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New Tyne and Wear Deputy Lieutenants appointed

Posted on Wednesday 17 May 2017
New Deputy Lieutenants

From left to right Deborah Jenkins, John Robinson, Ruth Thompson, John Mowbray, Lord-Lieutenant and Jeff Brown.

Five new Deputy Lieutenants have been appointed to support the Lord Lieutenant of Tyne and Wear fulfil her official duties and help represent Her Majesty The Queen.  They will join an existing team of 35 Deputy Lieutenants who cover a wide range of interests across the area.

The Lord-Lieutenant of Tyne and Wear, Mrs Susan Winfield, OBE, commissioned the new Deputy Lieutenants in a ceremony last night at Trinity House Newcastle.

The five people commissioned to take on the role are Jeff Brown, Deborah Jenkins, John Mowbray, John Robinson and Ruth Thompson.

A well-known face on regional television in the North East and Cumbria for more than 20 years, Jeff Brown works as a news and sports reporter and presenter with BBC Look North. Prior to that he was a sports reporter and presenter for ITV Tyne-Tees, having moved into TV after a career as a newspaper journalist with the Birmingham Post and Mail and the Newcastle Journal.

Deborah Jenkins, MBE, is Chief Executive of the Derwent Initiative, an independent charity based in Newcastle, which aims to reduce the risk of sexual offending which was set up after the enquiry into the Cleveland child abuse cases of the early 90s. She also runs her own consultancy and is Independent Chair of the Neonatal Network – a clinical network for the North East and Cumbria, helping to build improved neonatal services for premature babies and their families across all NHS units in the region.  She has recently become the Chair of ‘Together for Children’, a new independent company set up to run children’s services in Sunderland.

 John Mowbray, OBE, retired as Director of Corporate Affairs at Northumbrian Water in 2012.  He was awarded an OBE for services to the water industry and charity in the same year. He has always been active in the region and is a Past President of the North East England Chamber of Commerce. Amongst other things he is currently Co-Chair of the North East Culture Partnership, Deputy Chairman of the University of Sunderland and Chairman of the Sunderland Music Arts and Culture Trust. He is involved with a number of charities and particularly Northumbrian WaterAid, which he previously chaired for 16 years.  He was High Sheriff of Tyne and Wear for 2016/17.

 John Robinson is currently a non-executive Director for Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust. With a professional background in Environmental Health he worked in local government for over 40 years serving Gateshead Council at Chief Officer level until retiring in 2013 as Strategic Director of Local Environmental Services.  Commissioned into the Royal Air Force (Volunteer Reserve) in 1974 he served in the Air Training Corps as Deputy Wing Commander of Durham/Northumberland Wing and is currently a member of the Reserve Forces and Cadet Association.

Ruth Thompson, OBE, is an experienced executive and non-executive director and chair, working across energy, economic development, higher education, health and charity sectors.  A solicitor by profession, from local government to the energy industry, she changed course to become the only female director of Transco PLC’s UK gas distribution networks, and later, the Group Corporate Affairs Director with National Grid plc, dealing with communications and UK and EU public policy across the UK and USA.  She was awarded an OBE in 2002 for her lead as Chair of an Employer’s Coalition for New Deal creating employment opportunities for long term unemployed people.  She held the office of High Sheriff for Tyne and Wear in 2014/15.

The Lord-Lieutenant, Mrs Susan Winfield, said: “Deputy Lieutenants all hold important positions in our communities and these new appointees have been chosen because of their contribution to the community and society in general. Each one of them brings their own contribution to the Lieutenancy Team and I am really looking forward to working with them.”