Who’s Moving: Cancer Research UK, RSPCA, Sense and more


Michelle Mitchell, incoming chief executive at CRUK

Our weekly summary of the latest movers in the charity sector.   

Chief executive

Michelle Mitchell has been appointed as the new chief executive of Cancer Research UK, replacing Sir Harpal Kumar when he stands down in the summer. 

Mitchell will join the charity from MS Society, where she has been chief executive since 2013. Prior to working with the MS Society, she was charity director general at Age UK.

Kumar announced that he would be standing down from CRUK last autumn, having been in charge of the UK’s largest fundraising charity for over a decade. 

Read the full story here. 

The RSPCA has appointed Chris Sherwood as its new chief executive, making him the charity’s fourth CEO since 2010. 

Sherwood joins the charity from Relate, where he has been chief executive since 2015. He joined relate in 2012 as the charity’s head of policy, communications and digital services.

Sherwood will take up his new role on 1 August and replaces most recent chief executive Jeremy Cooper, who left the charity with immediate effect last June. 

Read the full story of Sherwood’s appointment here. 

Gillian Morbey has announced that she will be stepping down as chief executive of deafblindess charity Sense, after eight years in the role. 

Morbey became chief executive of the charity in October 2010 and is retiring from the role to work part-time at a new Sense centre in Birmingham. Between 1985 and 2010, Morbey was head of Sense Scotland, and she was awarded an OBE for her work in 1995. 

She will be succeeded in the role by Richard Kramer, who is currently the deputy chief executive and director of policy and communications at Sense. 

Read the full story here. 

Which? has announced that its chief executive Peter Vicary-Smith will be standing down from his role after more than 13 years in the job. 

Vicary-Smith will officially depart the charity in September 2018 to “pursue a portfolio career”, according to a statement from Which? 

Vicary-Smith joined the charity in September 2004, having previously worked as director of fundraising and communications at Cancer Research UK for eight years. He was also head of appeals at Oxfam. 

Read the full story here.

YoungMinds has announced the appointment of Emma Thomas as its new chief executive. 

Thomas was previously chief executive of YouthNet and has also worked in the commercial sector and for the BBC. She is currently a consultant working with the charity sector supporting digital adoption and strategic development. 

She will take up her new role in July, replacing Sarah Brennan who is stepping down after 11 years with the charity. 

Contact the Elderly has appointed Meryl Davies as chief executive. She was most recently chief executive of Habitat for Humanity Great Britain and has held various other roles in the charity sector. 

She said: "It is an immense privilege to have been asked to lead Contact the Elderly into its next phase of development and growth. Contact the Elderly’s work, in raising awareness of social isolation and of combating loneliness in older people, is essential."

Fundraising and communications

The Carers Trust has appointed Svetlana Kirov as its new director of fundraising and communications. 

Kirov joins the charity from Samaritans, where she was most recently a fundraising consultant. Prior to that, Kirov also worked for Beating Bowel Cancer and Diabetes UK. 

She replaces Giles Meyer in the role, after he was promoted to become the charity’s chief executive. 

Lindsay Gormley has been appointed as the new director of marketing, communications and fundraising at The Film and Television Charity, as part of a double announcement which also saw Rachel Hillman appointed as the charity’s new director of grants and programme development. 

Gormley joins the charity from Asthma UK, where she was most recently director of marketing. She has also worked for Barnardo’s, the old Central Office of Information and the Department of Transport. 

Hillman has spent the last 14 years working at Wellcome Trust, where she helped set-up Welccome’s Broadcast, Games and Film Strategy. She has also worked in television and film, as an executive producer on shows for BBC2, ITV and on the 2014 film Electricity. 


The Silver Line helpline has appointed Ben Summerskill as chair. He has been a trustee for a year and is director of the Criminal Justice Alliance. 

He was formerly Chief Executive of Stonewall for over a decade. He is also on the board of ACAS and the committee of the Queen's Award for Voluntary Service. 

To tell us about your charity's latest appointments please email: [email protected].

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