Paul Rice, chief executive of Liverpool Commercial District Partnership from its creation in 2006, died at the weekend following an 18-month battle with myelodysplastic syndromes, a form of blood cancer. He was 54.
A statement published on the LCDP website on Monday read: "It is with the deepest sadness that we announce the death of our chief executive Paul Rice who passed away on Saturday 21 January 2012. Paul was appointed as chief executive of the Liverpool Commercial District Partnership in 2006. He was diagnosed with MDS 18 months ago.
"Throughout this time he battled with courses of chemotherapy and underwent a bone marrow transplant in the Royal Liverpool University Hospital in January last year.
"Despite the intensive, invasive and gruelling nature of his treatment he continued to work seemingly tirelessly successfully campaigning to secure a 'yes' vote in the ballot last year to achieve Business Improvement District (BID) status."
David Guest, director of Bruntwood and chairman of the Liverpool Commercial District Partnership, added: "There are no words that can do justice to such an inspirational character. Both professionally and personally I had the utmost respect and affection for a much-loved man who was genuinely committed to Liverpool and whose achievements for the city will leave a lasting legacy.
"Paul's unique personality shone with his sense of humour, warmth and likeability. He had the ability to relate to anyone whatever their status or walk of life and always made an impact on people. He will be sorely missed but never forgotten."
A devoted Liverpool FC fan, Rice chaired the inaugural meeting of the Spirit of Shankly Supporters' Union before being elected chairman, then vice-chairman and lifetime vice president in recognition of his work for the organisation.
Ian Ayre, managing director of Liverpool FC, said: "I was fortunate to have known Paul personally and he was a true fan and also an excellent businessman."
From 2004 to 2006, Rice was chief executive of Manchester City Centre Management Company. He was formerly the Liverpool City Centre Neighbourhood Manager, Town Centre Manager in Warrington and worked in the private sector as a development manager at Clear Channel UK. Prior to that he had worked in a variety of roles for Liverpool City Council for 14 years. He was a director of the Association of Town Centre Management from 1995 to 2006 and was company secretary of Baltic Creative CIC in Liverpool.
- If you would like to pay a tribute to Paul or send a message please email Geraldine@kenyons.co.uk