Derian House Children’s Hospice has appointed a new Chief Executive.
Karen Edwards will take on the top job in February 2023 and plans to make sure the Chorley-based charity is recognised as “number one for children’s hospice care in the country”.
Derian’s current Chief Executive David Robinson is stepping down at the end of the year, following eight years with the charity, five of which in his current role.
During his time at the helm, he earned the charity a rating of Outstanding from the Care Quality Commission (CQC), led a £1.7million refurbishment of the hospice buildings and introduced a new service that saw every family get a free holiday.
Karen said she will build on the good work already done and looks forward to leading Derian House on its next exciting chapter.
She joins Derian from children’s charity Bolton Lads & Girls Club, where she has worked for the past 27 years having started out as a youth worker.
During 13 years as chief executive, she has improved the lives of thousands of young people across Bolton and in 2012, she was awarded an Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to children and young people.
She said: “I’m delighted to be joining Derian House and being a part of the amazing services the charity provides.
“The real-life impact we have on children’s lives at Bolton Lads & Girls Club is what I’m most proud of and that’s what I hope to continue at Derian House. I cannot wait to meet the children and families and ensure they continue getting the very best care possible at the most difficult of times.
“Ultimately I want to build on Derian House’s reputation as the leading light of children’s hospice care in the UK – the place others look to for excellence.”
Mrs Edwards lives in Bolton with husband Peter, two teenage sons and three dogs (including a Bosnian rescue dog adopted online during lockdown).
Karen Swindley, Chair of the Board of Trustees at Derian House Children’s Hospice, said: “We are thrilled to be welcoming Karen as our new Chief Executive in the New Year. She brings a wealth of skills, experience and passion for improving the lives of children and young people and we are confident she will continue to take us on our exciting journey.
“Karen shares our vision to take Derian House forward to be the number one specialist provider of children’s palliative care throughout Lancashire, South Cumbria and Greater Manchester.”
David Robinson, current Chief Executive of Derian House Children’s Hospice, said: “I wish Karen every success in taking over the reins and leading Derian House forward from the amazing place we have taken it to.”