Director of BBC Scotland Donalda MacKinnon to stand down

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Donalda MacKinnon, who turns 60 later this year, said the BBC was an organisation she loved

Donalda MacKinnon is to stand down as the Director of BBC Scotland in the autumn.

Ms MacKinnon, who has held the post since 2016, told staff it was the "right time" for her to go.

The former BBC Scotland Head of Programmes and Services oversaw the launch of the nation's new TV channel.

She told staff: "It has not been an easy decision for me to leave this job, a team and the best colleagues and friends I could have wished to have."

Ms MacKinnon, the first woman to occupy the role, added: "This is an organisation that I love. And about which I care deeply."

She is the most senior figure within BBC Scotland with responsibility for content across radio, television and online.

'I couldn't be more proud'

The announcement comes a month after Tony Hall confirmed he was to step down as director general of the BBC in the summer.

In 2017 Ms MacKinnon shared a platform with Lord Hall as they announced the largest single investment in BBC services in Scotland.

She told staff: "Since then, we have all worked hard to deliver on our commitment to audiences in Scotland, and we have succeeded.

"It has involved a huge amount of hard work, passion and commitment from each of us and I am enormously proud of all that we have achieved."

Ms MacKinnon, who has been with the BBC for 33 years, also said she was privileged to lead a piece of work which resulted in a report on career progression for women.

She added: "I am pleased to see real progress being made on its recommendations and hope that it will lead to lasting change for women at the BBC in the years to come."

'Very strong shape'

The BBC Scotland chief acknowledged the corporation faced "some real challenges" but remained in "very strong shape" for the future.

Ms MacKinnon, who succeeded Ken MacQuarrie and is on an annual salary of about £180,000, said she always intended to leave the corporation this year.

The mother-of-three added: "I will be 60 at the end of 2020 and I'm keen now, for family and personal reasons, to get some time back."

Ms MacKinnon thanked her colleagues and concluded: "I couldn't be more proud of all that you have done and continue to do every day to serve audiences here in Scotland and across the UK."