Westway Trust’s board of trustees are delighted to announce that Venu Dhupa has been formally appointed as the Chief Executive of Westway Trust, following a truly participatory approach to recruitment, which put our community at the heart of this important strategic decision. 

Understanding that the selection of a new Chief Executive has wide-reaching implications not just for the organisation but for the community we're here to serve, we committed to a truly participatory approach to the recruitment of this role. 

Earlier this year we held an open recruitment drive for community members and stakeholders of Westway Trust to form a community selection panel. This panel was finalised in March, as the panel set to work reviewing applications and short-listing. 

Having shortlisted the applicants, four candidates were invited to partake in open webinars and forums with community members and staff, where individuals could ask questions of the candidates and rank their responses. The community panel used the feedback from these webinars to select their preferred candidate. 

Venu has shaped her career at local, national and international level, most recently as Director at Community Links in Newham. She has a niche consultancy specialising in Workforce Development, Equalities, International Cultural Policy and Organisational Development / Innovation. These activities bring together her passion, commitment and expertise to address inequality, social injustice and poverty. 

I’m delighted to be joining Westway Trust. This multi-faceted organisation is well placed to work with a whole range of partners towards the important goals of social justice and tackling inequality. I look forward to getting to know the diverse communities of North Kensington and working along-side them to ensure that culture, heritage, entrepreneurship and all the talents play a central part in the continued empowerment and development of this unique part of London.

Westway Trust’s Chair, Toby Laurent Belson, hailed Venu’s appointment as a significant step in delivering the Trust’s new strategic direction of community-centering.  

In Venu we have someone with a remarkable breadth and depth of experience. It is great to have her here and the appointment is a great example of the transformative change taking place. It shows how the new board want this organisation to work with the people of North Kensington. 

It is one step only. But, following the groundbreaking board changes in 2020, it's another very important one that is equally new and groundbreaking. 

This is what we're here to do. We'll continue to look back to understand where things went wrong. And we'll look ahead to what we can achieve together as we continue to rebuild the Trust over the next 2 years.

Venu officially joined Westway Trust on Friday 11 June on a part-time basis, before scaling up to a full-time role from early August. 

Details of opportunities to meet Venu will be announced over the coming weeks, including forums with member organisations, tenants and the wider North Kensington community.