Take The Reins is delighted to announce the appointment of Deborah Hay as its new interim Chief Executive Officer to lead our not-for-profit organisation into its exciting next phase.

Deborah was on the steering committee for the Take the Reins pilot programme delivered in partnership with the Racing Foundation from 2017 – 2020, and brings a wealth of experience into this new role from her work within the racing industry, most recently at Arena Racing Company where she served as Head of Commercial and Partnerships at Lingfield Park. This knowledge and experience not only of the racing industry but of the journey undertaken by Take the Reins to date will be essential in the growth and sustainability of the organisation. Deborah has a passion for working in the community and was named as one of three finalists in 2019’s prestigious Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff Awards for her work in that field.

Deborah will remain a director of Take the Reins until our Charity status has been secured, and will work alongside fellow directors Amie Canham (former Sky Sports Producer) and Sammy Jo Bell (former Jockey and current racehorse trainer) to extend the reach of Take the Reins into communities across the UK to offer youth engagement programmes, personal development, transferable skills training and engagement with the racing industry at all levels.

Deborah says ‘I am thrilled to take up this position at this important point in the development of Take The Reins. I look forward to working closely with Amie and Sammy Jo and our fantastic team of supporters, advisors and volunteers to take racing into new communities, offering new experiences for young people at a time when inspiration, aspiration and opportunities will be more important than ever as the effects of Covid are felt across society.’