Alumnus of the Month: September 2021
Lawrence Levy is our Verulam School Alumnus of the Month for September 2021. Lawrence left Verulam School in 1981 and is now co-owner and Chairman of St Albans City FC as well as a Life-time Vice President of Rennie Grove Hospice Care.
Please tell us a little about yourself – where do you work and how did you get into this role?
I have a number of roles, including being a shareholder and director of a recruitment company. It’s a business I started in 2000 and handed over the reins to a colleague in 2014.
I have been a volunteer fundraiser and now life-time Vice President of Rennie Grove Hospice Care since 2006 and founded the Herts 10k run in Harpenden to raise well-needed funds for the hospice.
Myself and my business partner took over the control of St Albans City FC (at Clarence Park) in 2011 and became Chairman in 2016.
What are some of your proudest achievements since leaving Verulam School?
After working in the Netherlands and not being very good at the technical side of IT, I went into IT recruitment without any knowledge of the industry. I found I was able to communicate and learn quickly as well as use the little amount of the Dutch language I had learnt to succeed in a very competitive environment. I subsequently started my own business which I built in the UK and the Netherlands and am proud to have mentored a number of people who succeed today.
One of my proudest moments is also founding the Herts 10k, which to-date has raised over £1.5m for the hospice, helping local people who are living with life-limiting illnesses. Since then I have been involved with a number of fundraising projects which I find fulfilling.
What advice would you give someone looking to follow a similar career path?
The recruitment industry requires determination, resilience (not being afraid to make mistakes) and hard work. The secret of being successful is understanding issues so it’s important to not be afraid to ask questions, no matter how silly those questions may seem. My advice is to be curious and to never feel you know everything because you never stop learning.
How have your experiences at Verulam School contributed to your life and successes since leaving school?
I did not have the most glittering school career but there were teachers who made me feel I could achieve something worthwhile. I made many friends, some of whom I am still good friends with today.
What House were you in at Verulam School and can you describe one of your fondest memories?
I was in Jennings and really enjoyed playing trumpet in the school orchestra at the Abbey. I also particularly remember school trips to Austria.
As I mentioned, you never stop learning and, as we have a long-term vision for success for St Albans City FC, I am using the skills I have gained over many years in a very different business. I am particularly proud of our youth development programme which sees Verulam’s school captain, Huw Dawson, playing for the club at Clarence Park. The club is also involved with many community projects and supports a number of local and national charities.