Macmillan Cancer Support appoints fundraiser Lynda Thomas as chief executive

Thomas has been interim head of the charity since the departure of CiarĂ¡n Devane in November

Lynda Thomas
Lynda Thomas

Lynda Thomas has been appointed as the new chief executive of Macmillan Cancer Support.

Thomas has been interim chief executive since November, when Ciarán Devane left to take up the top job at the British Council.

Thomas, who will take up the permanent role with immediate effect, joined Macmillan as head of media in 2001 and was promoted to director of external affairs in 2007. She became the charity’s director of fundraising in 2011.

She started her communications career in consumer PR, before moving into marketing roles at Action for Children and the NSPCC.

She is a trustee at both the Institute of Fundraising and the Women’s Sport & Fitness Foundation, and a director of the Fundraising Standards Board.

Julia Palca, chair of Macmillan Cancer Support, said: "The board and I have been incredibly impressed by Lynda’s performance and leadership throughout her time at Macmillan, but especially over the past few months as interim chief executive.

"Lynda has a proven track record of delivering great results for the organisation and consistently demonstrates creativity, resilience and passion in everything she does. Lynda is the perfect person to lead the organisation into an exciting new phase and help fulfil our ambition to reach and improve the lives of everyone affected by cancer."

Thomas said she was honoured to become Macmillan’s chief executive.

"With the number of people affected by cancer set to reach four million by 2030, we have a huge challenge ahead, but I believe Macmillan has never been better placed to deliver the support and change needed to ensure no one faces cancer alone," she said.

A spokeswoman for the charity said that Thomas's salary had not yet been finalised, but she was paid the equivalent of just under £161,000 a year as interim chief executive.

Macmillan had an income of £189.7m in 2013 and employs 1,581 staff.

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