Our Governors

Our Governors

Alder Hey has an active Council of Governors representing patients, parents, carers, staff, the general public and partner organisations. The Council represents our membership and represents as far as possible, every staff group and the communities that Alder Hey serves across England and North Wales.

A total of 34 Governors are elected from the membership base. The Council of Governors is comprised of six staff governors (elected by staff), nine public governors, four patient governors, six parent and carer governors (elected by members), together with nine appointed governors from nominated organisations.

Our governors play a key role in working alongside the Board of Directors to ensure the Trust’s plans are being delivered and that the interests of all stakeholder groups have been considered.

Elections to the Council of Governors take place annually in the summer. Vacancies will appear in the news section of the website.

Governors' responsibilities

  1. Governors have a number of key responsibilities which are set by Monitor (2014) and include:
  2. Holding non-executive directors to account for performance of the board
  3. Representing the interests of members and the public
  4. Amending the constitution
  5. Approving the appointment of the Chief Executive
  6. Appointing and removing the Chair and other non-executive directors
  7. Appointing and removing the NHS foundation trust’s external auditors
  8. Receiving the NHS foundation trust’ annual accounts and annual budgets
  9. Preparing the forward plan
  10. Taking decisions on significant transactions
  11. Taking decisions on non NHS income

You can contact any of our governors by e-mailing membership@alderhey.nhs.uk

Dr Rabia Aftab

Dr-Rabia-Aftab.jpgConstituency: Public, Rest of England and North Wales

Term of office:  2016 - 2019

Who am I? I am a GP trainee in North Lincolnshire, trained at the University of Liverpool and graduated in 2010. During medical school and Foundation training years at University Hospital Aintree NHS Foundation trust, I have been involved with Junior Association for the study of Medical Education (JASME) as a liaison officer. I also have broad experience with medical students in various capacities as a Problem Based Learning (PBL) tutor, Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) and Liverpool Objective Clinical Assessment System (LOCAS) examiner and medical admissions interviewer at the University of Liverpool. Along with being a mother of two beautiful young boys, I write educational articles for the RCGP journal, ‘InnovAit’ and am now mentoring new writers. I also lead the Yorkshire and Humber region for Child Protection and Rehabilitation Trust (CPRT) - a registered UK charity organisation that supports vulnerable street and slum children in Pakistan. I developed my interest into the role of a governor at Alder Hey due to strong affiliations with Liverpool as a nurturing city, Alder Hey as a training hospital and my husband’s extensive involvement as a governor in the North Lincolnshire CCG.

What do I bring to this role? Having been an employee of Alder Hey hospital and comparing this to various other trusts I have worked with, I feel I am able to contribute by suggesting positive changes needed in areas of improvement. My first-hand experience at the A&E department at Alder Hey with my son, not too long ago, enabled me to directly relate to experiences of patients and their families there. I hope to share knowledge and experiences from my own regional CCG for the global improvement of Alder Hey hospital as a trust. Due to distance, I attend quarterly Council of Governor meetings and am keen to build ‘core skills of a governor’ by attending an upcoming GovernWell course organised by NHS Providers.

Bakare Aliu


Constituency: Patient Governor, Merseyside

Term of office:  2018 - 2021

Who am I? I was diagnosed at the age of 16 with Crohn’s Disease. An Inflammatory Bowel Disease that effects the intestines. As a sufferer of Crohn’s, I know the wants and needs of patients. Living with Crohn’s I have evolved to be in control of the illness, with strict dieting, complete mental control and medication. With this being said, I have created a community interest company called Merseyside IBD Group. This is to support people who suffer from both forms of IBD, Crohn’s and Colitis. We hold meet ups where we offer free advice and support for those in need. We plan to expand activities further down the line. Currently we have over 1,400 followers from around the world on Instagram. The online community is ever growing but, our focal point is to spread awareness and support those that suffer from IBD. In addition to this along with being a director of Merseyside IBD Group, I am currently in my second year at Chester University, studying Physical Education BSc (Hon

