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About us



The Council of Governors consists of public governors and staff governors who have all been elected by their constituencies. It also includes nominated representatives from the Local Authority, University and other partnership organisations. You can find out more about the role of our governors here.

The report on the results of the 2016 governor elections is available here.

Below you will find a list of our current governors.

Elected Governors - Public

Public: City of York


Margaret worked in the NHS as a nurse, midwife and senior manager for a total of 43 years before retiring in 2011.  She gained invaluable experience in the delivery of healthcare and in seeking and responding to the views of staff, patients and their families/carers and in working with a range of people from many different organisations. 

Since her election to the position of Governor in October 2012, she has worked with her Governor colleagues to ensure that the Trust continues to hold the patient at the centre of all it does.  In April 2014, Margaret was elected Lead Governor by her colleagues. 

By attending meetings and being involved in various committees and groups she has been able to see how the Directors and Non-executive Directors fulfil their roles and how strategic plans are developed and put into action. 

Following re-election, Margaret has welcomed the opportunity to develop and take forward the role of both Governor and Lead Governor in the Trust representing members and the community.  She ensures that the views of patients and their families/carers continue to be sought, considered and taken account of when discussing services. She is fully committed to the role of Governor working with the Trust and its staff, willing to both congratulate and challenge the Trust on actions being considered or taken when delivering healthcare. 

 Margaret Jackson

Robert believes in holding people to account and that frontline staff should have a voice with regards to how services are delivered, but most importantly, he believes that patients and their families should be at the heart of everything the Trust does. 

Robert feels that as a Governor he offers the Trust, fellow members and patients:

·         His whole hearted commitment to ensuring the Trust delivers safe, effective and high quality care

·         His belief in effective and robust governance and the importance of ‘speaking truth to power’

·         His professional knowledge of what great leadership in the NHS looks like

Robert is a York resident with a young family who has much to thank the NHS for – in particular the health and wellbeing of him and his loved ones (3 children born at York, numerous A & E visits and surgical procedures etc) and his career in leadership selection (he works for NHS Leadership Academy which is like a business school aimed at developing new leadership behaviours in the NHS).

He believes his career experience of questioning and assessing NHS executives and senior leaders means as a Governor he is comfortable challenging the Board at York to assure patients, families and staff that they are doing all they can to provide first class, safe and value for money services. 

 Robert Wright

From the age of 18 until retirement, Helen’s career has been firmly rooted in the NHS.  A registered nurse, nurse teacher with a master’s degree in education, she spent many years working in a clinical and teaching capacity For thirteen years she worked as a Senior Civil Servant in the Department of Health and was responsible for over 40 staff and a multi-million pound budget. 

Helen is very familiar with the work required of a Governor having sat on the Board of the UK Sector Skills Council for Health and she was subsequently appointed as a Director of Strategy and Planning with the same body.  It is these skills plus those of communication that she brings to the position..

Helen’s links with York Teaching Hospital are predominantly through patient experience both personally (following a mild stroke) and also through caring for her elderly mum who has since passed away.   

Helen believes that giving time and commitment to the role of Governor can bring real benefits to promoting excellence in patient care. She believes the Governor community is highly valued and able to draw on a variety of experience and contributions.

 Helen Fields


John moved to York some 40 years ago which was prior to his retirement in 1990 after being a Personnel and Administration Manager with British Rail for 40 years in various locations including Rotherham, Sheffield, Doncaster, Nottingham, Leeds and finally York.

In 1980 John joined the worlds largest service organisation that of Lions Clubs International as a member of York Lions Club.  He was appointed Club President in 1985, Lions District Governor for Yorkshire and Derbyshire 1990/91 followed by the National Drug Awareness and Life Skills Officer for three years.

John was a Board Member of the Charity TACADE (The Advisory Council for Alcohol and Drug Education) from 1993-2003. Tacade produced Educational and Life Skills material for Primary and Secondary Schools.  John has been a School Governor and Pupil Mentor at Lowfield School, Acomb, and York.

