Chief Executive

Royal Forestry Society
Closing date 05 October 2020
Location Banbury
Position type Permanent
Role Leadership / Strategy
Education Bachelor's
Experience >10 years
Salary GBP 50,000–55,000
Benefits See below

Job description

The Royal Forestry Society (RFS) is the oldest and largest woodland education charity, dedicated for more than 130 years to promoting the wise management of woods and trees
across England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Our mission is to inspire passion and excellence in woodland management through membership and public events, especially our very well attended
woodland meetings across twenty regional divisions; our commitment to forest education from junior school right through to university and research level; and our national advocacy of best
practice through our renowned quarterly journal, policy and research publications, and our engagement with national and international debate on forestry challenges and opportunities.

The RFS is seeking an experienced and inspirational individual to be its new Chief Executive, responsible to a strong Board of Trustees.

Main responsibilities


  • Together with the Board, regularly review the strategy for the RFS, develop and oversee
  • the implementation of the strategic plan
  • Develop and maintain connections to the Society’s members and its twenty regional
  • Divisions, fostering good communications
  • Promote RFS research insights with government and policymakers, and develop the RFS
  • profile externally with government, statutory and voluntary bodies and with the public


  • Run the Society efficiently and effectively with appropriate systems and structure and to
  • be consistent with its charitable aims and objectives
  • Maintain a positive and productive culture in the workplace reflecting good employment
  • practice
  • Lead and manage the Society’s professional staff (currently 6) and long term subcontractors including regular performance review
  • Deliver excellent membership services and educational outreach activities


  • Working with the Development Manager, develop and implement the Society’s fundraising activity including managing relationships with existing funders and donors, and developing new sources of funding
  • Develop and deliver new projects in support of the charitable objectives of the RFS 4 Finance & Legal
  • Be responsible for the overall financial health of the Society including developing and monitoring an effective programme of income generation
  • Working with the Finance Officer, ensure robust financials controls and processes are maintained
  • Preparation of annual budget, annual report and accounts and financial projections for board approval
  • Monitor financial performance and report regularly to trustees - Ensure the Society fulfils its legal, statutory and regulatory responsibilities
  • Ensure the Society implements appropriate risk management policies including health and safety, data protection, reputational and financial risks, and regularly reviews these 5 External relations
  • Maintain and build the Society’s reputation and influence by undertaking and overseeing the active promotion of RFS to forestry organisations, policymakers and the public
  • Represent the RFS in cross sector forums and conferences and foster collaboration between the RFS and other organisations with common aims and objectives
  • Working with the PR and Communications Officer, represent the RFS to the media and develop strategies to increase media interest in the work of the RFS 6 Governance
  • Working with the Chair, ensure that an annual programme of Board meetings is in place and that the board has the information it needs to perform its duties
  • Report regularly to the board on the performance of the Society
  • Maintain an effective relationship with the Chair of the Society through regular communication
  • Assist the Chair in ensuring that the process for recruiting future trustees is open and fair and that appropriate induction procedures are implemented

Other duties

  • Serve as the Company Secretary of the RFS - Serve as an ex officio member of the Investment Committee, which is chaired by the Treasurer

Person specification

  • We are seeking a committed and experienced professional with:
  • Chief executive or senior executive experience with proven track record in effective strategic, operational and financial management
  • Knowledge of and enthusiasm for the UK forestry sector, and commitment to advocacy on behalf of members for good woodland management practice and high standard forestry education Ability to foster good communications throughout the membership and its regional divisions, confidently promote RFS’s research and insights with government and policymakers, and to develop the RFS profile externally with government, statutory and voluntary bodies and with the public
  • Experience of engagement with funders and donors

How to apply

To apply please forward your cv and a covering letter describing your suitability for the role to Kitty Martin, Chair of the Board of Trustees, Royal Forestry Society via email to

Closing date: 9am on Monday 5 October 2020 First interviews will take place on Thursday 15th October and Friday 16th 2020 either at our offices near Banbury or via video link.