Our board and governors

Our board:

  • Executive Directors


    Sheena Cumiskey, Chief Executive:
    01244 397371

    • Over 30 years’ experience in the NHS, 20 years at Chief Executive level
    • Former Chief Executive of both commissioning and provider organisations
    • Worked at strategic and operational levels within the NHS
    • Chair of North West Leadership Academy Board
    • Member of the NHS Employers Policy Board
    • Named as CEO of the Year at the 2015 Health Service Journal (HSJ) Awards

    Qualifications & Memberships

    • BA Hons
    • General Management Training Scheme graduate
    • Member of the Institute of Health Service Managers


    Avril Devaney, Director of Nursing, Therapies and Patient Partnership:
    01244 397374

    • Over 30 years’ experience working in Mental Health and Drug and Alcohol Services
    • 14 years’ experience at Board level
    • Initiated funding bids, secured income and established new and innovative interagency services
    • Received the Queen’s Nursing Institute Award for Innovation in 1999
    • Led the development of Patient and Public Involvement and CWP Challenging Stigma Campaign since 2004
    • Received MBE in January 2016 for services to nursing of people with mental health problems’

    Qualifications & Memberships

    • Member of Local Safeguarding Children Boards
    • Vice Chair of National Mental Health Nurse Directors Forum
    • Received Honorary MA from University of Chester in March 2014 for services to CWP and mental health care in Uganda
    • Registered Nurse (Mental Health)
    • Diploma in Counselling
    • MSc in Health and Social Care (research subject): Nursing Leadership and Organisational Change)
    • Trustee on The Jamie Devaney Memorial Fund – supporting mental health care in Uganda


    Dr Anushta Sivananthan, Medical Director, Compliance, Quality and Assurance:
    01244 397374

    • Over 15 years as Consultant Old Age Psychiatrist
    • Clinical Director for Older Peoples’ Services, West Cheshire
    • Trust-wide Clinical Director for Adult Services
    • College Tutor, West Cheshire 2002 – 2004
    • Deputy Convenor, Royal College of Psychiatrists 2004 – 2006
    • Programme Director, Old Age Psychiatrists at Mersey Deanery
    • Cochrane reviewer in collaboration with Evidence Based Practice Centre at CWP

    Qualifications & Memberships

    • MBChB
    • MRCPsych
    • Diploma in Geriatric Medicine
    • North West Leadership Award (2013) for Quality and Innovation


    Andy Styring, Director of Operations:
    01244 397267

    • Lifelong experience of living with and alongside people with learning disabilities
    • 35 years as a nurse, teacher and senior manager in services for children and adults with learning disabilities
    • Several senior clinical posts in children’s and adults learning disability services spanning career  
    • Board level posts at acting and substantive level in mental health and learning disability services
    • Former Healthcare Commission associate
    • Member of local Safeguarding Children’s Boards
    • Member of Learning Disability Partnership Boards
    • Member of Executive Commissioning Group for mental health and learning disability services across Cheshire and Wirral
    • Wide ranging expertise in strategic service development and change management
    • Former staff governor
    • Passionate about partnerships and team building

    Qualifications & Memberships

    • Registered nurse (learning disabilities)


    Tim Welch, Director of Finance:
    01244 397267

    • Over 20 years in the NHS with over 12 years experience as a Director
    • Previously Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Finance at Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
    • Director of Finance at City & Hackney Teaching Primary Care Trust
    • Started career as a graduate financial management trainee

    Qualifications & Memberships

    • Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy
    • BSc (Hons) Biochemistry​


    David Harris, Director of People & Organisational Development
    01244 393128

    • 22 years of working in a range of public sector organisations
    • Particular experience in the development, implementation and management of organisational change
    • Former member of the Civil Service Fast Stream Scheme

     Qualifications & Memberships

    • MA (Cantab)
    • Chartered Fellow of the Charted Institute of Personnel and Development
    • AQuA Fellow in Improvement Science
    • Advanced Diploma in Executive Coach Mentoring
    • Qualified Coach-Mentor Supervisor

    Dr Faouzi Alam, Medical Director, Effectiveness, Medical Education and Medical Workforce / Caldicott Guardian:
    01244 397374

    • 20 years’ experience as a Doctor

    Qualifications & Memberships

    • MD, specialist in renal medicine
    • MRC Psych
    • CCT in Adult and Liaison Psychiatry


  • Non-Executive Directors


    Mike Maier, Chair:

    Sarah McKenna, Non-Executive Director:

    Lucy Crumplin, Non-Executive Director:

    Dr James O'Connor, Non-Executive Director:

    Rebecca Burke-Sharples, Non-Executive Director:

     Andrea Campbell, Non-Executive Director:

    Edward Jenner, Non-Executive Director

Our Governors:

  • Service user and carer governors

    Anna Usherwood, Lead Governor

    Anna has been a governor of CWP since 2007. Her working life has been mainly spent with children and the elderly and she has a great deal of support and understanding for people with learning disabilities.  Anna currently works with people who have vision loss, and has been the Lead Governor of CWP for the last four years.