 John Cooke

  Michael states that he will bring experience, skills, and dedication to the role of Governor. He would like to represent members, help resolve issues and ensure the best possible healthcare. Michael recently retired to York, so have time to dedicate to this important role.

Michael holds a degree and doctorate in science. His career has focused on the development of e-learning and training technology to improve job performance and safety, including projects in the medical field. He has managed large projects, budgets, and supervised multidisciplinary professionals from a variety of nationalities. Michael has good leadership, listening and communication skills, and a record of creative, cost-effective solutions. He can see the big picture and both sides of an issue. Michael states he is detail-oriented, organized and motivated and has led community organizations, and has experience of focus groups and feedback surveys.

Michael brings a unique global experience of healthcare services, having lived, worked and received medical treatment in the UK, USA, and Middle East. He has experience of patient feedback committees. As well as seeking feedback from Trust members, he has friends who work in the NHS who can help him gain insight into issues and priorities.

Michael states that with his experience, skills, perseverance and dedication, he is confident that he can effectively represent members of York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, hold the non-executive directors to account, and help guide the development and delivery of safe, cost-effective, and sustainable healthcare in York.

 Michael Reakes

Public: Bridlington

  Clive has lived in Burton Agnes, near Bridlington for 8 years, since he took early retirement.  He started his working life by training as an accountant and subsequently moved on to take a degree in computing science, both of which qualifications have enabled him to have a wide and varied business career. 

Clive worked in the service and distribution industry for many years in a number of diverse roles, latterly at Board level.  In the final part of his career, he worked for the Department of Health, initially in policy areas including the National Tariff.  He then moved to a Senior Business Manager role in one of the largest directorates within the department and his responsibilities included forward planning, governance, human resources and finance. 

Since moving to the area he has become involved in the community through the Village Sports Association and the Bowls Club, both of which he chairs.  He is also a member of Bridlington U3A, having served as vice chair for 3 years. 

His background in the private sector and in central government, together with an enquiring, open mind and a determined commitment help to serve the community in the role of Public Governor for the Bridlington area.

 Clive Neale
  Pat has worked within the NHS for 35 years.  Having trained at Halifax Royal Infirmary, West Yorkshire and once qualified she joined the QARNNS as she wished to travel. 

Leaving the Armed Forces after 4 years service, she moved to the South to continue with her career.  A change in direction led her into community nursing where she completed her conversion to RGN 1st level, gained a diploma in Professional Practice, and then obtained a Degree Hons in Specialist Practice District Nursing, becoming a district nursing sister and later the manager of a ‘virtual ward’. 

Pat retired and moved North again with her husband and has lived in Bridlington since 2012.  Having time on her hands she decided to seek employment within York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, working at Bridlington Hospital for 18 months on the elective orthopaedic ward. 

 Patricia Stovell

Public: Selby


Ann wanted to become a governor to make a difference especially since as a family they have had some negative experiences with medical treatment. She decided that instead of doing nothing, she wanted to be part of a change and as a Governor she has been party to some really positive changes. It is hard to summarise in so few words, but she feels that some of the highlights include:

Being on the Fairness Forum; promoting equally and reducing health inequalities. Engagement with Dementia Services, Human Resources, Patient Experience Team, Safeguarding Teams for adults with learning difficulties, Visual Impairment Teams, Fairness Champions and LGBT Network. Being a member of the Nominations and Remunerations committee; involved in policy forming regarding appointments and salaries of the Chair and Non-Executive Directors. Involvement in Constitutional Review. Involvement in Community Service Group including development nof the Selby and Malton Hubs. Having input into the Food and Drink Strategy. Attending Ellerby’s opening, York Hospital’s improved restaurant. Involvement in Listening Week; recording opinions and experiences from staff, carers, volunteers and patients. Attending the National Governors Forum in London. Attending the wonderful AVS team’s Christmas Party and Remembrance Service at Selby Hospital.

Ann is now on her second term as a governor and continues to be deeply involved with her portfolio. 

