We are deeply saddened to be sharing the news that our Chief Executive at NCS, colleague and dear friend, Leslie McDonald has passed away.


Leslie joined Nottingham Counselling Service 17 years ago and with wisdom, skill and perseverance, led the charity through what often times seemed impossible challenges. He never once wavered in his belief of Nottingham Counselling Service and of all who have worked and continue to work with the organisation. NCS was much more than a job for Leslie, it was a vocation and he dedicated his life in service of building an organisation that has touched not only the lives of those of us who knew and loved him, but also the lives of thousands of people in Nottingham. People who desperately needed a counsellors help and had nowhere and often no one to turn to. Leslie suffused values of care, fairness and integrity through every initiative undertaken by NCS and with attention that was meticulous, built NCS in to the organisation it is today, providing more than 4000 counselling hours in a year with the incredible support of Shaz, Martin, Joe, Claire, Rob, Louise, Adriane, Graham and the vibrant community of volunteer counsellors to whom we are most grateful and upon whom the organisation depends.


Leslie pioneered relationships with organisations across Nottingham including serving as Chair of the Board of Trustees for New Art Exchange, membership of Nottingham City Council's Health and Wellbeing Board and as a Steering Committee member representing Black and Asian Minority Ethnic Communities for Nottingham's Integrated Care Partnership. He was a guiding member of a number of community partnerships including BHAG and African Women's empowerment group.


We have lost a dear friend, a gifted leader and a man who whilst softly spoken and gentle was also fierce in building for the good. Leslie was all of these things and more and we will miss his light most dearly.


We ask at this time that your thoughts are with Leslie's family and his sources of joy, Kate, Joe and Jess. We will be closing NCS for three days as a mark of respect and the office will re-open on Wednesday 3rd May. We know that many people knew Leslie well and will wish to have the opportunity to remember him and share our respect. We will share details in due course about plans to honour and recognise the incredible contribution Leslie made.