    Area: East Cheshire
    Ann McGrath

    Ann McGrath

    In 2005, Ann took early retirement, having spent 26 years working with the Cheshire Constabulary in a variety of roles. She has an interest in Older Person’s Dementia and is an active volunteer for the Alzheimer’s Society.  Ann, who is a Service User/Carer Governor, currently sits on the Scrutiny Committee and also supports unannounced Place and Compliance visits.

    Area: West Cheshire

    Brian Couch

    During a long career with BT, Brian has sat on the North West Business Leaders Board and the Manchester Inward investment Board. Brian decided to become a governor at CWP because of the excellent care his son received. He wanted to help other carers get the best help advice and care from CWP.

    Area: East Cheshire

    Charlotte Arrowsmith

    Charlotte worked in PR for 15 years and was a Board Director for one of London's top 10 PR agencies.  She finished work 8 years ago to care for her young sons.  Charlotte hopes that the experiences from her career alongside those gained from her current role as a parent carer will enable her to actively support positive new initiatives that address the needs and concerns of service users.


    Area: East Cheshire

    Chris Lynch

    In addition to being a service user governor, Chris is Chair of Chester PLUS a local service user run mental health charity, he has helped set up a number of Rethink Mental Illness support groups in Chester and has recently started volunteering with Cheshire Police. Chris is also a trustee of the British Psychological Society.

    Area: Wirral

    Ferguson McQuarrie

    Ferguson has lived in Wirral all his life and was elected to the Board of Governors in 2013 as a service user and carer governor. He currently works as an OT Assistant at CWP’s Springview site at Clatterbridge Hospital. He has been working in this role for the past seven years and feels it allows him to interact with patients, giving him a unique position as a former service user.

    Area: Wirral
    Gladys Archer

    Gladys Archer

    Gladys has always wanted to make a difference and has been fortunate to have the opportunity and time to try by becoming involved in both the voluntary sector and her local community.  For the past 10 years Gladys has been the carer for her husband who suffers from Alzheimer’s Disease. By becoming a governor for CWP Gladys believes that she will be in a position to make a difference, and she especially hopes to achieve appropriate care in hospitals for people with dementia.

    Area: West Cheshire

    Gordon (Gus) Cairns

    Gus has lots of experience working with the NHS on a national level including 3 years on a NHS England specialised commissioning Clinical Reference Group for Specialised Urology and assisting in interviewing for NHS England New Models of Care. Gus wanted to be a Governor to help boost the profile of Autism within the trust and his main interest is patient involvement in strategic planning.

     Area: West Cheshire

    Emma King

    Alongside being the current service user governor, Emma helps coordinate several peer led support groups in Chester with Rethink Mental Illness and is also a trustee for Chester Plus support group.  She is an involvement representative with CWP and attends various meetings to get service users views and concerns to help represent and develop CWP.

    Area: West Cheshire

    Michael Brassington

    Michael has a PHD in physics and over 35 years of research and development and executive business experience. Michael has lived and worked in San Francisco bay area since 1985 in the semiconductor industry. Since returning to the UK in 2014, Michael has continued to provide engineering consulting services to the high tech industry, and was also elected to the board of Governors for Dee Bank’s school in 2015. Michael has cared for his children who have accessed Mental Health services, and suffered from clinical depression for the past 25 years receiving treatment in the US and UK. He continues to be a user of CWP services, including in-patient, out-patient and community health services.


    David Bull

    David is a carer for his wife who lives with a long term condition, and over many years has worked with CWP Adult and Older People’s Community Mental Health Teams and Wellbeing Clinic. David is retired and has work experience in public sector law and governance and business risk management, is a volunteer youth worker and has been involved in the voluntary, community and faith sectors in Cheshire West and Chester and further afield. David holds professional qualifications with the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives, the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and the Institute of Risk Management.


    Keith Millar

    Keith has served time within the Maritime industry holding positions and qualifications in quality and management, and was foreman on the last submarine build for the Royal Navy at Cammell Laird. Keith has spent the last 20 years working in the Aerospace industry holding positions in health and safety management and quality control.

  • Public governors
    Mike Robinson

    Mike Robinson

    Mike’s entire working career has been spent in either the theatre or animation. He hopes to help the organisation promote and explain the work of governors at CWP so that parents and carers have a greater understanding of those affected by eating disorders. Mike is very keen to encourage young people's involvement at the Council of Governors with the aim of encouraging them to become governors.

    Area: West Cheshire

    Peter Wilkinson

    Peter worked for the NHS for over 27 years, 24 of which he was as a Registered Mental Health Nurse. He has chaired a group of Governors that reviewed the Governors Code of Conduct Policy and the Term of Reference of the Governor Scrutiny and Membership Sub Committees. Peter has special interests in the Scrutiny Sub Committee, Challenging Stigma and the Recovery Model.

    Area: East Cheshire

    Richard Agar

    Richard worked for Merseyside Police 33 years, retiring at the rank of inspector. He was an elected public governor at Wirral University Teaching Hospital between 2007 and 2013, where he served on a number of committees.  Richard also volunteers in community mediation and restorative justice in Wirral. Quality of care and patient experience are his main interests within CWP.

