115 episodes

Welcome to Island Influencers, where we share stories of successful business owners, experienced professionals, entrepreneurs and community leaders based or with influence in the Isle of Man.

This podcast is brought to you by Thornton Chartered Financial Planners, because great Financial Planning has the power to change your life.

Island Influencers Sharon Sutton

    • Business
    • 4.9 • 34 Ratings

Welcome to Island Influencers, where we share stories of successful business owners, experienced professionals, entrepreneurs and community leaders based or with influence in the Isle of Man.

This podcast is brought to you by Thornton Chartered Financial Planners, because great Financial Planning has the power to change your life.

    Derry Kissack BEM, Commentator and frontman of the madcap Purple Helmets, Author and Retired Business Owner

    Derry Kissack BEM, Commentator and frontman of the madcap Purple Helmets, Author and Retired Business Owner

    Welcome to episode 112 of Island Influencers. I'm honoured to introduce this week's Island Influencer, Derry Kissack, BEM.
    Derry is known to thousands, especially as a key member/frontman of the world-famous Purple Helmets motorcycle display team. Many of you will recognise him as the energetic commentator who guides awe-struck spectators through their breathtaking performances. He is a favourite at the TT and shows worldwide.
    You'll immediately notice from his accent that Derry was born and raised here in the Isle of Man. In our conversation, Derry opens up about his life experiences, sharing his childhood memories, education, and profound passion for motorcycles. We also delve into the development of the Isle of Man TT's pit lane and discuss the crucial role of supporting local businesses and individuals who contribute to the island's vibrant tourism industry.
    Derry's journey hasn't been without hardship. He lost both his parents by the age of 24, and he reveals how a motorbike accident led him to write his first book!
    Despite his challenges, Derry's wonderful sense of humour, spirit and resilience shine through, especially in the fascinating story of how the Purple Helmets were formed (he proudly takes credit for getting them into show business!). He even shares some exclusive tales for you, our Island Influencers listeners.
    This episode is packed with great yarns and unforgettable moments I hadn't heard before.
    Here's episode 112 - the incredible life and adventures of Derry Kissack BEM.

    • 1 hr 15 min
    Island Influencer Carol Ann Kinley-Smith

    Island Influencer Carol Ann Kinley-Smith

    In this latest episode, I'm excited to welcome Island Influencer Carol Ann Kinley-Smith, an extraordinary force in criminology, forensic science, and investigative security.
    Carol Ann is committed to leveraging her diverse experiences to enrich society. She brings a wealth of expertise from her extensive career, operating at the highest levels in both investigative and intelligence capacities.
    Originally from the Isle of Man, Carol Ann returned from the UK in 2021 after a distinguished career that included heading Corporate Security and Investigations at the BBC and leading the Royalty Protection Command Team within the Metropolitan Police Service. Her roles have ranged from safeguarding the British Royal Family to spearheading teams assessing threats to high-profile figures.
    Currently, Carol Ann shares her wealth of knowledge as a lecturer at University College, where she teaches Forensic Science and Criminology. Her dedication to empowering students with industry insights promises to inspire future generations of professionals.
    Carol Ann's academic achievements are remarkable, especially as she admits she wasn't academically inclined during her school years. She earned a Distinction in an MSc in Legal and Criminological Psychology from Cumbria University. Her dissertation, which has recently been published and focuses on the experiences of policewomen navigating menopause, underscores her strong advocacy for women's support and resilience in demanding professional settings.
    Here is episode 111 with Island Influencer with Carol Ann Kinley-Smith.

    • 59 min
    Island Influencer Sarah Mercer

    Island Influencer Sarah Mercer

    In this latest episode of Island Influencers, I delve into Sarah Mercer, co-founder of Earthscope’s remarkable story.
    Originally from Liverpool, Sarah moved to the Isle of Man at age two, shaping her childhood along the island's shores and landscapes. Her academic pursuits in Physical Geography at Durham University sparked a deep interest in environmental issues, leading her to co-found Footprint, an annual environmental summit.
    Returning to the Isle of Man, Sarah immersed herself in projects like 'Island Utopias', a lockdown documentary capturing community spirit, and 'Manannan's Charms', an app blending folklore with nature. All while living off-grid, making the film entirely using solar power.
    She collaborated with the Isle of Play to engage children with nature. She explored sustainable practices across Europe with AimHi Earth, presenting alongside notable figures and partnering with impactful organisations globally.
    Sarah's dedication culminated in co-founding Earthscope, driving carbon literacy initiatives, and advocating for sustainable practices.
    She is an advocate, nature lover, filmmaker, and sustainability facilitator. Her journey is one of passion, purpose, and a relentless dedication to creating a more sustainable and harmonious world for all.
    Here is episode 110 with Sharon Sutton in conversation with Island Influencer Sarah Mercer, co-founder of Earthscope.

