The National Association of Care Catering (NACC) announced Neel Radia as its new chair at the organisation's National Training & Development Forum held in Blackpool last week.
Radia steps up from his role as South East region chair and succeeds Karen Oliver, who has come to the end of her two-year term.
Commenting on his appointment, Radia said he is honoured to accept the responsibility of being national chair.
"I believe in the strength of the association and I am committed to making it even stronger for the benefit of our members and the care sector as a whole. We are already seeing front line services gradually disappear so as an association we are more crucial than ever and I am ready to lead the NACC through these challenging times," he said.
"I have worked incredibly hard as chair of the South East region with fantastic results and I am keen to share these practices and innovations at regional and national levels. With fresh thinking and a strategic approach we will grow membership and the voice of the NACC will become even louder as we promote the absolute importance of good nutrition and hydration in the care sector today and in the future."
Radia has been an active member of the NACC for over seven years. Six of those were spent leading the South East region, which picked up the Region award at the NACC award on four occasions.
In that period he has introduced changes that include accredited training qualifications, study days and engaging communication and networking events. He has also driven a dramatic rise in membership levels and produced buoyant and sustained attendance at its regional seminars.