Islamic charity Penny Appeal appoints its first non-Muslim CEO

Islamic global funding charity Penny Appeal has appointed Alex Leith as its next chief executive.

Leith joins following a career in tech, digital marketing and finance roles and is the charity’s first non-Muslim CEO since it launched in 2009.

Leith replaces interim chief executive Harris Iqbal, who had been in the role for the last 18 months.

The charity said that the appointment of Leith as its first non-Muslim CEO “represents the organisation’s commitment to championing diversity and cross-cultural collaboration”.

Leith said: “Diversity is more than a tick-box exercise, it’s about recognising and leveraging the strength we have in our differences. I’m proud to have one of the most diverse boards and workforces in the charity sector, together we represent the best of Britain.”

The Wakefield based charity’s chair Mohammed Jahangir added: “While the values and vision of Penny Appeal are firmly inspired by our Islamic faith, they are also universally accessible. In Alex we see a leader who recognises the power of communities coming together for the greater good.”

Leith’s private sector experience includes roles as commercial director and head of trading at Summit – Changemakers in Online Retail, business director at Kitbag.com and head of operations at Confetti Network Ltd.

Safeguarding scandal

Last year Penny Appeal referred itself to the Charity Commission after a safeguarding scandal emerged around operations it is supporting in Gambia.

The charity pledged to take “serious and substantive action” to ensure people in the communities it supports are safe.

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