What do I bring to this role? As a patient governor I bring passion and enthusiasm. In creating Merseyside IBD Group Community Interest Company, it shows I have great initiative. I can be a spark, a fresh new person with current ideas. Understanding people and communicating is a key skill I already have. I feel this would help me hugely in repeating exactly what patients want from Alder Hey Children’s Trust.
If you want to find out more information on Merseyside IBD Group follow us on Instagram: @merseysideibdgroup visit our website: www.merseysideibdgroup.co.uk or contact us: info@merseysideibdgroup.co.uk

Felix Blake

Constituency: Patient

Term of office:  2018 - 2021

Who am I? *Details to come*

What do I bring to this role? *Details to come*

Dot Brannigan

6.16 dot face only.pngConstituency: Parent and Carer

Term of office: 2nd Term 2016 – 2019

Who am I? I am part of a close extended family and have five grown up children between the ages of 18 and 32, all but one of whom at some point have needed the excellent services of Alder Hey. I have three precious grandchildren.  I am a Human Resources Business Partner in the public sector. As a young child in the late 1950s my aunt and godmother was an A and E sister at Alder Hey and I was quite often ‘taken to see Aunty Pat’ having had some mishap or other. Thus my early memories of the Hospital are all happy ones.

What do I bring to this role? As a Human Resources business partner in the public sector I am experienced in working with and supporting others often in considering complex issues and making and communicating difficult decisions. I enjoy working with others and am able to challenge and be a critical friend in questioning issues and raising concerns in a constructive way when needed, whilst always having the best interest of our hospital community and in particular patients and carers at heart. I enjoy and am greatly committed to my role as a Governor of Alder Hey.

Paul Denny

paul denny.jpg Constituency: Public: Merseyside

Term of office: 2nd Term, 2017 – 2020

Who am I? I am a proud parent of a 10 year old boy. My relationship with Alder Hey dates back to my own childhood. During my teens I developed cancer on 3 different occasions it was this experience alone which guided me into a career of nursing. I started by fundraising and was able to raise over £100,000 for various cancer based charities, whilst fundraising  I obtained a job in Alder Heys Accident and Emergency Department as a Medical Support Worker. This involved assisting with various medical emergencies. In 2000 I decided to leave Alder Hey to complete my nurse training at Edge Hill University. Since qualifying as a registered nurse I have worked as a lecturer at Edge Hill University, teaching student nurses. I have also worked as a deputy manager of a busy Endoscopy unit, and as a deputy manager of a home for young people with brain acquired injuries. My current job entails me teaching staff how to look after their own health and the health of patients. Carrying out workplace risk assessments and risk assessments on patients during hospital stays and risk assessments on staff, some of whom may be returning to work from having a period of sickness.

What do I bring to this role? Alongside being a registered nurse, I am a qualified risk assessor and qualified tutor. I have a strong interest in Health & Safety, staff and patient well-being and patient experience, in particular ensuring the hospital environment is both comfortable and safe for patients. I am currently active in pursuing a role as a CQC inspector and health and safety advisor. My experience of being a patient has allowed me to identify and recognise failings of some hospitals with regards to patient experience. I believe patients should have a pleasant and safe experience whilst in hospital regardless of the reason being a hospital stay or visit to a clinic.

Naomi Cheetham

naomi-grannell.jpgConstituency: Public Governor, Cheshire

Term of office: 2nd Term 2017 – 2020

Who am I? I am a qualified Social Worker and deliver a long-term health conditions programme as part of my work with Warrington Disability Partnership. I have been a frequent and long term patient at Alder Hey, having been born with cerebral palsy.

Being able to give something back to the Hospital which has provided such outstanding care to me and my family was all the motivation I needed to become a Governor. I was delighted when I was elected as I am passionate about raising the awareness of the fantastic work the Hospital and everyone associated with it does. I am very proud indeed to represent the Cheshire constituency on the Board of Governors and to be a part of such an incredible team. I witnessed first-hand the compassion of all the medical team when the grand-daughter of a close family friend was a patient at the Hospital suffering from a terminal cancer. This left a lasting impression on me, increasing the esteem in which I already held the Hospital and staff.

