NHS England Board

The NHS England Board consists of a Chair and eight non-executive directors and four voting executive directors. This complies with the requirements of the National Health Service Act 2006. A number of non-voting executive directors regularly attend Board meetings.

Roles and responsibilities of the Board

The Board is the senior decision-making structure in NHS England. It provides strategic leadership to the organisation and, in support of that, it:

  • sets the overall direction of NHS England, within the context of the NHS mandate
  • approves the business plan, which is designed to support achievement of NHS England’s strategic objectives and monitors NHS England’s performance against it
  • holds NHS England’s executive group to account for this performance and for the proper running of the organisation (including operating in accordance with legal and government requirements)
  • determines which decisions it will make and which it will delegate to the executive
    group via the Scheme of Delegation
  • ensures high standards of corporate governance and personal conduct
  • monitors the performance of the group against core financial and operational objectives
  • provides effective financial stewardship
  • promotes effective dialogue between NHS England, government departments, other arm’s length bodies, its partners, clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) and providers of healthcare and communities served by the commissioning system.

Members of the Board

Board members bring a range of complementary skills and experience in areas such as finance, governance and health policy.

Non-executive directors

NHS England’s current non-executive directors are:

Professor Sir Malcolm Grant CBE: Chair

Image of Professor Sir Malcolm Grant CBE: ChairMalcolm Grant is Chancellor of the University of York, and immediate past President and Provost of University College London from 2003-2013. He is a barrister and a Bencher of Middle Temple.

As an academic lawyer he specialised in planning, property and environmental law, and was Professor and Head of Department of Land Economy (1991-2003) and pro-vice chancellor (2002-2003) of Cambridge University, and professorial fellow of Clare College.

He has served as Chair of the Local Government Commission for England, of the Agriculture and Environmental Biotechnology Commission and the Russell Group.

He is currently a Trustee of Somerset House, President of the Council for At-Risk Academics, global chair of the PLuS Alliance, a director of Genomics England Ltd and a UK Business Ambassador.

Dame Moira Gibb: Non-executive Director and Chair of the Investment Committee

Image of Dame Moira Gibb - Non-executive Director and Chair of the Investment CommitteeDame Moira Gibb is Chair of Skills for Care and Chair of City Lit Adult Education College. She is a non-executive director of the UK Statistics Authority and a member of the Council of Reading University.

Her career was in social services and local government, latterly as Chief Executive of Camden Council. She was a Civil Service Commissioner from 2012-15 and a Director of the London Marathon from 2005-11.

Lord Victor Adebowale CBE: Non-Executive Director

Image of Lord Victor Adebowale CBE: Non-Executive DirectorVictor Adebowale is currently Chief Executive and company secretary of Turning Point. He is a cross-bench peer and Visiting Professor and Chancellor at the University of Lincoln, a Fellow of the City and Guilds of London Institute, an associate member of the Health Service Management Centre at the University of Birmingham and of Cambridge University Judge Business School.

He is a director of Leadership in Mind and THP Innovate and Chair of youth charity Urban Development. Victor is on the Board of Governors for the London School of Economics, and is President of the International Association of Philosophy and Psychiatry.

His previous roles include being the Chief Executive at Centre Point, the youth homelessness charity and membership of the United Kingdom Commission for Employment and Skills.

Follow Victor on Twitter @voa1234

Professor Sir John Burn: Non-Executive Director

Image of Professor Sir John Burn: Non-Executive DirectorJohn Burn is a senior clinical geneticist and academic, based in Newcastle. He holds the NHS Endowed Chair in Clinical Genetics at Newcastle University, and conceived and helped to bring to fruition the Millennium Landmark Centre for Life in Newcastle.

He is a distinguished academic, clinician, and clinical entrepreneur, as founder of two spin out companies in the field of genetic diagnostics.

He is Chairman of QuantuMDx ltd, a medical device company developing point of care DNA testing for the developing world.  He was knighted for services to medicine and healthcare in 2010.

