Caroline Dove

Chief Executive Officer

Biography:  Caroline has spent her entire career working in the NHS. She has worked in secondary care in operational and strategic management, most recently as an Executive Director at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital. She has a passion for service transformation and in the 1990s she led the operational development of the UK's first treatment centre and moved to set up NHS Elect in 2003 in order to provide high quality, in-house support to healthcare organisations across the country, enabling them to work together to deliver improved services.

Recent Accomplishments: The NHS Elect team has grown from an initial membership of just four sites to a membership of over 50 sites, providing a diverse range of support across the NHS.

How she can help you: Caroline works extensively with members on service improvement, development of clinical services strategies, training and development, and change


Eilis Parker


Biography: Eilis began her NHS career as a Chartered Physiotherapist working in the West Midlands before moving to London. She moved initially into Therapy leadership roles and then into General Management at UCLH and Chelsea and Westminster Hospital. There followed a period working at a regional level before joining NHS Elect in its infancy in 2004.

Initially working in service improvement Eilis then developed an interest in supporting personal development and qualified as a Coach in 2012 and has since developed the Coaching Faculty at NHS Elect. She finds it to be an exceptionally rewarding part of her work and often uses her experience as an MBTI/FIRO and Strengthscope Practitioner to enhance the experience for coachees.

Eilis also has a keen interest in team and team working and the importance of leaders being able to adopt a coaching style, where suitable, to get the best out of their teams.

Recent Accomplishments: Completing ACAS Workplace Mediation training.

How she can help you: She works extensively with members on a 1:1 and group/team basis with coaching and personal development.


Jim Timpson


Biography: Jim joined Elect in 2004 to set up the “Business of Healthcare” work-stream focusing on the financial sustainability of NHS services. This built on 7 years of experience in the IT recruitment business and 10 years of general management experience gained via the NHS Management Training Scheme. After a few years helping members on joint ventures, business cases, tender responses and negotiation strategies he was being asked to do increasing amounts of facilitation, change management and leadership development work. This prompted him to gain first a certificate in practice and then an MSc in Organisational Development from Roffey Park Institute. He still works on business oriented projects but a growing proportion of his time is devoted to work on Resilience; Conflict and Culture.

Recent Accomplishments: Analysing the structure and culture of a community services organisation; designing & delivering resilience workshops; designing and delivering a strengths based programme at Guy’s & St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust to enable senior manager to implement appraisal based incremental progression; consulting with NHS England and a number of members on culture change; developing departmental strategies through Strategy Mapping workshops at Whittington Health NHS Trust; “Polarity Management” work with CCGs chairs to understand how to get the benefits of both large scale primary care centres and small GP practices.

How he can help you: Organisational Development: Leadership Development: Team Building; Having Difficult Conversations; Psychological Resilience.


Sue Kong


Biography: Sue Kong joined NHS Elect in April 2005 as their Director, leading on the marketing of NHS Services and assisting the Department of Health with the Gastroenterology 18 weeks commissioning pathways. Prior to joining NHS Elect, Sue was Executive Director for Strategy and Planning at North West London Strategic Health Authority and has operational and planning experience in acute hospitals in London and the East Midlands.

Sue has an MBA (distinction) specialising in marketing and is a CIM Chartered Marketer. Sue has chaired the Health Service Journal NHS marketing conferences and has published in the Journal of Management and Marketing in Healthcare, regularly sharing good examples of healthcare marketing and patient experience from around the world. Sue is a member of the editorial board for the Journal of Patient Experience (SAGE). She loves learning from different sectors and has presented as a Business Insight Leader for Warwick Business School, the Institute of Directors, National Housing Federation & 2020 Arab Health Congress.

Recent Accomplishments: Sue has developed a customer care / 'Improving the Patient Experience' training programme for its members covering administrative staff to multi-disciplinary clinical teams. She has personally delivered her training programme to over 2,500 NHS front-line staff and trained over 60 patient experience and leadership development colleagues across the country to implement this programme in their own Trusts.

How she can help you: Sue helps members with marketing, branding and customer service.


Nicola Chandler


Biography: Nicola joined the NHS in 1993 and has been employed in a number of senior general management and service improvement roles in both commissioning and the acute sector, in which she gained extensive experience in a number of fields such as operational, financial and budgetary management, contracting, service planning, change management and whole systems redesign. Nicola is NHS Elect’s lead for Productive Outpatients and has a MBA.

Recent Accomplishments: working with members to improve services for patients through a variety of service improvement initiatives and service reviews; working with teams to improve their outpatient services through the Productive Outpatients Programme.

