Spring Expo 2020
Dame Stella Rimmington DCB MA
Former Director General of the Security Service (MI5).
Dame Stella speaks about her life and career. Her straightforward approach and friendly, candid manner are combined with an informed view and intelligent judgement. She is happy to take questions.
A best-selling thriller writer, Dame Stella chaired the Judging Panel for the Booker Prize for Fiction in 2012. The Moscow Sleepers is the 10th in her Liz Carlyle thriller series and was published in 2018.
Dame Stella is known to billions of people worldwide as the role model for the character “M” played by Dame Judi Dench in the James Bond 007 films. It is rumoured that her own personal style, and choice of clothes, influenced the film character of “M”………who knows?!
Born in 1935, Stella Rimington was educated at Nottingham High School for Girls and Edinburgh University. After gaining a postgraduate diploma in the Study of Records and the Administration of Archives at Liverpool University, she worked in the Worcester County Record Office and the India Office Library, London.
In 1965 she accompanied her husband on a posting to the British High Commission in New Delhi. Whilst there, she worked part-time for the Security Service, which had an office in New Delhi at that time.
Returning to the UK in 1969, she joined the Security Service as a full-time employee. She worked in all the main fields of the Service's responsibilities – counter subversion, counter espionage and counter terrorism – and became Director of all three branches.
Appointed Director General of MI5 in 1992, Stella Rimington was the first woman to take the post and the first Director General to be publicly named in the Government’s new spirit of openness. She retired in April 1996.
Made a Dame Commander of the Bath in the 1996 New Year Honours List, Dame Stella has Honorary Degrees from Universities including Nottingham, Warwick, Lucy Cavendish Cambridge and Exeter. Edinburgh University elected her “Alumna of the Year 1994”.
Books by Dame Stella Rimington:
Open Secret – her autobiography (published in 2001).
Best-selling thrillers, featuring MI5’s Liz Carlyle: At Risk, Secret Asset, Illegal Action, Dead Line, Present Danger, Rip Tide, The Geneva Trap, Close Call, Breaking Cover, and The Moscow Sleepers (2018).
Dr. Geoff Mackey
Geoff was brought up on a small family farm in South Armagh, N. Ireland, he read biology in Liverpool and followed it with a range of post graduate qualifications in Health & Safety and management including a sleepless MBA. His doctorate concerned the strategic business value of social networks.
Today Geoff is an executive Director at BASF plc (the world’s largest technology & chemicals business) with a portfolio including sustainability, communications and external affairs. As a trustee and non-exec he also advises a wide range of strategic and tactical groups in sectors including science, environment and education.
Historically, he has been paid (occasionally working) as a bouncer (N. West), research scientist (mid Wales), sports coach (Midlands), bingo hall manager (N. East), HSE inspector (Yorkshire), bar manager (N. Ireland), PR adviser (Cambs), trainer (London) and ran his own consultancy (Shrops).
In his 'spare time' Geoff played rugby for Waterloo and Halifax; American Football in America and Australia; has sung and danced(!) with operatic societies; represented Breconshire at athletics; and is a published poet. He once won an award for his writing, and raises substantial charitable donations standing on his hind legs in public and talking…
Well known at the Rotary podium, Geoff has served three Districts, RIBI and RI in a wide range of posts. He is a Bequest Society member, a GSE scholar and Past Rotaract Chairman GB&I; he was awarded a Paul Harris Fellowship in 2004 and in 2005 was honoured to receive an RI Service Above Self Award.
He lives with his long suffering wife Luisa and their two sons, Alexander (13) and Nicolas (10) in rural Staffordshire and enjoys a full life to the full.….
Gary is a Past District Governor of Rotary in The Heart of England. (D1060)
Professionally he is a Surgical Podiatrist with extensive experience of working with a client group with mental health needs and or learning disabilities. He is also a qualified Mental Health First Aider
His subject will be how can we as Rotarians reach out to our community and offer help and support to those suffering with Mental Health issues.
Lea first joined Mercy Ships in July 2016. Prior to this Lea was the Chief Operating Officer at City Gateway and has worked in Senior Management roles within the Voluntary, Charity and Social Enterprise sector for over ten years.
Lea is passionate about seeing the lives of individuals transformed, the role in which we can all play in this and the eradication of diseases of poverty.
Globally, five billion people have no access to safe and affordable surgery when they need it. Mercy Ships operates the largest charity-run hospital ship in the world, taking free medical care and surgery directly to those who need it most. Since 1978, Mercy Ships has worked in more than 55 developing countries, providing services worth more than £1.2 billion that have directly helped more than 2.7 million people.
As well as providing direct medical care on their hospital ship (the Africa Mercy) during a ten-month field service, Mercy Ships implement a programme of system-strengthening and policy change across the whole country, vastly improving the medical infrastructure for generations to come.
Mercy Ships build a five-year relationship with every country we visit, working closely with each government and ministry of health to deliver real, lasting change where it is needed most. Mercy Ships form partnerships with charities and churches in each host nation, in order to serve local communities as effectively as possible. Mercy Ships is working to transform healthcare in Africa permanently.
Kate Stephens is CEO of Smart Works, leading the mission to roll out nationwide and help ever more women into employment.
Based in London, Kate runs HQ operations and oversees Smart Works’ long-established London service, ensuring it remains best-in-class and that learnings are shared across the Smart Works family.
Kate combines senior private sector experience with a passion for the entrepreneurial, dynamic and inspirational charity sector, learnt first as Trustee, Vice Chair and then Chair of a leading family charity and now as CEO of Smart Works.
The Prince's Trust
Harpenden Village Rotary Club (HVRC) extends a helping hand to The Prince’s Trust.
In late 2018, HVRC teamed up with The Prince’s Trust to help young people who are not in employment, education or training.
They are aged between 16 and 25 years old and lack work skills, social skills and confidence.
The Prince’s Trust has a well-established 12-week programme to help and support such young people. On the programme they learn about how to be part of a team. They have to take part in a community project to improve somebody else’s life. They are taught how to compile a CV, given work experience and how to do well at an interview.
The programme is supported by The Prince’s Trust and a range of organisations including Hertfordshire County Council, the Fire and Rescue Service, Hertfordshire Constabulary and Hertfordshire’s Lord Lieutenant’s Office.
The Metropolitan Police, local job centres, businesses and charities also lend their support.
David Rankin from HVRC and Mike Woods, the Prince’s Team leader working with HVRC, will tell you about their experience of the programme.
Trade Aid - Alan Geeson
Alan Geeson was born in Denton, Lincolnshire where he has been an active member of the community for many years serving as a parish councillor and Chairman, school governor and chairman of the Denton Parish Charity.
On leaving school he studied Agricultural Engineering and on graduation joined the family firm of blacksmiths and wheelwrights with the aim to move the firm forward to cope with the increasing developments in mechanised farming and moving on to develop their own range of animal feeding equipment. Due to governmental policy changes in agriculture and other unforeseen problems the business closed in 1985 and he took over the subsidiary company of funeral directing being run by his father who wished to retire. He expanded the business and took additional premises in Grantham and developed a successful independent business before passing on the business and retiring.
In 1982 he was invited to the inaugural meeting of the Rotary Club of Grantham Kesteven and joined Rotary as a founder member and has been an active member ever since, over the time having taken on the roles of secretary, treasurer, chairman of various committees and President.
In 2007 at the time of his retirement, he joined John Asher, another founder member of the club, and the inspiration behind Trade Aid, with other club members to set up Trade Aid and has been a tireless worker for Trade Aid promoting it around the country for the last 12 years.