“This is a tangible chance to make a better future for young people in our LGBT community.”

Today it was announced that the new chief executive of leading anti-bullying charity Diversity Role Models will be paralympian and diversity and inclusion expert, Claire Harvey. Her appointment follows founder Suran Dickson’s decision to return home to New Zealand after 14 years in the UK.

Since it started in 2011, the charity has reached over 49,000 students in over 200 schools with its workshops, in which trained LGBT role models tell their personal stories to students.

Claire brings a wealth of experience to the position, having previously worked in the Criminal Justice System, Financial Services Authority and Youth Sport Trust. Most recently, she led KPMG’s two-year progression from 156th to 10th in Stonewall’s Workplace Equality Index.

She said:

“This is more than a job role for me. It is a tangible chance to make a better future for the young people within our LGBT community, those with same sex or transgender parents, but also to build an inclusion-confident next generation. An inclusive culture where young people can be themselves is good for their wider mental health and wellbeing, and therefore society as a whole.”

She has a clear vision for the future of the charity:

“I would like to do much more to tackle the low-level discrimination we have seen in 2016, addressing the role models and social norms that young people find in their everyday lives.”

Chair Beth Dowling-Jones commented:

“We are excited that she has chosen to leave the City and apply her passion for diversity on a full-time basis with us. Her agility in moving between the public, private and voluntary sectors will be very valuable for us in winning the funding and partnerships we need to reach more children in more schools.”

She continued:

“Suran will always have a place in our history and our hearts as the founder of Diversity Role Models. She has been a fantastic leader for our first five years, creating a successful concept, building a strong team and rolling out our workshops to reach almost 50,000 pupils. We wish her every happiness on her return home to New Zealand and will continue drawing on her talents as a consultant.”

Claire invites all current and potential partners and supporters to contact her at claire@diversityrolemodels.org and share their views and ideas, to help her and her colleagues shape the future of DRM.

 

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