Chair of new fundraising regulator announced

Lord Michael Grade has been appointed the interim chair of the new fundraising regulator.

The Conservative peer is a former journalist, businessman and media professional. He has occupied leadership positions as chief executive of Channel 4 and chief executive and chair of ITV Plc.

Other leadership roles include spells chairing Camelot Group and Ocado Group. He currently chairs Pinewood Shepperton, which offers a range of film studio and related services, and media company Infinity Creative Media.

In a statement announcing the appointment the government said Lord Grade has been active in a number of organisations including the Science Museum, Band Aid, and the Samaritans.

Lord Grade will appoint the board and chief executive of the new regulator. In a statement, Lord Grade said the British people are “among the most charitable on earth”.

“Their continuing generosity depends on their trust in the charities who fund raise, which is why I intend to work with charities to ensure that this trust is not abused.”

Minister for Civil Society Minister Rob Wilson said the new chair has a vital role in restoring public trust in the charity sector.

“I welcome Lord Grade into this role as someone with the stature and experience to set up the new regulator and bring people together to deliver the necessary reform.”

The role is for at least four days per month and will be remunerated at £500 per day. The role is for a 12 month period, with the possibility of reappointment.

The new fundraising regulator is one of a range of recommendations to have come out of the review of self-regulation led by NCVO chief executive Sir Stuart Etherington.

Minister for Civil Society Rob Wilson announced in October that the government had accepted all of the review’s recommendations and implementation is now underway.

Etherington said Lord Grade is a “substantial figure” with the experience to drive through the necessary changes.

“He is a highly experienced chair and he has a clear commitment to public service along with a strong understanding of marketing, not least from his seven years as chairman of Ocado. I have every confidence that under his leadership the new fundraising regulator will become the body it needs to be in order to secure public trust.”

Institute of Fundraising chief executive Peter Lewis welcomed Lord Grade to the role and said there is “no time to waste” in rebuilding public trust in fundraising.

"We look forward to working closely with the new chair to ensure the views of fundraisers across the UK are part of a new system that better protects vulnerable members of the public whilst ensuring charities are able to raise vital funds for their good causes," Lewis said.

Public Fundraising Association Peter Hills-Jones said the organisation is committed to playing a full part working with Lord Grade to “built a better environment” for fundraisers and fundraising.

"We are already moving to expand our respected compliance work from street and door to door to other methods of fundraising to support raising standards and improve public confidence."

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