After 9 years as Chairman of the Board of Trustees at Oakhaven Hospice Keith Mans stepped down from his role at the recent AGM and handed over the reins to Professor Paul Dodson MD, FRCP, FRCOphth. Mr Mans, who joined the board in 2004, has been Chairman during one of the most significant periods of growth and development the hospice has seen including the introduction of its Hospice at Home service, the building of The Coates Centre and the expansion of its In-Patient Unit bedrooms.
“Keith has been a wonderful leader of our board of Trustees” said Oakhaven Chief Executive Andrew Ryde. “He has overseen a considerable period of development for us and at all times throughout that has been a great ambassador for the hospice and a tower of strength and support for both his fellow Trustees and our staff and volunteers; as Chairman he very much lead from the front and has even skydived and abseiled to raise funds for us. Everyone at Oakhaven thanks him for his tireless work on our behalf and wishes him well for the future. We look forward to working with our new Chairman who brings a wealth of experience to the board”.
Professor Dodson has been a Trustee since 2015 and Vice Chairman for the last 12 months. He qualified at St. Bartholomew’s Hospital, London, UK, in 1974 and spent his early years training at Southampton General Hospital and the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading. He returned to St. Bartholomew’s and Moorfields Eye Hospital, London in 1979 to research diabetes, hyperlipidaemia and retinopathy, which led to his MD. He was appointed Consultant Physician in 1989 in Birmingham and practised general medicine, diabetes and latterly medical ophthalmology, was one of the founders of the diabetic eye screening programme in the UK and currently provides courses, education and external quality assurance for the screening programme. He has international interests with consultancy for diabetic retinopathy screening in Singapore, Australia, Ireland and Ethiopia. He was appointed Hon Professor in the Dept of Health & Life Sciences at Aston University, Birmingham and to the Black Lions University in Addis Abiba in 2008. He has published extensively in major peer review journals as well as books on diabetes, lipids, hypertension and clinical retinopathies. He will therefore bring a clinical focus to the board as Chairman and continue to promote excellence in end of life and palliative care in Oakhaven’s services to the community.
“It has been a privilege to lead the board of Trustees through this amazing period of growth and development of our services” said Mr Mans. “I wish Paul all the best as he takes over as Chairman I know he will do an excellent job and I am sure it will be a tremendous asset for Oakhaven to have someone with a clinical background as its Chairman for what in fact will be the first time in our 25 years history”.
Also stepping down at the AGM was Joanna Oswin who has been a Trustee since 2002. “Joanna has been an enthusiastic Trustee and another wonderful ambassador for the hospice” said Mr Ryde. “She has been especially supportive of our fundraising and the fundraising team. Alongside a hard working committee she was instrumental in growing our Bike & Hike event over many years which raised in excess of £350,000 as well as making significant contributions to many other fundraising initiatives. We thank her for her time as a Trustee and wish her well for the future”