Charlie House appoints new CEO

  • 1st February, 2023
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Charlie House, has appointed John Brebner as chief executive officer (CEO), to lead our strategy and vision to support children with life-limiting and life-threatening conditions and their families.

Bringing a wealth of leadership skills to the organisation, Mr Brebner’s focus will be on the development and expansion of current and new services as well as helping to deliver the Big Build Appeal, an initiative to develop a dedicated support centre in the North-east.

Mr Brebner joins Charlie House following an extensive career spanning more than 40 years in the finance sector and numerous board level roles.

Starting out with Clydesdale Bank - now Virgin Money - he has experienced a number of senior leadership positions within the business as well as advisory and non-executive roles across local Aberdeen businesses including Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce, Motive Offshore Group and Pike & Bambridge. Additionally, he has served as a board trustee for Befriend a Child.

Currently a non-executive director for Port of Aberdeen which is approaching completion of a £400m harbour expansion project, Mr Brebner will continue with this position while taking on his new role at Charlie House.

He said: “I have continuously been inspired by the passion and commitment the Charlie House team has and I can’t wait to get to know everyone and look at where we can enhance our activity from a commercial perspective.

“A key priority will be identifying how we can expand our reach of donors, commercial partnerships and sponsors to enhance our already diverse income streams.

“I have been lucky enough to have had great personal development opportunities throughout my career, dealing with people and businesses from all sectors. My role in Charlie House will allow me to use these skills to help a great local charity achieve its goals.”

Passionate about not only completing the build of the support centre, Mr Brebner also aims to expand on our charity’s long-term strategy outwith the Big Build Appeal to ensure continued progression for the organisation and its service users.

Founder and chair of Charlie House, Tracy Johnstone said: “We are delighted that John will be joining the team and lending his valuable business acumen to the work we do here at Charlie House. His experience and skills will benefit the senior management team and charity as a whole.

"On behalf of myself and the wider Charlie House team, we are looking forward to working with John to deliver on our current projects for increased service provision for the children and their families needing our support across the North-east, as well as delivering on our goals for the Big Build Appeal in the not too distant future."

Charlie House launched the Big Build Appeal with a target of £8m to raise. The current fundraising efforts total more than £4m and the charity recently launched the Buy a Brick campaign to help raise money for the appeal.

To find out more about the Buy a Brick campaign and how you can help Charlie House build a dedicated support centre , visit

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