How she can help you: service reviews, designing and delivering service improvement and lean training workshops.


Robin Davis


Biography: Having worked in various senior NHS management roles, Robin combines a realistic outlook with the latest change management thinking to achieve results. He has a good understanding of the competing demands of operational health care management and the challenge of meaningfully engaging clinicians in projects. He is an accomplished facilitator and enjoys the challenge of working with clinical teams to bring about improvements for patients. Graduated from the NHS management training scheme in 2002, and he has an MSc in Health Care Policy and Management.

Recent Accomplishments: Robin direct supports several NHS organisations to deliver key operational targets and improve patient services. Working closely with both executive and clinical teams on service improvement, capacity planning and performance management issues advising on priority areas and developing improvement strategies.

How he can help you: Robin is an expert facilitator with passion for service improvement, service redesign, and coaching


Gareth Corser


Biography: Prior to joining the NHS, Gareth worked in the commercial sector and has a strong marketing background. Gareth has worked at a senior level in acute, community and primary care settings and was previously Executive Director of Strategy at Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and at West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust. He has a strong track record of successfully leading complex initiatives and has led on a number of significant strategic and commercial projects including corporate and clinical strategy development.

Recent accomplishments include: working with a non-NHS healthcare system on their corporate and clinical strategy for future sustainability of services, he has also supported a number of organisations in developing and responding to specific tenders, commercial thinking, mergers, acquisitions and joint venture vehicles.

Gareth is passionate about international models of care and has spent some time working in other healthcare systems. In particular, Gareth has a strong interest in integrated models of care and clinical engagement in service reconfiguration and strategy development. Gareth has been working with colleagues from International Consortium for Health Outcomes Measurement (ICHOM) to develop a programme for members on the implementation, assessment and monitoring of worldwide patient outcome standards.

How he can help you: Gareth is experienced in working with members on tender responses, patient patient & commercial strategies, approaches to mergers and acquisitions, fundraising strategies, community service benchmarking


Mike Davidge


Biography: He joined the NHS in 1979 setting aside temporarily (as he then thought) a career in industry; over 30 years later he is still working in the NHS. In the early 1980s as part of IACC, he was jointly responsible for creating the first national performance indicators and between 1986 and 1992 pioneered reduced waiting times in England and Wales. Mike then became the Analysis Director for the Modernisation Agency in 2001 and left the MA in February 2005 to take up a role as Director of Analysis and Modeling within the Leeds health economy. Recently, he was Head of Measurement at the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement in 2009 until its closure in March 2013 and he continues to be involved part time with 1000 Lives Improvement in Wales as the Head of Improvement Methodology.

Recent Accomplishments: Mike has created some new half day and day long sessions on using data effectively including how to create and use SPC charts. He has also expanded capacity and demand management material to include a half day on capacity planning.

How he can help you: Mike can guide you toward making better decisions by selecting the right things to measure. Mike can show you how to make sense of the data you’ve got. He can advise you on ways to improve the flow of work and also reduce access times.


Darren Leech


Biography: Darren's professional background is in pharmacy, where he spent 15 years working in logistics, manufacturing and the hospital sector in the UK, along with a year in the Middle East. Darren then worked as an Executive Director on the board of three acute hospitals - as Director of Delivery and then in Chief Operating Officer posts. Darren has also spent time working with commissioners, as Project Director for the clinical review and public consultation on the sustainability of services at a small acute hospital in East Anglia.

As a member of the NHS Elect coaching faculty, Darren is a qualified and experienced coach. Working on personal, team and board development he retains an active interest in academic research, education and the development of people. Darren has regularly published work related to leadership development and coaching. Operational and clinical services are Darren’s other areas of focus. In planned care, this includes Referral to Treatment (RTT) and Cancer pathways, along with surgical and clinical support service improvement. Darren also provides active support and insight to members who are developing ambulatory and other innovative emergency care initiatives.

Recent Accomplishments: Darren retains an active interest in academic research, education and the development of people. Completing a PhD in 2013 at Lord Ashcroft International Business School, Cambridge, his research and a number of subsequent publications focused on the impact of competition in the NHS on leaders and leadership in the acute hospital sector. In 2014 Darren completed an executive coaching accreditation and since then, he has regularly practiced as a coach and has published work in this field.  

How he can help you: Operational and clinical services are Darren’s key areas of focus. In terms of planned care, support areas include Referral to Treatment (RTT) and Cancer standards, along with surgical and clinical support service improvement and efficiency work (including the marketing of new clinical services). Darren provides active support and insight to members who are developing ambulatory (AEC) and other innovative emergency care initiatives (e.g. Surgical AEC, Discharge to Assess…). As a trained member of the NHS Elect coaching faculty, Darren’s other key portfolio area includes helping personal, team and board development through a range of coaching interventions.



