Shaun Johnson

Shaun is a dedicated member of the catering team at LJMU and was honoured with the Outstanding Professional Services award at the JMSU Student Experience Awards 2023, alongside the late Colette Dalton, a beloved colleague.

Shaun, a Liverpool native and the youngest of seven children, hails from a family deeply connected to the food industry. Both his parents worked in food-related roles – his mother at Barker & Dobson, a sweet factory, and his father at Crawfords, a biscuit factory.

In a heart-warming turn of events, Shaun’s husband Mark is also a qualified chef. Coincidentally, they already shared the same surname before they made history by becoming the first couple in Liverpool to have a civil partnership in 2005, later converting it to a marriage on their 10th anniversary in 2015. Mark also works at LJMU as the Front of House Manager.

Before joining LJMU, Shaun and Mark both worked in hospitality and catering and even ran their own coffee shop, Top Marks, in Walton Village from 2006 to 2009.

“I have had many jobs in hospitality, hotel and catering and have to say this is the best job I have ever had.”

– Shaun Johnson

Shaun joined LJMU in 2012 as an agency worker, securing a full-time contract in 2013. His LJMU journey began in the John Lennon Building as a Unit Administrator, a role he shared with Colette who worked at LJMU for 41 years and who sadly passed away in October 2023.

Shaun now holds the position of Catering Supervisor, overseeing three outlets – Byrom Street Core Cafe, the Social Zone at Byrom Street, and the Tithebarn Building Core Cafe. Shaun definitely counts his 2023 JMSU award win as a career highlight, alongside his Outstanding Customer Service Award which he got in 2019.

Shaun attributes his success to creating a positive and fun atmosphere for students to relax and enjoy their time on campus.

“I feel that I am a very outgoing person who likes to provide the best student experience and create a fun atmosphere where students can relax, if only for a while, in a nice friendly environment.”

On what the awards mean to him, Shaun said: “Coming from the students, it means the absolute world and both awards take pride of place in my house. I have had many jobs in hospitality, hotel and catering and have to say this is the best job I have ever had.”

In the award nomination for Shaun and Colette, one student said: “They never fail to put a smile on my face, the nicest members of staff. Their ability to make students feel heard is great. They have personally cheered me up when stressed about work so many times, always making people laugh and smile; they are like my uni mum and dad.”