Ms Thorpe has held previous executive roles as Chief HR Officer for Paddy Power plc, Corporate Development Director for Cairn Homes, and various HR leadership roles in Citigroup London, New York and Microsoft Europe.
She has deep experience working at board level and leading executive teams in FTSE 100 and 250 companies, developing their organisational strategy to deliver scale and sustainable outperformance in their markets. She has led global HR teams to deliver organisational transformation and operated in a board advisory capacity, working across the technology, financial services, leasing and property sectors.
Speaking about her appointment as Chair, Sandra Thorpe said, ‘I am honoured to take up this position as Chair of the Gate and look forward to building on the momentum created by the Gate leadership team, the Chairman and the Board in partnership with the Arts Council, to empower the artsits who bring their work to life with us. The Gate has a critically unique role to play in the arts as we want to increase our focus on creating theatre for all in 2024 and beyond. We will continue our focus on bringing art to life through nurturing artists and creating access for all to brilliant theatre on a local and international stage.’
Recognising outgoing Chair Peter Crowley’s tenure, Ms Thorpe added, ‘Peter has made an unmatched contribution as Chair of the Gate since 2015. His vision, leadership and judgement steered us a Board and as an organisation incredibly effectively; Peter leaves the Gate stronger than ever as a home for artists in Irish culture. I thank him for the leadership and support he has provided to the Board and his planned ongoing commitment to the company.’
Peter Crowley, outgoing Chair of the Gate Board, said: ‘The Gate and the artists and staff who work there are a vital part of the cultural fabric of Dublin and the country. It’s been a privilege to have been involved over the last nine years and I’m excited for the future of the Gate under its new leadership.’
Róisín McBrinn and Colm O’Callaghan, co-CEOs of the Gate Theatre, commented, ‘We are thrilled that Sandra Thorpe, a deeply committed Board member since 2019, has been appointed the next Chair of the Gate. Sandra has been instrumental in transforming the theatre into a better-resourced organisation for both its staff and artists, and a cultural institution that values the sustainability of its business as much as its excellence. We know the Gate will continue to thrive with Sandra at the helm of the Board.’
On Mr Crowley’s departure, they added, ‘In congratulating Sandra, we also recognise Peter’s immense contribution. Quite simply, the Gate would not be in the stable and promising position it is today without Peter’s vision. We thank him for his invaluable support in our first years as Co-CEOs.