Rob Nye says:

The Trustees conducted a thorough recruitment process, led by Moon Executive Search. The shortlisted candidates were put through their paces with a number of interview sessions, most importantly with a group of young people and representatives of the staff. In both cases these groups had a bearing on the outcome. I would also therefore like to congratulate Mark on clearing a challenging process against a very strong candidate list


Mark says:


“I’m delighted, honoured and humbled to have been offered the role. The selection process was intense, but I really welcomed the involvement of staff and youth panels – which feels really important for an organisation like ours, putting young people and staff at the heart of everything we do.

The team at Creative Youth Network do amazing work, supporting thousands of the region’s most disadvantaged and vulnerable young people each year. We are seeing demand for our services rising higher than ever, and many young people are struggling with the unfair/unequal impacts of the pandemic – all in a funding climate that remains very challenging.

My first priority will be to engage and to listen – to our staff, to our numerous partner organisations with whom we jointly deliver services, to our commissioners, funders and stakeholders, but most of all to the young people that we are here to serve. I am a big believer in partnership and collaboration and am sure that together we can be more than the sum of our parts and deliver the best services we possibly can for young people in the West of England.

I look forward to meeting and speaking with as many of you as possible over the coming months.


Some facts about our new Incoming CEO

  1. Mark is passionate about youth work and credits his experience of youth projects as a painfully shy teenager as being crucial to his personal development. Over the past 20 years he has volunteered for a range of charities and projects that support young people, including tutoring refugee children, a youth sailing project, career mentoring and mock interviews, as well as being an active and engaged parent to two children of his own.


  1. Mark is a strong believer in the power and importance of community. As well as having responsibility for community projects across a number of his work roles, Mark is a longstanding volunteer trustee for his local community development association and for social enterprise and affordable housing projects.


  1. He brings experience from other sectors, as well as youth work. After initially training as a lawyer, Mark worked in the private sector and the creative industries (music publishing, game production and digital design) before deciding 10 years ago to devote his career to the charity/not-for-profit sector. A decade working in housing/homelessness, social care, addiction recovery, domestic abuse and mental health give him a solid perspective on some of the difficult issues faced by the young people Creative Youth Network supports (and their families). He says that his time working in adult services have given him a determination that we should invest in preventative services for young people, before problems escalate.


  1. He is in fact an award-winning social entrepreneur. Mark won a national prize for his work launching a social enterprise that in its first 5 years housed over 250 formerly homeless people including refugees. He brings a commercial and entrepreneurial perspective to Creative Youth Network and is a firm believer that the youth sector must find ways to “grow the pie” rather than compete for limited funding.


On behalf of everyone Mark, congratulations in your new role!


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