YORK businesswoman Tracey Smith has been appointed by the Institute of Directors as its deputy chairman for North Yorkshire as she steps down from her York Science Park role.

Ms Smith has spent eight years as chief executive of York Science Park, home to science, technology, creative, media and IT companies, before leaving the organisation this month.

As well as managing the day-to-day operations of the 137,000 sq ft park, she facilitated knowledge transfer between resident companies and the University of York.

In her new role with the IoD, Ms Smith will also be a regional Ambassador for start-ups and entrepreneurs, representing and promoting the IoD within the scientific and creative communities.

Ms Smith said: “We are living in a time of rapid technological change, which is ushering in a new generation of exciting, tech-savvy entrepreneurs and providing new opportunities for the creative sector.

“ I’m looking forward to using my new role with the IoD to connect such businesses and foster ever greater links between business and academia.”

Ms Smith spent six years on the UK Science Park Association board and has been involved with the International Association of Science Parks, promoting York as a leading city of business.

As a Member of the Company of the Merchant Adventurers of York, Ms Smith works with schools to inspire the next generation of young entrepreneurs and provide experience of the business world.

Jon Geldart, chairman of the IoD’s North Yorkshire branch and Yorkshire and Humber region, said: “Tracey is a driven and passionate leader with a track record of motivating, collaborating and inspiring individuals.

“I’m looking forward to working alongside her to bring even more business leaders of all ages and backgrounds into our community and, in doing so, ensure that this important region has a strong voice on national policy matters.”