 Ann Bolland
  Having spent time in York Hospital as a patient Roland feels he has insight of both sides, the patients and the staff on the wards. He is now retired but was a self-employed farmer at Hemingbrough.  Roland feels he now has the time to commit to take on the challenge of being a Governor

Roland is a trustee of a local charity and has also been a Parish Councilor for many years. In the past he has raised funds for British Heart Foundation, Yorkshire Cancer Centre, Macmillan Cancer Support ‘York’, and Ciic Sergeant helping children with Cancer.

For many years He has also supplied historic photographs to the Selby Times and Selby Post and currently gives historical talks to local groups and writes local history books which he donates to local groups.  Because of this voluntary work Roland feels he fully understands the financial commitment in balancing the books.

 Roland Chilvers

Public: Ryedale and East Yorkshire

  Jeanette had a career as a nurse in the NHS, latterly as a Diabetes Specialist. She is committed to obtaining the best health care services for the people of Ryedale and East Yorkshire. Since her election as a Governor in 2012, she has worked to ensure the Trust fulfils its commitment to put patients at the centre of all it does.  Jeanette finds the role of Public Governor very rewarding.

By attending meetings and various groups Jeanette has been able to see how the Board of Directors make strategic plans and implements them.  The quarterly Council of Governors meeting provides an opportunity to receive reports and to question the Chief Executive and other senior staff. 

Jeanette is a member of the Governors Community Services Group, which reviews the service delivery particularly the new developments. These become ever more significant with the pressing need for collaborative working between Health and Social care.  Jeanette is also a member of the Nominations and Remunerations Committee, which were responsible for appointing the current Trust Chair.

Jeanette chairs the Derwent  Surgery Patient Group meetings in Ryedale and attends the Scarborough & Ryedale CCG Patient Group, where there is an opportunity to present the views and concerns of patients and their families. 

 Jeanette Anness
  She has been a Governor for the Ryedale area since September 2012 and has experience of over 20 years working within the community on various patient groups, hospices and inspections which helps her to fulfil her role. 

As a Governor she has been invited to sit on various groups enabling her to be involved in the work of the Trust.  She sits on the Derwent Surgery Patient Group which offers feedback to the Trust from various residents in Ryedale, the Transport Group which involves ensuring patients and families know of the various concessions available for long term illnesses and finding ways of helping patients access all our hospitals in a more efficient way.

Sheila has also taken part in PLACE inspections which help to ensure the environment, cleanliness and food offered to patients in all our hospitals is the best possible standard.  Sheila also sits on the Annual Plan Group which comments on the Trust’s strategy.

She monitors any plans for Malton Hospital and the community services in Ryedale.

 Shelia Miller

For the past four years Andrew has served as a public governor at York Teaching Hospitals representing the Selby constituency. He has recently moved to Malton and is looking forward to representing the Ryedale constituency.

During His time as Governor he took a special interest in scrutinising the trust’s finances and annual reports to Parliament. He was the chairman of the Trust’s Constitutional Review Committee, which ensured the trust’s constitution remained compliant with new legislation. He was also a member of the appointment panels for the Trust’s Medical Director and Chairperson.

Over the past four years as a governor he feels one thing has been utterly clear – Our NHS is financially strained and will be for years to come. Governments, commissioners, regulators and NHS England will push to centralise services. It will be down to local Governors to work with the Trust to push back and show that a good NHS is one that invests in local community services to help people avoid unnecessary inpatient stays.

One of the best developments he has seen at the Trust has been the development of moving elective orthopaedic services from Scarborough to Bridlington hospital. By utilizing the Trust’s estate in this way, more bed space is available at Scarborough and Bridlington has a new, high quality service running from it. Andrew will be pushing to see how the Malton Hospital estate could be better used to improve services.

 Andrew Butler

Public: Hambleton District

  Catherine lives in Sutton on the Forest in the South of Hambleton District with her husband and young son, and has lived there since 2009 when she moved from York. Catherine worked as a physiotherapist at York Hospital for over 10 years, before leaving in 2008 to teach physiotherapy and other health related subjects at York St John University. She now works in healthcare management at NHS England, based in Leeds, and her role is to improve patient and carer experience of health services across England.

