Age UK makes Steph Harland new chief executive

Harland, who has been deputy chief executive since September and was acting chief, takes over with immediate effect

Steph Harland
Steph Harland

Age UK has promoted Steph Harland to chief executive.

Harland, who has been acting chief executive of the charity for older people since Tom Wright left in September to join Guide Dogs, was the charity’s deputy chief executive.

Age UK said in a statement today that Harland’s appointment as permanent chief executive, which was with immediate effect, came after a competitive process at the end of last year.

Harland previously worked for Age Concern before its merger with Help the Aged to create Age UK in 2008.

Age UK’s latest accounts show its income and expenditure were both just under £150m in the year to the end of March 2017. This income was down from almost £175m two years before.

The charity employs more than 1,500 people on its charitable and trading activities, according to the 2016/17 accounts.

An Age UK spokeswoman declined to confirm how much Harland would be paid.

Age UK’s highest-paid employee received between £190,001 and £200,000 in 2016/17, the charity’s accounts show. This person, who is not named, spent half of their time working for the charity and the other half on the charity’s commercial interests, the accounts say.

The charity also announced today that Sir Brian Pomeroy (below) would take over as chair of Age UK in February.

He will succeed Dianne Jeffrey, who has been the charity’s chair since it was formed and has reached the maximum time allowed as an Age UK trustee. Pomeroy joined the Age UK board last year.

Jeffrey said the charity’s recruitment panel was impressed by Harland’s vision and strategy for the charity’s future.

"We have no doubt that she will be a strong and inspiring leader and that Age UK and its people will thrive under her leadership," she said.

Harland said: "I feel very honoured to be chosen to lead Age UK into the future. We are a strong and energetic organisation with important work to do, especially at a time when older people, the network and our sector face many difficult challenges."

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