Jo’s first graduate job was working as a trainee community development officer, which gave her an insight into the significance and importance of rural communities and people who live within them. This work led to an opportunity to head up the business support provision delivered by the Rural Women’s Network before moving on to manage a market town regeneration project in Longtown.
More recently Jo has worked with businesses in Cumbria to access academic expertise within the University of Cumbria, through managing collaborative partnerships. For the last five years she has run a spin-off company on behalf of 5 universities in the North West, including the University of Cumbria, offering on-line learning facilities and courses.
Jo believes that communities are such an important part of rural life in Cumbria, and in the work that ACT does to support, develop, and offer a voice to. As Chair her role is to lead ACT through growing funding challenges, whilst continuing to resource and deliver activity that has such a strong and lasting impact on rural communities.