Catherine takes a keen interest in the health services that are provided locally, and would like to be a Governor for York Hospital so that she can influence and support the services to be the best that they can be for the people in this area. In her work she has the privilege of visiting hospitals and healthcare staff across England. She gets to see many different ways of delivering care and supporting patients, and sees what is possible and what can be achieved. She is used to working alongside hospital managers, patients,

carers, and patient organisations and so she feels comfortable challenging and asking questions of others to ensure that decisions are made in the interests of patients.

Catherine Thompson

Public: Scarborough







 Richard Thompson - Photo

Richard is retired and now feels he has more time to commit to being a Public Governor. He stated the role is valuable, rewarding and is part of the essential business of providing, effective, sustainable care and even more demanding services for patients within our community.

Totally mindful of complying to NHSI’s criteria, having served over 9 years as a Public Governor to my local Mental Health NHS Trust in the past, he finds it important that comments, feedback and requests from service users in the Constituency are relayed to the Trust to be actioned in a positive manner.

Over 40 years of Local Government involvement, National Park and 15 years with the Ambulance Service has given him a wide experience and knowledge of both clinical and mental health challenges on a day to day basis affecting our vast Constituency/Trust area.

Richard relishes the challenge and opportunity of being a Public Governor at the Trust.

 Richard Thompson

Public: Whitby


Stephen has been the Governor for Whitby and Esk Valley for 5 years. During that time he has endeavoured to work with the Trust after the merger, to enhance community and hospital services both at Whitby and Scarborough.

Significant improvements have taken place at Scarborough Hospital with a new modern ward, department upgrades and car parking. He feels York Trust have worked very hard to develop the efficiency of community services in Whitby and the Esk Valley before the transfer to NHS Humber trust.

Stephen worked initially in printing technology, post university in Liverpool , he did physiological research into hormonal control of gastric secretion.

He was then in teaching for 35 years and has the National Head Teacher qualification. After retiring he became a partner in a gardening business for 4 years, before moving back to  Whitby.  Stephen is a Local Authority Governor for 2 schools, as well as his role with the Trust.

Stephen continues to work hard as a Public Governor within the Trust to further the development of Scarborough Hospital, to provide high quality services to Whitby and Esk Valley residents when they make their choices for treatment. He is committed to working with the Trust to offer local consultant clinics across a range of services in Scarborough and Whitby.

Stephen has involved himself in many of the Trusts vital committees and this has been very important in developing his understanding of the structure and management of one of the largest geographical Health Trusts in England.

Whitby and the Esk Valley has an unusual position in terms of health provision with its geographical position linking it to South Tees and Hambleton/Richmondshire, as well as York/Scarborough.

 Stephen Hinchliffe

Appointed Governors - Partner Organisations

Partner: University of York


Dr Gerry Richardson is a Senior Research Fellow in the Centre for Health Economics (CHE) at the University of York in the UK. CHE has a leading international reputation, and is one of the world’s largest health economics research centres. 

Gerry has over 20 years’ experience as a health economist concentrating on applied and methodological issues in cost-effectiveness analysis. 

Topics of interest  include optimal skill mix for health professionals, the cost-effectiveness of self-management interventions, and the cost-effectiveness of childhood and parenting interventions. 

Recently he has led public health evaluations that involve decision making across sectors (primarily health and education) and over time. 

Gerry Richardson

Partner: North Yorkshire County Council


Chris has been appointed as a stakeholder governor on behalf of North Yorkshire County Council. 

As part of his Council portfolio, Chris sits on the Care and Independence Overview and Scrutiny Committee, the Joint Sub-Committee for Transport, Economy and Environment and Scrutiny of Health Committees together with the Selby Area Committee. 

Chris was appointed as a stakeholder governor in October 2015 and as part of his responsibilities also attends the Trust’s Transport Group. 

