Meet our board of directors

Our board

Our Board, made up of our executive directors, non-executive directors, and non-executive directors, oversees the running of our hospitals, including:

  • Setting the strategic direction of our Trust
  • Ensuring the provision of high quality care in our hospitals
  • Overseeing financial stewardship 

Executive Directors

Matthew Trainer, Chief Executive

Photo of Matthew Trainer Matthew Trainer became our Chief Executive in August 2021. Before joining BHRUT, he worked for three years as CEO of Oxleas NHS Foundation Trust, which provides a wide range of health and social care in south east London and parts of Kent. While at Oxleas, Matthew was seconded to help run the NHS Nightingale Hospital in London.

In 2016, he worked for King's College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, where he was managing director of the Princess Royal University Hospital in Bromley. Matthew has also held senior positions at NHS England, the Care Quality Commission, and the MS Society.

Tweet Matthew: @MatthewTrainer

Ben Morrin, Deputy Chief Executive

Ben Morrin

Ben Morrin joined us as our Deputy Chief Executive in January 2021 from University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (UCLH). In 2020, he worked as part of the NHS England and Improvement’s London executive. From 2014-19, Ben was UCLH’s responsible director for workforce, education and communications.

In the preceding decade, he worked across the Department of Health and within the Prime Minister’s Delivery Unit. Ben is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development.

Tweet Ben: @BenMorrin

Kathryn Halford OBE, Chief Nurse

Kathryn Halford Kathryn joined our Trust in January 2016 from Walsall Healthcare where she was the Director of Nursing.

She qualified as a registered nurse in 1984 and then as a registered sick children’s nurse in 1987.

Since that time she has held a number of senior nursing roles within secondary and tertiary care settings. Kathryn has led a number of national programmes including a focus on new roles and an independent review into children’s palliative care whilst working at the Department of Health.

Tweet Kathryn: @HalfordKathryn

Remi Odejinmi, Director for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

Remi Odejinmi

Remi Odejinmi was appointed our first Director for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion in May 2021. Remi has worked at our Trust for 20 years as a consultant anaesthetist. She has held several clinical roles, including Clinical Director of Strategy and Divisional Director for Anaesthesia.  

In this role, which she occupied for seven years, Remi enjoyed working in collaboration with our multidisciplinary teams to develop innovative ways of delivering care and making many improvements across our services. She is particularly proud of the expansion of critical care beds and the development of chronic pain and pre-assessment services. 

In order to enhance her leadership abilities, Remi undertook an MBA degree at Henley Business School in 2019; her dissertation was titled, “the barriers of career progression for BAME staff at BHRUT”.  

Nick Swift, Chief Financial Officer

Nick Swift

After studying engineering at Exeter University, Nick qualified as a chartered accountant with Touche Ross in 1988. He then spent five years in New Zealand in both practice and commerce before starting a family and returning to the UK.

Nick brings over 20 years of board experience in a variety of international finance roles, most recently as Chief Financial Officer for British Airways.

Since then, Nick has studied part-time for an MSc in Health and Medical Science at University College London. He was a non-executive director at East and North Herts NHS Trust and is a trustee at the girls education charity Camfed.

 Nick lives in Hatfield with his wife Jude and their two daughters.

Dr Magda Smith, Chief Medical Officer

Magda Smith

Dr Magda Smith has been a consultant physician and gastroenterologist at Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust for more than twenty years.

She has combined her consultant role with a number of leadership positions including Clinical Divisional Director and Associate Medical Director.

She is passionate about delivering good care to patients, developing teams that combine the best skills of all their members and ensuring that the voice of the patient is always listened to.

Alan Wishart, Interim Director of Workforce

Photo of Alan Wishart Alan joined the Trust as the Deputy Director of Workforce in December 2015. From March 2021 he has been the Acting Director of Workforce.