What do I bring to this role? With the multiple panels and working groups I sit on in and around Warrington, I get a very good view of the issues impacting on patients and families in Cheshire. I see it as my role to make sure that these views are represented to the Board. I joined the Council of Governors in June 2014, right in the middle of the delivery of, and move to, the new Hospital. This has been a time of huge challenge to all involved, and also a time of real excitement and opportunity for the Trust.

As a Trust Governor I am responsible for holding non-executive directors to account for the performance of the Board of Directors and also approving major decisions such as large financial transactions and issues around mergers and acquisitions. If I can play just a small part in being a voice for the people of Cheshire, then I will feel a real sense of achievement and contribution to something which is so important to so many people.

Simon Hooker

Constituency: Public – North Wales

Term of office: 2015 – 2018

Who am I? My wife and I have two sons and two young grandchildren. I worked in automotive design and development, and before our recent move to North Wales, I was a Public Governor for Basildon and Thurrock University Hospital Foundation Trust (BTUH). Having developed epilepsy eight years ago, I understand some of the issues in managing a long-term condition. I am learning Welsh  – Dw i’n dysgu Cymraeg.

What do I bring to this role? As Deputy Lead Governor for BTUH, I chaired governor engagement groups, helped develop governor training, and co-interviewed candidates for Non-Executive Director and Chair positions. As governors we were engaged in the process that brought BTUH out of special measures. I was part of a regional group that helped guide the Care Quality Commission’s development of the Fit and Proper Persons Regulation for NHS Providers.

Pippa Hunter-Jones PhD

Constituency: Parent and Carer

Term of office: 2nd Term, 2017 – 2020

Who am I? I am a parent of two children, who, perhaps like many of us, finds herself spending time with her children in A&E; X-Ray; Audiology; Orthopaedics; and a week on F2 with Bronchiolitis. My relationship with Alder Hey dates back to my own childhood and participation in a Hospital-led, pioneering research trial, which successfully corrected congenital dislocated hips and club feet.

What do I bring to this role? Alongside being a mum, I work in the higher education sector. Here I work in teams, manage projects and participate in meetings which represent the interests of our student population. These meetings also hold different committees to account. My research work explores the patient experience. Here I am involved in projects which collect and analyse data on how we can enhance quality in service settings.

Kate Jackson

Constituency: Public – Greater Manchester

Term of office: 3rd Term 2017 – 2020

Who am I? I am a mum with two daughters and four grandchildren one of whom has been a patient in Alder Hey. I worked in the Trust for 10 years on specialist projects involving parents and carers of children who had been patients of the Trust. This work, plus my personal knowledge of the services here, has given me real insights into the issues which confront patients and their parents and carers when dealing with illness.

What do I bring to this role? In addition to working at Alder Hey, I worked in other NHS organisations, at a senior level, for 25 years. I have a broad understanding of how the NHS works and a personal understanding of being the relative of a patient of the Trust. I hope this gives me the experience to represent the interests of the constituency. I serve in a way which is helpful to patients and the Trust’s aspirations for service improvement.

Councillor Barbara Murray

Constituency:  Appointed Governor - Local Authorities, Liverpool City Council

Term of office: Appointed 2012 –

Who am I? I am a parent of three adult children. I have twins who were born at 29 weeks who, when they were younger, attended Alder Hey to have their development monitored. I am a local councillor for Yew Tree ward and was first elected in 2008. I currently work for a Housing Provider as a Community Development Officer.

What do I bring to this role? I have a varied work history including the Civil Service, an area manager for a retail outlet, a teacher (I undertook a Post Graduate Certificate of Education after my children were born) predominantly in special needs and secondary schools. I am currently working in housing. In terms of personal development I have studied and trained to be a school SENCO, completed a post graduate multi-media course, completed research for a master’s module in creative problem solving. Most recently I have attended training In Mental Health First Aid and I have been trained to be a trainer for Connect 5 and emotional first aid for professionals working with children. As a school governor I chair a primary school and I am a member of a secondary academy. I bring broad experience of governance, robust scrutiny and a commitment to children to this role.

Kal Ross

Constituency: Public

Term of office:  2018 - 2021

Who am I? *Details to come*

What do I bring to this role? *Details to come*

Hilary Peel

hilary.jpg Constituency: Public Governor

Term of office: 2016 - 2019

Who am I? I am a member of the nursing staff at Alder Hey who has forty years of experience working in the profession. This period has seen me move from being a student nurse to a qualified staff nurse, a senior sister and ward manager. Since April 2015 I have been working with the senior nursing team and supporting the move of the Hospital to our exciting new home.

