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Willen Hospice appoints its new chief executive

THE FORMER head of branch at retailer John Lewis in Milton Keynes is to be the new chief executive of Willen Hospice.

Kate Broadhurst pictured takes up her post in January and succeeds Peta Wilkinson, who is due to step down this month after six years at the helm.

Ms Broadhurst leaves John Lewis after a 23-year career in which she  led three multi-million pound department store businesses and held several strategic leadership roles at John Lewis head office.

Most recently, she was head of branch at the centre:mk store and latterly worked as head of democratic vitality, proposition and insight.

Willen Hospice

Ms Broadhurst lives in Milton Keynes and has also held various voluntary roles locally. She spent five years as a non-executive director with early years care and education provider Childbase Partnership, based in Newport Pagnell, and has been a non-executive board trustee with Camphill Communities, a local charity supporting adults with learning disabilities.

She is a former chair and director of Milton Keynes Shopping Centre Association and sat on the board of the MyMiltonKeynes Business Improvement District.

“As a member of the Milton Keynes community, I have always been inspired by the passion, dedication and commitment that everyone shows in providing this vital service and care to our local community,” Ms Broadhurst said.

“On meeting members of the team I felt the real pride and restlessness to continue to provide for patients and families at their time of greatest need, which is both humbling and inspiring. Peta has left a lasting legacy and it is a real honour to be taking on this role at this time in the hospice’s journey.”

Paul Davis pictured left, chairman of the hospice’s board of trustees, said: “Following a rigorous selection process, my fellow trustees and the senior leadership team were impressed by Kate’s tremendous passion, energy and commitment to our purpose. She is an exceptional strategic thinker and visionary leader, who shares in our values of compassion, ambition, respect and excellence and has a passion for the hospice and clear vision of our strategic plan.

He paid tribute to Ms Wilkinson pictured right, who had overseen a 40% growth in the hospice’s income and a significant expansion of its care provision.

“We continue to operate in challenging financial circumstances, with increasing financial pressures and a changing healthcare landscape,” Mr Davis said.

“Under Kate’s leadership, we are clear that we will continue to deliver the outstanding care that Willen Hospice has become synonymous with while ensuring that we grow and develop somore individuals and families are supported during one of life’s most challenging times and that we continue to be the leading palliative care centre in the region.”

The Board of Trustees has appointed healthcare sector specialist Richard Alsop as interim chief executive. He is working alongside Ms Wilkinson and Ms Broadhurst to ensure a smooth transition.

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