Chris Pearson 

Partner: Project Choice

 Karen Porter - Photo

Karen is the lead for Project Choice in Scarborough and York and has been working within this project for the last 3 years. Prior to this Karen has 20 years of managerial experience, mainly based within the NHS, in a variety of roles including managing facilities and admin based staff.

Project Choice is an NHS England led project which offers young people aged 16-25 with learning difficulties/disabilities the opportunity of work placements within an NHS environment. The students in this area are supported by Karen and her team to experience real  and valuable work placements within York Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust.  They also undertake employability based training which supports them with the knowledge they need to lead independent lives and support  them to apply for apprenticeships or permanent employment in the future. Employing people with learning disabilities is an essential part of transforming the care we provide in the NHS.

Karen wanted to accept the role as Governor as she wanted to represent the young people that she works with on a daily basis. The Governor role enables her to give them a voice to be more involved and engaged in the services that are available in their local NHS community and to ensure that there is accessibility to service provision for young people with autism and other disabilities.  Karen is eager to ensure that Equality and Diversity continues to be recognised, encouraged and embraced across the organisation. 

 Karen Porter

Partner: North Yorkshire and York Forum


Partner: Hospice Movement


Dawn has come on board as an appointed governor representing the hospice movement, specifically St Leonards Hospice in York, and St Catherine’s in Scarborough as the Trust felt it important that End of Life care is represented at governor level.

Dawn is currently Director Of Fundraising at St Leonards Hospice in York, and so has direct experience of the service provided by this sector within the area.  Dawn has been working in the charity sector for 3 years, prior to this she help a number of senior roles at ASDA Head office in Leeds covering both community, brand management and customer experience, and so brings a wealth of experience in these areas acquired in a commercial business environment, as well as operating within a lowest cost to operate environment.

Dawn has held trustee roles in charities, and is an active Dementia Champion – having created 400 Dementia Friends over the last 2 years. Dawn stated that she ‘wanted to do this role for a number of reasons, she lives in York and is a regular user of the services at York District Hospital.  It will also give a deeper insight into how the CCG, NHS and the wider system works together, and hopefully her experience in the private sector will add value as she can bring both a different view and approach to areas such as patient experience, membership etc.  Dawn has said that ‘It is so important that the end of life experience in York and surrounding areas is the best it can be and she wants to be part in making sure that happens’

 Dawn Clements

Elected Governors - Staff

Scarborough and Bridlington:

  Helen was successfully appointed as a governor for the staff constituency at Scarborough Hospital (including Bridlington) in October 2012.  She thoroughly enjoyed her first term as a staff governor and felt she had been able to contribute and support staff through the acquisition of Scarborough and York Hospitals Foundation Trust.  This is an extremely important role which involves making sure that Scarborough and Bridlington based staff feel involved in the strategic direction of their organisation, something that she feels very passionate about. 

Helen qualified as a Registered General Nurse in 1988 and went onto train as a Midwife, qualifying in 1991.  She has worked in a number of different roles within the maternity services and after almost 20 years, with a passion for governance and a strong interest in the quality and safety agenda she applied for a role within the Governance Team taking on the role of lead for safety and quality.  Her current role following the acquisition with York Hospital Foundation Trust has been as the Head of Patient Safety across the Scarborough and Bridlington sites.  Over the past several years she feels she has contributed and raised the profile of Patient Safety amongst her colleagues. 

Helen Noble 

Andrew cares passionately about the NHS, the Trust and the services it provides.  Andrew has lived in Scarborough for a number of years and he is extremely proud to work for the NHS Trust that serves this area.  Andrew has worked in the NHS since 2002 and during this time he has worked entirely in a non-clinical support service in Estates and Facilities. 

In his current role in the Capital Projects Department, Andrew is constantly striving to improve the quality, functionality and safety of the Trust’s healthcare facilities for patients, visitors and staff in order to improve the patient experience and health outcomes.  In this role Andrew is used to representing the interests of others selflessly and objectively and he is determined to bring this same approach to representing the staff of Scarborough and Bridlington at the Council of Governors.

