Stockbroker Keith Loudon awarded honorary degree
Keith joined Redmayne-Bentley stockbrokers in 1962 after qualifying as a Chartered Accountant and has occupied a leading position in UK stockbroking ever since.
A Senior Partner at the Leeds-based, national firm, he is renowned as a fighter for the rights of private investors. He is also a regular media commentator on issues relating to the industry.
Speaking about receiving the award Keith said: "I never expected this as I never graduated - I think I'm a late developer. I'm just over 80 now.
"We first started dealing with Leeds Met at Redmayne-Bentley when we started taking placements from the university about 20 years ago and now about seven per cent of our staff are graduates from here. Congratulations to all the students graduating today. Today is not the end - it's the beginning.
"This is a great honour and I will do my best to live up to the expectations of those who have organised this."
When Keith joined his father at Redmayne & Co, they employed just four members of staff. He went on to take part in the merger with F W Bentley & Co and J W Granger & Co when the firm became known as Redmayne-Bentley. With Keith's leadership the firm has progressed to 40 branches with more than 150 staff, plus over 140 head office staff in Leeds.
A friend of Leeds Metropolitan, Keith is passionate about education and dedicates much of his time supporting various initiatives at the University. A donor to Leeds Met's Bright Futures scholarship fund, which supports the education of students from disadvantaged backgrounds, he also pioneered a scheme - now in its fifteenth year - that enables Redmayne-Bentley to annually offer year-long student placements.
Keith was also instrumental in setting up a PR prize in memory of his colleague, PR Executive Claire Mascall. The annual competition leads to monetary prizes and corresponding placements for Leeds Metropolitan Public Relations students.
Born in Horsforth, Leeds in 1933, Keith attended Featherbank Primary School and Woodhouse Grove School in Apperley Bridge. He did National Service as an Infantry Man and, as a Non-Commissioned Officer, led men in Germany and Sudan. Keith was one of the first National Service Sergeants, serving a term as Guard Commander for the Governor General's Residence in Khartoum.
A former Lord Mayor of Leeds from 1993-94, Keith served on Leeds City Council for many years. He also joined the Trustees of National Heart Research, now Heart Research UK, in 1996. He sits on the board and was Chairman until 2011.
Others receiving honorary degrees from Leeds Metropolitan include Leeds businessman and charity activist, Edward Ziff; Emmerdale actress Gaynor Faye and Olympic triathlon coach Malcolm Brown MBE.