What do I bring to this role? The past forty years has allowed me to both develop a wealth of experience in the care and treatment of children alongside an appreciation of the staff context too. This experience has come from working at the grass roots of the organisation, on the wards. It has enabled me to develop relationships across departments, including junior and senior management, and helped me to understand the issues that staff and our families face.

Mark Peers BEM

mark_peers.jpgConstituency: Public: Merseyside

Term of office: 2nd Term 2016 – 2019

Who am I? I am a former patient of 20 years, with previous experience of many departments and services within the Trust, such as; A&E, Orthopaedics, Maxillofacial (Cleft, Lip & Palate), Nephrology, Ophthalmology and many more. Despite no longer being a patient, my relationship remains strong with Alder Hey, working alongside and together with the fantastic members of the charity and fundraising services.

What do I bring to this role? I believe that given my many years of patient experience, I can work together with patients, parents, and advise the Trust on how to maintain and progress the high standards of patient care and experience. I, along with my family, have also fundraised for many years and will continue to do so for many more years to come.

georgina tang.jpg Georgina Tang

Constituency: Parent and Carer

Term of office: 2016 – 2019

Who am I?  I am a working mum with a son who has complex medical and educational needs, therefore, Alder Hey is like our second home. He is under several specialist consultants since birth and he is 13 years old now. Also, he has severe Autism, Learning Difficulties and Sensory Processing Difficulties.

I am involved as a Governor because the experience that we had previously was a not positive one. Indeed my son was traumatised by it all, so much so that he had a melt-down whenever I told him we were going to Alder Hey. I used to have to drag him into the hospital and he would never go into any consultation room.

Several years later, it’s a different story, he is quite happy to be in Alder Hey and doctors are able to examine him using various medical instruments. This is a major achievement for him, as previously he developed phobias of all medical establishments and equipment through his traumatic experiences. Thanks to the former Equality and Diversity Director for listening to my concerns and allocated a very experienced Play Therapist to work with us. It has been a long road and along the way, many staff became more aware of the needs of children with additional needs, particularly those with Autism and Sensory Processing Difficulties. I am very pleased to say that I now sit on the steering group to develop Learning Difficulties and ASC strategy for Alder Hey.

I worked in social housing for many years and left in December 2015, so to concentrate on my freelance work with the Care Quality Commission with their inspections on health establishments such as Alder Hey. I have inspected many hospital trusts, GPs surgeries and care homes for people with Autism and Learning Difficulties etc. I also run my own business selling handmade natural & organic skin care and soy wax candles.

What do I bring to this role? My inspection work together with personal experience in accessing health service for my son has given me real insight into the issues which are face by parents, carers and patients. This gives me the experience to represent the interests of my constituency. Also, the knowledge that I gained from CQC work would help Alder Hey in their commitment to raise standards of service delivery to all children. Last but not least, compassion, empathy and caring are qualities that I can bring to this role too.

adrian williams.png Adrian Williams

Constituency: Staff Nurse

Term of Office: 2016 - 2019

Who I am? I am originally from Anglesey and am a fluent welsh speaker, as a second language.
On leaving school I joined the Army as a Military Accountant, leaving the Army in 1985. From leaving the Army I worked for various companies as a Management Accountant. In 1991 I had a career change and in January 1992 began training as a Mental Health Nurse, since qualifying I have worked in Adult Acute, Psychiatric Intensive Care, Youth Offending Services, and Child and Adolescent Mental Health, in primary, secondary and tertiary care. I am currently working with Alder Hey Community Developmental Pediatrics as Joint Lead for ADHD.

What do I bring to the role? I have also pursued qualifications as a Counselor and Psychotherapist and hold a Master’s Degree of Education in this, and am also an EMDR Therapist, 3Di Autistic Spectrum Assessor, and Independent Non-Medical Prescriber. I have had research published and also articles on ADHD and Attachment Disorder. I have spoken at many conferences and events both home and abroad and chaired a European Mental Health Nurses Conference. I have responded through the Royal College of Nursing on a number of NICE Guidelines including ADHD and ASD.

