Battersea Dogs and Cats Home chief executive steps down after 11 years

The chief executive of Battersea Dogs and Cats Home is stepping down after 11 years in the role.

After more than a decade leading the animal charity, Claire Horton is leaving Battersea to take up the role of Director General at The Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

Ms Horton joined Battersea as chief executive in March 2010, during its landmark 150th year, and has led the total transformation of the much-loved charity, securing continued year-on-year growth, increasing its supporter base, quadrupling its income, repositioning the brand and investing in the expansion of its direct animal services, leading to it becoming a UK top 10 charity brand.

In recent years Battersea’s influence has extended well beyond the gates of its three centres, using its voice to effect changes in legislation, including increases to sentences for animal cruelty and compulsory microchipping of dogs.

Ms Horton, pictured above, said: “Battersea is an incredible organisation, filled with the most talented and dedicated people I’ve ever had the privilege to work with, and all totally focussed on changing and saving the lives of animals.

“Their shared sense of purpose and commitment is breathtaking, and it is this dynamism and energy that has made Battersea one of the foremost animal welfare organisations in the world.

“I am deeply honoured to have worked alongside them for so long and I want to thank everyone at Battersea for their unstinting support, and their belief in me, over the past 11 years.

“While I might be leaving as chief executive, I shall remain very much part of the Battersea family, as a staunch supporter, fundraiser and advocate, and my commitment to changing the world for animals remains as strong as it ever did.

Ms Horton leaves Battersea at the end of January 2021.

The charity will start the recruitment process for a new chief executive in the near future.


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