The two people behind the Save Mount Pleasant campaign are Jonny Douglas and Pennie Raven. They are known locally for their work in creative and social enterprise, through PechaKucha Nights and Sheffield Soup. They are passionate about Sheffield and its people.
Freelance creative director, Social Entrepreneur, Concept Designer
Lecturer in Entrepreneurship + Personal Leadership
Jonny is an accomplished and inspirational change catalyst; dedicating time to being at the heart of a diverse range of cultural and strategic initiatives. He has a wealth of experience in ‘making things happen’, always seeking to push boundaries through creativity, collaboration and harnessing talent; striving to make the world better for everyone.
He sits on a number of advisory boards on Enterprise, Economic Strategy and the CDI Sector for Sheffield City Council, and serves on the Sheffield Creative Guild Board. He is CoCurator of PechaKucha Sheffield, and co-owner of Sheffield Soup, a CoFounder of the ThrowStarfish podcast and comperes for Sofar Sounds Sheffield.
He has his own leadership and design agency, and is passionate about the environment, sustainability and humanity for good. He has mentored and supported many of the city's start up entrepreneurs, international business students and worked widely with young people in schools and colleges inspiring them to consider careers and opportunities an entrepreneurs. He has prioritised making a difference to Sheffield and its people, and the cultural and digital sector of the city.
Businesswoman + Social Entrepreneur
An adopted Sheffield'er of approaching 17 years, Pennie is best known locally for her work on the Inspiring Women Board, as Co-Curator of PechaKucha Nights Sheffield, and Founder of Sheffield Soup and the Global Soup Foundation. She is a persuasive speaker, an influential leader, an experienced change and growth manager and shares her knowledge and experience generously through her training and leadership workshops.
Pennie is owner of HR Guardian Angels a training, HR and recruitment consultancy, and the free Facebook Jobs in Sheffield page. She is a Visiting Lecturer at Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield Enterprise and UTC Sheffield and a CoFounder of the ThrowStarfish podcast.
From humble beginnings Pennie has an inspirational personal and career history. She was homeless by the age of 15, a Director by her mid 20's and has experience in manufacturing, engineering, finance and contact centre industry, in the U.K., USA, Europe and Sheffield. She is an advocate of fairness and equality, and has dedicated the last 6 years of her career to making a difference to Sheffield people and local start up entrepreneurs and small business owners.
Professional Advisory Board
Whilst Jonny and Pennie have a vast amount of experience in business and enterprise, they recognised that they needed help, advice and guidance of significant professional people to help make their vision a reality. They have secured an excellent team of local experts to help, support, break down barriers and make introductions to relevant people and funds to bring the vision to life.
Architect + Director of Bond Bryan architects
Darren is an expert in the planning system and participates in a Sheffield planning agents’ forum to feedback on broad policy and services issues. He is also a member of Sheffield City’s Sustainability and Urban Design Panel. Working with developers and private clients, Darren is currently engaged in large scale mixed use residential and dwellings across the UK. He has also developed a national and international advanced manufacturing portfolio, designing and delivering a series of significant inter-related research and production facilities, for several major industrialists and higher education clients where projects cross disciplinary boundaries.
Darren has worked at Bond Bryan for more than 10 years; prior to joining he worked at a major design practice designing and delivering major public sector projects in health, education and Ministry of Justice, as well as residential and commercial in the private sector.
Darren is personally interested in the future of how we sustainably work, live and play together, which is the ethos of the Mount Pleasant scheme.
Retired Director of Places for People
Kim has an impressive track record, having worked in Community, Neighbourhood and Housing professions for 33 years, culminating in being a Director of Places for People, are one of the UK’s largest property and leisure management, development and regeneration companies, it owns or manage 140,000
homes, with assets in excess of £3 billion, embracing diversity and integrating responsible business principles in all areas. Kim’s specific area of responsibility was Individual Support Services, where she held financial accountability for annual turnover of £38m+ and total assets of £100m+, across 6,000+ properties.
Prof. Tony Ryan OBE
University of Sheffield
Director of Grantham Centre for Sustainable Futures
Professor Tony Ryan was a student at the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST) where awarded a BSc in Polymer Science & Technology (Chemistry) in 1983 and a PhD in 1988. From 1985 to 1988 he was a Lecturer in Polymer Science & Technology at UMIST. He held a NATO Research Fellowship at the University of Minnesota in 1988 and 1989. In 1990 he returned to UMIST to be a Lecturer in Polymer Science & Technology in the Materials Science Department and was promoted to Senior Lecturer in 1994 and Reader in 1995. From 1993 to 1997 he was seconded half-time to the Synchrotron Radiation Source at Daresbury. In 1997 he moved to Sheffield to be The Professor of Physical Chemistry. From 1999-2004 he was the Head of the Department of Chemistry, from 2000-2008 Director of the Polymer Centre 2000-2008, and in the period 2002-2008 The ICI Professor of Physical Chemistry. From 2008-2016 he was the Pro Vice Chancellor for the Faculty of Science at the University of Sheffield.
