Date published: Friday 1st March 2019 | 13:17 GMT
Welcome to Deborah Fielding, our new Chair of Trustees!
On Tuesday 26th February, St Clare Hospice’s board of trustees elected a new Chair, Deborah Fielding, to replace the outgoing Patrick Foster, who has stood down at the end of his full nine-year tenure as trustee.
Deborah has been a trustee at the Hospice since December 2018 and has over 40 years’ experience within the healthcare sector, including health service management experience. Her current professional role is Chief Executive of the Hertfordshire and West Essex Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP).
Commenting on her appointment as Chair, Deborah said: “I’m very lucky to be taking the reins at an exciting time; last year the Hospice launched its new strategy, to reach significantly more people with its services, strengthen our communities to cope better with death, dying and loss, and to work more closely with partners. I’m delighted to say that the first signs of this being delivered are beginning to show.
“I’m hoping my experience within the NHS will be of benefit to St Clare, helping the hospice to create new partnerships that will increase awareness of the Hospice’s great work and expertise.”
Patrick, who had been Chair of Trustees since 2013, was one of three long standing Board members who stood down as Trustee (Patrick Foster – Chair, Phil Quincey – Company Secretary, and Jenny Minihane).
Over the last nine years Patrick has seen significant changes at St Clare, including major upgrades to the Hospice and its Inpatient Unit, the construction of the Taylor centre and the introduction of the Hospice at Home service.
“I was recruited originally because St Clare was looking for a trustee with experience and expertise in the building industry, to serve on the Buildings and Health and Safety Committee,” Patrick explained. “At the time there were thoughts about extending the Inpatient Unit and recognised the need to upgrade the Hospice’s facilities.”
Another recent success for Patrick is the development and implementation of the Hospice’s new strategy, with its emphasis on spreading further our reach into the community through projects including Compassionate Neighbours, and the ambitions to bring palliative care into places such as Care Homes.
“For me, the decisions we take should always and only be driven by what is best for St Clare and the people we care for, and that we should always be striving to ‘touch the lives’ of more and more people in our community. It is for this reason that I am so excited by the new strategy with its emphasis on reaching out to offer our services so much more widely.”
Patrick added: “I am delighted to welcome Deborah Fielding as my successor. She brings with her a wealth of experience and expertise both in terms of leadership and of the NHS, which will be invaluable in pushing forward our strategy to extend our services into the community. I am sure she will be a great success in the role.”
Sarah Thompson, Chief Executive of St Clare Hospice, said: “Our Board of Trustees is responsible for the overall governance of St Clare Hospice. These unpaid volunteers bring with them a wealth of specialist skills, experience and knowledge relevant to the aims and objectives of our charity.
“Many of our trustees are also our biggest ambassadors, representing the Hospice at networking and fundraising events, and ensuring that people are aware of our services and the great care we deliver.”