Follow John on Twitter @capp3

Noel Gordon: Non Executive Director and Chair of Specialised Services Commissioning Committee

Image of Noel Gordon: Non Executive Director and Chair of Specialised Services Commissioning CommitteeFormerly an economist and a banker, Noel spent most of his career in consultancy until his retirement in 2012 including, for the last 16 years, with Accenture where he was global managing director of the Banking Industry Practice. He has extensive practical experience of driving fundamental innovations in transforming industries, and of big data, analytics, mobile and digital technologies.

Noel is Chairman of NHS Digital (HSCIC), Chairman of Healthcare UK Advisory Board, a non-executive director of NHS England and Chair of its Specialised Commissioning Committee. He is a member of the Life Sciences Industrial Strategy Board of the Department of Health, a non-executive director of the Payments Systems Regulator, a member of the Audit and Risk Committee of the University of Warwick , a member of the Development Board of Age UK, and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of UserVoice.org.


David Roberts: Non-executive Director, Vice-Chair and Chair of the Commissioning Committee

Image of David Roberts: Non-Executive DirectorDavid Roberts took over as Chairman of Nationwide Building Society in July 2015. From 2010 to 2014 he was on the Board of Lloyds Banking Group, where he was Group Deputy Chairman and Chairman of the Board Risk Committee.

David has many years of experience at board and executive level in retail and commercial banking in the UK and internationally.  He joined Barclays in 1983 and held various senior management positions culminating in Executive Director, member of the Group Executive Committee and Chief Executive, International Retail and Commercial Banking, a position he held until December 2006.

He is a former Non-Executive Director of BAA plc and Absa Group SA, and was Chairman and Chief Executive of Bawag PSK AG, Austria’s second largest retail bank. David has a degree in Mathematics from Birmingham University and holds an MBA and Honorary Doctorate in Business Administration from Henley Business School.

He is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Financial Services and a Member of the Strategy Board of Henley Business School at the University of Reading.

Michelle Mitchell OBE: Non-Executive Director

Image of Michelle Mitchell OBE: Non-Executive DirectorMichelle Mitchell is Chief Executive Officer of the Multiple Sclerosis Society UK. She is currently a trustee of the MS International Federation. She was previously a Trustee of the King’s Fund. Michelle is a Managing Member of the Progressive MS Alliance.

Michelle has extensive voluntary sector experience at a leadership level. Before joining the MS Society, she was Director General for Age UK. Prior to that, Michelle was Chair of the Fawcett Society.

Michelle has a BA in Economics, an MA in Politics and Administration and an International Executive Diploma from INSEAD.

Michelle is an alumna of the Innovations in Government Programme at Harvard University JFK School and the Global Not for Profit Leaders programme at Harvard Business School.

Follow Michelle on twitter: @MMitchMS

Wendy Becker: Non-Executive Director

Image of Wendy Becker: Non-Executive DirectorWendy was appointed to the Board in March 2016.

In her executive career, Wendy Becker had many years of experience leading consumer-related organisations, creating strategies and driving change. Wendy spent 15 years at McKinsey and Company in both San Francisco and London with nine years as a partner.  She has held a number of senior roles in industry including as Chief Executive Officer of Jack Wills and as Global Chief Marketing Officer and member of the Executive Committee at Vodafone plc.

Wendy is a Non-Executive Director for Whitbread plc, the Deputy Chairman of Cancer Research UK, and a Trustee of the Prince’s Trust.

She holds a BA in Economics from Dartmouth College and an MBA from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business.

Joanne Shaw: Non-executive Director and Chair of the Audit and Risk Assurance Committee

Image of Joanne Shaw: Non-executive Director and Chair of the Audit and Risk Assurance CommitteeJoanne Shaw joined the board in October 2016. She is a qualified accountant and has chaired the audit committees of the NAO and the Money Advice Service. Her experience in the health sector includes: acute and primary care; urgent care; commissioning; remote and digital health assessment, advice and information; medicines; and prevention. She is currently Deputy Chair of Nuffield Health and Chair of the British Equestrian Federation.

As past chair of NHS Direct, Joanne has a strong interest in the use of mobile and digital channels for health and medicines. In her professional roles and in her writing for health publications she is known for advocating partnership between patients and health professionals and supporting people to make better-informed choices about their health.

