welding Distribution Ltd on a two-year rotation. In 2012 he was appointed managing director of Welding World Ltd and a director and trustee of the North Herts Studio Schools’ Trust.

In 2014 Adrian accepted the appointment to the Herts LEP Main Board and was requested to chair the Skills and Employment Board from March 2015, integrating the skills needs of businesses with local educators.