San Leonard, Chief Executive

Currently employed as a Chief Executive of Social Firms Wales, San Leonard is a highly professional business person and entrepreneur who is passionate about working at the heart of community regeneration to develop opportunities that bring about sustainable social change.
Working within family businesses from a very early age, she has successfully grown several business enterprises. Now, with more than 30 years in management and business development within the private sector, she uses that experience whilst working to support the growth of commercially viable social businesses that offer paid employment and career advancement in a mixed ability, supportive business environment.

With considerable first-hand knowledge of working with people with disabilities, San is well placed and understands fully, the need to develop training and work opportunities for people who are often the furthest from the labour market. These valuable experiences and skills are utilised to their fullest in helping and advising organisations who work directly with some of the most excluded groups in today’s society.
Successes have been built on both a good understanding of all sectors within the community and the ability to look at the wider vision and opportunities. Recognised by her peers as a clear strategic thinker, San clearly demonstrates the ability to build long-term cross sector supportive relationships.

San specialises in helping Local Authorities to move trading operations and day services out of Local Authority ownership into external independent Social Firms. A well-respected advocate of cross-sector partnership working, she recognises the real benefits that can be accrued by working with other professional practitioners to bring about sustainable social change. She is ever mindful however, that this approach is not a “quick fix” option but more, a long-term solution to address changing attitudes in society.



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