The Counselling Foundation announces Julian Gell as successor to Trustee’s Chair

November 30, 2015 2:40 pm Published by

Following the retirement of Charles Watchman as the board of trustee’s Chair, The Counselling Foundation is pleased to announce that Julian Gell has been elected as his successor.

Julian has been a trustee at the Foundation for the last three years and has taken an active part in some of the key decisions and projects we have embarked on over that period. Until he retired from full time work he was for 17 years, Head of Human Resources and a board director at Prudential’s fund management business – M&G Limited. Prior to that he served in various HR roles at the Eastman Kodak Company.

In taking up this new appointment Julian said:

It is a privilege to have been elected as the new Chair. The Counselling Foundation is an important asset in our communities which we must nurture and protect and I am completely committed to that aim.

Throughout my period as a trustee I have been hugely impressed by the skill and commitment of all of our team; our managers, our staff and our counsellors and for all of us who sit on the Foundation’s board it is an honour to be associated with you and with our organisation.

I have a challenge ahead of me in following in Charles’ footsteps. Under his seven years as Chair, The Counselling Foundation has been transformed into an organisation that is in a strong and healthy state. We are now well positioned to develop further as a significant contributor in the field of promoting psychological wellbeing in the communities the Foundation serves.

Our immediate priorities are to take a new look at what we can do to secure, strengthen and create more value from our existing activities in general counselling, training and our NHS contracts to see whether there are opportunities to create more value from them for our client, trainees and for the Foundation. Whilst we do this work we will also look at opportunities to widen the work we do into new areas.

Last week there was an away-day session involving the senior management team and trustees which was aimed at discussing, prioritising and shaping our plans for the year ahead. 

I am delighted to be to say that this was one of the most productive sessions of this type which I have attended. We emerged with a set of very clear plans and priorities which we are currently filtering into shape for wider communication across the Foundation and our intention is to have this up on the website by the year’s end.

I would like to say that the inputs from Robert and his team in terms of the planning options which they put to us were of the very highest quality and I would like to publicly congratulate them all on the thinking and energy they put into this work. 

As trustees and as managers I think we all came away feeling a real energy about the way forward and, more than that, a real sense of openness and energy in working together which is new and exciting.

I think this will be a very rewarding and exciting period for all of us, as ever not without challenges, but I look forward with confidence and anticipation to what we will achieve together.

(Julian Gell – New Chair of Trustees with Rachel Kelly, guest speaker at the Foundation’s 2015 Graduation Ceremony)

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