Samir Patel was appointed CEO of Comic Relief in January 2021. A “digital expert”, Patel has over 20 years’ experience of international digital, grassroot campaigns and communications experience. This has included working for Oxfam, Google, Co-op, Amnesty International and the UN’s Refugee Agency. At these companies, he has overseen major brand updates, helping charities to innovate fundraising strategies and leading digital initiatives to increase engagement. On taking up his position, Patel said: “digital innovation, strategy and storytelling are all part of my DNA”; Comic Relief’s chair, Eric Salama, explained: “to be able to achieve our goals, alongside our relationship with our partners and the BBC, we need to become digital in everything we do”. Separately, Patel has advocated for diversity and inclusion and partaken in numerous high-profile groups focusing on equality and sustainability. He has also worked with UN Live on engagement with young change-makers.