Mencap appoints new chief executive

Edel Harris, chief executive of the Scottish disability charity Cornerstone since 2008, will replace Jan Tregelles in the new year

Edel Harris
Edel Harris

The learning disability charity Mencap has appointed Edel Harris as its new chief executive.

Harris, who will take up the role in the new year, is chief executive of the Scottish disability charity Cornerstone, a position she had held since May 2008.

She will replace Jan Tregelles, who announced earlier this year that she intended to step down in the autumn after six years in post.

Before joining Cornerstone, Harris was deputy chief executive of Aberdeen Foyer and spent eight years working at NHS Grampian.

Harris is also a former chair of the Scottish government’s social investment fund, a former Metropolitan Police officer and former director of the Aberdeen Football Club Community Trust.

She served as the first female president of athe Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce, as one of the first directors of Opportunity North East and is a former chair of the Life Changes Trust.

She is also currently on the board of the Scottish funding provider the Robertson Trust.

A spokeswoman for Mencap said it would be inappropriate to comment on what Harris would be paid, but it would be in line with comparable jobs in the sector and recorded in the charity’s annual report.

Tregelles was paid £164,353 in the year to 31 March 2018, Mencap’s latest accounts show.

Harris said: "As someone who is passionate about ensuring that people with learning disabilities are included, listened to and valued, this role provides me with an opportunity to continue all the good work I’ve done at Cornerstone, but on a bigger stage.

"Mencap is a very well-known and respected charity, and I am excited about the opportunities that lie ahead."

Derek Lewis, chair of Mencap, said: "As we embark on the next phase of our ambitious development strategy, we look forward to Edel’s leadership and commitment to people with learning disabilities.

"Her experience and insights will be invaluable, especially those from her 11 years as chief executive of Cornerstone, where she has pioneered transformational changes in the way people with learning disabilities are supported. We look forward to welcoming her and working with her."

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