Everton CEO Awarded University Honour

Everton CEO Professor, Dr Denise Barrett-Baxendale has been described as "a tireless ambassador for the city" and "a role model for young people" after receiving an honorary degree from the University of Liverpool.
Professor, Dr Barrett-Baxendale was conferred with a Degree of Doctor of Laws in recognition of her achievements in education, commerce, charity and sport at an event on Tuesday (6 December).
Prior to taking up her current role in June 2018, Professor, Dr Barrett-Baxendale had transformed Everton in the Community as its CEO and been both Deputy CEO and a Board Member at Everton.
She was awarded an MBE for ‘Services to the Community of Merseyside’ in June 2014 and was later appointed a Deputy Lieutenant in the County of Merseyside.
At the conferment, Professor, Dr Barrett-Baxendale was praised for her role in delivering Everton's new stadium - a project that will bring an estimated £1.3bn boost to the UK economy alongside tens of thousands of jobs to the Liverpool City Region - and her contribution to "many local, national, and international causes". 
Speaking at the event, Professor Dinah Birch, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Cultural Engagement at the University of Liverpool, said: "[Professor, Dr Barrett-Baxendale's] achievements in the field of education, commerce, charity and sport are outstanding.
"She is a leader of a crucial anchor organisation in the city; a tireless ambassador for Liverpool; a role model for young people, especially girls in this city - which still has too few women in its senior positions; and an inspiration to her colleagues.
"She does what she does for the Club, its fans and for the city – not for herself. Denise gives heart, mind, and soul to all her commitments. You can’t fail to be impressed by her professionalism, passion and commitment. But what shines through all her achievements is her sheer humanity."
Professor, Dr Barrett-Baxendale, who had a 16-year career in education before joining Everton in the Community in 2010, said: "I am honoured today to receive a Degree of Doctor of Laws from the University of Liverpool.
"As a daughter of this city, I am passionate about its people, its growth, its future - and celebrating all that makes Liverpool one of the greatest, most welcoming places in the world. 
"I would like to thank the University of Liverpool. To be recognised in this way is truly humbling."
At the event, it was also noted how Professor, Dr Barrett-Baxendale led Everton’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, which included the co-ordination of the Blue Family campaign. The award-winning initiative, launched ahead of the first national lockdown, saw the Club and Everton in the Community support more than 31,000 vulnerable families and individuals to combat the impacts of lockdown, financial instability, and social isolation.
The latest award complements the honorary visiting professorship bestowed on Professor, Dr Barrett-Baxendale by Liverpool Hope University in 2016 and an Honorary Fellowship awarded by Liverpool John Moores University in 2017.
Away from Everton and football, Professor, Dr Barrett-Baxendale was Chair of Liverpool’s successful bid to host the Special Olympics Great Britain National Summer Games in 2021 - an event that was ultimately cancelled due to the pandemic. She is also Chair of Liverpool City Region's Station Commission, and has sat on a Creativity Commission for the Lord Mayor of Liverpool, served as a patron of St Vincent’s School for the Blind in West Derby, and as a Local Authority Ambassador for looked-after children in the city of Liverpool.