Claire Horton

Chief Executive, Battersea Dogs and Cats


Claire joined the Home in the role of Chief Executive in June 2010. Formerly Chief Operating Officer for the Variety Club of Great Britain (the Variety Club Children’s Charity), she brings a wealth of experience from both the commercial and not-for-profit sectors having spent 16 years in senior management positions; the past 12 at CEO/Board level. Prior to the Variety Club she was Chief Executive of the University of Warwick Students' Union for six years.

Commercially, Claire has extensive experience in identifying and developing new business and achieving organisational growth. In addition, she has worked in consultancy roles for a number of years, advising voluntary and commercial organisations on strategy and practice and organisational development. Claire is a specialist in brand and profile development, income generation and business turnaround and is a published author in the area of partnership working.

Previous charities include NSPCC where she was Area Appeals Manager, then Regional Press and Public Affairs Manager. She then spent six years as a Director for Cats Protection, working at national and regional level on strategic development and in the front line, managing the charity’s rescue, rehabilitation and rehoming operations. She has lobbied on campaigns that have successfully changed legislation as well as dedicated public awareness campaigns relating to rescue, rehoming issues and general animal care.

She is a Non Executive Director of a market leading software development company and a member of the Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations (ACEVO). Previously Claire sat as an Independent Chair for Worcestershire County Council on their social services complaints, schools appeals and exclusions hearings and was a board member of the Finance and Business Academy at King Edward College, Nuneaton acting as a business mentor to students.

Claire is a Non Executive Director on the Government Board, The Animal Health & Welfare Board for England (AHWBE), the principal source of advice to Defra Ministers on all strategic health and welfare matters relating to kept animals. She is chairman of the Association of Dogs & Cats Homes (ADCH), the national membership body for rescue and rehoming organisations.

She holds an MBA from Warwick Business School, is a Fellow of the RSA and the Institute of Directors and in 2015 was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Roehampton for services to welfare and the community.

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