Executive directors

NHS England’s Executive Group are:

Simon Stevens: Chief Executive

Image of Simon Stevens: Chief ExecutiveSimon Stevens is CEO of NHS England, which leads the NHS’s work nationally to improve health and ensure high quality care for all. He is accountable to Parliament for over £100 billion of annual Health Service funding.

Simon joined the NHS through its Graduate Training Scheme in 1988. As a frontline NHS manager he subsequently led acute hospitals, mental health and community services, primary care and health commissioning in the North East of England, London and the South Coast. He also served seven years as the Prime Minister’s Health Adviser at 10 Downing Street, and as policy adviser to successive Health Secretaries at the Department of Health.

Alongside his 16 years work for the NHS and UK public service, Simon spent a decade working internationally at UnitedHealth Group, including as its Medicare CEO and as president of its global health division, leading health services in the United States, Europe, Brazil, India, China, Africa, and the Middle East.

Simon was born in Birmingham, and was educated at Balliol College, Oxford University; Strathclyde University, Glasgow; and Columbia University, New York where he was Harkness Fellow at the New York City Health Department. He is married with two school-age children, and volunteers as a director of the Commonwealth Fund, a leading international health charity. He has also been a trustee of the Kings Fund and the Nuffield Trust, visiting professor at the London School of Economics, and an elected local councillor for Brixton in South London.

Simon took up post as NHS England CEO on 1 April 2014, following an open worldwide competitive appointment process led by the independent board of NHS England.

Professor Sir Bruce Keogh: National Medical Director

Image of Professor Sir Bruce Keogh: National Medical DirectorProfessor Sir Bruce Keogh is NHS England’s Medical Director and professional lead for NHS doctors. He is responsible for promoting clinical leadership, quality and innovation.

Formerly, Sir Bruce had a distinguished career in surgery. He was Director of Surgery at the Heart Hospital and Professor of Cardiac Surgery at UCL. He has been President of the Society for Cardiothoracic Surgery in Great Britain and Ireland, Secretary-General of the European Association for Cardio-Thoracic Surgery, International Director of the US Society of Thoracic Surgeons, and President of the Cardiothoracic Section of the Royal Society of Medicine. He has served as a Commissioner on the Commission for Health Improvement (CHI) and the Healthcare Commission. He was knighted for services to medicine in 2003.

Follow Bruce on Twitter @drbrucekeogh

Professor Jane Cummings: Chief Nursing Officer

Image of Professor Jane Cummings: Chief Nursing OfficerJane Cummings is the executive lead for maternity, patient experience and the professional lead for nursing and midwifery in England.

Before progressing into general management, Jane’s nursing specialism was in Emergency Care. She has held a wide variety of clinical and managerial roles including Director of Commissioning, Director of Nursing and Deputy Chief Executive.

In February 2004, she became the National Lead for emergency care which involved working closely with clinical colleagues and NHS managers to agree and implement the 98% operational standard. She has also worked as the nursing advisor for emergency care, and with the Royal College of Nursing to develop the role of nurses and improve the experience and care of patients requiring urgent and emergency care. In January 2005, she was appointed as the National Implementation Director for ‘Choice’ and ‘Choose and Book’.

Jane moved to NHS North West in November 2007 where she held executive responsibility for the professional leadership of nursing, quality, performance as well as QIPP commissioning and for a time Deputy Chief Executive Officer.  In October 2011, she was appointed to the role of Chief Nurse for the North of England SHA Cluster.

She was appointed as Chief Nursing Officer for England in March 2012 and started working full time in June 2012.  Jane is the professional lead for all nurses and midwives in England (with the exception of public health) and published the ‘6Cs’ and ‘Compassion in Practice’ in December 2012, followed by publishing the ‘Leading Change, Adding Value’ framework in May 2016.

Jane was the Senior Responsible Officer for Learning Disability at NHS England until January 2016 and now has executive oversight of this area. In January 2016, Jane also became executive lead for Patient and Public Participation.

Jane was awarded a Doctorate by Edge Hill University and is a visiting professor at Kingston University and St George’s University, London.

