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Chief Executive

The Organisation

Shakespeare Schools Festival (SSF) is the UK's largest youth drama festival, working with over 1,000 schools and 150 professional theatres. SSF provides all the tools, support and guidance necessary to enable schools to take students aged 8-18 on a wonderful journey by performing their own Shakespeare productions in front of a paying audience.

The Brief

Following the retirement of the SSF’s first Chief Executive, the charity’s trustees engaged Prospectus to search and secure their next Chief Executive to continue SSF’s great work and identify new areas of growth.


The new CEO needed to be a passionate and motivational leader with a proven empathy with the arts, used to running teams and developing staff. Candidates were sought with a track record of developing and delivering successful growth strategies and who were used to talking to a range of stakeholders from all walks of life, including at ministerial level.

Prospectus’ targeted search focussed on the arts and heritage sectors, broadcasting and communications, education charities and charities working with young people. We targeted Chief Executives and Directors with responsibility for growth and external relations within these organisations.

The Appointment

Charlotte Imbert was appointed to the Chief Executive post and took up the post in January 2015. As a graduate in Theatre Studies and Dramatic Arts from Warwick University, Charlotte used her personal passion for the theatre to set up her own production company. Following a period teaching in China for Voluntary Services Overseas, Charlotte successfully managed change and growth for a number of charity organisations. This included leading a restructure of BOND as General Secretary, leading the largest country office for VSO and most recently developing creative ways to address social issues through productions at BBC Media Action Bangladesh, Media Action’s largest country office. Here she has led the growth of the country office from one project to six, restructured the team into a united and quality focused team of 100 staff, and grown audience numbers by a third whilst increasing the profile of the organisation nationally and internationally.

Charlotte has successfully delivered large scale high-impact multi million pound projects, managing evaluation, budgets and finances and working with technical, operational and logistics staff. She is an experienced networker, highly used to working with senior ministers, civil society leaders, donors and the media.