Note: The role of an RD&E Governor film was produced in 2016 and includes Governors and members of staff in post at the time. The content still remains relevant.
The majority of governors are elected by members to represent patients, staff and the general public. We hold elections each year, and members vote for governors within the constituency they live.
Elections are run by an external polling company and members receive ballot papers and information by post when an election takes place.
Voting in the elections to the Council of Governors closed at 5pm on 21 September 2021 and we can now declare the results as follows:
East Devon Dorset Somerset & Rest of England – 3 to elect, all for terms of two years
Mid North West Devon & Cornwall – 2 to elect
Staff – 4 to elect
The full report of voting is available to download. Terms of office start and end at our Annual Members Meeting on 29 September 2021.
In the Exeter & South Devon constituency, we had three candidates for three posts and therefore all three candidates are elected uncontested. The uncontested election report is available to download.
Thank you to all our candidates and to all our members who voted.
In March 2020, NHS England and Improvement contacted all Foundation Trusts to propose changes in order to reduce the burden of reporting and to free up senior capacity to prioritise the management of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In light of this direction and taking into account the need to focus on managing COVID-19, the Council of Governors proposed some temporary changes to the Constitution at an extraordinary meeting in April 2020. The RD&E Board has subsequently approved the proposed changes to the Constitution to ensure business continuity, maintain good governance, and to pay heed to ongoing Government guidance on social distancing and avoiding non-essential travel. The changes approved by the RD&E Board are:
The Governors who have had their terms extended in line with these changes are:
At its extraordinary meeting in April 2020, the Council of Governors agreed that a plan would be developed to ensure that annual elections are maintained from 2021 onwards bearing in mind the need to retain the balance of the different categories of Governors on the Council (as set out as requirements in the Constitution).
Governors provide a vital connection between the RD&E and its patients, the community it serves and its partners. The Council of Governors (CoG) has a real say in the RD&E’s future priorities and who fills key posts on the Board.
It holds the Board and Non-Executive Directors to account, individually and collectively, for the performance of the Board of Directors.
Governors represent the broad interests and views of local people to the Trust’s Board, and feed back information about the Trust's performance to the communities we serve.
Governors represent the broad interests and views of local people to the Trust’s Board, and feed back information about the Trust's performance to the communities we serve.
This means discussing things like major new service developments, the annual report and accounts, and how members are being recruited and kept informed.
The Council meets four times a year and, in addition, many Governors also participate in informal working groups:
The RD&E is committed to listening to your views and experiences about the Trust and your feedback helps us to continually improve our services. Governors play a key role in representing these views as a collective.
They do not, however, represent individual cases.
If you have any questions or concerns about any aspect of your treatment or care, please contact the Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) on 01392 402093 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are 26 seats on the RD&E’s Council of Governors (CoG). This is made up of 19 elected members of the public, 5 elected staff, and 2 appointed individuals from key organisations.
The Council currently consists of 21 Governors, with 5 vacancies.
If you want to get in touch with our Governors, please email rde-tr.FoundationTrust@nhs.net, stating which Governor your message is intended for.
Appointed on behalf of Devon County Council (DCC), June 2021
Ian is a District and County Councillor for his hometown of Axminster and its surrounding parishes, with a deep passion for improving public services in both the local community and Devon as a whole. He believes that if we put the physical and mental health of individuals at the heart of public services, then we will provide more resilient and prosperous communities. During his time as an elected member, Ian has been designated as a Mental Health Champion for DCC and has pushed hard for protections against the most vulnerable in society. This passion permeates outside of his political work, in roles as chairman of Cloakham Lawns (a sports charity which promotes ‘education through sport’ for all ages) and vice-chair of ARC (a unique mental health charity which provides rapid support for the community whilst taking pressure of public services). Ian looks forward to supporting the work of a hospital that has so kindly helped personal relations in the past
Appointed on behalf of the University of Exeter, from October 2016.
Peta was re-elected as Public Governor in September 2019 for a term of three years.
She has been a member of the RD&E’s Council of Governors since 2013 and carries out the responsibilities of the Lead Governor following election to that role by her peers in 2017. Peta has extensive experience of leading and working in multi-professional teams, primarily within the NHS, higher education and third sector organisations. She is a committed advocate for social action and demonstrates that in several ways, through volunteering in the local community and as the national Chair of The Wildlife Trusts and Trustee for Step Up To Serve.
Kay was first elected in 2014 for a term of three years and re-elected in 2017 for a term of three years . She is a retired State Registered Nurse and Midwife with over thirty years of nursing experience. She held Sisters’ post at the RD&E in ITU and CCU. Kay also served as a Nursing Officer for 18 years with Queen Alexandra Royal Army Nursing Corps retiring in the rank of Major. She has a BSc (Hons) in Health Services Management. Kay is a member of the Patient Experience committee PMEG and Patient Safety and Quality working groups.
Barbara was elected in September 2017 for a three year term.
