Smiling woman with brownish shoulder length hair wearing a greyish denim jacket and looking wistfully to one side
PMZ Chief Executive, Debbie Geraghty 

Plymouth Music Zone is bidding a huge and heartfelt farewell to our much loved CEO who is sadly leaving PMZ after almost 20 years. Debbie Geraghty was not only the charity’s first female CEO but has since become its longest serving leader with 11 years at the helm.

Over the past two decades, Debbie has worked with her team to tirelessly champion the power of music in bringing people together to make a difference. She has helped secure significant investment to ensure music could keep playing its part in creating widespread social impact and joy across the city. Work that has achieved numerous awards and national and international recognition along the way. But, it will perhaps be Debbie’s signature warmth, humour, heart, compassion and resilience as a leader that will leave an indelible mark on so many.  

PMZ’s Chair of Trustees, Chris Hunt, says:

“We’d like to take a moment to sincerely thank Debbie for her many years of service to Plymouth Music Zone and the profound impact she has had. In her multiple roles at PMZ (as Director of Development, Co-Director and ultimately CEO), Debbie has been a passionate role model and advocate for PMZ, Plymouth, the arts, culture, fundraising and inclusive leadership, especially through such national platforms as the CIOF Culture Sector Network.

Debbie’s generous leadership and commitment to the cultural sector has undoubtedly inspired far beyond the reach of PMZ and we are all certain this uniquely fiercely kind champion will continue to cause ripples well into the future”.

Debbie is keen to thank all those who have been part of her journey at Plymouth Music Zone over the years, as well as those who will continue to take the charity forward. 

PMZ’s Chief Executive, Debbie Geraghty, says:

“It’s certainly a wrench to say goodbye to this remarkable charity after all this time but I am deeply grateful for the million marvellous memories I’ll be taking with me. Plymouth Music Zone seems to be one of those places that gets under your skin – nestling firmly in a corner of one’s heart, refusing to budge! Leaving is never going to be easy but what an amazing adventure it’s been. Where else could I have experienced the extraordinary creativity, solace and happiness that the work of this charity brings – all while surrounded by such gorgeously caring people who share a similar passion for using music to mix social justice with joy.

It has always been a team effort at PMZ. All the fantastic Trustees & Special Advisers, the PMZ team, volunteers, wonderful participants, and so many amazing  partner organisations I had the absolute honour of learning so much from. Together, they create a beautiful bubble of hope and possibility – and I can’t thank them enough for letting me be part of that for so long.” 

Debbie is stepping down from her role later this month. Her last act as CEO will be sharing PMZ’s inclusive practice on the national stage as she attends a special event in London alongside a selection of key leaders from across the music sector. The group is exploring how best to advocate for the “wellbeing equity” of musicians, a subject close to PMZ’s heart. PMZ was the first organisation to convene a regional Think Tank to feed into this important work following an earlier Think Tank with Britten Pears Arts. PMZ is widely considered an example of best practice in the area of practitioner wellbeing so this strategic event feels like a fitting, final farewell for Debbie.  

Meanwhile, Plymouth Music Zone continues in the wonderful hands of the remaining PMZ Leadership team. Anna, Glyn and Karl will be ensuring the continuity of our work and taking the charity forward into the future.  Feel free to reach out if you have any questions.