Deborah Lee steps down on 10 January 2024 after 7 years in post

9 Jan 2024, 3:06 p.m.

Deborah Lee steps down on 10 January after over 7 years in post as Chief Executive Officer (CEO), handing over the reins to new CEO Kevin McNamara.

As Chief Executive, Deborah has ultimately been responsible for the day-to-day leadership of the organisation through her executive team and ensured the implementation of the Board’s strategic objectives.

Deborah joined the Trust as CEO in June 2016 from the University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust where she was the Chief Operating Officer and Deputy CEO. She took over our organisation at a difficult time when a huge financial deficit was uncovered, improving this position rapidly over the following two years.

Deborah has been instrumental in driving through the Fit for the Future programme characterised by two thriving hospitals with separate Centres of Excellence, supporting colleagues in their aim to deliver these programmes and securing almost £100m+ of investment to provide new facilities across both main hospital sites. Deb described this and other significant development programmes as important steps on our journey to deliver better care for the Gloucestershire community in the years to come, often navigating a highly challenging external environment.

She also led the organisation through the pandemic, taking the unusual step of maintaining urgent cancer surgery even in the early days of the pandemic to ensure that patients’ continuing needs were being met and taking maximum advantage of the separate Centres of Excellence model.

As a working mother with a full life outside work, Deb has been an inspiring figure for many colleagues and aspiring leaders alike. Always approachable and visible, she has championed a healthy work-life balance, supporting flexible and part-time working for all and spearheading an open approach to mental health and the challenges this can present within the pressured healthcare environment.

Deborah will remain working part-time at the Trust until the end of March, supporting Kevin McNamara and the Board on a small number of specific projects.

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Chief Executive Deborah Lee