    • 1 hr 6 min
    Island Influencer Boakesey Closs, the IXth Manx Bard

    Island Influencer Boakesey Closs, the IXth Manx Bard

    This week’s Island Influencer’s life story is nothing short of jaw-dropping. I am only scratching the surface with this introduction.
    Boakesey Closs, the IXth Manx Bard, embodies resilience in every word she weaves. Born amidst unexpected circumstances in London during her mother's return from Nigeria, Boakesey's life path defies convention from the outset.
    Raised in North Wales, she navigated a childhood marked by unique challenges. She exhibited remarkable intellect from a young age, mastering calculus and delving into Tolkien's epic tales in "Lord of the Rings" at a mere eight years old.
    Throughout the conversation, Boakesey candidly shares her experiences navigating through various trials, including caring for her grandmother battling Alzheimer's while embracing single parenthood and pursuing a degree in biochemistry.
    She speaks openly about her battles with mental and physical health, finding solace and healing through creative expression. A dedicated teacher, Boakesey finds joy in shaping young minds. She recounts personal stories of her students' successes and her own reading and watercolour painting pursuits.
    Despite facing financial hardships, Boakesey remains undeterred. She eagerly anticipates new projects and ventures as a writer and facilitator and is steadfast in her mission to uplift and support others.
    Join us in episode 109 of Island Influencers, where we celebrate the triumphs of the human spirit with Boakesey Closs. 

    • 56 min
    Sinead O’Connor, Head of the Regulatory and Compliance Services team at DQ Advocates, Isle of Man

    Sinead O’Connor, Head of the Regulatory and Compliance Services team at DQ Advocates, Isle of Man

    The wonderful Sinead O’Connor is my 108th Island Influencer, and she heads the Regulatory and Compliance Services team at DQ Advocates, based in the Isle of Man.

    Sinead is a seasoned professional in the compliance sphere, with a career spanning back to the mid-1990s. However, her credentials are not the only thing that sets her apart. 

    Born in Northern Ireland, she found her “freedom and sense of belonging” and home on the Isle of Man after two transformative summers spent on the island. Since then, Sinead has become integral to the regulatory landscape, serving as a beacon for best practices and compliance excellence.

    Sinead's contributions extend beyond the boardroom. With a heart for community service, she has been an active member of the Samaritans leadership team for over 12 years.

    And when she's not navigating the complexities of compliance or leading community initiatives, you might find her enjoying a leisurely walk with her cockapoo or diving into the pages of a compelling book.

    Here is episode 108 with Island Influencer Sinead O’Connor. 


    • 49 min
    Island Influencer Fiona Fitzpatrick

    Island Influencer Fiona Fitzpatrick

    Welcome to episode 107 of Island Influencers!
    Chatting with Fiona Fitzpatrick, an esteemed International Business Development Consultant, Coach, Facilitator, and Speaker is my absolute privilege.
    With a wealth of experience, Fiona specialises in empowering food companies to achieve growth through strategic brand optimisation, people development, and innovative thinking.
    In this episode, Fiona shares her life story, beginning with her childhood in Dublin, where she reflects on the profound impact of her early Montessori education and the guidance of mentors who shaped her path.
    Delving into the transformative power of love, Fiona recounts how it brought her to the Isle of Man alongside her partner Juan. She candidly discusses her career trajectory, from her roles at Nestle and Premier Foods to her dynamic experience at Gü, where she played a pivotal role in business growth despite the challenges.
    Throughout our conversation, Fiona opens up about the highs and lows of her career, including her courageous battle with breast cancer and the resilience she discovered in the face of adversity.
    We also explore the unique challenges and opportunities present on the Isle of Man. Fiona looks ahead with optimism, eager to apply her extensive international expertise to foster growth and innovation locally.
    Here is episode 107 with Island Influencer Fiona Fitzpatrick.
    Useful links:
    LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/fionafitz/
    Website: https://www.fionafitzconsulting.com/
    Instagram: @brandgrowthheroes
    Podcast: https://www.brandgrowthheroes.com/
    Brand Growth Heroes Accelerator Programme: Overview | LinkedIn
    Book: All The Broken Places: The Sequel to The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas 
    Brand Growth Heroes is proud to be launching the Brand Growth Heroes mini MBA powered by Alantra. Running from April 29th to July 5th 2024, the mini MBA is open to ambitious founders of scaling challenger brands of consumer packaged goods products. To find out more about the mini MBA and apply for your place please click here.
    Please subscribe, and leave a rating and review, on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts to help others find the show.
    Island Influencers is produced by Bear Content & Social KEWS
    Sponsored by Thornton Chartered Financial Planners

    • 1 hr 4 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
34 Ratings

34 Ratings

Nigel Hib ,

Insightful, interesting & informative

A great listen and now being through the one hundred mark tells its own story

Batchman KWC ,

Top work

This a great listen while out for a long walk. The topics and comments are thought provoking and inspiring. I particularly enjoyed the 100th episode, the candid insight into what drives a hard working and super intelligent women onto success. Thank you!

Lrciom ,

Brilliant podcast showcasing local talent

Love this podcast - it’s so positive and uplifting, and I love how it showcases some of the brilliant people doing amazing things on our little island! Thank you Sharon for putting this together.

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