Macular Society chief executive to retire

Cathy Yelf is to step down both from the Macular Society and her role with The Eyes Have It partnership

A woman, Cathy Yelf, has short brown hair, is wearing a fuchsia coat and a blue scarf, and is standing on a bridge outside in winter. The background focus on the image is blurred
Macular Society

Cathy Yelf will retire as chief executive of the Macular Society in 2024, the charity has announced.

Yelf, who has led the Macular Society since 2015, will remain in post until a new chief executive is appointed.

Announcing her retirement, Yelf said that she is “immensely proud and privileged to have had the opportunity to work for, and lead, such a fantastic organisation, which makes a real difference to the lives of people affected by this devastating disease.”

She joined the charity as head of external affairs in 2008, before becoming chief executive seven years later.

The charity was founded nearly four decades ago “to provide essential support to individuals living with macular disease and raise critical funds for research,” Yelf said.

“We have maintained this passion over more than 30 years and remain dedicated to beating macular disease, through vital information and support as well as new treatments and cures,” she added.

The Macular Society is now a leading funder of macular research in the UK. Over the past 15 years, treatments for several types of wet age-related macular degeneration have come into use.

“Every day, dedicated researchers are learning more and bringing new treatments ever closer. It’s a very exciting time and I am very grateful for their wonderful work,” Yelf said, adding that the commitment of the charity’s staff to beating macular disease “remains unwavering.”

Recruitment for a new chief executive will begin immediately, the Macular Society confirmed.

Speaking about the future, Yelf noted that it is “time to bring in fresh ideas and energy to raise the Macular Society, and its crucial work, to new heights.”

Yelf’s retirement means a new representative will also be appointed to The Eyes Have It, the campaigning partnership that Macular Society is a member of.

Yelf’s replacement on The Eyes Have It will be confirmed in due course.