Southdown housing association announces new chief executive

Neil Blanchard SUS-140428-122315001
Neil Blanchard SUS-140428-122315001
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Southdown has announced the appointment of Neil Blanchard to the role of chief executive officer.

Neil starts as CEO with immediate effect having previously filled the position of acting chief executive and is formerly an executive director of operations, a role he filled for 12 years at the Sussex based not-for-profit organisation.

Southdown provides specialist support and housing services to more than 8,000 vulnerable people and their families across Sussex and employs 950 staff.

Andrew Doig, chair of the Southdown Board, said, “The field of candidates was strong and I am delighted that we have appointed Neil as our new Chief Executive.

“He has a high level of strategic expertise, a strong track record in developing services, excellent business acumen and great experience of building and leading successful teams.

“At a time of shrinking public finances when many not-for-profit organisations are confronted by extraordinary challenges, Neil is well placed to help us respond with innovative plans that meet the challenge but keep intact our vision, our values and our focus on supporting vulnerable people to lead fuller lives.

“Neil has the vision, drive and commitment to lead Southdown forward to build on our current reputation as a top performing social care provider.”

Neil originally qualified as a chartered surveyor and worked for a number of years in commercial property development and management before moving into the social housing and care sectors in the early 1990s.

Neil said, “When I joined Southdown in 2001, I quickly understood the very special culture within the organisation that underpins everything we do, from the way we look after our staff to the high quality care and support provided to clients across East and West Sussex and in Brighton & Hove.

“Back then it made me immensely proud to be part of such an important service, helping so many vulnerable people, and I am equally proud and humbled today to be given the great responsibility for nurturing and building upon the legacy Southdown has created.”