Our Board


Dorset HealthCare’s activities are overseen by the Trust Board. The Trust Board works with the Council of Governors to agree the future plans of the organisation.

The Trust Board’s key responsibilities are to:

  • Set the strategic direction for the Trust
  • Agree the organisation’s annual objectives and ensure they are achieved
  • Ensure effective financial control is in place
  • Ensure high standards of corporate governance are maintained.

The Trust Board comprises a Non-Executive Chair, seven Non-Executive Directors who are not employees of the Trust, and seven Executive Directors including the Chief Executive. The members of the Board share a corporate responsibility for all decisions made by the Board.

The Trust Board approves a schedule of matters which include the power to set the vision, strategic aims, objectives and budget for the Trust. Other matters are delegated to Board Committees, which operate within defined terms of reference.

Executive Directors

Many of our executive directors are in joint posts with Dorset County Hospital.

Matthew Bryant

Joint Chief Executive Officer

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Matthew joined the trusts in March 2023 and took up the substantive role in April 2023.

Matthew previously worked for Somerset NHS Foundation Trust and Yeovil District Hospital NHS Foundation Trust where he was Chief Operating Officer for hospital services.

He led the Somerset health and care system boards for planned and unplanned care, and previously led surgical and medical services at the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS FT, as well as redesigning care for frail older people. Over a 25-year career in the NHS he has worked with hospital, community and mental health services, and helped to establish the Peninsula Medical School in the south west.

He is passionate about empowering NHS staff and working in partnership across organisations to improve health outcomes for local people.  Matthew is also Senior Independent Trustee at Hospiscare, the palliative care provider based in Exeter.

Shared leadership arrangements

The Boards of Dorset HealthCare and Dorset County Hospital agreed in September 2022 to appoint a joint chief executive and joint chair to help improve the delivery of care to local communities by simplifying decision-making, increasing integration and improving quality.

The shared leadership approach will focus on:

  • prevention of ill health
  • tackling health inequalities
  • better integration between physical and mental health
  • joined-up workforce planning and development.

Dawn Dawson

Joint Chief Nursing Officer

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Dawn is a nurse with an extensive clinical background having worked in acute, community and the mental health sector; most recently she has held a number of senior positions in an integrated mental health and community trust.

Dawn has a broad academic background, which includes psychology, law, and post-compulsory education. Her focus on high quality patient care combined with workforce development led to Dawn working strategically across an STP footprint successfully heading up a national test site for the Nurse Associate Programme.

Nicola Plumb

Joint Chief People Officer

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Nicola was appointed Joint Chief People Officer of Dorset Healthcare and Dorset County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (DCH) on 1 February 2024.  She first joined the DHC’s board of directors in  2014 and has been Interim Chief People Officer at DCH since May 2023.

Nicola is passionate about the NHS and has spent her career in the public sector since graduating from Durham University with a Politics degree in 2000.

Nicola has held a variety of communications and development roles in the NHS and Department of Health including working at NHS Bournemouth and Poole, Communications Advisor to the NHS Chief Executive and working as Head of Brand for NHS England.

Kristin Dominy

Chief Operating Officer/Deputy Chief Executive Officer

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Appointed April 2020

Kristin is a nurse by background and has held a number of senior roles across the NHS.

As an Executive Director, Kristin was Chief Operating Officer at Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Trust and South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust prior to joining Dorset HealthCare.

Kristin is passionate about delivering high quality healthcare and has worked in the NHS since she was 18.

Professor Faisil Sethi

Chief Medical Officer

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Faisil joined Dorset HealthCare as Executive Medical Director in October 2020.

Faisil is a multiprofessional clinical leader, with a wide portfolio of experience in leadership roles in recent years.

Faisil has a broad academic profile, and over the past decade, alongside his role as a Consultant Psychiatrist, he has developed experience in a diverse portfolio of management, leadership, quality improvement, innovation, and research activities.

Faisil is also a Visiting Professor at the Faculty of Health and Social Sciences, Bournemouth University.

