Stephen Fry has been announced as the new President of Mind – a UK charity that campaigns vigorously to create a society that promotes and protects good mental health for all – taking over from Melvyn Bragg, who is stepping down after fifteen years in the role.
Melvyn Bragg, Stephen Fry and Paul Farmer
“I am honoured and delighted to become the new President of Mind,” said Stephen. "This wonderful charity performs vital work to help anyone, like myself, who experiences a mental health problem.
“It is a privilege to follow in the footsteps of Lord Melvyn Bragg, and I can only hope to live up to the standard that he has set in his fifteen successful years at the helm.”
Stephen Fry has been a Mind supporter for a number of years and was named Mind Champion in 2007 for his award-winning documentary The Secret Life of a Manic Depressive, which explored his experiences of living with bipolar disorder.
Announcing his successor, Lord Bragg said: "It’s been a privilege to work for Mind and with such an excellent team over the past fifteen years. However I feel that the time has come to move on. I’ve seen many positive changes in my time and I’m sure a new President would bring new energy and new ideas to the role.
“My first choice to succeed me, and that of the Mind Board, was Stephen Fry. I wrote to Stephen and am delighted to say that he accepted. He has been both eloquent and public with his experience of mental distress, and I am sure he will take Mind forward and be welcomed by everyone who supports this fine organization.”
Stephen has previously fronted the ‘Get it off your chest’ campaign, aimed at getting men to recognise the importance of talking about their problems, and has also been an ambassador for Time to Change, Mind’s anti-stigma campaign.
Paul Farmer, Mind’s Chief Executive, said: "I am thrilled that Stephen Fry is to become the next President of Mind. He has already done much to reduce the stigma around mental health through his television documentary and his writing, honestly describing his experiences of bipolar disorder.
“I am certain that he will prove to be an inspiring leader of our charity and will continue to provide hope and inspiration to anyone who experiences a mental health problem.
“This is an exciting time in mental health as we start to see real changes in attitudes and I know that Stephen will be instrumental in helping us to continue the momentum that we have built up under Lord Bragg’s leadership.”
Find out more about Mind here.