Deborah Thompson


Biography: Deborah Thompson MSC, Dip HE, RGN is a Director at NHS Elect Director covering Urgent Care Delivery Networks. This involves leading the design and delivery of two large-scale improvement programmes across the UK; The Ambulatory Emergency Care Network and Acute Frailty Network. In addition, she also designs bespoke programme support and expertise to frontline teams to improve emergency care. Deborah has 37 years’ experience as a clinician and manager in NHS acute services.

During her career, Deborah has undertaken a variety of roles from Ward Sister through to ‘acting’ Director of Nursing. In 2003, she diversified her career path by undertaking the role of general manager in Emergency Services leading to a role as Director of Operations.

Recent accomplishments include: Since then she has worked on a number of national healthcare improvement programmes and since 2011 has focussed on improving emergency flow leading the improvement and expansion of ambulatory emergency care (AEC) services in over 120 organisations in the UK. This work expanded to include the Acute Frailty Network in 2015 that aims to improve the quality and safety of emergency care for frail older people in the first 72 hours.

How she can help you: Deborah is passionate about working with front line staff to support them to understand and improve emergency patient flow, and has a particular interest in clinical pathway redesign and working with health communities on a large scale to design processes to safely provide ‘same day’ emergency care reducing the reliance on hospital beds for treatment and ensuring frail older people don’t spend a day longer than necessary in a hospital bed.

Joe Blunden

Director of Communications and Engagement

Joe is a multi-award winning marketing and communications specialist with over 15 years of experience across a range of industries. He has worked for the NHS for the past 10 years, including marketing, communications and engagement roles in both acute and community settings.

He is a compulsive learner and recently completed an MBA (Distinction), having gained a Professional Diploma in Marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing, a Diploma in Managing Digital Media and a degree in business.

Joe directed the successful campaign to get the NHS Choir to Christmas number one in 2015, raising over £300k for charity in the process. He also led NHS Voices in 2018, bringing together 30 celebrity singers to record a song for the NHS, which was made into a documentary by ITV.

Joe specialises in strategy development and digital communication and has extensive experience in PR, stakeholder engagement and campaign development.


Jessica Ormrod

Digital Communications Manager

Biography:  Jess is the newest addition to the NHS Elect team, having come from a background of Producing film, digital and stills campaigns across the world. After leaving the advertising industry, Jess created a range of content to include websites, brochures and videos, and wrote copy for charities and small businesses.

Recent Accomplishments: Jess has just finished her MSc in Psychology at UCL, which she studied whilst freelancing.

How she can help you: Jess is the go-to NHS Elect member for anything content creation related!


Toni James

Head of Operations

Biography: Toni started at NHS Elect in December 2005 on a 5 week contract and either as a penance or a stroke of good luck (depends on what kind of day she is having) she has been here ever since. Her background is in HR and she was an HR Manager for a Music Company for many years. After leaving the Music company she was approached by a recruitment agency to increase their temporary workforce which she accomplished. After the company was bought out she started her own recruitment company which she still runs in conjuction with her work for NHS Elect.

Recent Accomplishments: Managing the very busy team diaries, and so far she hasn’t managed to send one of the team to Narnia for a membership visit, but she wouldn’t rule it out in the future.

How she can help you: She can deal with most of your queries from the general 'What or Who is NHS Elect?' and 'What do you do?', to events, in house


Ernie Reid

Associate Director

Biography: Ernie had a successful career continually at the cutting edge of the IT and Business outsourcing industries across Europe and the US before joining the NHS in 2006. His achievements took him to the position of Managing Director of a multi-national Internet Service Provider. He specialised in commercial account management and major programme management. Among his achievements was the establishment of a blue-chip learning and development function, programme management of major front and back office re-engineering initiatives of several service based organisations. After taking a three year sabbatical, he was seeking a new challenge. Ernie worked on the establishment of England’s first commissioning hub: The West Midlands Central Business Support Agency (CBSA) and having embarked on a new career in the NHS went on to work with the Department of Health, Surrey PCT and Sussex Community Healthcare NHS Trust as well as supporting other NHS Elect members.

Recent Accomplishments: Coaching, Myers Briggs and FIRO B accreditation as well as development of business process training programmes including Leadership, Relationship and interpersonal skills.

How he can help you: Organisational , Operational and Learning & Development reviews, Team assessment and building with a focus on helping personal development, coaching and L&D support for leaders in practice.


