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The Trust Board

The Trust Board has overall responsibility for the operational and strategic direction of the Trust and is accountable to NHS Improvement, the regulator of Foundation Trusts. The safety and quality of care provided at our hospitals is regulated by the Care Quality Commission.

The key functions of the Board can be described as:

  • Setting the strategic direction, defining objectives and agreeing plans for the Trust
  • Monitoring the Trust’s performance and take corrective action where appropriate
  • Ensuring high standards of corporate and clinical governance
  • Appointing and appraising executives
  • Working in partnership with external bodies and the local community for the benefit of the Trust and the communities it serves

The Chair is responsible for the overall conduct of the Trust. He appoints and reviews the performance of the Chief Executive and both the Chief Executive and the Chair appoint and review the performance of other Executive and Associate Directors. The Chair and Chief Executive have key roles in leading the external and public relationships of the Trust and in establishing the appropriate internal environment.

Mike Thomas, Chair, headshot.jpg

Professor Mike Thomas, PhD, MA(Law), BN, PGCert Ed, FHEA, MBPsS, FRSA, ROA.

Mike has worked in academia and the health sector for nearly forty years in a variety of senior academic roles, including Vice-Chancellor, and holding various professional chairs across four universities. He remains research active and a practising clinical psychotherapist. For many years he carried out clinical research to enhance mental health support for individuals who experience severe and enduring eating disorders whilst, simultaneously, over the last fifteen years he has been working with research colleagues across the UK investigating issues that impact on compassionate leadership in both the public and private sectors. He has written three books and numerous articles and chapters on these two subjects.

More recently he has been providing an advisory service to public and commercial sector organisations supporting staff engagement projects, cultural change programmes and strategies for enhancing good governance. 

Mike is committed to the voluntary, charity and public sector and has been continuously involved in charitable work for his whole working life. He is currently serving on the Lancashire County Council Veterans board and the College for Military Veterans and the Emergency Services which he co-founded. Prior to entering academia, he served in the Royal Navy, working for five years in HM Submarines before employment in the engineering sector and then qualifying as a mental health nurse and later a psychological therapist.

Executive Assistant - Cara Berriman
Email: Cara.berriman@mbht.nhs.uk
Telephone: 01539 715296, EXT 45296

The Non-Executive Directors provide support, advice and other specialist skills to the Trust and the Board. They are responsible for ensuring that the interests of the local community are represented and, with the Chair, for monitoring the executive management of the organisation.

Jalibani Ndebele, Non-Executive Director

Jalibani Ndebele, Non-Executive DirectorJalibani works for Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board in Wales as Director of Operations. Jalibani is a leader with extensive healthcare experience at regional and local level. His prior role was for NHS England as a Lead for Specialised Services leading a dynamic team in delivering services across the NW region and wider specialised commissioning portfolio to translate and deliver specialised models of care across the region. Jalibani's aHUS team (The National Renal Complement Therapeutics Centre) won the Bright Ideas in Health Award for Research Delivery Impact in 2018.

Executive Assistant - Cara Berriman
Email: Cara.berriman@mbht.nhs.uk
Telephone: 01539 715296, EXT 45296

Amin Kamaluddin, Non-Executive Director.jpgAmin Kamaluddin, Non-Executive Director

An experienced senior director Amin possesses a diverse 25- year career within FTSE100 and global blue-chip organisations spanning the pharma, medical, FMCG industries. Combining expertise in global procurement, supply chain, manufacturing, product development, go-to-market strategy. Amin focuses on formulation and implementation of value creation strategies helping deliver organisational transformation supporting sustainable growth and tangible benefit. A track record of achieving year on year growth for key stakeholders and shareholders alike. Amin holds an MBA from a top 4 UK Management School, is professionally accredited by The Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply and has a BA Hons in Accounting & Finance. Amin serves as a Trustee for a Blackburn based charity, is the Institute of Directors Ambassador for Lancashire, business mentor for Lancashire County Council Boost programme and business degree student mentor at The Manchester Metropolitan University.

Executive Assistant - Cara Berriman
Email: Cara.berriman@mbht.nhs.uk
Telephone: 01539 715296, EXT 45296

Alison Cole, Non-Executive DirectorAlison Cole, Non-Executive Director
RGN, BSc (hons), MSc

Alison has 40 years’ experience in health care, most recently within NHS England as Deputy Director of Nursing & Quality. Alison trained as a Nurse & Midwife and worked at UHMB from 1992-2007 as a Midwife and general manager.

She also spent five years at AQUA (Advancing Quality Alliance) as Head of the Academy focussing on Continuous Quality Improvement and facilitating improvement collaboratives. Alison is passionate about patient safety and continuous improvement and is keen to support UHMB in their improvement journey.