Tony has many awards: The Plastics and Rubber Institute Silver Medal 1990; The Akzo Chemical Award 1990; Royal Society of Chemistry Thermal Methods Group Award 1992; The Morand Lambla Award of the Polymer Processing Society 1999; The Beilby Medal and Prize of the Royal Society of Chemistry 1999; Royal Society of Chemistry Environmentally Friendly Polymers Award 2003; Officer of the British Empire, OBE, for “services to science” 2006; Ellison-Cliffe Medal & Lecture, Royal Medical Society 2007; Maitland Medal & Lecture, Institute of Structural Engineers 2008; Gold Medal of the Society of Dyers and Colourists 2008; MacroGroup UK Medal, RSC/SCI/IoP 2009; RSC Materials Division Schools Lecturer 2011.
Founder, Creative Arts Development Space
Steve is trustee and founder of CADS (Creative Arts Development Space) and Co-Founder of The Night Kitchen, Party for The People and more recently Tickets for Good. It's a story that spans over 10 years and starts in a small studio in Stag Works, evolving to managing 13 buildings and now over 160 studios in 2016 across Sheffield.
He is an entrepreneur who has created viable and sustainable projects. He is very passionate about the creative and social enterprises, as well as co-operatives, loves that Sheffield is becoming a city with a wealth of creative activity. Steve’s buildings are a great community of artisan productivity, with buildings that have become a true credit to their occupiers, and his lending his voice and experience to Save Mount Pleasant and the Avenues to Zero Project.
Founder Sheaf Valley Heritage
Museum + Heritage Consultant
Brian works with local communities to help them express themselves through interpretation, education and publications. He has collaborated on numerous community projects, many working alongside BME groups and faith communities. He has designed and project managed creative and distinctive heritage initiatives. He is passionate about making unique places accessible to all, and has worked on education projects for museums, heritage sites and community groups in Yorkshire and Manchester.
Entrepreneur and Developer
Ramzi has lived in the neighbourhood for over 20 years, and is locally best known for the 5 years he was Chairman of the Sheffield BME (Black, Minority, Ethnic) Business Forum.
He has 30 years retail business and property development experience, in the U.K., UAE, and Morocco. Locally, he owns local fast food chain Fanoush, online retail SnootyCatz.com and FirstAidUKOnline.
He is currently constructing a student block completing in July comprising of 102 rooms and 21 flats. His latest local development is a £13 Million flagship on Sylvester Street, a combination of retail and residential living.
Sheffield’s Active Citizen
Nigel believes the public should know all we can about the business of the decision makers that affect our lives, our wallets and our democracy.
As an active citizen he strives to improve the levels of transparency and accountability within Sheffield City Council and others. Nigel has helped the Save Mount Pleasant Team navigate complex systems, and challenge at council level.
Entrepreneur + Inventor
Ruth is a Sheffield entrepreneur and inventor of the StairSteady. Ruth won the 2006 Young Engineer of the Year award in Britain with her idea.
She was also picked as the youngest ever of Britain's "Heroines For Hard Times" 35 women under 35 by Management Today, Derbyshire Young Achiever 2006, she was the first ever Women of the Future "YoungStar" award winner, and she was listed on the Yorkshire 42 under 42 in May 2010. Ruth is also Co Founder of Kids Invent Stuff and Managing Director of DROLS an educational toy start up. She also is a trustee of Greenbelt Festival and a passionate advocate of women in STEAM
Expert in sleep behaviours, sleep environments + sleep products
founder of the sleep lab
James is one of the leading sleep experts in the UK, and is one of the 4 experts on Channel 4's 'The Secrets of Sleep'. He brings together his training as a sleep practitioner, a lifetime spent in the sleep products industry (he is the third generation of his family to be involved in this market) and his experience as an insomniac to help individuals sleep better and organisations develop products and services that help us get the sleep we deserve.
