RNID is very pleased to announce that Ewen Stevenson, Group Chief Financial Officer at HSBC, has been appointed as our new Chair of the Board of Trustees. Find out more about him and how he’s joining at a very important time for our charity in the article and Q & A with Ewen below.
In addition to his current role with HSBC, Ewen has had a long career in the banking industry, previously holding positions at RBS (now NatWest Group) and Credit Suisse. At HSBC, Ewen is also the co-sponsor on the Group Executive Committee for HSBC’s work on disability for both customers and colleagues.
Ewen has a close and longstanding connection with RNID and our work, having been a supporter for many years. He is deaf in his left ear, and has spoken publicly and extensively about his hearing loss and the impact it has had on him.
Ewen’s appointment comes as RNID begins the first year of our ambitious strategy focusing on inclusion, health, employment and research for the 12 million people in the UK who are deaf or have with hearing loss and the 1 in 7 people who have tinnitus.
Ewen Stevenson, Chair of RNID, said:
I am delighted to have been appointed Chair of RNID. Having become permanently deaf in my left ear about a decade ago, RNID is an organisation very close to my heart. I look forward to working with the team, championing the new strategy and helping drive change to create an inclusive society in which people with hearing loss, deafness or tinnitus are able to be full and active members of the community – both at home and at work.”
Mark Atkinson, Chief Executive of RNID, said:
The whole team at RNID is immensely pleased to welcome Ewen on board as our new Chair. The strength of his professional background, combined with his passion for the cause and personal experience of hearing loss, will be invaluable in helping to shape our strategy over the months and years to come. We are at an exciting point in RNID’s history as we embark on a bold new plan to reach many more of the 12 million people in the UK who are deaf, have hearing loss or tinnitus. Ewen’s leadership will be key in ensuring we meet the ambitious level of impact we’ve set ourselves.”
Ewen takes over as Chair from John Morgan, who has chaired RNID for the last 5 ½ years: seeing the organisation through the impact of COVID, a major restructure and the development of an ambitious new strategy.
Ewen was selected for the role by RNID’s Board of Trustees, and his appointment was approved by the membership in a ballot in May. He officially takes over the role on 1 June.
We asked Ewen what he is most excited about in joining RNID, and what opportunities he sees for the charity over the next few years.
- Could you tell us about your connection to RNID and why you are so passionate about our work?
“After I lost the hearing in my left ear, I did a lot of research into hearing loss and charities that supported individuals impacted by deafness and hearing loss. RNID was one of those that really stood out as a leader in the field and an organisation that genuinely cared. Over the years I have supported the charity in a personal capacity and, when the opportunity came up to join the Board, I was delighted to be approached and even more delighted to be appointed as Chair. Hearing loss impacts 12 million people in the UK and the research the charity is doing is truly ground-breaking. It is a great privilege to be part of the team driving this forward and making the world a more inclusive place for those who are deaf or have hearing loss and tinnitus.”
2. What do you see as being the biggest opportunities for RNID over the next few years?
“I think there has been a real shift change recently in the commitment from corporates and other organisations to invest in becoming inclusive places to work, and a genuine interest in becoming employers of choice for those with disabilities. RNID can really use this opportunity to drive the agenda towards both the workplace and society becoming fully inclusive. We are also seeing a massive increase in technological research solutions, and we have a really exciting opportunity to be part of the conversation and leaders in creating, testing and promoting new solutions.”
3. What experiences from your professional career do you think will be useful in helping to steer RNID’s work over the coming months and years?
“I think the experience of losing my hearing while working in a large corporate environment, means that I understand the challenges many people will be facing. I’ve been involved in various ability networks throughout my career and I am actively involved in how to resolve the issues people face.
From a professional perspective, I am very good at analysing situations and seeing alternative angles and solutions, and I think this will help to offer a different perspective and hopefully help steer RNID towards even greater things than they are already achieving.”
4. What are you most excited about in joining the RNID team?
“I am really excited to be part of a team that is actively making a difference for those with hearing loss, and helping to shape the experience that these individuals have by ensuring that they live in an inclusive society where they can be full and active members of the community – both at home and at work.”