Simon has a strong passion for human rights and believes this concerns more than just the basic rights. Simon wants to live in a world where everyone is respected and valued for who they are, and where the most needy and underrepresented are given the voice they need and deserve to make themselves heard. Simon also believes in caring for the environment whilst ensuring that the lives we lead are sustainable, leaving the world in a condition to be enjoyed by future generations. Simon feels very proud to work for an international organisation which places its ethical responsibilities as a high priority and believes that other organisations should take the same view. Furthermore, Simon feels that good health thanks to a developed healthcare system should be enjoyed by everyone and we should work together across the world to support this. Simon has a real passion for community, and is a very active member of the community in which he lives in York, UK, and as part of diversity communities across the United Kingdoms. Simon blogs at www.simonrodgers.org
Simon Rodgers joined Aviva plc in 2006 and has held various roles across Business Change, IT, and now Procurement where he is a Category Manager responsible for the supply management of Corporate Events, Sponsorship, Corporate Merchandise, and Customer Incentives & Recovery; a role in which he achieved his Graduate Diploma with the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply. Simon was a founding member of Aviva Pride (the Aviva Employee Network Group) in 2007, and has been an active member of the Steering Committee and the Network Lead in York ever since.
Simon has been a supporter of Stonewall (the LGBT charity) for a number of years and has supported and volunteered at various events. In 2008, Simon attended the Stonewall Leadership Programme, an experience which had a huge impact both personally and professionally. In 2010, Simon was asked to return and give the opening speech to the Leadership Programme, which was a tremendous accolade and showed how Simon had developed since the Programme. Simon led the Aviva submission into the Workplace Equality Index in 2011 and has since supported other organisations in their approach to the Index, working collaboratively to share best practice and improve workplaces across the UK. In recognition of his work in this field, Simon has given speeches at two Stonewall conferences, talking about the importance of Role Models in the workplace. Simon has also spoken at a number of other conferences events organised by universities, community groups and charities.
Simon actively volunteers within his community as well as undertaking charity work across the United Kingdom. In 2010 Simon organised York Pride, a public event which celebrated LGBT diversity, and attracted hundreds of guests. This was a particular highlight for Simon, as it demonstrated his ability to find, build, and lead a motivated, successful and committed team of volunteers, and to engage with the local LGBT community, the wider community, and local businesses. It involved engagement with local authorities, the media, and many other interested parties. The event was hugely successful and has grown from strength since 2010, with visitor numbers exploding beyond expectations. Since the event, Simon was then elected as the Chair of the York & District LGBT Forum and was a co-opted member of the City of York Council Equalities Advisory Group, advising the Council on equality and diversity issues.
In 2011, Simon was a Liberal Democrat candidate in the City of York Council Elections, narrowly missing out on a seat. As a member of the local party executive committee, Simon was then selected as a candidate in recognition of his work in, and commitment to, the community in which he lives. The election was very challenging, but gave Simon enormous exposure to the inner workings of local politics, a local Council, and a local election. Simon also met and spoke with thousands of local residents, building relationships, and taking action on local issues on their behalf, which proved to be immensely rewarding.
In the community, Simon has previously fundraised for Yorkshire Cancer Centre, Macmillan Cancer Support, Martin House Children’s Hospice, Hearing Dogs for Deaf People, Our Celebration, St Leonards Hospice and The Albert Kennedy Trust. Simon has previously been a Volunteer Youth Worker for the York LGBT Youth Group, a regular volunteer at Cancer Research UK Race For Life events, and every Christmas Day volunteers at the Arc Light Homeless Centre in York. Simon was also a founding member of Make-York, the networking group for young professionals in York, which is part of the wider York Professionals group.
In his spare time, Simon enjoys attending music events, theatre, and reading. Simon has previously rowed at York City Rowing Club and held a position on the Management Committee between 2008/2009. Simon is also a Friend of York Theatre Royal and a Door Supervisor.
Simon blogs at www.simonrodgers.org
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