Reading charity Booktrust has appointed Diana Gerald as its new chief executive. Gerald replaces Viv Bird and will take up the position in March.
Gerald joins Booktrust from Ark Schools, an education charity that runs school academies in disadvantaged areas of the country, where she held the position of chief operating officer.
Karen Brown, chair of Booktrust’s board of trustees said: “Diana is dynamic, ambitious and passionate about reading and the life-changing benefits it brings. She brings great leadership and management experience having worked across commercial, non-profit and social enterprise organisations.
“We recognised Diana’s ability to help build on our strengths, expand our income streams, extend our work with those least likely to experience the benefits and pleasures of reading, and ensure an even greater focus on impact.”
In the new role Gerald will develop Booktrust’s programmes and work closely with its partners in government, the Arts Council, publishing, libraries, children’s centres, schools and local authorities, said the charity.
Current chief executive Bird announced she was stepping down from the role in March 2014.
She joined the charity in 2007 and during her time at Booktrust she spearheaded several campaigns andworked to improve child literacy, most recently partnering with Save the Children and the National Literacy Trust on the Read On. Get On. campaign.
Bird said she had chosen to leave the job to “achieve a better work life balance.” She added: “I am proud of what I have achieved working with committed staff and a supportive Board of Trustees, as well as the challenges we have overcome.”