Liodden, still just 32 years old, holds a CV that includes tenures at Wilh. Wilhelmsen, external consultancy for OECD and SeaTrucks Nigeria, and numerous board level positions for, amongst others, Maritime Forum
Oslofjord and the Norwegian Sea Rescue Academy. She was awarded the WISTA (Women’s International Shipping & Trading Association) Leadership Award in 2012.
Liodden was also President of YoungShip Norway between 2009 and 2011, and founded YoungShip International in 2011, becoming its first Secretary General.
She describes the new move to Nor-Shipping, an internationally renowned program of activities that attracted around 50,000 visitors, across 240 events, in 2013, as “an incredible opportunity.”
“Nor-Shipping is a landmark biennial event on the international shipping calendar,” Liodden stated. “From the main exhibition halls in Lillestrøm to the Ocean Talent Camp in Oslo city center, it has a unique blend of activities that attracts a wide, multinational and high quality audience.
She continued, “I believe it has a role at the very vanguard of shipping, with the power to engage, inspire and challenge the industry and its key players.
“From the outset I’ll be looking to cement the links between this event and the businesses and people it represents – building visibility, closer partnerships and relationships, and increasing the industry influence of Nor-Shipping, both in Norway and around the world.”
Nor-Shipping is owned and operated by the non-profit foundation Norwegian Trade Fairs, headed by CEO Siv Lunde Kolrud, who believes Liodden’s compelling combination of energy and experience can bring something new to an event that celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2015.
“Birgit first worked alongside us at Nor-Shipping 2011, when, through her consultancy company Liodden Projects, she took part in organizing the Ocean Talent Camp initiative,” commented Kolrud. “Her engagement with our internal team, the industry and the young people that flocked to the ‘camp’ was immediately obvious – she has a passion, drive and commitment to achieving results that left a vivid and lasting impression. “The Director role is high profile and demanding, but her network within the industry and track record is second to none. We believe Birgit will be an excellent ambassador, facilitator and motivator for the brand and the team here. We’re delighted to have her on board.”
Kolrud continued, “We’d also like to take the opportunity to thank our current Nor-Shipping Director Vidar Pederstad for all his hard work and achievements over the past years. Nor-Shipping 2015 is fully organized and delivered by him and his team. We wish him every success in his new role as Managing Director of the Maritime and Offshore Forum Oslofjord region, and look forward to continuing the relationship through the cooperation of the two organizations.”
Liodden will now work alongside Pederstad ahead of Nor-Shipping 2015, taking over the full time running of future events after its completion.
She says she is keen to use the gravity of the new position to address issues that are not only close to her heart, but also integral to the future success of the shipping industry. Sustainable shipping, she believes, is key.
“From my very first discussions with Norwegian Trade Fairs I’ve stated my belief that Nor-Shipping needs to focus on sustainability,” she noted. “Not just in terms of green technology, but also with respect to greater diversity – of gender, age and cultural backgrounds.
“For shipping to prosper in the future it needs to be inclusive and forward thinking; encouraging fresh talent, innovation and new revenue streams. Nor-Shipping is the perfect platform to promote these issues, affect positive change and add value to the industry.”
Norwegian Trade Fairs is a non-profit organization, established by Norwegian trade organizations. It works to promote and strengthen Norwegian industry.