At the start of her Fellowship, 2010 Clore Social Fellow Kate Lee had been at the British Red Cross for 14 years and was working as their Director of Strategy and Evaluation.
Early on in her Fellowship, Kate decided to move on and explore ways of managing her work/life balance more effectively. In December 2011, Kate took up her new role close to home as CEO of the Myton Hospice Group a £9m charity delivering palliative care services across Coventry and Warwickshire.
During her Fellowship, Kate undertook two secondments. Her first was a three-week project, Right to ask/right to give, with the Institute of Fundraising. The second was a seven week stint with Frontline SMS, a growing social enterprise tackling the problem of a lack of communication for grassroots non-governmental organisations working in developing countries:
“I chose the secondment as an antidote to working in a big charity and found the experience both stretching and rewarding. The focus of my work included supporting the design of the new strategy and costing model as well as helping them consider legal entities and funding streams.”
Kate’s practice-based research explored some of the barriers to improving transparency in UK charities and looked at whether there is a sound business case, as well as a moral case, for improving transparency. Martin Brookes, then the Director of New Philanthropy Capital and now newly-appointed Director of the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, acted as Kate’s mentor throughout her Fellowship, and alongside the rest of her cohort she also undertook residential weeks, Action Learning and regular coaching:
“My Fellowship coach helped me work through a number of issues including how to make a transition into a CEO role, how to understand and agree the expectations of me and how to establish and maintain a better life-balance in my new role.”
In 2013, Kate was awarded the Charity Times 'Rising CEO Star' award.