She has lived in East Devon for 40 years and has recently retired from further education where she worked in governance. During her working career she has also held senior positions in management in healthcare and in higher education. Three of her four children work in the NHS and her late husband was an academic GP in Exeter. Her particular interest is in the quality of patient experience, and on the Council of Governors she has been elected to sit on the Public Experience Committee and the Nominations Committee. She also sits on the Public and Members Engagement Group.
Barbara is a Trustee at Hospiscare. Other Board experience includes eight years as a Governor of Exeter College
Rachel was elected in September 2019 for a term of three years
Rachel is Deaf and lives in Ottery St Mary. Her family’s first language is British Sign Language (BSL). Rachel worked with young Deaf people at Derby College, as an Independent Support Worker, encouraging them to develop independent living skills. She went on to study Contemporary Arts/ Computer Animation, gaining an MA. She became a consultant for a disability board for East Midlands Art Council and was a member of the board of EQUATA, an arts agency for Deaf/disabled. She worked as an Advisory Deaf Inclusion worker for DCC. Rachel supported hearing families with deaf babies/toddlers. This job centred on giving parents confidence to develop their children’s language skills. She also worked with nurseries and schools to develop the inclusion of Deaf children in mainstream situations. Since developing MS, she has become the full time mother of two boys.
Tony was elected as governor in September 2019 for a 3-year term. After studying philosophy, Tony first worked for the government on tax policy and then in the private sector worked on financial advice to developing countries. He later moved to investment management and finished his financial career with a spell directing IT. In retirement, he has published two books on ethics. He has been an advisor, trustee and local chair at Citizens Advice. He holds second dan grade in the martial art aikido and is a keen tennis player, a sport he took up in his sixties. Tony is delighted to contribute as a governor and believes the NHS is one of the best things about our country. He hopes the skills acquired in his varied career will help in the central task of holding the Board to account and that through two-way communication he can help the community to feel connection and involvement with their hospitals.
Bob was elected for a term of one year in September 2019. He has lived in East Devon all his life and his current home is in Exmouth. After completing a short career commission in the Royal Navy, attaining the rank of Lieutenant, Bob worked in export trading before moving to a customer support role in managed computer services. He has over 30 years’ experience in customer facing roles. Bob has been actively involved with a local charity, the Exeter MS Therapy Centre, for more than 15 years and has served on their board of trustees, completing a period as chair in 2017. Having resigned as a trustee in April 2019 he continues to volunteer at the Centre as an Oxygen therapy operator.
Tony was re-elected in September 2017 for a term of three years.
Before he retired in 2006 Tony worked in the NHS including five years as a Lecturer in the Department of Child Life and Health at St George’s Medical School and twenty-two years as Consultant Neonatal Paediatrician in Kent. He has served on various hospital and regional and national committees including a National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guideline group. He spent 27 years as a member of the territorial army including 5 as commanding officer of 220 Field Ambulance in Maidstone. Since retiring He has worked with Clinical Commissioning Groups as Lead Clinician for the appraisal of neonatal units in East of England and South West England.
Faye was elected in September 2016 for a term of three years and was re-elected in September 2019 for a further three years. She lives in Exeter and is a retired nurse, midwife and Associate Professor of Midwifery for the University of Plymouth. She has been an active member of the Council of Governors at RD&E NHS FT and is the Chair of the Patient Safety and Quality Working Group of the Council of Governors. Faye is also a member of the Patient Experience Committee and the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Steering Committee. She brings to the Council experience of leadership and management, listening and responding to stakeholder and staff feedback. As a governor Faye supports all aspects of inclusivity and is a member of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Working Group at RD&E NHSFT. She believes in the NHS providing safe and effective care that is kind, compassionate and fair to all
Olwen was elected as governor in September 2019 for a 3-year term. Her work has been in education and psychology and retired two years ago from lecturing at Exeter University. She has always volunteered regularly - helping to set up & work with the Exeter Rape Crisis Line and now at the Foodbank. As a teacher, psychologist and lecturer for over 40 years, she has worked with all ages in a wide variety of contexts. She was also a school governor for 17 years.
During 40+ years in Exeter, she and her family have made much use of the RD&E. Having been a non-NHS employee, she hopes to represent and advocate for service users and their families. She has recent experience of providing an outsider’s perspective, both teaching at the medical school about the importance of clear communication, and also public involvement in medical research. She looks forward enormously to supporting the work of a hospital that she greatly respects.
Desmond Kumar was elected in September 2019 for a term of 3 years
Born in Guyana S.A. on a sugar plantation next to the river Demerera, his family arrived in London in 1962. He went to school and then moved to Exeter to study Mathematics and Economics at the University. After qualification he joined the Devon & Cornwall Police force, where I was posted around Devon. He ran his own business and started a career as a teacher at Blundells' School, later moving to schools in Ottery and Honiton. During this time he coached hundreds of young people basketball, many who have gone on to represent their country and played in Europe and the USA. He is passionate about supporting young people and believes we all need to do our bit to help our community.
James was re-elected in September 2018 for a term of three years. James was a Chartered Environmental Health Officer and Chartered Safety and Health Practitioner who having completed a military career has worked in Local Government, the National Health Service and finally as an international consultant.