Executive Assistant - Cara Berriman
Email: Cara.berriman@mbht.nhs.uk
Telephone: 01539 715296, EXT 45296

Carrie Cobb, Associate Non-Executive DirectorCarrie Cobb, Non Executive Director.jpg

Carrie joined the Board in March 2023 as an Associate Non-Executive Director. She has been a registered nurse since 2001, and has worked as an ACP clinically previously . She is now a Deputy chief nurse / AHPs at FCMS, and therefore has extensive senior clinical leadership expertise. She also has expertise in commissioning , governance and in Quality improvement as a Quality lead at CCG level , and safeguarding lead expertise.  She completed an Msc in Healthcare leadership with the NHS leadership academy and gained an EGA award . She was awarded a Queens nurse award for her leadership and innovation work in hospital avoidance . She also supports a voluntary organisation as a trustee on the board ,and enjoys giving a voice to underrepresented communities. 

Carrie has worked in General practice for a large part of her career , working with her local PCN as board nurse lead , and now overseeing a range of services such as urgent, out of hours and primary care services.

Executive Assistant - Cara Berriman
Email: Cara.berriman@mbht.nhs.uk
Telephone: 01539 715296, EXT 45296

Tony Oakman, Non-Executive DirectorTony Oakman, Non Executive Director.jpg

Tony has forty years of public service. Having acquired a degree and post graduate degree at Lancaster University he qualified a social worker. He has over 22 years of Corporate Board experience and has operated in some of the most challenging urban areas of the country, both in Local Government and the NHS.

Until recently he was Chief Executive of Bolton Council where he led the Transformation strategy of the Council and development of a place-based Vision for Bolton - 'Active Connected and Prosperous'. A more inclusive and creative approach with partners developed an innovative integrated care model with the local acute trust, strong third sector developments and economic regeneration including the Medical Science School Bolton. With a focus for improvement under his tenure Bolton Children services were assessed as Good and Criminal Justice Services Good with Outstanding features. 

As a person he is characterised by his motivation, energy and authentic approach matched with his passion to work and make a positive difference with teams of similar type people.  

Currently he is also the chair of Barnsley Children’s Improvement Board. 

Executive Assistant - Cara Berriman
Email: Cara.berriman@mbht.nhs.uk
Telephone: 01539 715296, EXT 45296

Karen Deeny, Non-Executive Director and Deputy ChairKaren Deeny, Non-Executive Director

Karen joined the Board as a Non-Executive Director in July 2022. She started her career as a speech and language therapist and has over 40 years experience across health, social care and education organisations and systems locally, regionally and nationally. Her work as a clinician, senior leader, researcher and author has been driven by an enduring passion for working with and learning from patients and staff to improve people’s experiences and outcomes of care.

Karen has completed the NHS Top Leaders programme, holds a PhD in healthcare improvement and is an Institute of Leadership and Management qualified executive coach and mentor, She now works independently supporting a range of statutory, voluntary and charitable organisations with their assurance and improvement programmes.

Executive Assistant - Cara Berriman
Email: Cara.berriman@mbht.nhs.uk
Telephone: 01539 715296, EXT 45296

Sarah Rees, Non-Executive Director and Deputy Chair

Sarah Rees, Non-Executive DirectorSarah is Head of Stakeholder Relations at Lancaster University, leading the development and delivery of stakeholder engagement activity, with a particular focus on civic and community engagement. She facilitates relationship building with a range of organisations locally, regionally and nationally, building understanding and making connections between partners and the University, for mutual benefit.

Sarah is the University lead for the Public and Community Engagement perspective of the national Knowledge Exchange Framework and the Civic University Network, to which Lancaster is a signatory. Sarah was the University’s Appointed Governor on the Council of Governors of University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay Foundation Trust from 2018-2021, before joining the Board as Non-Executive Director in September 2021. She served as Chair of the System Design Authority for Bay Health & Care Partners from 2021-2023.

Executive Assistant - Cara Berriman
Email: Cara.berriman@mbht.nhs.uk
Telephone: 01539 715296, EXT 45296

The Chief Executive is the accountable officer to Parliament and is responsible for ensuring that the organisation works effectively in accordance with national health policy, public service values and maintenance of financial control. The Chief Executive is also personally accountable for clinical and corporate governance. The Chief Executive is directly accountable to the Board for ensuring that its decisions are implemented.

Aaron Cummins, CEO headshotAaron Cummins

Aaron was appointed Chief Executive of the Trust in March 2018 after first joining us in January 2014 as Director of Finance / Deputy Chief Executive.

Before joining UHMBT, Aaron was the Director of Finance / Deputy Chief Executive of Mid-Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust – a role he was appointed to in June 2012. Prior to that, he was Director of Finance at Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (LHCH).

Aaron started his career in the NHS as a National Graduate Trainee in 2000 and held a number of senior management positions in the finance function before being appointed as Director of Finance at LHCH in August 2009.

Aaron has  also held a number of national roles including chair of the Foundation Trust Network Finance Directors’ Forum and the Government Procurement Services (GPS) Customer Board, as well as being a member of the National Procurement Council.

Business Support Manager
Victoria James
T: 01539 716695

The Executive and Associate Directors, led by the Chief Executive, are responsible for the overall management of the Trust. This includes the delivery of services, the management of staff and resources and the development of Trust's strategic direction. The Executive and Associate Directors have individual responsibilities and provides leadership for specific areas of work.