Chris Hearn

Joint Chief Financial Officer

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Chris was appointed Joint Chief Financial Officer of Dorset Healthcare  and Dorset County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (DCH) on 1 February 2024.

Chris joined DCH in October 2022 from DHC, where he was Director of Operational Finance. During his time in the NHS, Chris has worked in a number of senior finance roles within acute, mental health and community Trusts, and prior to this has experience across a variety of technical and commercial finance roles within a large FMCG organisation.

Chris is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW), having qualified with PwC London where he was involved in the audit of a number of FTSE 100 companies.

Nick Johnson

Joint Chief Strategy, Transformation and Partnership Officer

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Nick was appointed Joint Chief Strategy, Transformation and Partnership Officer of Dorset Healthcare and Dorset County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (DCH) on 1 February 2024.

He joined DCH in 2016 from University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust where he was responsible for strategy and commercial development projects, including establishing an innovative commercial development joint venture, for which he was a board member.

Nick became DCH’s Deputy Chief Executive in 2020 and since joining the Trust Nick’s portfolio has expanded to include strategy and corporate planning, corporate governance, transformation, communications, commercial, the DCH Charity and strategic estates developments, including the New Hospital Programme. Nick is also the executive lead for health inequalities and one of the Dorset Integrated Care System board member representatives for the Wessex Academic Health Science Network, as well as exec lead for the Trust’s Subsidiary Company and Dorset Estates Partnership.

Prior to that he was responsible for business development and bid management at a large, multi-national infrastructure and support services provider focussing on strategic public private partnerships. Nick has also worked in a number of local authorities delivering innovative strategic partnerships, contract management and service transformation. Nick has a MSc from Warwick Business School and started his career on the National Graduate Management Scheme for Local Government.


Jenny Horrabin

Joint Executive Director of Corporate Affairs

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Jenny was appointed Joint Executive Director of Corporate Affairs for Dorset HealthCare and Dorset County Hospital on 11 March 2024.

She is a qualified accountant and chartered company secretary. She worked in audit and assurance for over 20 years in the public and private sector, before moving into a Company Secretary role in the NHS in 2012.

She joined the trusts from Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership Trust, having previously worked in senior governance and corporate affairs in two Clinical Commissioning Groups.

Jenny has a passion for continuous improvement and excellence in practice and is an active member of the NHS Company Secretaries Network and a member of the HFMA Audit and Governance Committee. She is also a trustee of a charity.

Non-Executive Directors

David Clayton-Smith

Joint Chair

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David is the Joint-Chair of Dorset HealthCare and Dorset County Hospital.

He is a vastly experienced chair and non-executive director, working in a broad range of non-executive roles in both the public and private sectors, most recently focusing heavily on health.

David has held non-executive director roles at Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust and has been Chair at East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust, as well as the NHS Sussex and NHS Surrey Primary Care Trusts.

From 2019-22, David was Independent Chair at the Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Berkshire West Integrated Care System. He was also an Independent Chair of the Programme Board for the new hospital development at Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust. David’s executive career was spent in marketing roles across the retail and hospitality sector.

Tristan Phillips

Non-Executive Director

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Tristan has been working in a variety of finance and transformation roles for the past 15 years where he has worked in Russia, Switzerland and Australia before returning to the UK in October 2016. In August 2015 Tristan completed his Executive MBA where he was involved with his cohort in setting up a charitable foundation to leverage the skills and experience of the group to support charities across Australia.

Prior to leaving Australia, Tristan lead an organisation transformation programme across the Commercial organisation of Carlton United Breweries looking at the structure, processes and culture of over 900 people. Since returning to the UK, Tristan has worked as the EMEA Finance Director at Groupon, at O2 as Head of Commercial Finance for Digital and Innovation and as Head of Finance at Marks and Spencer plc. Tristan is currently employed by Poundstretcher Limited.


Steven Peacock

Non-Executive Director

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Steven is Chief Finance Officer for RNLI based in Poole where his responsibilities beyond finance include Business Planning, Programme Management Office, Legal Affairs and LEAN Continuous Improvement.

