United Way Australia Appoints Social Change CEO
8 April 2015 at 10:24 am
Scottish-born social change advocate, Kevin Robbie has accepted the role of CEO at the Australian arm of global community development Not for Profit, United Way.
Robbie will take up the new role in June following a seven-year stint as Executive Director of Social Ventures Australia, where he led their venture philanthropy work supporting some of the most innovative ‘for purpose’ organisations across Australia.
SVA was established in 2002 by The Benevolent Society, The Smith Family, WorkVentures and AMP Foundation and in its first twelve years generated $45 million of investment from philanthropists, trusts, foundations and Government in the social sector.
Robbie’s CV shows an extensive 20-year history as a social change advocate, including the development of a 10-year employment strategy focused on tackling employment exclusion. He also led the development of the Industry Employment Initiative – a collaboration involving the Brotherhood of St Laurence, Jesuit Social Services, Mission Australia and the Business Council of Australia that is co-funded by a range of philanthropic foundations.
Prior to Social Ventures Australia, Robbie held the role of Chief Executive of Forth Sector, one of Scotland’s leading social enterprises working with some of that country’s poorest citizens, as well as being an Advisor to the UK Government Cabinet Office.
Robbie told Pro Bono Australia News that he hopes to particularly bring his philanthropic learnings to the new role at United Way Australia.
“My understanding is that United Way wants to upscale. My role will be to look at what’s working and what’s working well and drive that. It’s a challenge for all Not for Profits,” he said.
“The Not for Profit sector is operating in a volatile and complex environment and we need to be nimble and able to diversify income streams and focus on impact at the same time.”
Robbie says he hopes to bring his specific skills in place-based community initiatives, social innovation, social enterprise development, stakeholder engagement and impact measurement to the role.
He will take up the role as CEO of United Way Australia on 1 June. Prior to this, Anne Myers will continue as Interim CEO.