Sight Care's new chief executive takes up his post

John French replaces Paul Surridge who is stepping down after 18 years in the role

John French

Sight Care’s new chief executive, John French (pictured), has joined the business support organisation for independents this week, replacing Paul Surridge who is standing down after 18 years.

Mr French comes from outside of optics, bringing over 12 years of experience working in the professional membership association sector, combined with private sector business and marketing experience.

He was previously chief executive of Paul’s Cancer Support Centre in London and before that he was head of management information at the Automobile Association. Mr French has also been chief executive of the Federation of Holistic Therapies, and was a trustee and treasurer of Transplant Sport UK.

Regarding his new role in optics, Mr French said: “I am extremely excited about joining the Sight Care team whose reputation for providing the highest quality business and marketing support for independent practice owners is recognised throughout the optical profession.”

Paying tribute to Mr Surridge, he added: “Paul has been influential in creating a successful independent practice business community and training network and it is my job to build on this to ensure that every independent practice owner is only a call away from accessing the services and resources available to help them grow their business.”

The candidate who was announced as the new chief executive last month, Steve Wright, a former dispensing optician, decided not to take up the role.