After our Co-Founder and CEO, Bryn Parry, announced in April that he would be stepping down from his full time role at Help for Heroes in late 2016 the Nomination Committee of the Trustees started the process of searching for a new CEO.
Looking for a successor to lead Help for Heroes with the same vision and determination as the Co-Founders has been no easy task. We are delighted to announce that Melanie Waters, the current Chief Executive of The Poppy Factory – an independent employment charity – has been appointed and will take up her role in November 2016.
Melanie brings experience leading a high-profile organisation which puts the recovery and employment of ex-Service people at its heart. Previously, Melanie held a number of significant roles in both the commercial and charitable sectors leading the External Affairs, Business Improvement and Operations for companies such as the Automobile Association.
In non-executive roles, Melanie is a Director and Commissioner of the £35m Big Lottery grant-giving body, Forces in Mind Trust; a member of NHS England’s Armed Forces Clinical Reference Group; and elected Vice-Chair of Cobseo (Confederation of Service Charities).
Alex Scott-Barrett, Chairman of Trustees, Help for Heroes:
“Melanie brings with her energy and a proven track-record of results. Experienced in both the commercial and charitable sectors, she is a natural leader with expertise in both strategic and operational areas; this will be crucial as the Help for Heroes team drive the next stage of the charity’s development. ”
“Help for Heroes has brought a new energy to the Armed Forces charity sector, drawing significant attention to the current and future needs of Service people who have suffered life-changing injuries and illnesses. The organisation is known by both its beneficiaries and supporters for its uniquely positive culture and the open, easy-to-access support that it offers. I am delighted to have been appointed by the Trustees to lead the organisation and I plan to build upon the incredible work of the Co-Founders and the wider dedicated Help for Heroes team as the charity enters its tenth year.”
Bryn Parry, Co-Founder of Help for Heroes:
"I have worked alongside Melanie in Cobseo and The Poppy Factory for several years. She brings extensive knowledge and skills from both the commercial and third sector and is a much respected leader of a partner charity. She is passionate about helping ‘the blokes’, the wounded, injured and sick Servicemen, women and their families and is fully cognisant of the responsibility to them that this role brings.
The last nine years have been demanding for Emma and me but it is an extraordinary privilege to have been given the opportunity to make a difference to so many very special people. Our role will now change but our commitment to ensuring that 'the blokes' get the very best support, will continue for life. We wish Mel all the best and will look forward to working with her."