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26 July 2023

Tansy Challis appointed Chief Executive Officer of The Racing Foundation

Tansy Challis has been appointed the new Chief Executive Officer of The Racing Foundation. Her new role with be effective from September 1, 2023 and she will succeed Rob Hezel who departs after 8 years at the Foundation. Hezel will continue to have an active role within the horseracing industry with a non-executive role on the British Horseracing Authorities Inudustry People Board. 

Julia Budd, Chair of the Racing Foundation, said: “The Board are delighted to appoint Tansy as the Foundation’s new CEO following a rigorous recruitment process.

“A broad field of candidates were considered including those within racing and others with strong credentials in related sectors.

“Tansy’s knowledge of the racing industry and its stakeholders, along with her experience in grant giving, is unparalleled.”

Challis has held the role of Head of Grants at the Foundation since 2014 and has over 19 years of experience in the charitable sector, with 15 of those directly in the racing industry. 

Challis said: “My passion and understanding of the racing industry, along with my long-standing commitment to the Racing Foundation in the delivery of its aims and objectives, will enable me to embrace this role as part of a logical career progression.

“I have been involved with the Racing Foundation almost since its inception and very much look forward to being a driving force for its continued evolution and progression.

“I would like to acknowledge the pivotal role Rob has played in shaping the direction of the Foundation and its valuable role within the industry.

“I look forward to working with the talented executive team and dedicated Board of Trustees to further shape the future of the Foundation.”

Racing to School and Racing Together are grateful to the Racing Foundation for their ongoing support. Lucy Gurney, Community Engagement Manager for Racing Together added: “Our congratulations go to Tansy on her appointment as CEO of the Racing Foundation. We’ve been grateful for Tansy’s guidance and depth of knowledge over the years in her role as Head of Grants, as well as to the Racing Foundation for their ongoing support across Racing to School and Racing Together to help us to pilot and deliver education and community engagement programmes that benefit both racing and the communities it operates in.”

The Racing Foundation was set up in 2012, following the sale of the Tote. It was established to oversee the distribution of funds to charitable causes within the racing and thoroughbred industry.

The Racing Foundation aims to make a difference to the horseracing and thoroughbred breeding industry by supporting charitable work that contributes towards positive change in four key areas: people, equine welfare, community engagement and environment and emerging issues.

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