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Hilary Florek has been appointed Chairman of the Board of the Port of Tyne with immediate effect. Dr Jon Hargreaves CBE has been appointed Deputy Chairman.

The appointments follow the death of the former Chairman, Sir Les Elton, in July this year.

Hilary Florek is a strategic communications and marketing specialist with extensive experience in both the public and private sectors. She established her consultancy, HFPR Ltd, in 2000. Her early career began in PR consultancy before she became PR and Communications Director for the Vaux Group PLC, a role through which she developed extensive investor relations experience.

In addition to her role as Managing Director of HFPR she has considerable experience as a non-executive director for a range of organisations. She has served on the boards of the Community Foundation for Tyne and Wear and Northumberland and the County Durham Foundation. She is a former Trustee of the Sunderland Youth Enterprise Trust and was a board member of Project North East for six years.

She is also a non-executive director of Isos Housing Ltd and a member of the University of Newcastle upon Tyne School of English Advisory Board.

She was appointed Deputy Chairman of the Port of Tyne after six years as a non-executive director. She said: "I am looking forward to leading the Port of Tyne through what promise to be exciting times ahead. The business is in very good shape and my colleagues on the Board and I will endeavour to ensure we continue to develop a vibrant and sustainable port that remains a major contributor to the economy of the North East region and the UK."

Dr Jon Hargreaves was appointed a non-executive director to the Port of Tyne Board in 2010. He is a former Chief Executive Officer of East of Scotland Water, Managing Director of Northumbrian Water, MD of Entec Europe Ltd, non-executive director of British Waterways and Chairman of British Waterways Scotland. He was the Chief Executive Officer of Scottish Water from 2002 to 2007, where he oversaw a £2bn investment programme.

Andrew Moffat, Chief Executive Officer of Port of Tyne, said: "I am pleased to be welcoming Hilary and Jon as the new Chairman and Deputy Chairman and delighted that this means the Board retains expertise and continuity of knowledge at its helm. It ensures we are well-placed to continue to make progress on our plans for growth and to deliver our aim of ensuring that the Port continues to be a thriving, dynamic business supporting the economy of the North East region now and for the future."

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