The board of disaster relief charity ShelterBox has removed founding CEO Tom Henderson from his position with immediate effect.
In a statement the charity advised that: "The Board of ShelterBox Trust can confirm that Tom Henderson is no longer CEO of ShelterBox. There is an ongoing appeal process, and as we do not wish to prejudice any outcome, and to maintain fairness to all involved, we will not make any further comment.
"A process has already begun to find a new CEO, with John Leach (previously chief operating officer) acting as CEO in the interim period."
ShelterBox was founded by former Royal Navy search and rescue diver Henderson in April 2000. Since then the board has delegated the day-to-day running of the charity to Henderson and the senior management team of international director Lasse Peterson and four departmental heads.
Henderson has received a number of international awards for his work at the charity, including an OBE received in 2009.
Interim replacement John Leach has been head of operations at ShelterBox since October 2009 and was previously operations manager at Parcelforce Worldwide for three years and Royal Mail for five years.
Shelterbox relies almost entirely on donations from the public to undertake its operations, and the support of over 170 voluntary response team members and hundreds of other volunteers. The charity proved fundamental to the relief efforts after the 2005 tsunami, sending out more than 22,000 aid boxes, which include resources such as tents, mosquito nets, cooking equipment, tools and educational resources.