RSPCA appoints chief executive 

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Chris Sherwood, incoming chief executive of RSPCA

The RSPCA has appointed Chris Sherwood as its next chief executive – making him the charity’s fourth CEO since the start of the decade. 

Sherwood has been chief executive of Relate since 2015, having joined the charity as head of policy, communications and digital services in 2012. 

He will take up his new role on 1 August. 

RSPCA’s last chief executive, Jeremy Cooper, left with immediate effect last June, after just over a year in the job, and shortly before the publication of a governance review. 

Before that the RSPCA had been without a chief executive for over two years, after Gavin Grant stood down for health reasons in 2014.

Paul Draycott, chair of the trustee recruitment panel, said: “I am delighted that Chris Sherwood has agreed to join the RSPCA as our new chief executive. Chris was appointed after a comprehensive recruitment process with many high calibre candidates. 

“Chris has excellent leadership credentials, experience of working in charities that provide crucial services, and a track record of delivering innovative change. He presented a strong vision about how the RSPCA can continue to shape the debate about animals in society and how we can develop and maintain services that meet the needs of animals and the people who care for them.”

Sherwood said: “It’s a huge honour to be joining the world’s oldest, largest and most influential animal welfare charity. The RSPCA plays a unique and critical role in protecting animals and preventing cruelty. I am excited about the prospect of leading such a well-respected and supported organisation and advancing their mission to create a world that is kinder to animals.”

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