Hft recruits two chief officers

Devia Gurjar and Teresa Parker

National learning disabilities charity Hft has appointed two chief officers to its executive board – Devia Gurjar and Teresa Parker.

Gurjar, who will lead the charity and external affairs portfolio, has experience across brand, marketing and fundraising from previous roles.

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Before joining Hft, she most recently held the position of director of brand and marketing and interim fundraising for Barnardo’s. Other leadership roles across the charity sector have included director of marketing and communications for Girlguiding. Gurjar has also held roles with Scope and RNIB.

‘I look forward to working with the team to inspire more people to support our work, helping us to support people with learning disabilities to live their best lives possible,’ she said. ‘I started my charity career in the disability sector which has always held a special place for me and I’m thrilled to be able to return to it.’

Parker is taking up the position of chief commercial housing officer. Her role is to provide strategic direction and commercial leadership across Hft’s housing portfolio.

She has held leadership roles in supported housing management and more recently commercial asset management. Her previous experience includes leading and motivating multi-disciplinary teams in turning strategic plans into commercially viable operations. She has previously held the role of national housing head for Housing and Care 21.

‘Hft’s vision is a world where adults with learning disabilities live the best life possible,’ said Parker. ‘I’m excited to support the ethos of the organisation by enriching the standards of our housing portfolio to support the delivery of excellent services to ensure the greatest impact for the people we support.

‘Ultimately, my aim is for Hft to become the market leader for creating empowering environments, in both the design of refurbishments and new build projects, for people with learning disabilities.’