We are a  week  away from our fourth event in our series of Courageous conversations and this topic certainly resonates strongly at the present time.


The murder of George Floyd and the subsequent global, national, and local demonstrations of support have prompted a conversation between JUST Lincolnshire and Voluntary Centre Services about how we can address inequalities connected with ethnicity and the health system. We feel this is the right time to widen conversation across the county … it is also the right thing to do.


We have held a number of courageous conversations which have been extremely insightful and impactful with plenty for attendees to take away with them.


As a result, we invite you to contribute to the fourth in a series of online conversations on 04/11/20, 10.30am – 11.45am. This conversation will be exploring the impact of recent events on Business.


We feel that it is vital to provide this space to allow individuals, organisations, and communities a period of reflection on the issues and challenges that have been compounded by the impact of current pandemic.


These events will be in the form of a facilitated conversation with four panel members chosen based on their lived experience of the topic being discussed; as part of their role within their organisation; or expertise in the subject. JUST Lincolnshire will ensure that this discussion place is one of respect and space to listen and be heard.


We hope this will provide an opportunity for us all to join JUST Lincolnshire in their aims to:


  • Change the divisive nature of some of the conversation. We seek to provide a safe space and facilitate respectful discussion.


  • Challenge, through education, systems, processes, and personal behaviours that discriminate against others and place barriers in the way of personal progress.


  • Champion the work of allies, both locally and nationally, that seek to empower and enable the voice of BAME communities to be heard.


  • Collaborate with all those who seek to bring real change in the challenging and removal of racism and discrimination.


  • Celebrate the diverse population of Lincolnshire and the contribution of BAME communities to the life of the county



The panel members are:

Ruchi Aggarwal

Director Business Development and Associate Professor, Lincoln International Business School, University of Lincoln

Ruchi is a business professional with over 2 decades of multi-industry, cross cultural experience across UK and India. She has worked in diverse industries like Sports, Telecom and IT @ Microsoft – before joining the University of Lincoln, where she is Director Business Development at the Lincoln International Business School.


Ruchi manages business relationships in Greater Lincolnshire, across the UK and even internationally. She is additionally the Regional International lead for India, building key partnerships across nations. She and her team have received many awards for their work at the University, which span innovations with local businesses, the Military and International partnerships.


As an additional interest, Ruchi is a keen speaker on Diversity and inclusion, with a focus on Inspiring Women leaders. She is currently authoring her first book on Women Leadership which focuses on taking charge and ‘Getting off the Sticky Floor’.


Emma Olivier-Townrow


An Award winning Customer Service and Business Innovation, intrepreneur.

Honoured and privileged to enjoy a career  immersed  in   Education, Business, Theatre, Arts, Culture, Hospitality and Tourism. I love using  innovation and creative thinking to deliver strategy that enriches communities whilst generating business revenue and growth. IOD Ambassador for Diversity, Board Member; Grimsby cultural development fund NELC, Apprenticeship ambassador, IOD committee member, former member of  Lincolnshire County Council scrutiny committees; Children and young people’s Services and Lincolnshire Safeguarding Children Board. Former school governor and currently Panel member of NWCH Counselling hub, Team Lincolnshire and Lincoln University Innovation and Productivity programmes. Business development manager of  the New Theatre Royal Lincoln  and Stokes Tea and Coffee. A persistent challenger of unconscious bias and always pushing for equality, inclusion and diversity in education and business.

Meryl Shirley


Meryl has worked for a vast number of social justice projects with ethical business and with causes having an environmental interest. She has worked as a Social Worker prior to completing a Master’s in Business Administration and subsequently worked in various ethical business start-ups before opening her own businesses, Women Growing a Business, which is a local network offering training and support to those underrepresented in the business world. Meryl mentors’ students in Lincoln International’s Business School and the Women in Work society in Lincoln University.

Meryl also runs E collaborators, which is a platform for those whose daily work has meaning and purpose beyond profit alone, to amplify their market share through their connections, collaborations and promote socially just, environmentally and financially sustainable charities, social enterprises, businesses and consumers promoting healthy life and work for both people and the planet.

Become a member to connect with other like-minded business owners, and access support to make a strong impact across the UK and beyond.

Simon Beardsley

Simon Beardsley is Chief Executive of the Lincolnshire Chamber of Commerce; a leading business representation and support organisation in the county, promoting the interests of member businesses, connecting and contributing in partnership towards a prosperous regional economy making a difference to its members.

His current position directly involves him supporting a number of key local business support organisations (including the Growth Hub, Greater Lincolnshire LEP, University of Lincoln, Bishops Grosseteste University) as well as organisations with a social and cooperative ethos, such as Community Assets Plus and the Co-operative Development Agency. Simon is also a director of the East Midlands International Trade Association.

Mr Beardsley has a long history of supporting the set up and development of sector based groups that allow businesses and the public sector to come together to build and deliver coordinated activity that might not happen without such structures being in place. To date successful examples include collaboration in town management, Business Improvement Districts, the visitor economy, place marketing, the food sector and international trade.

Simon has a previous career in commercial banking where he gained sector expertise in the agriculture, horticulture, property and construction as well as supporting businesses to trade internationally. During this time he became an Associate of the Chartered Institute of Bankers.

JUST Lincolnshire would like those attending these events to be able to ask questions and make a meaningful contribution but as this conversation will be held virtually it will be more difficult to have a flowing questions and answer session. Therefore, we ask that questions you may wish to see addressed are submitted via this anonymous form https://tinyurl.com/y55dmfjy   or Whatsapp on 07827702638 or just email by return.


Register your interest in the event here: https://tinyurl.com/y6hhe63h


Kind regards


JUST Lincolnshire Team!


Translate »