Tabetha Darmon
Chief Nursing Officer

Tabetha Darmon, Chief Nursing OfficerTabetha Darmon joined UHMBT as Chief Nursing Officer on 1 May 2023 from Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust where she was Executive Director of Nursing, AHPs and Quality. Nottinghamshire Healthcare has more than 9,000 members of staff, and provides integrated healthcare services, including mental health, intellectual disability and physical health services in a variety of settings ranging from the community through to acute wards, as well as secure settings.  

Tabetha is a registered Mental Health Nurse, who holds a BA (Hons) in Applied Youth and Community Work, a post graduate diploma in Management, post grad (cert) in Health Promotion, Risk and Society, Prince2 project Management and an MBA. She has more than 30 years’ leadership experience at a local and national level. 

Executive Assistant
Georgina Barber
T: 01539 716697

Chris Adcock, Chief Financial Officer and Deputy CEOChris Adcock
Chief Financial Officer and Deputy Chief Executive

Chris joined the Trust in mid-February 2021 from the Sussex NHS Clinical Commissioners where he was the Chief Finance Officer for the three Sussex CCGs, and Finance lead for the Sussex Health and Care Partnership Integrated Care System.

Chris brings a wealth of experience to UHMBT, having worked in the NHS for 23 years. Prior to his role at Sussex NHS, he was Chief Financial Officer at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust for just under four years, following his roles as Director of Finance for the University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust, and Chief Financial Officer for Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust.

Chris' most recent system leadership role means that he also has in-depth experience and understanding of how individual parts of the health and care system can truly work together for the benefits of local communities, and that is exactly what we are trying to achieve with Bay Health and Care Partners.

Alongside the Director of Finance role, Chris will also be splitting the Deputy Chief Executive role - focusing on system reform and integrated partnership work.

Business Support Manager
Sharon Myers
T: 01539 716696

Alison BalsonAlison Balson, Chief People Officer
Chief People Officer

Alison, known as Ali, has worked in Human Resources in the NHS for more than 20 years and has deep rooted connections to UHMBT having been born at the Royal Lancaster Infirmary and still has family living in the area. 

Ali is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and has an MA in Human Resources Management. She also co-chairs the NHS NW HR Director network, where she is currently leading regional work on colleague well-being, and is a member of several national advisory groups.

Executive Assistant
Jane Frill
T: 01539 715223

Miss Jane McNicholas, Chief Medical OfficerJane McNicholas
Chief Medical Officer

Miss McNicholas joins us from East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust (ELHT) where she worked as a Consultant Breast and Oncoplastic Surgeon. She first joined ELHT in 2010 and became Clinical Lead for Breast in 2015.  

She then took on the role of Clinical Director for Cancer Services in 2016, but gave that up when she became the Medical Director for the Lancashire and South Cumbria Cancer Alliance in 2019. Also in 2019, Miss McNicholas became Deputy Medical Director for Performance and Service Development. 

Executive Assistant
Linda Kaplan
T: 01539 716666

Scott Mclean
Chief Operating OfficerScott McLean, Chief Operating Officer

Scott joined UHMBT in July 2022. He trained as a nurse in 1992 in Fife, Scotland, and then spent the next 15 years of his career working in Cardiology in Fife, Edinburgh and Dublin. Having completed his PhD in the pre-hospital care of acute coronary syndromes, Scott moved to London in 2010 to take up post as Divisional Director of Nursing at Barts Health NHS Trust.  

In 2013, Scott moved back to NHS Fife and was Executive Chief Nurse there before making the switch to become Chief Operating Officer. Scott then moved to Cardiff, Wales, where he was initially Director of Children and Women's Services before becoming Managing Director of the University Hospital of Wales. 

The role of the Chief Operating Officer is critical to ensuring consistent quality care for our patients. An effective Chief Operating Officer combines broad operational knowledge with strategic planning; experience which Scott clearly possesses. 

Executive Assistant
Lucy Curwen
T: 01539 715347

Paul Jones, Company secretary.jpgPaul Jones
Company Secretary

Paul joined UHMBT in May 2013. Paul is a qualified Company Secretary with extensive experience of corporate governance. Before joining the NHS he held several senior leadership roles in local authorities across the North of England and Yorkshire.

Dr. Sakthi KarunanithiDr Sakthi Karunanithi, Director of Public Health, Lancashire County Council and Advisor to the Trust Board
Advisor to Trust Board

Dr Sakthi Karunanithi:  Prior to becoming the Lancashire Director of Public Health and Wellbeing in 2013, Dr Sakthi Karunanithi worked as the Director of Population Healthcare in the county. He trained across many NHS organisations in the North West and has been a NICE scholar. His key interests include mobilising communities for wellbeing, integration and improvement of health and care at scale, socio-economic determinants of health and addressing unwarranted clinical variation. He has been a trusted spokesperson on best practices amid the Covid-19 pandemic.