Bristol welcomes three new international ambassadors

Bristol welcomes three new international ambassadors

Bristol has appointed three new international ambassadors to play a key role in increasing the city’s cultural and economic presence on the world stage.

7 February 2022

Marti Burgess, Fuad Mahamed and Clare Reddington will support the council with its ambition to be a global city by working with others across the world for local and global benefit.

Nominated by the Mayor of Bristol and the city’s International Strategy Board, ambassadors are chosen for their strong and active international connections. It is hoped that they can use their expertise and connections to share Bristol’s story and develop new opportunities with cities across the globe.

Mayor of Bristol Marvin Rees said: “Our international strategy was developed in 2016, with the aim of creating a stronger and more inclusive city. We are very proud of the work we’ve done so far. Our international work is not just about trade and investment but also about leadership on global issues that affect cities, such as climate change, and working in partnership with those who have international connections to open up opportunities for culture, education and business.

“With an inspiring passion for creating these essential international links, Marti, Fuad and Clare will each bring with them experience from a range of sectors and existing relationships with people and businesses from around the world. I know they will all promote Bristol brilliantly.”

Marti is a Partner and leads the Corporate Team within the Bristol office of national law firm Bevan Brittan with a focus of advice and support to SMEs.

She has been active in building links across the African Diaspora but particularly with Jamaica and the Caribbean.

She is also Chair of Black South West Network, sits on the Bristol Ideas Board and has director roles with several key social enterprises in the city.

Fuad came to the UK as a refugee from Somalia with no English and went on to obtain a first-class degree in Engineering from the University of Bath followed by an MSc in Management from Lancaster Business School.

He set up Ashley Community Housing in 2008 to support the resettlement of refugees like himself, and has built the organisation into one of the leading providers of integration support for excluded and marginalised people including supported housing, training and employment programmes.

It now spans across three cities, employs 80 people and works with 3,500 individuals a year.

As well as working with diasporic communities living in UK, Fuad is continuously invited to present his work on integration and resettlement to international audiences. He hopes to use these extensive networks for the benefit of Bristol.

Clare joined Bristol’s Watershed, one of Europe’s leading film culture and digital media centres, in 2004 establishing its creative technology programmes including Pervasive Media Studio.

She became CEO in 2018. Clare works with industry, academic and creative partners from around the world to champion inclusion, support talent and develop new ideas.

Clare is a trustee of the British Council and as part of Watershed’s Playable City Programme is collaborating with creative communities in Lagos, Seoul, Tokyo and Durban.

The three new international ambassadors started their voluntary posts in January.

The posts will initially be for one year, but with the intention that they continue on an annual basis to build a stronger and wider network of international ambassadors for the city. To read their full biographies, visit the Original by Bristol website.

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