Meet the Team
Since his appointment as CEO in early 2012 Kim has, through building a dedicated team and increasing the Chamber’s range of services, developed Cornwall Chamber of Commerce into an organisation that is firmly at the forefront of Cornwall’s business community.
This approach - extending ambition, redefining purpose, motivating teams and improving performance - has been a feature of his career.
A joint honours degree in English Literature and Economics allowed him to combine his interest in powerful narratives with a thorough grounding in business essentials and, after 18 months’ travelling, he took up the first of a number of commercial roles in the publishing sector. This experience (up to management level), led to his founding Brass Tacks Publishing in 1986. Under his stewardship, Brass Tacks became one of the UK’s leading contract publishers and website agencies, with Somerfield, Royal Mail, British Gas and the RFU among its many blue chip clients. He sold the company to Chime Communications in 2000, remaining as MD of their Bristol subsidiary until 2009.
Today, Kim is also a member of, and chairs, several business and education boards:
Chair of Cornwall’s Raising Aspiration & Achievement Strategy (RAAS)
Chair of Governors at Truro School
Trustee of BF Adventure, children’s charity
Director of South West Investment Group (SWIG)
Advisory Board member of Golden Tree Productions
Board member of Clean Cornwall
Director of Falmouth Rugby Club Enterprises
Director of Krowji
Member of Truro & Penwith College Business & Employment Council
Vice-president of Guy's Hospital RFC
Outside of work, his family (wife Sarah and three grown up children), his garden, boating and walking the Coast Path are sources of great enjoyment.
Mel’s role at the Chamber sees her making the most of her wide-reaching business experience. She started her career working in education followed by spells in recruitment and hospitality, with five years in France working for the British Council and Education Nationale, and 12 years as the Business Development Manager for Truro and Penwith College. This career path has shaped an extensive bank of contacts both in the UK and overseas, as well as developing specialisms in marketing, funding, change management and innovative business practices.
Known for her infectious enthusiasm and dedication to supporting businesses, business people and her own team, Mel is firmly ensconced at the heart of the Cornish business landscape. She holds a number of strategic positions including being Chair of SMART Cornwall and the Cornwall Business Support Delivery Board, and a trustee of iSight Cornwall. Mel is on the board of Cornwall Young Enterprise and represents private enterprise on the Local Enterprise Partnership Employment and Skills Board.
John Negus - Office Manager
A Londoner by birth, a Cornishman by choice. Taking up his position at Cornwall Chamber of Commerce in February 2017 marked another new chapter in John’s working life. Having spent most of his career as an industrial engineer in London, Bristol and Hull, a move to Cornwall initially saw John taking up a variety of positions within the heritage sector.
He has worked in visitor services and operations management at the Telegraph Museum, the Royal Institution of Cornwall and Geevor Tin Mine, and has now transferred his skills to supporting the business sector.
Following a varied international career as a top-flight PA, Norma is the Chamber’s chief keeper of diaries and queen of export documents.
Laura Barnes - International Marketing Manager
Laura grew up in Cornwall before embarking on teaching and community projects around the world. Returning to Falmouth in 2014, she worked as a freelance marketing and PR consultant for a raft of small businesses in Cornwall. At the Chamber, Laura manages the Export for Growth programme, offering free advice to help with accessing new markets.