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4 charity CEO moves & other sector appointments

Melanie May | 26 February 2024 | News

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Tree of Hope, Spinal Research, My Name’5 Doddie Foundation and Gaddam have all recently announced CEO moves. More on these and other sector movers below.

New CEO for Kent-based children’s charity Tree of Hope

Kent-based children’s charity Tree of Hope has announced Becky Andrew as their new CEO. Andrew has with over 14 years’ experience building and managing teams, programmes and services within the youth and education charity sector. Most recently she served as Director of Operations at The Diana Award, a youth social action charity, where she played a pivotal role in driving the organisation’s growth and impact globally over her nine-year tenure.  

Prior to her role at The Diana Award she led operations, events and networks at The Teaching Awards Trust, overseeing and delivering high profile events across the UK, including the BBC-televised National Teaching Awards.


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Key leadership changes announced at Spinal Research with Louisa McGinn taking on CEO role

Spinal Research’s current CEO Harvey Sihots is to take up the newly created senior role of Chief Vision Officer, reflecting the growing number of developments in the field of spinal cord repair and restoration that need support and translation. As Chief Vision Officer, Sihota will have responsibility for ensuring the most promising research and developments are being invested in and that the charity continues to foster collaboration and cooperation with its international partners and the research community.

Sihota will work closely with Louisa McGinn, previous Director of Fundraising, who has been appointed Spinal Research’s new Chief Executive. McGinn has extensive third sector experience with 15 years working with charities including Comic Relief, Cancer Research UK and Save The Children, before joining Spinal Research in 2022.

Doddie Weir and Jill Douglas

Leadership change at My Name’5 Doddie Foundation as CEO steps into ambassadorial role

Chief Executive of the My Name’5 Doddie Foundation Jill Douglas is to step into a new role following almost six years at the helm of the charity set up by late Scottish rugby legend and motor neuron disease campaigner Doddie Weir. 

Douglas, appointed the charity’s first CEO in 2018, will become Patron of the foundation from the end of April, with the foundation’s Chief Operating Officer Nicola Roseman succeeding Douglas as CEO from 1 May. Under Douglas’s leadership, My Name’s Doddie Foundation has grown from an idea amongst friends at the Weir kitchen table into one of the UK’s most prominent MND organisations, committing more than £11 million to MND research to date, plus an additional £2mn to supporting people living with the disease.

Gaddam appoints Ben Whalley as CEO

Following a cross-sector recruitment process, Gaddum has announced the appointment of a new Chief Executive Officer, Ben Whalley. Whalley was previously Head of Operations at Gaddum before being appointed as Deputy CEO in 2022. He takes up the position as permanent CEO on 1 March, bringing a wealth of experience in the voluntary sector, most recently as the Regional Mental Health System Influencing Adviser for Greater Manchester at Mind. He will head up a team of 75 staff, providing advocacy, carer support and therapy services across Greater Manchester.

Whalley is currently in a seconded role working with the Greater Manchester Independent Care Board, advising on VCSE sector integration around mental health systems in the region. He is an experienced social worker, charity leader and project manager.

Nicole Junkermann appointed as Trustee of The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity

Junkermann, who is an entrepreneur and investor, brings extensive experience to her new role as Trustee at The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity , which she took up in January. As Vice-Chairperson of Infront Sports & Media, she helped build the company into a top sports and media rights business, later acquired by Bridgepoint Capital in 2011. She also founded United in Sports, her own private equity fund focused on sports and media investments, which raised approximately €250mn. She also served for four years as an Advisor to pan-European private equity firm, Trilantic Europe. Junkermann is the Principal and owner of NJF Capital, and sits on the Tate Americas Foundation Latin American Acquisitions Committee, supporting the work of Latin American artists. In August 2023, she was appointed a Trustee of the Royal Academy Trust.

L-R: Sperber & Zenios (c) Blake Ezra Photography Ltd. 2022

Jewish Care announces Marcus Sperber as next Chair

Jewish Care has appointed Marcus Sperber as its next Chair, taking over from Jonathan Zenios, who is stepping down in September. Sperber has been a trustee since 2021. He currently sits on the charity’s Internal Audit. Assurance & Risk Committee, and its Renumeration Committee.

Sperber has a wealth of knowledge, experience and expertise in the charity sector Jewish community, having sat on the boards and committees of many organisations including UJIA, North West London Jewish Day School, the Jewish Leadership Council and the Shen Charitable Trust. He also has over 30 years of experience in the real estate and investment management industry. He runs his own investment and advisory business, Northcrodt Capital and acts as Non-Executive Director and advisor to a number of investment managers, pension funds, and property companies.

Ma’ayan Plane takes up Director of Development role at Artichoke Trust

Artichoke Trust has appointed Ma’ayan Plane as the new Director of Development, replacing Liz McCarthy who is leaving to become Director of Development at Chichester Festival Theatre. 

Plane was previously Artichoke’s Deputy Director of Development. She first joined Artichoke in 2010 and subsequently held roles at the Institute of Contemporary Arts and Children & the Arts before returning to Artichoke in 2017. 

General Counsel of the Bank of England becomes Chair of Target Ovarian Cancer’s Board of Trustees

Target Ovarian Cancer has announced that General Counsel of the Bank of England, Sonya Branch, has been appointed as the new Chair of its Board of Trustees.

Current Chair Chief Executive of SEC Newgate UK Emma Kane has reached the end of her term. Since being appointed as Chair in 2019, Kane has helped transform the scale of the charity’s impact, leading the charity to treble its annual income and personally raising over £1 million through fundraising for new projects. Branch started her first term of service as a Trustee of Target Ovarian Cancer thirteen years ago. On Thursday 29 February, she will be formally appointed and Chair and will be driving forward the charity’s new business plan Ovarian Cancer: Fast Forward.

Alzheimer’s Society announces new External Relations lead   

Alzheimer’s Society has announced the appointment of Laura Peters as Associate Director of External Relations and Media. Peters takes up her new role today, 26 February, and has over 20 years of experience in communications across the sector.   

In her most recent role as Director of Corporate Communication at WWF-UK, she led the team responsible for delivering high-profile, award-winning corporate partnerships with major brands such as Aviva, Tesco, Sky, Carlsberg, and Vodafone. She also chaired the Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion (DE&I) champions group, embedding inclusion and accessibility across the charity’s communications work. Previously, Peters was Director of Communications at Cancer Research UK, and her voluntary experience includes roles as a Trustee, most recently at local children’s cancer charity Gold Geese.