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International Ambassador – Marti Burgess

Marti has practised as a lawyer with particular expertise in energy, healthcare, technology and manufacturing, who has been advising SMEs on corporate and commercial law, for over 20 years. Her particular areas of specialism are company and business sales and purchases as well as providing companies with all the commercial contracts they need to run their businesses. Marti is a partner in the Corporate Team at Bevan Brittan which is a top 100 UK law firm.

Marti is the chair the Black South West Network. Black South West Network is a black-led racial justice charity which supports the development of dynamic, independent and strong black and minoritised communities, businesses and organisations to flourish whilst challenging systemic barriers.  Black South West Network’s ambition is to be a driving force for racial equality in the South West and nationally through releasing the agency and voice of Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic people such that they can utilize robust research, lived experiences, and innate knowledge to influence decision -making, increase their economic and social capital, and construct a more equitable and prosperous society for Black and Minoritised people everywhere.

In 1994 before becoming a lawyer, Marti and her brother secured VC finance to acquire a 1200 capacity nightclub. Marti was one of the key strategists in turning ‘Lakota’ into an internationally renowned music venue specialising in underground music. In the early days at Lakota it implemented an innovative marketing strategy to establish the brand. Lakota is now an established fixture in Bristol’s cultural landscape. Whilst no longer having a day to day role, Marti remains involved as one of the owners of the business and provides strategic input to ensure Lakota remains current whilst retaining its underground ethos.

Marti also sits on the board of Bristol Cultural Development Partnership, the Bristol City Council’s Economy Board and 91 Ways which is a social enterprise looking to connect disadvantaged communities in Bristol using the uniting power of food.