23 July 2012

New Chair appointed

The independent Appointments Commission has appointed Tony Gallagher as Chair of Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust.

Mr Gallagher, who has been Interim Chair since April,  said he was delighted. "We have started to change the way the Trust is run and the way it relates to staff, service users, carers and other stakeholders.  As an organisation we want to be transparent, outgoing and fully engaged with the communities with whom we work.

"I see my appointment as recognition of the positive steps taken in the past few weeks and faith in my ability to lead the Trust through this challenging period."

Mr Gallagher has been a Non-executive Director of the Trust for four years and Chair of the Audit Committee for the past two.  Before that he was Chair of Governors of Swindon Further Education College for over five years and has wide UK and international business experience.

He has been appointed for a four year term and will continue to work closely with acting Chief Executive Paul Miller.

"We want to ensure that clinicians are at the forefront of service change and that we reflect the needs of different local areas. Above all we will ensure that service users and carers are at the centre of what we do and that staff are enabled to make a real difference in the care we provide, said Mr Gallagher.

"AWP today provides many excellent services.  Our staff work exceptionally hard, deploying their specialist skills to support a large number of people and I would like to thank them for their dedication and commitment."

Acting chief executive Paul Miller welcomed Mr Gallagher's appointment. He said: "This is good news for the Trust and the community we serve as we embark on an ambitious programme of change and improvement.

"The Board has a strong working relationship and we are committed to working together to achieve the Trust's objectives."

The appointment follows a rigorous selection process conducted by the Appointments Commission, which provides an independent and transparent appointment process for public appointments, based on the principle of selection on merit.

In accordance with the Nolan recommendations, there is a requirement for appointees' political activity (if any declared) to be made public. Mr Gallagher holds no other public appointments and has declared no political activity. He is appointed from 12 July 2012 until 11 July 2016 and will receive a remuneration of £20,896 per annum.

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