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Our highly qualified board are responsible for developing strategic directions and plans for Age UK Hertfordshire, and overseeing implementation


Penny Butler, Chair

Penny was appointed as a Trustee in 2013. Penny has an MPhil in Medicine and worked for more than 20 years in St Bartholomew’s Hospital and medical school carrying out research and development within the pathology department. She moved into NHS corporate management, becoming Assistant Director of Planning (Community Services). 

Penny took up the role of Assistant Director of Adult Social Care in a London borough then moved into management consultancy. She has held a number of voluntary sector roles including as trustee of a local hospice and an area forum representative for Alzheimer’s Society and provides management support to a local adult disability charity. 

Penny is currently also a trustee of a Hertfordshire sexual health charity and Charter Member of Independent Age – a national older people’s charity.

Penny sits on the Quality and Performance and Finance, Remuneration and Audit Committees.


John Ellis, Vice Chair

John joined as a trustee early in 2017 and brings with him a wide range of experience from the charity sector, including fundraising, volunteering and retail. He worked for Barnardo's for approaching 30 years in a variety of roles including Deputy Director for Volunteering. John has been involved in a number of charity organisations; he was Vice Chair of the National Network of Volunteer Involving Agencies, Chair of The Stock & Recycling Group of The Charity Retail Association, and he also chaired the Advisory Group for Modernising Volunteering.

He is currently Lay Pastor and Senior Steward of Watton at the Stone Methodist Church with pastoral and organisational responsibilities.

A family man with two married daughters and three grandaughters, John is keen to use his past charity experience to support and help to develop the work of Age UK Hertfordshire.  


Karen Whitaker

Karen has rejoined the Board having previously been a trustee between 2007 and 2016.

She has a lifetime’s experience of social care having started her working life as a Social Worker in Hertfordshire before moving into the voluntary sector where she became a Senior Manager with Age Concern South Staffs and subsequently the CEO of Barnet Care and Support Services.

In addition to her practical experience of managing within the Charity Sector Karen has extensive experience as a trustee having been Chair of South Staffs CVS, having set up and registered Shropshire Geological Society, and been a trustee of Essex Dementia Care.  Most recently Karen has been focussed on registering a new charity supporting work in Eastern Uganda.

Karen is an active volunteer with three national charities, deafblinduk, Epilepsy Action and Victim Support.


Vicky Tassell

Vicky is a Solicitor and joined the board in 2018.

Vicky works as a Private Client Solicitor in Bishop’s Stortford. A large part of her work includes planning for and supporting older clients, enabling her to assist the Board with both her legal expertise and a unique perspective of the requirements and difficulties of older people in Hertfordshire.

Vicky also has fundraising experience as a member of the Charity Committee at her workplace.


Esther Botha

Esther joined the Board as a co-opted Trustee in January 2019.

She is a qualified solicitor and only recently moved into the voluntary sector. Her most recent experience includes Family Office management, personal & corporate financial oversight, private tax planning and estate restructuring, as well as overseeing a private charitable budget. She also practiced as intellectual property lawyer in the UK and South Africa.

Esther is keen to support Age UK Hertfordshire, and its Board, and to advocate awareness of the charity’s work.


Mousumi Basu

Mousumi Basu began her 20 year career as a Strategic Commissioner of NHS and social care services in North London. She has worked in commissioning and operational management, most recently as Head of Commissioning at Essex County Council.

She has a passion for service transformation, and in 2001 she led the strategic planning and implementation of the National Service Framework for Older People in Camden and Islington. This led to wide and far reaching improvements to the lives of older people. Including the introduction of single sex wards at UCLH and Royal Free Hospital, redesigning care to be closer to home for the elderly, investment into intermediate care models and falls prevention, reducing long term illness by commissioning specialist care. A large focus of this work was promoting the life assets of older people, their important role in family networks and within communities.

She has a particular interest in the care of older people and stroke survivors. In 2011 she led on the strategic development of integrated community stroke care in Camden rated by CQC as one of the best performing services nationally. Improvements included provision of specialist high quality rehabilitation, designing a Stroke Early Supported Discharge Service (cited as best practice by Healthcare for London), commissioning Stroke Psychology for family carers, production of Stroke Patient Handbooks and the expansion of community Stroke Clubs.

Mousumi has been an advisor on a national level. She sat on Department of Health reference panels and was a key contributor on NHS national guidance. Her work on best practice commissioning was published in the Health Services Journal (2012 and 2013) and is a graduate of national senior management and leadership programmes. She is a Mentor, supporting staff to meet their professional ambitions and member of her NHS Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) Network.

Mousumi is currently Associate Director at Essex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, responsible for Community NHS Integrated Care Services for over 600k residents across South East Essex.

 


Chris Bird

Chris is a Chartered Management Accountant, with the experience of being CFO of a multi-national company and joined the board of trustees in 2018.

When working he was IT Director for Psion PLC., London, and the Director/ Owner – Wealden Computing Services Ltd, Enfield, before selling the company to retire in 2007 . Since then he has worked as a NED for Shropshire Community NHS Trust and the West Midlands Strategic Health authority 

His Charitable Work includes being Hon. Treasurer Isabel Hospice for 5 years (Chair of Finance committee and Chair of trading company (16 shops). More recently Chris was Chair of Governors – Frobisher primary school Jaywick (The school working in the most deprived community in the UK), Secretary and Trustee – CAB Clacton and Chair and Treasurer of Tendring specialist stroke services. Now Chris works as a founder trustee 3H a charity helping people in Eastern Uganda 

Outside of his charity work, Chris watches a lot of football and cricket along with the occasional theatre trip.  

Join the Board

Do you have the expertise and dedication to become an Age UK Hertfordshire trustee?