Claire Butler Brown

Events Coordinator

Biography: Claire has been co-ordinating events for NHS Elect for over three years now, having returned to work part-time after starting a family. Prior to this, I worked for 15 years in Public Relations in the private sector, both in-house and in PR consultancies, latterly as the PR Director for a large French cosmetics company. Large and small-scale event organising formed part of my previous roles.

Recent Accomplishments: We are working hard to increase the number of delegates attending our network-wide sessions across all our member organisations. We are also keen to ensure we keep offering our most popular events, adapting and updating where necessary.

How she can help you: Contact me with any event queries or bookings via email or via our website booking


Lisa Godfrey


Biography: Lisa has 30 years’ experience in the NHS, and is an experienced leader of transformational change and improvement. Prior to joining NHS Elect as a Programme Director in 2013, Lisa held a variety of executive director roles in acute Trusts and the charitable sector; including the Directorships for Strategy and Service Transformation, and Campaign Director for Patient Experience. Lisa, who is a nurse by background, has led a number of significant projects including service reconfiguration and major capital builds, cultural change programmes and within the charitable sector set up a UK pipeline for system redesign projects. Lisa uses a combination of service improvement and programme management approaches with social movement techniques.

Recent accomplishments: In her campaign director role Lisa was the lead for Patient and Public Involvement, developing the Trust’s patient and public engagement strategy, including the creation of networks of users, and a database to bring together the 10,000 trust members and patient participants as a powerful user voice.

How can she help you? Lisa’s key skills include: programme direction, strategic development, stakeholder engagement, service improvement and transformation, group facilitation.

Linda Keenan

Associate Director

Biography: Linda joined NHS Elect in 2014, she brings considerable organisation and leadership development experience gained in the health, charity, and housing sectors. Prior to joining NHS Elect, Linda ran her own organisation development consultancy for 12 years, working predominantly in the charity sector with organizations such as Medecins Sans Frontieres and the British Heart Foundation. Linda has an MSc in Organisation Development from Roffey Park (University of Sussex) and an accredited advanced action learning facilitator (ILM) and facilitator trainer, advising members on how best to introduce action learning alongside leadership development and to support culture change initiatives. An experienced and accredited workplace mediator, Linda trained with the internationally respected Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR).

Recent accomplishments: Linda has been a key member of the design and delivery team for an innovative top 100 leader programme in a Midlands based Trust. Linda has had a leading role, working in partnership with the Organisation Development Team, to develop and deliver a bespoke leadership programme that reflects and responds to the leadership challenges and issues facing the hospital. This included designing and delivering a 3 day in house action learning facilitator programme.
For the last 12 months Linda has established and facilitated action learning sets in a Surrey based CCG, aimed at supporting the development of clinical leaders.

How can she help you? Developing and delivering leadership development programmes including setting up action learning sets: Organisation development and change: Using MBTI for either personal, team or leadership development: managing and responding to conflict in the workplace through team facilitation or workplace mediation.

Mark Leyshon

Associate Director

Biography: An experienced commercial practitioner, Mark initially started his career in the Automotive industry within Supply Chain Management, and was actively involved in his organisations world class continuous improvement programme. He then moved on to a variety of senior, and executive commercial posts in the rail, energy and travel industries, where his experience includes acquisitions and a management buy out. At the turn of the Millennium Mark started his own Consultancy Company providing PFI support before broadening into a wide variety of improvement and change management assignments.

Recent accomplishments:
Mark has been supporting NHS members in both strategy development, commissioning, tendering and service redevelopment initiatives. He has also been providing a range of Commercial Development workshops, including Leadership, Responding to Tenders, Report Writing, and Procurement and Specification Writing.
A strong advocate of lean thinking techniques and the impact safety has on the entire service stream delivery, he has recently been researching, and is now developing, a Human, Technical and Organisational Factors programme for roll out later this year.

How he can help you: Strategy, commercial development, commissioning, tendering, service re-egineering, human, technical and organisational factors, and leadership.

Jey Punitharajah

Head of Finance and Corporate Affairs

Biography: After graduating with a degree in Mathematics & Statistics in 2015 Jey began his career in NHS finance at Kings College Hospital. He progressed through various finance roles including accounts payable, management accounts and specialist projects in both acute and community trusts. Jey started at NHS elect in January 2019 as the Business and Corporate Services Manager and more recently moved into the Head of Finance and Corporate Affairs role.

 Recent Accomplishments: Design and implementation of a new financial model and reporting tools to inform business decisions going forward. Put in place processes to streamline current BAU tasks.

 How he can help you: Jey will be your main point of contact regarding the finalisation of membership agreements and arranging for invoicing for membership fees.