Caritas Australia CEO Kirsty Robertson elected Vice President of Caritas Internationalis

25 May 2023

By The Record

Caritas Internationalis
Kirsty Robertson, Caritas Australia’s CEO has been elected as Vice President of Caritas Internationalis. Photo: Caritas Internationalis.

Caritas Australia CEO Kirsty Robertson has been elected as the new Vice President of Caritas Internationalis.

The 22nd General Assembly of Caritas Internationalis, held 11 to 16 May in Rome has elected Ms Robertson to serve the Confederation over the next four years across 162 national Caritas member organisations.

With more than 20 years of experience in humanitarian aid and development, Ms Robertson started her career at Caritas Australia in the justice resources team, and has since lived, worked and travelled in some 50 countries, including in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, working with the development arm of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, and at Machermo, a health post in the Gokyo Valley in Nepal, looking into the protection of the rights of porters for the International Porters Protection Agency.

Ms Robertson has worked at Anglican Board of Mission, Act for Peace, and spent five years as CEO of Mary MacKillop Today. She returned to Caritas Australia in September 2019 to become the first female CEO of the organisation.

Caritas Internationalis welcomes its Thirteenth President, Archbishop Tarcisius Isao Kikuchi. Photo: Caritas Internationalis.

“It’s a wonderful privilege to be taking on this role, a privilege to be serving the members of the Caritas Confederation across the world, and a privilege to be serving the Church and all of the supporters of Caritas Internationalis,” said Ms Robertson.

“We are an amazing confederation, one united by our mission in service to the world’s poor. As a woman it is a particularly important day for us in the confederation. By every measure possible, women are disproportionately affected by poverty. As a confederation we are committed to serving women in villages, parishes, and communities, but also in leadership. My appointment today reflects that commitment.”

Alistair Dutton, Executive Director of SCIAF (Caritas Scotland), was elected as Secretary General of Caritas Internationalis.

The election of Mr Dutton and Ms Robertson comes two days after that of Archbishop of Tokyo, Tarcisio Isao Kikuchi, as the new President of Caritas Internationalis.

“I would like to congratulate Alistair Dutton for his election to the role of General Secretary of the Confederation. I believe that Caritas is in safe hands with him leading the Confederation over the coming years,” said Ms Robertson.