    Area: Wirral

    Rob Robertson, Deputy Lead Governor

    Rob, a public governor for four years, wants to make it easier for members to seek help from their governors.  As a supporter of Cheshire West and Chester Stakeholder Network, Rob believes that peer support and joined up community health and social services lead to much better outcomes for patients and service users.

    Area: West Cheshire
    Rob Walker

    Rob Walker, Deputy Lead Governor

    As well NHS experience collaborating at operational levels Rob has gained valuable knowledge sitting on a local Commissioning Board where he represents the interests of service users. Rob helped develop CWP's Challenging Stigma Project and in the same year gained a qualification in Leadership and Empowerment in Mental Health. As a result of his achievements he was made a member of the Institute of Mental Health and gained the status of Associate Fellow of The Higher Education Academy. In 2013 he was appointed to the Royal College of Psychiatrists Parliamentary Liaison Committee and their Leadership and Management Committee.

    Area: East Cheshire
     Stanley Mayne  

    Stanley Mayne

    For the past 30 years Stanley has undertaken voluntary work with various charitable organisations within Wirral and Liverpool. He is currently a member of Healthwatch Wirral, Healthwatch Liverpool and Wirral Link, and chairs HMP Liverpool’s Independent Monitoring Board, reporting to the Home Office on all prison matters.


     Area: Wirral
  • Staff governors


    Jill Doble

    Since qualifying as an Occupational Therapist in 1984, Jill has worked predominantly within the clinical field of older people's mental health for CWP. Jill really enjoys working as an OT within a multi-disciplinary team and is very proud to represent Therapists on the Council of Governors.

    Area: Therapies
    Kathy Bullen

    Kathy Bullen

    Kathy is a qualified mental health nurse, cognitive-behavioural therapist and psychosexual therapist. She has focused on the latter since 2008 working part-time. She has a particular interest in the prevention of staff burnout and the promotion of self-compassion. She aims to represent all grades and types of psychological therapists.

    Area: Clinical Psychology
    Philip Mook

    Philip Mook

    Philip previously worked in the commercial sector as a Shipbroker and has great experience of management within large organisations.  Since working within CWP he has found the work extremely rewarding and wishes to contribute further beyond his day to day working.  Philip has recently joined the Membership and Development sub-committee.

    Area: Non-Clinical
     Janie Shaw

    Janie Shaw

    Janie has been a Registered Mental Health Nurse since 1985 and has always immensely enjoyed every aspect of her work. She currently works for East Cheshire's Single Point of Access Team. As a governor she hopes to  represent the voice of our Nursing staff constituency so together we can all contribute toward change for the better, to be the best we can be.

     Area: Nursing

    Deepak Agnihotri

    Deepak is a specialist physiotherapist in multi-disciplinary learning disabilities team. He is keen to listen to the concerns of the staff and be the voice of allied health professionals to influence decisions for the betterment of the workforce in this rapidly changing NHS environment. He is determined to work with the services to help them provide patient centered care and incorporate 6 Cs in the practice.

     Area: Therapies

    Ken Edwards

    Ken has been a mental health nurse for 30 years, in that time working across many inpatient services. Since 1998 he has been responsible for delivering CWP staff clinical education programme and is currently Clinical Education Lead. This education role is also shared with his role as CWP Security and Safety Lead which Ken has held since 2005. His passion has always been to promoting staff values and ensuring equality across all levels within the organisation. This is Ken's second term as a Governor and he looks forward to working with all colleagues which address the common challenges ahead.

     Area: Nursing
  • Appointed governors
    Phil Gilchrist

    Cllr Phil Gilchrist

    Phil’s interest in mental health flows from direct experiences in his family. He believes that it is only by talking to each other and tackling misconceptions that we can help others to understand more about poor mental health. Phil currently serves Eastham on Wirral Council, where he was first elected in 1977.

    Area: Wirral
    Maurice Lea O'Mahoney

    Maurice Lea O'Mahoney

    Maurice currently works as an alcohol treatment practitioner for CWP and was nominated as a staff governor by his staff-side colleagues. He has been Vice Chair of CWP staff side since 2009 and has worked in partnership with management to continually improve services for users and staff through the established forums.

    Area: Staff Side
    Pam Smith

    Pam Smith

    Pam is a qualified Occupational Therapist and has spent most of her working life in local government.  She now has her own Management Consultancy Company which advises local authorities, housing associations and charities. Pam is particularly interested in the care of people with Dementia and those with a physical disability.

    Area: West Cheshire CCG

    Carol Gahan

    Carol Gahan

    Carol became a local Councillor in May 2015 and has a keen interest in supporting the work of the trust. She has a background in accountancy and hopes to bring useful skills to the role of Governor. Carol believes that we need to make mental health service provision as positive and effective as possible.

    Area: Cheshire West and Chester Council

    Graham Pollard

    In 2015 Graham was appointed Director of Operations for the Faculty of Health and Life Sciences at the University of Liverpool. Since joining the University in 2007, he has been fortunate to enjoy several roles that have enabled him to broaden his knowledge and experience of health education and research, and support the University’s contribution to the local, national, and global community.

    Area: University of Liverpool


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