12 July 2021

Founding Director of CELCIS to take up new role

Professor Jennifer Davidson, founding Director of CELCIS, and Director of its predecessor the Scottish Institute for Residential Child Care, will be stepping down as Executive Director of CELCIS from 1 August 2021 to continue her work with the Institute for Inspiring Children’s Futures at the University of Strathclyde on a permanent basis.

Professor Davidson has been on secondment full-time to Inspiring Children’s Futures as its Executive Director since 1 April 2020. With the University of Strathclyde’s investment to further grow the Institute’s work, and with its focus on children who face serious adversities, Professor Davidson will drive forward a range of initiatives to respond to new challenges in the COVID-19 era, including leading a multidisciplinary international Doctoral Research Centre.

Claire Burns, Director (Acting) CELCIS, said: “We are delighted that Jennifer, through her leadership of Inspiring Children’s Futures, will continue to focus on the structural and preventative ways that children’s rights and wellbeing can best be realised around the world. Jennifer will remain an important advocate and champion for CELCIS and a key partner in our work.”

Jennifer Davidson said: “It has been an extraordinary honour to lead CELCIS, with its brilliant and passionate team, and to collectively grow CELCIS into the child-centred, capable and change-focused organisation that it has become. My sense of urgency remains undiminished for the change we have yet to see for children and their families, and this change offers the opportunity to advance yet more innovative ways to drive change with, and for, children. I look forward to our future partnerships, as we strive together to create the best possible conditions for all children and their families.”

Professor Alexis Jay, CELCIS Strategic Advisory Board Chair, said: ”Jennifer’s commitment to the rights and wellbeing of children in need of care and protection, and their families, has been enourmous. While we are sad to see her go, we are deeply grateful for her commitment and leadership in establishing and building the credibility, value and impact of CELCIS.”

The process of recruitment for the Director of CELCIS will begin later this summer through an open external recruitment process. Claire Burns will be continuing in her role of Acting Director until the recruitment process is concluded.