Owen Sharp to become chief executive of the Movember Foundation

The former head of Prostate Cancer UK replaces founder Adam Garone, who will still have an ambassadorial role at the charity

Owen Sharp
Owen Sharp

Owen Sharp, the former head of Prostate Cancer UK, has been appointed chief executive of the Movember Foundation.

Sharp, who has been working for Movember as chief operating officer for the past seven months, replaces Adam Garone, one of the founders of the men’s health campaign, who moves into an ambassadorial position with the charity.

Garone will continue to be paid by the charity and will remain a director on the board, said Sharp.

The Movember Foundation is the global body that sits above the individual Movember charities that operate around the world. The organisation employs about 100 staff in offices in London, where Sharp will be based, Los Angeles, where Garone is, Melbourne, which is its official headquarters, and Toronto.

Sharp, who will take up the role next month, told Third Sector that one of his priorities was to arrest the decline in funds raised for the charity over the past two years.

The foundation has raised more than £440m in 21 countries since 2003, but accounts filed with the Charity Commission for Movember Europe show its income fell from £27.1m in the year to the end of April 2013 to £12m two years later.

Sharp said it could be difficult for fundraisers who have done the moustache-growing challenge on one or two occasions to repeat the exercise with similar success.

"We need to recognise that Movember has become more than just moustache-growing, although that is a very important part of it," he said.

Last year the charity introduced the Move challenge as part of Movember, which encourages people to carry out a physical activity to raise funds for or awareness of men’s health issues.

Sharp said the charity had some other ideas in the pipeline for this year’s campaign, "but it is probably a little early to say what they will be".

He said he was "completely delighted" to be offered the role.

"It’s an organisation that has done more than any other to highlight the fact that men are dying too young, unnecessarily," he said. "I am incredibly proud to have the opportunity to lead the foundation into the next phase of its evolution, ensuring that we meet our goal of changing the face of men’s health forever."

John Hughes, chair of the Movember Foundation, said: "Owen has a proven track record of strong leadership and brings with him a wealth of fundraising experience and a deep understanding of the charity sector as a whole, which will serve the organisation well as we further evolve."

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