The National Care Forum (NCF) today announces the appointment of Andy Cole OBE, as the new Chair of its board.

Effective from today, Thursday 13 May 2021, Andy succeeds Maria Ball, CEO of Quantum Care, who has held this post since 2017. Maria will remain on the board of directors as an integral part of the team in providing support to the NCF team and members.

Andy is Chief Executive of Royal Star & Garter, a long-standing member of NCF, and a NCF board member himself since 2017.

Royal Star & Garter is one of the country’s leading military charities, which provides care to veterans and their partners living with disability or dementia. Andy led the development of the charity’s home in High Wycombe, which opened in 2019 and is championing the launch of new services for veterans.

Andy was previously Chief Executive of the national premature baby charity, Bliss, receiving an OBE in the 2014 Queen’s Birthday Honours; and was a director at Leonard Cheshire. He also sits on the council of Buckinghamshire New University.

Andy Cole said, “I am delighted to take on the role of Chair, and look forward to assisting Vic Rayner and the whole NCF team. The last year has been hugely challenging for everyone in social care, and NCF has played a vital role in not only helping our own members but also the wider sector onto a path for recovery. It will be a privilege to champion our members as we fight for meaningful reform in the years ahead.”

NCF Chief Executive, Vic Rayner said, “We are delighted to announce Andy Cole as Chair of NCF as Maria Ball steps down. Maria has been a dedicated Chair and during the last year has steered the NCF team and members through the pandemic. As we approach our 30th anniversary Andy will bring his invaluable experience and expertise to the role of NCF Chair.”

Maria Ball said, “I am very confident that Andy Cole will bring a huge amount of experience, passion, new energy and vision to the role I have truly enjoyed over the past three years, despite a year which has been exceptionally challenging for all of us leading care organisations. It has also been a year in which the NCF has really come to the force as a voice of social care. I know Andy will support Vic in building even more on this huge achievement.”