Board Members

Our Board Members

Hitesh Thakrar


Hitesh Thakrar is an experienced investor in the technology sector, having spent over 25 years investing in public equities in the life sciences, information technology and innovation sectors. Since 2015, he has moved into early stage venture investing. Hitesh is currently a Partner at Syncona Limited (a Wellcome Trust backed early stage venture fund), a Governance Board Member of KQ Labs at the Francis Crick Institute, an accelerator with the Turing supporting next generation businesses in data science and life sciences, and the Chair of the Investment Committee for Newable Ventures (a pre-Series A deep tech fund). Hitesh is also an advisor to UKRI’s Science and Technology Funding Council (SFTC) that helps early stage companies spin out from UK universities, He recently joined as a Trustee of the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital Charity. Previous NED roles include work with Desktop Genetics and Tropic Biosciences, both companies using CRISPR technology in gene editing. Prior to 2015, Hitesh has worked at various public market institutions in global equity research and fund management including at ADIA (Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund), JP Morgan, Aviva Group, Dresdner Bank and New Star Asset Management. Hitesh has a degree in chemistry from Kings College, London, an MBA from Cranfield University and a CFA from the American Association of Investment Analysts and has previously held a position as Innovation Fellow at the University of Cambridge.

Ian Abbs

Chief Executive and Chief Medical Officer Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust

Ian became Medical Officer of Guy’s and St Thomas’ in January 2011. He joined the Trust as a consultant renal physician and honorary senior lecturer at King’s College London in 1994 and has had a distinguished clinical and academic career, which has included a broad range of senior management positions. In addition to his clinical work, Ian has played a key role in the development of Clinical Academic Groups, the management units of King’s Health Partners, and was closely involved in work to integrate with Lambeth and Southwark community services.

James Friend

Director of Digital Strategy NHS England - London Region

James joined the NHS England – London Region team from St George’s where he was Chief Transformation Officer, prior to that being an adviser to the Secretary of State for Health. James is an experienced NHS and commercial director, having held roles in NHS commissioning, as well as at West Middlesex University NHS Trust, Chelsea and Westminster NHS Foundation Trust and Barts Healthcare NHS Trust.

Sarah Cottingham

Director of Planning and Commissioning, NHS South East London Clinical Commissioning Group

Sarah has worked in the NHS for her whole career, most of it in NHS commissioning and in south east London. She has worked at the borough, pan borough and SEL level and has covered all aspects of commissioning from strategic and operational planning and delivery, through to contact negotiation and management and from primary through to tertiary care across physical and mental health.

Adrian McLachlan

Vice Chairman, GP Partner at Hetherington Practice

Adrian is a GP Partner at Hetherington Practice in Clapham and Chair of the Lambeth Clinical Commissioning Group. He trained at Kings College in 1983 and after qualifying took up a hospital based post in Plymouth before returning to London. During his career he developed an interest in mental health, addictions and healthcare for the homeless.

Jenny Higham

Principal, St George's, University of London

Professor Jenny Higham is Principal of St George's, University of London and represents universities on the HIN Board. She took up appointment at St George’s on 2 November 2015, where she also practices clinically as a Gynaecologist in the Trust . She is also the first female Chair of the Medical Schools Council, a position she was elected to in August 2016.

Ryan Campbell

Chief Executive Officer Demelza, Hospice Care for Children

Ryan has been Chief Executive of Demelza since 2015. He has worked in the voluntary sector for over 20 years, with much of this time spent delivering services to vulnerable people, and alongside service users, families and carers, campaigning for their rights and dignity.

Stephen Waring

Head of Health Policy and Partnerships, Greater London Authority

Stephen currently works for the Greater London Authority’s health team where he heads up health and care policy and partnership working, supporting the Mayor of London’s role in championing and challenging the NHS to deliver safe and consistent services to Londoners. Stephen had previously worked at NHS England (London Region) leading the specialised services transformation programme.

Catherine Pearson

Healthwatch Lambeth Chief Executive

Catherine has been the Chief Executive of Healthwatch Lambeth, since its inception in 2013. The charitable organisation works to ensure that the voice of local people is heard. Catherine is also Vice Chair of Lambeth’s Safeguarding Adults Board and chairs the Board's Community Reference Group.

Jill Lockett

Managing Director King's Health Partners

Jill is the Director of Performance and Delivery at King’s Health Partners. She was Service Director for the Behavioural and Developmental Psychiatry CAG in South London and Maudsley NHS FT. Previously, she was Director of Cancer Waits and Heart Team Capital Programme at DH. Previous roles include Chief Executive of a London PCG and Director of Commissioning in a PCT.

Dr James Lyddiard

Chief Operating Officer, NIHR Clinical Research Network South London

James’s career includes 21 years working to support clinical research and he has been working within the NIHR since it was established. With a background of working in preclinical drug discovery during his PhD and Postdoctoral work, James transitioned to supporting oncology trials with the MRC Clinical Trials Unit. In 2002, James worked to set up one of the regional cancer research networks as part of the National Cancer Research Network initiative, which latterly developed into a joint role that involved both covering the Network activities and being Head of Cancer Trials for UCLH, managing UCL’s Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre. Prior to his current role James worked as the Chief Operating Officer for the CRN North Thames.

Hilary Newiss

HIN Vice Chairman

Hilary is a lawyer and former partner in Denton Hall solicitors. She specialised in intellectual property law and has served on several public bodies. She is currently a Trustee of the Natural History Museum, Chair of National Voices and recently advised on a Review of Access to Innovative Medicines for the Office of Life Sciences.

Julian David

Chief Executive Officer techUK

Julian has spent over 30 years in the tech industry including roles at IBM as Vice President for Small and Medium Business and Vice President for Public Sector. As CEO of techUK Julian leads a 60 strong team in representing 800+ member companies, ensuring that the digital tech industry is at the heart of a modern society and economy in Britain.

Professor Sir Graham Thornicroft

Consultant Psychiatrist South London & Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and Professor of Community Psychiatry, King’s College London

Graham Thornicroft is Professor of Community Psychiatry at the Centre for Global Mental Health and the Centre for Implementation Science, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London. He is also a Consultant Psychiatrist at South London & Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, working in a community mental health team in Lambeth. He is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences, is a National Institute of Health Research Senior Investigator Emeritus and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, Honorary Fellow of King’s College London and the Honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists.