Chief Executive Officer (Maternity Cover contract)

Job Description

Position: Chief Executive Officer (Maternity Cover contract)
Hours: Full-time (37 hours per week)
Start date: May 2022
Duration: 9 months
Reports to: MHR Board

Location: Coleraine House, Coleraine Street, Dublin 7  [Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, and subject to Government restrictions, the successful candidate may also be required to work remotely.]

1.Position summary

The Board of Mental Health Reform are seeking a passionate, focused and experienced leader to cover maternity leave for the role of Chief Executive Officer. This is a unique opportunity to join the Mental Health Reform team at a period when mental health is in the public spotlight and a prominent element in current national policy discourse. Given the increased profile of mental health there is now an opportunity to use this momentum to address the current shortcomings in our system. Mental Health Reform is ideally placed to contribute its expertise, knowledge and via its members, the critical insights of both service users and providers, to the urgent work of building a mental health system which is coherent, integrated, agile and responsive to users’ needs.

Working closely with the Board, and leading a talented team, the CEO is responsible  for the delivery of the overall strategic and operational plan of MHR. The CEO will oversee the resourcing of the organisation and the development, engagement and growth of the network.

2. About Mental Health Reform

Mental Health Reform is Ireland’s leading national coalition on mental health. Our vision is of an Ireland where everyone can access the support they need in their community, to achieve their best possible mental health.

In line with this vision, we drive the progressive reform of mental health services and supports, through coordination and policy development, research and innovation, accountability and collective advocacy. With over 75 member organisations and thousands of individual supporters, MHR provides a unified voice to Government, its agencies, the Oireachtas and the general public on mental health issues.

See more;

(a) Leadership

  • Work with the Board to grow and sustain Mental Health Reform as a national coalition on mental health
  • In conjunction with the Board, lead on the development of a new multi-annual strategic plan for MHR
  • Sustain and grow MHR’s membership base and supporter network, and oversee MHR’s membership structure
  • Oversee and advance the development and implementation of effective lobbying and campaign programmes to achieve the objectives of MHR
  • Provide commentary on mental health issues and build MHRs public profile
  • Establish and maintain influencing relationships with key targets and allies

 (b) Management and financial oversight

  • Develop and oversee the implementation of annual operational plans and budget
  • Ensure adequate measurement systems are in place so that MHR’s operational plan can be monitored and reported on accurately on a timely basis at Board meetings
  • Be responsible for the prudent fiscal management of MHR’s operational budget and fulfilment of the organisation’s accounting policies (the Financial Procedures Manual)
  • Support the preparation of the agenda and board papers for Board meetings
  • Oversee procedures to fulfil regulatory and funder contractual requirements, including fulfilment of the Charities Regulator’s governance code
  • Be responsible for the prudent fiscal management of MHR’s operational budget and fulfilment of the organisation’s accounting policies (the Financial Procedures Manual)
  • Manage the recruitment and performance of staff and support their professional development
  • Oversee externally contracted resources in line with good practice and legal requirements
  • Communicate, motivate and develop staff through regular performance reviews including annual reviews, involvement in target setting and through routine exchanges in free and accurate information
  • Ensuring that adequate policies, procedures and training are in place throughout MHR in relation to Health and Safety. The CEO is responsible for ensuring that all employees adhere to these standards/procedures

(c) Fundraising 

  • Lead the organisation in developing and implementing a fundraising strategy
  • Grow and maintain relationships with major donors and funders
  • Identify grant opportunities and submit grant applications

(d) Developing and strengthening partnerships

  • Develop and maintain a network of contacts to inform and increase the impact of MHR’s work
  • Ensure MHR consults regularly with members, people with lived experiences, peer organisations, allies and other relevant actors in order to stay current with trends and to ensure that MHR’s research, policy and advocacy agendas are responsive to these trends
  • Represent MHR in cross-departmental consultative forums and at public events

4. The person

Skills, knowledge and experience required:

  • Track record of successful leadership and management including programmes, people, resources and financial management
  • Proven record of implementing and delivering on strategic vision and goals of an organisation
  • Strategic planning experience preferably in a decision making or influential capacity
  • Proven leadership, decision making, and advocacy skills
  • Proven ability to engage with a range of audiences and to build effective relationships with political, public sector, media, funder, service user and professional groups
  • Proven experience of working with the media to deliver key messages and commentary to the public
  • Proven capacity for innovation, strategic thinking and decision making
  • Strong analytical skills, sound judgement and the capacity to operate in a complex and challenging legal environment
  • Commitment to the vision and values of MHR with the passion and ability to mobilise members and supporters at local and national level to influence mental health reform


  • Knowledge of the policy environment in health, social change or related areas
  • Experience in and familiarity with the community and voluntary sector in Ireland
  • Familiarity with mental health issues in Ireland


The salary will be commensurate with skills & experience.
Mental Health Reform operates the following benefits for its employees:

  • Annual leave 24 days, exclusive of public holidays, 1 company day and 1 wellbeing day per year
  • Access to an Employee Assistance Programme

Additional notes:

  • Mental Health Reform is open to an individual being seconded to this role from the staff of its member organisations
  • This job description is not a definitive list of tasks; rather it is designed to give an overview of the job. It is envisaged that the post-holder will use their own initiative and develop the job under guidance so that the organisation’s aims are achieved. It should be noted that the organisation is dynamic and fast paced and it may be necessary to step beyond the areas outlined above to support others from time to time.
  • This is a 9-month position. Flexibility is required regarding hours as some weekend and evening work will be necessary for board meeting and other engagements. Travel and out of office work will also be a feature of the role.
  • Mental Health Reform is an Equal Opportunities Employer.
  • All documentation received by Mental Health Reform will be processed in accordance with the Data Protection Acts, 1988 and 2003 General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR; 2018). The information will only be used by Mental Health Reform in the processing of job applications and for ongoing administrative purposes with job candidates.

Application process:

Please email your CV and cover letter to

Requests for additional information can be sent to Fiona Coyle at

Closing date for the submission of applications is Sunday, 13th March


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