BHF appoints first chief technology officer

Ursula Dolton, previously the heart health charity's director of IT and business change, will head its newly formed technology directorate

Ursula Dolton
Ursula Dolton

The British Heart Foundation has appointed its first chief technology officer to lead its newly created technology directorate.

Ursula Dolton, who has been at the BHF for three years and was previously the charity’s director of IT and business change, will be part of its executive team.

The new directorate will combine the charity’s IT and portfolio management office, its digital, data and customer relationship management teams, and its digital products and delivery teams.

The charity said the department would be tasked with delivering the charity’s technology strategy, both to support research and innovation and to drive income growth.

Before joining the BHF, Dolton was the lead on technology transformation at the University of East London and held IT and leadership roles at companies including Cadbury and Jaguar Land Rover.

"The new technology directorate will enable us to put technological innovation at the heart of all areas of the BHF," she said.

"Doing so will improve supporter experiences, make us a more efficient and effective organisation and, most importantly, lead to innovations that will make a meaningful difference to the seven million people living with heart and circulatory disease in the UK."

Simon Gillespie, chief executive of the BHF, said Dolton was one of the "sector leaders" in new technology and innovation.

"Improving how we harness innovation and technology has the potential to enhance every area of our work, from how we understand our supporters and raise funds to the innovations that can improve the lives of people living with heart and circulatory disease," he said.

"I’m delighted that Ursula will be leading the British Heart Foundation’s exciting new strategy in these areas and look forward to seeing the innovative uses of technology that emerge from her leadership of a talented and dedicated team."

Last year, the charity said it was the first in the UK to allow donations through the Amazon Alexa voice-activated virtual assistant.

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