Meet the 11 young business leaders of the East Midlands who will champion Generation Next – the new Chamber network for their peers

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Posted by: JasmineThompson
Posted on: 13/04/2021

Generation Next, the new East Midlands Chamber network for young professionals, has launched a board of “champions” to help shape its offer.

The group of 11 individuals will take an active role in the development of the network’s activity and profile.

Generation Next supports professionals and the next generation of business leaders aged between 18 and 35, based in Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire.

It features a series of networking events and educational workshops led by a range of East Midlands-based companies and specialist advisers, with the goal of developing its members’ professional networks and skills.

East Midlands Chamber director of resources and Generation Next lead Lucy Robinson said: “We are thrilled to be launching the Generation Next board ‘champions’.

“It features 11 truly fantastic young professionals, representing a range of sectors and backgrounds, and we look forward to working closely with them all.

“Generation Next is passionate about developing and retaining young talent in the East Midlands so it is crucial for our activities to be as relevant as possible for our target audience – and what better a way to achieve this than involving those people in our strategy planning.”

The champions will meet with the Generation Next team quarterly to inform the network’s future direction. The group will also be involved in the judging process of the Generation Next Awards, which closes for entries on Monday 26 April.

Emma Baumback, an independent financial planner at Future Life Wealth Management, has been elected as chair of the board.

She said: “Working in the financial services industry and being a young woman in business, I am in a fortunate position to help to deliver the Generation Next mission and I’m thrilled to be joining the board.

“From experience, I know that confidence can play a huge part in shaping what people in our younger generation decide they want to do in life and how to progress their careers and ambitions. Generation Next’s vibrant community is the perfect vehicle to help develop our skills and get the support from our amazing role models out there.

“Having the opportunity to work with like-minded young professionals to deliver this mission is a humbling and inspiring opportunity and I will put my all into making a real change for the next generation of business leaders in our region.”

Generation Next headline partner the University of Derby will also put forward two members of its student base to sit on the board. Shortlisting is currently underway and the successful applicants will be confirmed in the coming months.

To become a member of the network, visit or email the team at You can also keep up with the network via LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.


Meet the Generation Next champions

Emma Baumback (chair)

Emma is an independent financial planner at Future Life Wealth Management. She has recently been listed in the Top 35 Next Generation Advisers in the prestigious list compiled by New Model Adviser and was also shortlisted for Rising Star of the Year in the 2020 Women in Investment Awards.

Beth Bearder

Beth is a senior associate solicitor at Keebles specialising in employment law. Beth advises on a range of employment law matters including claims for unfair dismissal, harassment, breach of contract and misconduct investigations – with expertise advising on disability discrimination and the exit of senior executives.

Byron Burghart

Byron is an investment manager at Brewin Dolphin and works with people from a variety of backgrounds to help them make the most of their finances. He has recently completed an MBA at Cranfield University.

Chathura Sudharshan

Chathura is the founder of digital fashion technology business Chanodil. He has both a fashion design and product development bachelor’s degree at the University of Moratuwa in Sri Lanka, and a master’s degree in entrepreneurship and business operations at Nottingham Trent University.

Daniel Nikolla

Daniel is the marketing manager at professional and digital signage company Hardy Signs. Last year, he was awarded Generation Next Young Professional of the Year at the Derbyshire Business Awards and Greater Birmingham Chamber’s Future Face of Sales, Marketing and Comms.

Hope Thorley

Hope is a senior resourcing advisor at multi-disciplinary construction and property consultancy Pick Everard – and is responsible for sourcing and attracting talent for the firm. Prior to working within recruitment, Hope worked within the hospitality sector both in the UK and overseas.

Katie Gilbert

Katie is the head of product development at food gifting company, TTK Confectionery. Accolades to her name include the Rising Star Award at the Women in Business Awards and Enterprising Women Team of the Year 2020.

Katrina Starkie

Katrina is the space and community manager at the new Dryden Enterprise Centre at Nottingham Trent University. The centre is a new home for entrepreneurs, start-ups and SME’s at the university. Katrina is also on the board for the D2N2 Growth Hub and is a long-term supporter of the Chamber’s Enterprising Women network.

Lee Tomes

Lee is an award-winning filmmaker and managing director of video storytelling company Orange Fox Studios. Lee has had various projects screened at national film festivals as both a director and cinematographer. His most recent triumph came at the 2018 Birmingham International Film Festival when his collaborative short film Martin Sharpe is Sorry scooped Best Micro Short. He is also the winner of Generation Next Young Professional of the Year category at the Chamber’s Leicestershire Business Awards.

Rubina Lokat

Rubina is an accomplished management accountant with a specific eye for design combined with a drive for results. She is the managing director of PrintPrint, a Leicester-based design and print house.

Scarlett Tinsley

Scarlett is the brand and marketing executive at Leicester-based recruitment consultancy ER Recruitment. Scarlett initially joined the business as an intern while studying at De Montfort University and has since worked on some incredible campaigns and projects.

To view the champions’ profiles, please click here.

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