The variety, and increasing seniority, of experience Andrew has gained from his involvement in capital projects and maintenance services across the Trust has given him a very good understanding of the diverse issues involved in running a healthcare organisation.  He understands that the key role of Trust Governors is to review, question, challenge and hold the Board to account to ensure that the Trust is running properly and delivering its services effectively.

For Andrew, a key part of being a Staff Governor also means using the opportunity to influence, on behalf of staff members of the Trust based in the Scarborough and Bridlington area, the Trust's approach to shaping the scope and quality of the healthcare it provides for the benefit of the whole community. 

Andrew joined the NHS to make a difference and he is constantly appreciative of the positive impact that the work of Estates and Facilities staff can have on the patient experience and the vital support it can give to the services provided by their clinical and nursing colleagues.

 Andrew Bennett


  Mick came to the Trust from a military background having served with the Royal Air Force for 31 years as a fire-fighter.  He has been with us for almost 8 years now and feels that during that time he has become more fully aware of and appreciative of, the Trusts aims and objectives.  He feels that there is so much negativity surrounding the NHS, with articles appearing in the national press almost on a daily basis.  If we are to believe what we read, then it would appear that the organisation is always going to be under pressure to deliver its primary role within society, that of being able to deliver free first class health care to all.    

As a member of staff himself, he feels that we should all be justifiably proud of what the Trust has achieved.  Mick’s role as the fire safety advisor enables him to meet and get to know many people across all staff disciplines; he sees at first hand the professionalism and dedication of staff.  The one thing which is only too apparent, is how focussed they are in putting the welfare and care of the patients first, above all else. 

There is no doubting that as an organisation we are constantly expected to operate under huge financial pressure in order to deliver more for less and it is only right that we should be held to account because of those expectations.  But let us not lose sight of the fact that despite those pressures both from within at a trust level and externally from a national level the one constant we share is our continued commitment to our patients.

 Mick Lee
 Jill Sykes

Jill has worked for the Trust for approximately 33 years starting her career in the NHS in Sunderland in 1978 working in Medical Records.   She studied for professional qualifications and a number of promotions; resulted in being successful in a range of senior management roles within York Teaching Hospital Trust. 

The roles Jill has undertaken have encompassed areas within the hospital  ranging from  out patients, site administrator to  working  within  the contracting department liaising and negotiating with GP practices involved in GP fund holding  and agreeing contracts, which led to her present role as Assistant Director of Commissioning.  This has given her the experience to negotiate contracts with both internal and external colleagues within CCG’s resulting in the opportunity to broaden her understanding and involvement and negotiation skills necessary in the numerous diverse agendas associated with a healthcare organisation.  Jill would like to be able to use the opportunity to influence,   and be instrumental in the Trusts approach to shaping the scope and quality of health care it provides to the benefit of the whole healthcare community.

She understands the role of the Trust Governors is to question, challenge and hold the board to account when necessary to ensure that the Trust is delivering services efficiently and effectively and having joined the NHS to make a difference, she welcomes the opportunity to share this passion and vision.

 Jill Sykes


  Sharon has worked for the Trust for approximately 28 years.  She trained as a registered nurse at York and has held various nursing posts including staff nurse, ward sister and matron. Sharon has also been a deputy directorate manager and worked corporately in healthcare governance and risk and legal services and last year she learnt about integrated working in the community.

Review papers described colleagues re-shaping health and social care and working in partnership with patients. She decided then that she would like to be part of the community team. So, when a position as a Locality Manager for Selby and South York was advertised, she applied and was appointed in January 2015.

Sharon joined the NHS to make a difference and appreciates the impact that her community colleagues have on patients’ lives. When she talks about colleagues she includes those directly and indirectly involved in patient care e.g. therapists, community and specialist nurses, human resource managers/advisors, administrators and colleagues working in estates.

She is committed to patients receiving quality services they require and desire by appropriately trained staff. It is also important that staff are supported by the organisation’s leaders to deliver services in the 21st Century.

Sharon Hurst


The Council of Governors consists of public governors, stakeholder governors and staff governors.




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