Dr Julie Williams PhD

Constituency: Partner Organisation

Term of office: 2014 –

Who am I? My relationship with Alder Hey dates back to my own childhood and I am a parent of two grown up children who have both had previous experiences of the services at Alder Hey. My family are very closely involved with, and dedicated to, the Hospital through their experiences as employees and students of medical education programmes.

What do I bring to this role? I work in the higher education sector where I lead teams of nurses and midwives dedicated to educating the healthcare workforce of the future. I am an advocate of the student experience and promote, at every available opportunity, the involvement of service users and carer views and hearing their voice. I work with senior colleagues from across the health service and represent nurse education at strategic and operational levels to improve the quality of education and have an impact and influence on nursing car

Paul Walsh

paul.pngConstituency: Other Clinical Staff including Allied Health Professionals, Psychologists and Pharmacists

Term of office: 2017 - 2020

Who am I? I am a Senior Biomedical Scientist (BMS) working in the Haematology Laboratory. I have worked here since leaving school 37 years ago. I am married to a Radiographer, (who also works here!) and we have 3 children – all of whom have received treatment here from different teams.
I am a keen skier and enjoy walking and mountain biking. I help coach a junior football team, something I have done for over 10 years.

What do I bring to the role? I believe strongly in the NHS and particularly in Alder Hey -I am proud to say that I work here. I always want to the best for our patients and ensure that they get the best possible treatment available. During my duties I interact with many other groups throughout the hospital – clinical support services are a vital part of the jigsaw. Unfortunately clinical support are often the unknown departments. It is my hope to champion our work and dedicated staff .
I am a good communicator and a well known member of the Trust – 2 assets I hope to use during my time as a Governor.
During my years here I have seen a lot of change and progress, now as a Governor I hope to influence these to ensure that Alder Hey continues to provide the best possible care for its patients.

Sujata De


Constituency: Medical and Dental Staff

Term of office:  2018 - 2021

Who am I? I have been a Consultant Ear, Nose and Throat Surgeon at Alder Hey since 2007. Prior to that I worked at Alder Hey as a junior doctor and a Research Fellow. I have two children who have had to use the hospital services, thankfully not very often. I am an elected member of BAPO (British Association of Paediatric Otolaryngology) and a member of the Clinical Reference group (NHS England) for Specialised Surgery in Children and in these capacities help develop national strategy for surgery in children.

What do I bring to this role? I am a ‘healthy pessimist’. I am immensely proud of Alder Hey; the commitment and achievements of everyone who works for the organisation, but I am not shy to raise issues or to be critical when I feel something could be done better. As an active staff member and member of the Medical board, I can bring experience direct from the shop floor. I hope to use this to enable Alder Hey to grow from strength to strength while always maintaining its core values of putting the patients first and treating all of its staff fairly and with respect.

Anna Parsons

Constituency: Other Staff and Trust Volunteers

Term of office:  2018 - 2021

Who am I? *Details to come*

What do I bring to this role? *Details to come*

Glenna Smith

Consituency: Staff - Other Staff and Trust Volunteers

Term of Office: 2nd Term 2017-2020

Who am I? I am a staff governor who has been working at Alder Hey since 2012 in an Operational Management capacity.  I spent my first 4 years working within the then CBU for Neurosciences, Musculoskeletal and Specialist Surgery working predominantly with Trauma & Orthopaedics, Spinal, Burns and Plastics.  For the past 18 months I have been working within the Division of Medicine.

What do I bring to this role? The nature of my role means I am fortunate to interact with most parts of the Hospital, understanding how patients are supported at all parts of the their care.  I am committed to making that care as good as it can be, and I see my role is to advocate for both patients and staff, and I believe my knowledge of how organisation runs enables me to do that.