Steven is a Graduate in Economics and a Chartered Accountant with over 30 years of experience working in both Finance and Commercial roles for many household brand names such as Fosters Brewing Group, United Biscuits, Superdrug, Homebase, WH Smith and Estée Lauder.

Steven also served for 8 years as a Non Executive Director of The Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals Foundation Trust, retiring as Vice Chair in September 2017.

Suresh Ariaratnam

Non-Executive Director

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Suresh Ariaratnam has worked in the book industry for over twenty-three years, primarily as a literary agent, focussing on representing authors from Black and Asian communities. He remains involved in helping to ensure the equitable treatment of marginalised people, in the creative economy and more generally, through advocacy and activism.

As a non-executive director for NHS Dorset HealthCare and NHS Somerset, he is especially interested in the broader socio-economic determinants of health and their relationship to inequalities, and in a holistic understanding of wellbeing which champions the interdependency between personal, societal, and planetary health.

Suresh also serves as co-chair of Literature Works, and as a trustee of the Theatre Royal Bath, and the Trussell Trust, as a well as a member of the British Library Advisory Council. In 2022, he was made an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and appointed as a Deputy Lieutenant of Somerset in 2024.

Image credit: Joe Short

Andreas Haimboeck-Tichy

Non-Executive Director

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Appointed October 2020.

Andreas has over 25 years of experience in the IT/digital industry and is currently Managing Director at Healthcare at Accenture UK with a mission to help the NHS transform through the use of data, AI and other digital technologies. Prior to that he was a Director at Healthcare and Life Sciences at IBM UK

He has worked to improve children’s experience of hospital stays and visits with Alder Hey Hospital, with Versus Arthritis UK to improve patient pain management and with Velindre NHS Trust to improve patient experience during cancer treatment using Artificial Intelligence (AI). Following Wannacry, Andreas led the work with NHS Digital for Cyber Security supporting the NHS system to become more resilient and better prepared for future cyber attacks.

He previously also worked with a charity for the disabled as a member of the Board of Trustees overseeing the development of strategy and approving the strategic direction and policies for the charity.

Andreas is currently the Chair of the Health and Social Care (HSC) Council, techUK and leads regular Council meetings. This has included the co-ordination of techUK HSC Industry response to Covid19, current work on Frontline Digitisation and initiatives focusing on diversity and inclusion and the development of skills and tech talent in the health tech sector.

Frances West

Non-Executive Director

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Frances brings a varied career experience to her non-executive role. She started her civilian working life in 2008 after more than 20 years in the army where she was a lieutenant colonel in the Royal Military Police.

She moved into local government with Purbeck District Council initially, as the Head of Legal and Democratic services and then went on to run their public health and housing services.

More recently, Frances has worked in the charity sector with senior roles with Help for Heroes, Age UK and EDP Drug and Alcohol Services. She is also the Senior Independent Director on the Board of Westward Housing Group and was a Non-Executive Director for Tricuro Ltd until May 2023.

Sir David Haslam CBE

Non-Executive Director

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Appointed October 2020.

Sir David was a General Practitioner for 36 years, with additional experience and expertise in training, assessment and quality improvement.  He has been both Chairman and

President of the Royal College of General Practitioners and was an expert member of the National Quality Board.

He was also co-chair of the NHS Future Forum report to the Government on the use of information, which focused on the benefits to the NHS of maximising the information revolution.

For six years Sir David was the non-executive Chair of NICE (The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) and was responsible for the recruitment and maintenance of the Board’s NED team.   He also spent several years as National Clinical Adviser to the Care Quality Commission, having previously held the same role with the Healthcare Commission.  He has worked for the Disability Rights Commission.

Sir David is currently Chair of the Trustee Board of the cancer charity, Young Lives vs Cancer (formerly CLIC Sargent) and has authored numerous articles and publications for both the general public and professional journals. He has been listed for the last ten years as one of the most influential people in the NHS by the Health Service Journal.