Dr Iain MacRitchie

Iain is the Founder and Chair of MCR Pathways. Since 2007, he has been at the forefront of establishing MCR's mentoring and talent development model.

His vision is that every young person can achieve the same education outcomes, career opportunities and life chances with the right encouragement and support.

Iain, our founder with young people holding a photo frame cut out

About Iain

Prior to founding MCR Pathways, Iain MacRitchie, had found success in the business world by turning around failing corporations. He had advised over 100 businesses and acted as Executive Chairman or CEO for 18 different companies around the world. It was his leadership role of three failing care organisations, which ran 90 children’s homes, 5 schools and a foster agency, that drove him to set up MCR Pathways.

Under Iain’s leadership the organisations were transformed, but he could not reconcile that this made no difference to the outcomes of the young people in care. Talents were left undeveloped, potential unrealised and young people were falling in large numbers to highly destructive outcomes when they turned 18. Iain concluded that education was the key to unlocking the potential of these young people.

In 2007, Iain dedicated time and resources to address this injustice and set up MCR Pathways, targeting his birth city of Glasgow given the extent of deprivation and social challenges. His philosophy has always been to take on the greatest challenges and show what can be done as the way to persuade others to join the cause and make changes permanent. After meeting with a head teacher and senior manager at St Andrews Secondary in Glasgow, the transformational programme was launched.

Realising Potential

Early on, Iain was convinced that mentoring relationships could be organised for every young person across the country and since 2007 this has been the MCR goal. Dedicating 7 years as a full-time volunteer, Iain continues to lead as Chairman and make a positive impact for young people on a national and international scale.

His ambition is that every young person who has experienced disadvantage, through no fault of their own, is given support to allow them to flourish and create a future determined by their potential and never their circumstances.

By supporting the country’s vulnerable young people, Iain’s work has been recognised by a number of awards including Glasgow’s St Mungo Medal, The Lifetime Achievement accolade in The Diversity Awards 2019, and when he was named as one of the 2019 Class of Influential Leaders worldwide by AACSB International. He was also presented with a UK Points of Light Award from the Prime Minister,  IFT Foundation Reward and, in 2020, he won Director of the Year, for Glasgow & West of Scotland and Third Sector categories at the IoD Awards.

In recognition for services to industry, social enterprise and education, Iain was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from Strathclyde University in 2013 and, in 2020, he became a Visiting Professor at the University. Iain is the spokesperson for MCR Pathways. 

In the News

Recent Publications

Featured in the Herald Scotland, read more from Iain’s ‘Bridging Better Futures’ series below.