She is also Director and trustee for Macmillan Cancer Support and a clinical Ambassador for the Over the Wall Children’s Charity where she volunteers as a nurse providing care for children affected by serious illnesses.

Follow Jane on Twitter @JaneMCummings

Matthew Swindells: National Director – Operations and Information

Image of Matthew Swindells: National Director - Operations and InformationMatthew joined NHS England in May 2016 from the Cerner Group and his role as Senior Vice President for Population Health and Global Strategy. He has over 25 years’ experience in health care services and has worked in the Department of Health as a Chief Information Officer and as a Senior Policy Advisor to the Secretary of State for Health. Prior to this he served as a Principal Adviser in the Prime Minister’s Office of Public Service Reform.

Matthew began his career at Guys and St Thomas’ Hospital in the early 1990s, and went on to become Director of Clinical Services of Heatherwood and Wexham Park Hospital and later Chief Executive of the Royal Surrey County Hospital, in the early 2000s.

He is visiting professor and chair of the advisory committee in the School of Health Management at the University of Surrey and Member of the Editorial Board for the Journal of Population Health Management.

Paul Baumann: Chief Financial Officer

Image of Paul Baumann: Chief Financial OfficerPaul Baumann is NHS England’s Chief Financial Officer, providing system leadership to the NHS in delivering best value and financial sustainability. The Finance Directorate, under Paul’s leadership, aims to provide a first class financial management service ensuring NHS England is well advised and provided with excellent financial services at all times.

He joined NHS London, the Strategic Health Authority, in May 2007 after 22 years of experience of international financial management and strategic leadership at Unilever.

He was NHS London’s first Director of Finance and Performance and more recently held the post of Director of Finance and Investment. In this role he oversaw a significant financial recovery programme for London’s PCTs and Trusts and focused on the development of strategies to deliver long-term viability and sustainability across the London health economy. He is also executive lead for Devolution. and a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants.

Karen Wheeler: National Director – Transformation and Corporate Operations

Image of Karen Wheeler: National Director - Transformation and Corporate OperationsKaren Wheeler is responsible for ensuring NHS England’s governance, organisation and corporate services are effective and support staff to deliver their objectives. Karen oversees delivery of all NHS England’s Business Plan priorities and major change programmes, and she manages the delivery of Primary Care Support services. In December 2015, Karen took on responsibility for commissioning support units, and temporarily for the development of Information and Technology pending the arrival of Matthew Swindells as National Director – Operations and Information.

Karen joins NHS England having been a Director General in the Department of Health (DH). She joined the DH in 2010 to establish and run the programme to implement the DH and NHS reforms, as Transition Director.  In 2012, she was promoted to Director General, Information and Group Operations, which is responsible for the DH’s corporate services, change and NHS wide information portfolio.

She became a civil servant in 2003, when she joined to run a major change programme to create HM Courts Service, now part of the Ministry of Justice (MoJ).  Karen subsequently ran multiple change programmes in the MoJ, becoming Delivery Director for a major part of the department, including Her Majesty’s Court Service (HMCS) and many other arm’s length bodies.

In 2009, she joined the Cabinet Office to drive greater progress on digital delivery across government, working closely with Martha Lane Fox, the Digital Champion.

Before becoming a civil servant, Karen spent 15 years as a management consultant, initially with Andersen Consulting, working on large scale change programmes in different private sector organisations, including British Steel, Guinness, Societe Generale and North West Water.

Ian Dodge: National Director for Commissioning Strategy

Image of Ian Dodge: National Director for Commissioning StrategyIan Dodge joined NHS England in July 2014. His directorate leads the organisation’s work on: NHS strategy; sustainability and transformation; planning and implementing the Five Year Forward View; vanguards and the new care models programme; giving power to patients through personalisation and choice; commissioning strategy and development; and prioritising science and innovation.

Ian was Director of the NHS Group and Head of Policy Profession for the Department of Health. In 2005/06 Ian was the Prime Minister’s senior adviser on the NHS. Ian is currently an Adjunct Professor at the Institute of Global Health Innovation, Imperial College, London.