Post date: 
Wednesday, 6 June 2018

Nick Apetroaie, Keith Valentine and David Clarke join leading sight loss charity

The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) has appointed Keith Valentine as Director of Development and David Clarke as Director of Services. Nick Apetroaie joins as interim Director of Care, Education and Safeguarding.  

All three are new roles, created as part of a wide-ranging transformation plan to enable RNIB to provide the best possible support to people living with sight loss here in the UK.

Nick Apetroaie joined RNIB in May 2018. He started his career as a care worker and rose through the ranks to become Care Director, then Property Director, Deputy and CEO of a housing association. He is also a Board Member of Guinness Care and Ungureni Trust. Nick is accountable for all of RNIB’s care and education services as well as safeguarding processes and practice across the organisation.

Keith Valentine, formerly Vision UK Chief Executive, joined RNIB in early June. Keith has a background in leading urban renewal programmes but, as his own vision deteriorated, he turned his energies to the sight loss sector. He has spent the last five years holding senior and board positions at Vision UK, Thomas Pocklington Trust, RNIB and RP Fighting Blindness.  

As RNIB’s Director of Development, Keith will put the experience of blind and partially sighted people at the heart of the charity’s work. He will act as an advocate and ambassador for RNIB working with partners, Government and other key stakeholders to create a world where there are no barriers to people with sight loss.  

David Clarke, currently Head of Customer Banking for London and the South East at Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank, will take up the role of Director of Services at RNIB in early July.

David brings a wealth of customer focused experience to lead RNIB’s services which provide advice, information and support to the more than two million people living with sight loss in the UK. This includes the National Sight Loss Advice Service comprising specialist support via digital, telephone and face-to-face channels, including within hospital eye clinics.

Nick said: “I’m delighted to have joined RNIB as the charity marks its 150th anniversary. The passion and enthusiasm of my colleagues is clear, as is the commitment to the values that underpin the great work the charity does in supporting people living with sight loss. I look forward to working with customers, colleagues and other stakeholders to help the organisation deliver outstanding care and education services across the UK.”

Keith said: “I feel very proud to be joining the RNIB at this critical time. My family have been using RNIB services for generations, and the opportunity to be part of the organisation’s future is both exciting and humbling. Above all I believe our renewed strategic focus will prove vital to securing the services, progress and inclusion our community needs and deserves.”

David said: “As someone who has lived with sight loss since birth, I am all too aware of the barriers blind and partially sighted people can face in accessing vital products and services, or when seeking to achieve progression through education, employment and everyday life. I am determined through this role to use the skills and experiences I have gained during my 24-year banking career to work with colleagues to tackle these remaining hurdles and facilitate lasting, meaningful change.”

Eliot Lyne, Interim Chief Executive at RNIB, said: “We’re delighted to welcome Nick, Keith and David to RNIB at a very exciting time as we mark our 150th anniversary and look to the future. Their skills and experience will be a huge asset to the organisation as we develop and modernise the services and support we provide to people affected by sight loss here in the UK.”

To find out more about RNIB, visit www.rnib.org.uk

Notes to editors

All media enquiries to RNIB’s press office 020 7391 2223 or [email protected]. Or for urgent enquiries out-of-hours, please call 07968 482812.

High resolution photos available on request.

About RNIB

Every six minutes, someone in the UK begins to lose their sight. We are the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) and we're here for everyone affected by sight loss – that's more than two million people in the UK. If you, or someone you know, has a sight problem, RNIB can help. Call the RNIB Helpline on 0303 123 9999 or visit www.rnib.org.uk