Prior to Joining the Trust Alan spent three years at Capsticks LLP as the Associate Director for their Human Resources and Organisational Development Advisory Service.  Alan started his NHS career in 2003 working at the North West London Strategic Health Authority subsequently moving to work in People and Organisational Development at the West London Mental Health NHS Trust.

In the preceding decade Alan worked as a fulltime officer for both the Banking and Finance Union (now Unite) and spent 10 years at the British Medical Association as an Industrial Relations Officer in London. Alan is a CIPD Chartered Member.

Hannah Coffey, Director of Strategy and Partnerships

Hannah Coffey Hannah Coffey was appointed our Director of Strategy and Partnerships in February 2021.   

Hannah spent ten years as Director of Operations/Chief Operating Officer at three different NHS Trusts.   

Hannah has always been a passionate advocate of equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) and was the Executive sponsor for EDI at GSST. One of her proudest achievements was to oversee the implementation of reverse mentorship and witness the powerful impact it had on all those who took part.  

Hannah has recently graduated from the Aspiring CEO programme run by the NHS Leadership Academy and she has trained as a coach.  

Peter Hunt, Director of Communications and Engagement

Peter Hunt

Peter joined us in November 2017 after a career as a BBC correspondent and presenter where he was at the forefront of the organisation’s news coverage.  As one of the BBC’s most senior journalists, he covered international and national events, politics and the royal family.  

Tweet Peter: @_PeterHunt




Mike Gilham, Finance Director

Photo of Mike Gilham Mike, who has worked in NHS finance for more than ten years, joined us in February 2019. He worked previously at NHS Improvement, NHS England, Barts Health, Great Ormond Street and Mid Essex NHS Hospital Trust.

Mike knows the area well having grown up in Havering and he worked for the local authority as a graduate trainee when he was completing his accountancy qualification as part of the Society of London Treasurers’ scheme. His first full time job, before going to university, was as a Goods Receiving Officer at Oldchurch Hospital. Mike still lives locally with his wife and two young daughters.

Non-Executive Directors

Mike Bell, Chair

Mike bell

Mike joined our Trust in December 2020. His central vision is to lead our Board on its improvement journey towards providing services that are effective, efficient and ethical.

He wants to develop borough-based partnerships that offer the very best joined up care. He is keen to work with our partners across north east London to deliver these services efficiently and ensure there is a relentless focus on tackling the health inequalities that scar our communities.

Mike is also Chair of Croydon Health Services NHS Trust. He has held this position since 2013 and there he has championed place-based integration in health and social care and collaborative ventures with other providers across south west London. These alliances have meant services are better able to meet the needs of Croydon’s diverse population and have created fresh opportunities for employees.

Mike has more than 20 years of NHS board-level experience and has held many senior roles including Chair of the London Mental Health and Employment Partnership and Vice Chair of NHS London. 

Jackie Westaway, Vice Chair and Chair of Quality Assurance Committee

Jackie Westaway

Jackie is a charismatic and energetic senior leader with experience of delivering commercial success within the tightly regulated environment of the Pharmaceutical Industry. She is highly experienced in change management and UK and Global marketing leadership. She has a strong customer focus with a track record of effectively working alongside the NHS.

Jackie led the compliance function for the  European Pharmaceutical Business of her company and has worked alongside audit teams to implement changes. Jackie is a Non Executive Director of the British School of Osteopathy, a Director of Healthwatch Bucks and a Trustee of an Academy Trust in East London.

Joan Saddler OBE

Joan Saddler

Joan Saddler returned to our Trust in January 2021, after a six-year term with us that ended in the autumn of the previous year. 

Joan has considerable NHS experience. She is director of partnerships and equality at the NHS Confederation, which represents organisations across the healthcare sector. She was awarded an OBE for services to health and diversity in 2007.

Joan spent five years as the National Director of Patient and Public Affairs at the Department of Health and she previously served as the Chair of Waltham Forest PCT


Anthony Warrens

anthony warrens

Anthony Warrens was appointed in June 2011.

