“Exciting” new role for literacy charity chief

THE founding director of a literacy charity said she was “overwhelmed” to be appointed to the prestigious post of Deputy Lord Lieutenant of South Yorkshire.

THE founding director of a literacy charity said she was “overwhelmed” to be appointed to the prestigious post of Deputy Lord Lieutenant of South Yorkshire.

Deborah Bullivant, chief executive officer and founding director of Rotherham-based Grimm & Co, is one of five new deputies line up to work under His Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant, Prof Dame Hilary Chapman, who was appointed to the role in November 2021.

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She said: "I’m so delighted to have joined the team of Deputy Lord Lieutenants, as one of five newly appointed across South Yorkshire.

“I was overwhelmed to be asked to join this wonderful group of people, and I am so excited to have been given this opportunity to support HM Lord-Lieutenant Prof Dame Hilary Chapman in celebrating and recognising the good work that takes place across our region.”

Deborah started her career in community education, leading to headteacher positions, before going on to national educational leadership and policy advisory roles.

Specialising in literacy, she champions arts-based learning approaches to narrow the gap for marginalised children, young people, and adults.

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Last year, Deborah achieved a doctorate in education from the University of Sheffield and was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Jubilee Honours List for her dedication to children and young people’s literacy in Rotherham.

Lord-Lieutenants are the King’s representative in the county and in her role as Deputy Lieutenant, Deborah will support and deputise for Prof Dame Chapman.

Duties may include attending royal visits to the county, representing the Lieutenancy at ceremonial events and ceremonies and any other duties that the HM Lord-Lieutenant may ask to be undertaken on her behalf.

She will undertake the voluntary role in addition to her work at Grimm & Co, which is currently in the final phase of a two-year building project to create a new permanent home on Ship Hill.

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The town centre building is on its way to being transformed into a new enhanced and accessible offering and is expected to open in the autumn.

Also picked for the role is Lt-Col Mac McPherson, a former army officer and Rotherham Hospital public governor.

The chairman and proud supporter of Rotherham Military Community Veterans Centre, Mac served in several operational theatres.

He was an Arctic and Mountain Warfare Instructor, the youngest Regimental Sergeant Major in the army and served in the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst as a chief instructor.

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Since leaving the army he has been a director and trustee in a number of charitable organisations, with an emphasis on veterans’ groups and those in and around the criminal justice system.

He was awarded an MBE in 2009 birthday honours list and was the High Sheriff of South Yorkshire in 2022/23.

Sheffield chartered account Bookey Oshin, who has worked closely with Sheffield Theatres is also among the newcomers, as are Mark Storey, chief Executive officer of Sheffield-based charity Sheffield Churches’ Council for Community Care, and Reverend Canon Keith Farrow, Vicar of West Barnsley

Prof Dame Chapman said described the five new Deputy Lieutenants as “outstanding servants of South Yorkshire”.

“In their different fields they have contributed to making life better for the rest of us and, as Deputy Lieutenants, will continue to do so.”