He is an independent lay member of the NHS England Specialised Services Public and Patient Voice Assurance Group, lay member for NHS England Specialised Services Clinical Frailty Programme of Care Board, Member of Devon County Council Commissioning Involvement Group, Chair of Okehampton Medical Centre Patient Participation Group, Member of South West Academic Health Science Network Quality Assurance Group, The College of Optometrists Public Patient Reference Group, Trustee of West Devon Community and Voluntary Services and Treasurer of Devon Health and Social Care Forum.
Monika was elected for a three year term in September 2019. She is a retired Cabin Service Director with a degree in education who lives just outside Crediton. Having been raised and educated in Exeter she is very aware of the needs of the community. She has volunteered for the past 16 years as a Samaritan and was privileged to be their Director. She now has a national role as a Quality Mentor. Having been a cancer patient and more recently having had one of her sisters undergoing major surgery she is very aware not only of the negative aspects of the hospital, but more especially what an amazing asset to the community the RD&E is.
Marcus was elected in September 2019 for a one year term. He previously served as a Governor at another NHS Foundation Trust and is familiar with some of the processes used in the NHS and the characteristics and skills needed to be a Governor. He was formerly Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Dorset and has experience of governance and how executive functions are performed. He served 15 years as a Magistrate and more recently as a Legal Ombudsman. The relationship between the Council of Governors and the Board, whilst robust, needs to be handled with tact and diplomacy. He hopes that his ten years negotiating international treaties both in Europe and worldwide will help equip him with some of those skills.
Peter Flatters was elected in September 2019 for a term of 3 years. A large part of his career focussed on the collection, interpretation and presentation of scientific data, working for ICI as a Field Team Leader and research planning. Later he bought a rural Post Office in Devon in which he gained experience in practical economics and Government Regulations, basic banking, pensions, benefits, car-tax and fishing licences to the Village People. This background (science, regulation and looking after Post Office customers) has given Peter a good basis to contribute to Hospital Governance.
Hazel was first appointed as a staff governor in September 2013 and was re-elected in 2019 for another 1 year term. She commenced employment with the NHS in 1994 and joined the RD&E in 2000, having previously worked for another large acute Trust in the southwest.
Having worked within NHS facilities management for 16 years, Hazel joined the Programme Management and Service Change department in May 2012. She currently provides project management support for projects that sit within the Trust wide Integration Programme including the Transfer of Community Services (TCS) in 2016 and more recently Trustwide Outpatient Services. She also provides project management support and advice to colleagues within Corporate and Support Services division. Hazel has a Master’s degree in Business Administration and is a fully qualified Prince 2 Practitioner.
She also has a keen interest in Communications & Engagement particularly around the involvement of patients, carers and staff within service redesign and the implementation of change.
Catherine was first elected in 2016 for a term of two years and re-elected in 2018 for a term of three years.
Catherine’s career with the Royal Devon & Exeter NHS Foundation Trust began as a student nurse in 1995. As a staff nurse she worked in both the community and within the acute setting at the RD&E. In 2000 she qualified as a midwife and spent the next 11 years working in both community and hospital settings. After gaining her PGCE Catherine took a career break in 2009 and spent a year teaching student nurses and midwives in Western Australia. Catherine successfully completed her PGCert in obstetrics and gynaecology ultrasound in 2011 and has been the Clinical Lead Midwife Sonographer in the Centre for Womens’ Health since 2014.
Dominic was elected as a Staff Governor in September 2018 for a term of 2 years.
He started his career at the RD&E as a Student Physiotherapist in 2008. Since qualifying as a Chartered Physiotherapist he has worked throughout multiple departments within both the Acute and Community settings at the RD&E. He has previous experience acting as a workplace steward for the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy since 2014 and his current role as a Senior Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist is located at Exmouth Hospital.
Rob was elected as staff governor in September 2019 for a 3-year term. He is the lead physicist at the RD&E in radiotherapy treatment planning, with a background of 8+ years providing service development and direct patient care, within oncology. Rob has experience at different NHS trusts across Merseyside and Wirral before moving to the sunnier climates of Devon, and to the RD&E. Rob’s role requires solving complex technical, clinical and logistical problems and help implement solutions to improve patient safety and clinical outcomes. Rob is also an honorary lecturer at the University of Liverpool. He is a member of the Institute of Physics and a chartered scientist.
Anum was elected for a term of one year in September 2019. She has over a decade of experience in client services and relationship management. Anum has worked for both, the private and not for profit sector in a diverse set of service providing roles. Anum joined the RD&E in 2018, as a Patient Experience Lead for the Community Services Division. This allowed her to continue her ambition of working in the service industry in a role that focused on care for others. Anum is passionate about the NHS - both, as a service user, and as an employee. She believes that the organization should continue striving for the highest level of care, by ensuring the staff and patients are at the centre of every decision made. Anum is particularly interested in improving communication between the senior team and the diverse staff population. In her spare time, Anum enjoys spending time with her family and volunteers at her local school.