A qualified doctor with a clinical practice in renal medicine and based principally at Barts Health NHS Trust, Anthony has a particular interest in transplantation medicine.

He recently completed his term as President of the British Transplantation Society.

Since 2010 he has been Dean for Education at Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, where he has reorganised educational structures within the School and improved basic science teaching.


Lesley Seary CBE, Chair of People and Culture Committee and Chair of Remuneration and Terms of Service Committee

Lesley Seary Lesley has more than 30 years’ experience in senior leadership roles in local government. This includes spending the last 8 years as Chief Executive of Islington Council. During this time, she has led a workforce of 4,500, managed a range of successful services, and developed considerable experience of partnership working with both statutory and non-statutory organisations.

Lesley has worked extensively with local health partners in north central London at both STP and borough level, including the hospital trusts, CCG, GP Federation and GPs. She has worked with health partners on health and social care integration as well as developing a strong approach to prevention and early intervention.

She has a strong commitment to public services, combatting health inequalities and delivering excellence in health and care. She is delighted to have the opportunity to use the skills and experience she has gained in the public sector in the area where she has lived for 26 years. 

Sue Lees, Chair of Audit and Risk Assurance Committee

Sue Lees

Sue was appointed in August 2019. She was previously a Non-Executive Advisor for our Trust, having been appointed to that role in October 2017.

She is a qualified chartered accountant with more than 30 years’ experience in both the private and public sectors including periods working within the NHS and local government. She has led large capital programmes, including the delivery of a number of new health care facilities within Barking, Dagenham, Havering and Brentwood.

Sue has recently retired from her role as Chief Executive of Elevate East London. She continues on a part-time basis to provide commercial and leadership support to Agilisys Ltd, a leading provider in the technology advisory sector.

Mehboob Khan

Mehboob Khan Mehboob is Assistant Director of Policy and Change at the London Borough of Redbridge. He is also Vice Chair at North Middlesex University Hospital Trust.  

From 2014 to 2021, he was political adviser to London Councils, the cross-party organisation that represents the city’s 32 boroughs and the City of London. Mehboob has also held other senior leadership positions in the public sector.

He lives in London and enjoys current affairs, running and cycling. He is a founder member of the Seacole Group which is a forum for NHS non-executive directors from the BAME community.  

He was born in Yorkshire; grew up in Huddersfield; and as Leader of Kirklees Council, Mehboob was the first British Muslim to occupy such a role.

George Wood, Chair of Finance and Investment Committee

George WoodGeorge, who is one of our associate non-executive directors, is well known at our Trust. He is Chair of the King George and Queen’s Hospitals Charity and he has served as a Board adviser. He is also a non-executive director at The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust.

He worked for the Ford Motor Company for more than 30 years in their financial services division. During his career he spent time in sales, marketing, strategy and operations. He worked for the company in South America as vice president where, for five years, he was responsible for operations in Brazil, Argentina and Venezuela.

George is passionate about the NHS and about delivering a great service for our patients.

Caroline Roberts

Caroline Roberts Caroline, who is one of our associate non-executive directors, has a special focus on wellbeing and on ensuring the Board always considers the impact that decisions will have on the health and wellbeing of staff.

After an earlier career in BBC radio production, Caroline worked in a variety of roles where she ran secondment schemes, news management and events. 

Moving into human resources, she has held a number of HR Director roles in the public sector, media and architecture. 

She is currently HR Director at the Confederation of British Industry (CBI). As well as working with our Trust, Caroline is a Trustee for a group of academies.

Ruth Crowley

Ruth Crowley Ruth, who is one of our associate non-executive directors, works as a GP Partner in Upminster after beginning her training in Havering and working at Queen’s and King George Hospitals.

She is also a clinical director of Havering Federation which strives to work as a collective to improve care for all of their patients.

Ruth is passionate about creating partnerships between primary and secondary care so that every single patient experience is efficient, effective and positive.

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