Mike Travis

mike travis.jpg

Constituency: Staff - Nursing Staff

Term of Office: 2018-2021

Who am I? Mike has worked at Alder Hey for 38 years has a registered nurse, mostly in Intensive Care and High Dependency. During his career at Alder Hey, he has worked has a RCN Steward and Safety Representative, as well as Chair of Staffside Trade Unions. He has served within the RCN has Chair of the UK Safety Reps Committee, and currently is a member of the RCN Trade Union Committee. Mike has presented a number of papers at the International Congress of Nurses conferences in Japan, Vancouver and Taiwan. He also was a member of the European Public Services Trade Union working groups on workplace safety, manual handling and Working Time Regulations. He also comments in the media on health issues. When not working, Mike is a watchleader on the Jubilee Sailing Trust on their two sailing ships Lord Nelson and Tenacious. His sailing career has taken him to the Antarctic twice, and will be soon having his first photo exhibition which will reflect his sailing voyages.

Steve Reddy

steve reddy.png

Constituency: Appointed Governor – Local Authorities, Liverpool City Council

Term of Office: Appointed 2017

Who am I? Steve is Director of Childrens Services at Liverpool City Council. Steve’s earlier career was focused around criminal psychology and crime reduction - after a B.Sc. in Psychology at Manchester Metropolitan University he studied for a Masters Degree in Investigative Psychology at the University of Liverpool. Steve spent a year post qualification as a researcher and tutor before joining Lancashire Constabulary as a Criminal Intelligence Analyst and then moving on to work for Merseyside Police in a variety of roles and ultimately Head of Strategic Analysis.  Whilst working for Merseyside Police Steve added to his earlier degree qualifications with an MBA at Liverpool Business School.  Steve moved to the world of Adult Social Care through a number of senior management roles within Liverpool City Council. In early 2010 Steve was appointed as interim Assistant Director (AD) for Adult Social care in Liverpool before moving to a permanent role as AD in Warrington in August 2010. In 2014 Steve was appointed as Executive Director for Families and Wellbeing In Warrington (including statutory roles of Childrens Director and Adults Director) and in 2017 also became Deputy Chief Executive.Steve is currently chair of the Northwest Childrens Services Directors Group for local authorities.

What do I bring to this role? Steve brings a wealth of experience of working in various roles as well as studying in Liverpool. He is very passionate about the city and particularly its future citizens. In his statutory role as Director of Children’s Services wants to ensure the Council and all partners work with families, and our children and young people, to ensure they have a voice, have equality of opportunity and the best possible quality of life.

Steve lives in Ellesmere Port with his wife Joanne and their three sons.

Janice Monaghan

Consituency: Appointed Governor - Voluntary Organisations

Term of Office: Appointed 2011

Sarah O'Brien

Consituency: Appointed Governor - Liverpool University

Kate Burnell

kate burnell.jpg

Constituency: Parent and carer

Term of office: 2018 - 2021

Who am I?  I am the mother of two boys - Jack aged 9 and Arthur aged 3.  I am a graduate of the University of Liverpool and now live with my family in South Liverpool.  I am a barrister specialising in child and family law and have practised from chambers in Liverpool for twenty years.  Both of my children have been under the care of Alder Hey.  My eldest son has a complex genetic disorder and is under the care of a number of different teams at Alder Hey - cardiology, respiratory, rheumatology, orthopaedics, physiotherapy, LTV, paediatrics to name just some.  We are also under the care of a number of other hospitals around the country.  I have considerable first hand knowledge of the parent/ carer experience and believe that the best care for children is provided by parents/ carers and medical staff working together with good communication as a priority.  I am Chair of Governors at Gilmour Junior School in South Liverpool where I also have responsibility for safeguarding/ child protection.

What do I bring to this role? I am aware of the issues and problems facing parents/ carers and patients when dealing with complex, long term medical problems involving multiple medical disciplines.  In particular I am acutely aware of the problems that can arise when communication is not effective.  Within my professional life I have considerable experience dealing with medical issues which requires me to be able to absorb and scrutinise complex information quickly.  Through my role as a school governor I have experience of the role of critical supporter - to provide challenge to work towards solutions and better outcomes.  The skills I have developed in my professional life and the insights gained from my personal experiences will, I hope, enable me to effectively represent the constituency and work alongside the governing body to improve the high quality services provided at Alder Hey.

Children's NHS Foundation

Alder Hey Children's Charity
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