Dear Friends,

I am writing to provide information and background to the upcoming recruitment process for the East Timor Hearts Fund (ETHF) Board Chair position.

As you are aware, Ingrid Svendsen, co-founder of ETHF, has held this position since the company was incorporated in 2012. Ingrid has overseen the growth and development of ETHF from a small informal group to a professionalised but still volunteer driven NGO with DGR status, a substantial balance sheet and a diverse heart health program enabled by formal partnerships in Timor-Leste and Australia. Strong governance systems have underpinned this success, including a skills-based board supported by expert board committees and a strong strategic planning process.

In 2017 Ingrid gave notice to the board that she would step down during the life of the current 2017- 2020 strategic plan. As a result, a staged succession plan is underway to recruit a new Board Chair. This process has involved a comprehensive review of the Board skills matrix, current Board composition, and discussions around existing and proposed leadership roles within the Board. Consequently, the decision was made to externally recruit a new ETHF Board Chair, with advertisements to be placed shortly. The new role of Deputy Chair will also be created and advertised internally.

These leadership positions are critical roles as East Timor Hearts Fund continues to successfully navigate the challenges of COVID-19 and enters into a new strategic planning cycle to examine future opportunities to build on the organisation’s strong foundations.


David Marlow

Chief Executive Officer

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Ingrid Svendsen

ETHF Co-founder & Board Chair