National Council for Voluntary Organisations to appoint Tanni Grey-Thompson as next president

By Tim Tonkin, Third Sector Online, 16 October 2012

Tanni Grey-Thompson

Tanni Grey-Thompson

NCVO board names Paralympian and disability rights campaigner as preferred candidate to take up the role next month

The Paralympian and disability rights campaigner Baroness Grey-Thompson is set to become the next president of the National Council for Voluntary Organisations.

The umbrella body said that Grey-Thompson, who has won 11 Paralympic gold medals and is a crossbench peer, has been selected as the NCVO board’s preferred candidate to succeed the Conservative peer Lord Hodgson as president.

Her appointment will be confirmed at the NCVO’s annual general meeting on 8 November, when Hodgson’s five-year tenure comes to an end.

In 2011, Grey-Thompson was appointed president of the Leadership 20:20 Commission, which was established by the NCVO in 2010 to develop emerging leaders in civil society.

She is also patron of charities including Sports Leaders UK, which aims to provide people with local sporting opportunities, and is on the board of the Tony Blair Sports Foundation.

She said: "I am absolutely delighted to be appointed as president of the NCVO.

"From my background in sport, I am well aware of the importance of the voluntary sector. Many grass-roots sports groups would not survive without volunteers and, as we have seen with the magnificent Games Makers, large events flourish with well-developed volunteering. 

"I am hoping to expand my knowledge of the sector and continue the work that the NCVO has been so successful in by encouraging communities and people to engage fully in our society."

Martyn Lewis, chair of the NCVO, said: "Lord Hodgson is a hard act to follow. He made a massive contribution to the law and regulation around charities.

"I am sure that with Tanni we have chosen a worthy successor who will spread her own gold dust on our 8,500 members and we are all looking forward to working with her."

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