Our Executive Leadership Team is responsible for the day to day operational management of the Trust.

Meet our team below, or view our leadership structure here: Executive Leadership Team.

Ken Bremner, MBE - Chief Executive

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Ken has worked in the NHS since 1982, having joined as graduate NHS finance trainee.  He began working in Sunderland in 1988, initially working with Sunderland Health Authority and then at City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust where his previously roles include Director of Finance and Deputy Chief Executive before being appointed Chief Executive in February 2004.

In September 2016, Ken was also appointed as Chief Executive of South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust.  Since then, he has led a single executive management team covering both NHS Foundations Trusts prior to the formal merger to create South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust in April 2019. 

In 2018 Ken was awarded an MBE for his services to NHS leadership.  He is a passionate advocate for supporting the armed forces community and developing research, innovation and education in the NHS.  He played an instrumental role in the founding of a School of Nursing at the University of Sunderland in 2016 and helped secure a successful bid for the University of Sunderland to become one of five new medical schools across England in 2018. Ken is Chair of the Sunderland Partnership Board, a member of the Foundation of Light Development Board and member of the North East and North Cumbria Academic Health Science Network.

Dr Shaz Wahid - Medical Director

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Shaz completed his medical education and training in the North East and began his consultant career at South Tyneside District Hospital in October 2003. 

He is a Consultant Physician with a specialist interest in Diabetes and Endocrinology as well as Acute and General Medicine.  Widely respected as a doctor, manager and an educator, in 2006 he became the clinical lead for emergency care at South Tyneside District Hospital where he led the development of the hospital’s integrated Emergency Care Centre which opened in November 2012.

Dr Wahid became Medical Director at South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust in December 2015 and was appointed as the Medical Director of South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust in December 2018. 

Melanie Johnson - Director of Nursing, Midwifery and Allied Health Professionals

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Melanie is a registered nurse who has worked in the NHS since 1985.  She qualified at St Thomas’ Hospital in London and held a variety of clinical and management posts in London and Leeds during the early part of her career.

Prior to joining City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust in January 2016, she was Director of Nursing at Newcastle Hospitals and at NHS Lothian Health Board in Edinburgh.  In November 2016, Melanie was appointed as Director of Nursing, Midwifery and Allied Health Professionals as part of the single executive management team for South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust and City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust.

She is the professional lead for nursing and allied health professionals and executive lead for patient experience, research and innovation and safeguarding.  Her key professional interests are the unique contribution of the registered nurse, safe staffing levels, and leadership.  She is Chair of the Royal College of Nursing’s Professional Nursing Committee.

Julia Pattison - Director of Finance

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Julia is a Qualified Accountant and has worked in the NHS since 1989.  She joined City Hospital Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust in May 2006 as Head of Finance and Contracting and became Director of Finance in July 2008.  She previously worked as Head of Finance and Service Level Agreements at North of Tyne Commissioning Consortium.  In November 2016, Julia was appointed as Director of Finance as part of the single executive management team for South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust and City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust.

Kath Griffin - Director of Human Resources and Organisational Development

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Kath is a qualified HR professional who joined the NHS in Sunderland in 2003.   She became Director of Human Resources and Organisational Development for South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust in May 2016 and was appointed as part of the single executive management team across South Tyneside and Sunderland  in November 2016.

Peter Sutton - Director of Planning and Business Development

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Peter has worked in the NHS since 1995 and joined City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust in 1999.  He previously held the post of Director of Service Transformation working on behalf of NHS South of Tyne and Wear, South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust, Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust and City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust.  He became Director of Strategy and Business Development in September 2013 and was appointed as part of the single executive management team for South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust in November 2016.

Sean Fenwick - Director of Operations

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Sean was appointed as a Consultant Nephrologist in Sunderland in 2003 having completed his specialist training in Sunderland, London and Liverpool. Alongside his clinical work he has held a number of additional roles such as Clinical Director and deputy Medical Director. His primary role became the Director of Operations in 2015, initially in Sunderland and subsequently as the part of the single executive management team in South Tyneside and Sunderland.

Alison King - Director of Performance

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Alison has worked in the NHS since 2001, working in Durham and Chester-le-Street Primary Care Group and then County Durham Primary Care Trust around the development and then commissioning of primary care services.  She joined the North East Strategic Health Authority in 2008 and was involved in the development of the regional primary care strategy and development of national policy around primary care.  She began working in City Hospital Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust in 2010 and was appointed as Director of Performance as part of the single executive management team for South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust and City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust.    

Liz Davies - Head of Communications

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Liz is professionally qualified in Public Relations and is an Accredited Practitioner with the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR).  She began her career working in the private sector with agencies in Leeds and Newcastle before joining the NHS in 2009 where she initially worked at the North East Strategic Health Authority prior to joining Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust in 2012.  Liz was appointed as Head of Communications in South Tyneside and Sunderland in 2017 and is part of the single executive management team.  She is a multi-award winning professional and was recognised as the CIPR’s Outstanding Young Communicator in 2012.  Liz is the Lead Governor at Diamond Hall Junior Academy school in Sunderland.

Steve Jamieson - Director of Estates, Facilities and Biomedical Engineering

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Steve has worked in the NHS since 1980.  He commenced work in Pathology in Glasgow, progressing his career in Pathology through the borders of Scotland before moving south to Northallerton and then to Harrogate where he achieved the position of Director of Pathology. Steve moved into general management in 2000, becoming Divisional General Manager at the Friarage Hospital, Northallerton, before moving to the James Cook University Hospital, Middlesbrough where he fulfilled a Divisional Manager role for six years.  Steve has worked in South Tyneside for nine and a half years in a number of roles before becoming Director of Estates and Facilities.  In December 2018 he extended his portfolio to include Biomechanical Engineering.

Andy Hart - Director of Information Management and Technology

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After working for Procter and Gamble, Andy joined the NHS in 1993 as a member of City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust’s new IT team which had been created to implement and support the MEDITECH fully integrated Hospital Information Support System.  Since then, Andy has assumed a number of IT and Information Governance roles within the Trust, most recently being appointed as the Director of Information Management and Technology of the single executive management team for South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust and City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust.  Andy has also held a number of executive roles within the MEDITECH EU User Network, previously being the chair, and currently being the finance lead.

Andrea Hetherington - Acting Director of Corporate Affairs & Legal / Trust Secretary

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Andrea started working in the NHS (and Sunderland) in 1986 as a trainee medical secretary.  She has a Business Studies degree having studied whilst working full-time and was appointed to the role of Deputy Head of Corporate Affairs in 2011.  Since August 2018 she has been the Acting Director of Corporate Affairs and Legal.   She is also the organisation’s Trust Secretary and the lead for Emergency Planning.