New Chief Executive Announced

Issued: Wednesday 21st October

Women in Prison appoints new Chief Executive

Women in Prison (WIP) – a leading national charity campaigning on behalf of women affected by the criminal justice system and supporting women in all 12 women’s prisons in England – is delighted to announce the appointment of Dr Kate Paradine as its new Chief Executive.

Dr Paradine brings a wealth of experience to WIP, previously she was National Quality Lead for CRI(1) and is a current Trustee for the theatre company Clean Break(2). She has led various change initiatives in the public and charity sectors on issues including domestic abuse, child abuse, substance misuse and mental health including publishing national policy and strategy documents(3).

Commenting on her appointment, Dr Paradine says, “It is a great honour to join a charity that has such a strong reputation for campaigning and effectively supporting women to change their lives.

“I support the conviction of WIP, drawn from its own experience that if women affected by the criminal justice system are given the right kind of sustained help, they have the assets and capabilities to turn their lives around and the lives of their children.

She adds, “Most women are sent to prison for non-violent offences despite often being the sole carers of young children. A significant number of women in prison grew up in the care system, have experienced abuse as children and adults and many face mental health and substance misuse issues.

“As the Transforming Rehabilitation arrangements become established - and with the Justice Secretary, Michael Gove, committed to overhauling the prison system to break the cycle of recidivism - Women in Prison has a unique opportunity to work with the sector to establish a lasting legacy that sees a significant reduction in the number of women in prison and the establishment of effective - and cheaper - community alternatives to custody.”

Dr Paradine succeeds Rachel Halford who stepped down earlier this year after ten years commitment to the charity.

WIP is also very pleased to announce that Jill Maddison, who has been Interim Chief Executive during this period of transition, has agreed to continue on with the charity as a consultant focusing on contracts and development.

Women in Prison’s Chair of Trustees Yvonne Roberts says, “Penal reform is at a crossroads, the excellent skills and experience of our leadership team, combined with the high standard of work already provided by a dedicated staff, means that we have a much improved opportunity to achieve the change that our founder Chris Tchaikovsky campaigned for over thirty years ago – real justice for women.”


Notes to Editors:

  1. A charity providing treatment and support for people facing addiction, homelessness and abuse.
  2. A charity which produces award winning plays and provides training and education for women affected by the criminal justice system
  3. For example Guidance on Investigating Child Abuse and Safeguarding Children, and Guidance on Investigating Harassment

About Women in Prison:

Women in Prison (WIP) is a unique women-only organisation that provides gender-specialist support to women affected by the criminal justice system and campaigns to expose the injustice and damage imprisonment causes to women and their families.

For further information contact Women in Prison on 0207 359 6674 or email WIP’s Policy and Campaigns Manager on