He is a renowned expert on the sleep environment and the relationship between the room, sleep products and our behaviours when it comes to sleep. He works with hotels, the medical industry and other residential establishments to help them create the best sleep environments possible and will be helping ensure those living at Mount Pleasant have the healthiest sleep possible.
social Entrepreneur + events organiser
Sara's passion lies in social enterprise, festivals and the environment. Currently the Director of four social enterprises in Sheffield: Mesters Events - a production company specialising in outdoor events and festivals which uses any surplus generated to underwrite work for free at community events and humanitarian trips to refugee camps. Mesters Works - a community of office, studio and workshops spaces in Neepsend rented on a not-for-profit basis to artists, makers and start ups. Peace in the Park - Sheffield's largest free community festival celebrating peace and the incredible music of the Steel City. Rebuild Festival - a brand new festival for 2018 set in a post apocalyptic narrative combining a good old knees up with workshops and discussions around the nature of community, the world we could build and resilience skills.
She is a fellow of the School for Social Entrepreneurs, a Companion of the Guild of St. George, and the only woman to win the Henry Smith Prize for writing in Economics - the piece was an essay on the amorality of capitalism and is a topic she continues to pursue through her social enterprise work. Sara was also a Director of Opus Independents and Now Then magazine until mid-2016 and one of the founders of the Festival of Debate, all things she is proud to watch continue to grow. As the current Coordinator of Sheffield Mental Health Week she also has a keen interest in well-being and psychology and how these things can be addressed in all aspects of her work.
mit sloan fellow
technology and innovation consultant
Aejaz Zahid is a proud Sheffield'er and Sharrow resident with a passion for technology and a firm belief in its potential for empowering communities. Aejaz began his career in the National Health Service (NHS) of England as a Clinical Engineer, developing assistive and rehabilitation technologies for a range of disabilities. Many of the devices his NHS team designed and developed have won numerous national awards for innovation.
In recognition of his work, Aejaz was awarded a prestigious fellowship by the National Endowment for Science, Technology & Arts (NESTA) in 2006 to conceive of new assistive technologies at the cutting-edge intersection of science, technology and the arts. This research led to the successful launch of a software interface that allows severely physically disabled individuals with no movement in any part of the body to compose and perform music using just eye movement. Following the NESTA fellowship, Aejaz returned to the health service to take on senior management roles and established an Assistive & Communication Technology Service in the south east of England, the first dedicated NHS department in the UK to provide advanced communication aids for adults with conditions such as Stroke, MS, Traumatic Brain Injury, Motor Neuron Disease etc.
In 2010, Aejaz was commissioned by the government of Qatar to help establish a national center for assistive technology, the first of its kind in the Middle East. Eventually serving as its Director of Research & Innovation, he co-ordinated the work of development teams geographically dispersed across three continents to bring to market almost two dozen assistive and educational technology products, including hardware and software across a wide range of disability needs. In that role, Aejaz also helped establish an international competition for assistive apps linked to the Mobile World Congress and mentored a number of start-up teams. The competition led to the creation of 52 new applications for various disability needs and the launch of two successful companies. He maintains a connection with the region and is currently organizing the first disability related hackathon in the Middle East to be held in November 2017 in Dubai.
In 2014, Aejaz was awarded the MIT Sloan fellowship to pursue an advanced degree in innovation management at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. After graduating from MIT, Aejaz has taken on varied consulting projects in product and service development for organizations ranging from one of the largest US non-profits (The Arc of the USA) to a number of emerging MIT/Harvard start-ups developing next generation accessible technologies for individuals with diverse conditions such as Autism, Alzheimers, ALS, Blindness, Traumatic Brain Injury etc. MIT’s research, its unique entrepreneurial ecosystem and its practical ethos on “making stuff” that makes a positive difference in the world has ignited a passion for building innovation driven organisations that Aejaz would like to return to Sheffield with. He believes that Sheffield has all the ingredients needed to be a model economic powerhouse of the future driven by innovation, sustainability and a strong sense of community.
Community Advisory Board
We aim to ensure that the voices of local people are heard and help us shape Mount Pleasant today and in the future. It will always be important to keep our community’s engaged, and ensure they are always supported and are listened too.
Jonny and Pennie are structuring the scheme so that it will remain as a service for local people for at least the next 250 years. As such they are writing into the legal infrastructure a role and requirement for an advisory board made up of the everyday local people, to help inform and shape the services and activities Mount Pleasant will provide.
FIll out your details to get involved
Friends of Mt. Pleasant
The surrounding areas have some incredible organisations established to make local peoples life and experience of Sheffield great. Each of those organisations have a seat around our table to help us ensure that what happens at Mount Pleasant supports there activities and ensure that we do not duplicate efforts and support them where and however we can. They have also been very helpful and supportive in our work so far to help save Mount Pleasant.