Executive recruitment

Our Board

Sue Page

Chief executive officer

Sue has worked in the NHS for more than 30 years as Chief Executive in London, Cumbria, the North East and Liverpool. She has led hospital and community trusts, with a particular focus on improving organisations and leading them through significant change. Sue has previously worked in the northern region, leading hospital and community services in Northumberland and North Tyneside from 1990 to 2005, resulting in the creation of Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust in 1998. She also ran NHS Cumbria for seven years from 2006 to 2013 and received a CBE for services to the NHS in 2000.

Appointed Interim Chief Executive Officer on 1 October 2019

Steven Mason

Director of finance

Steven is a qualified accountant and has 35 years experience within the public sector mainly within health and local government. His previous role was Chief Executive and Director of Finance with Northumberland County Council, leaving following the County Council elections in May 2017. He was formerly Chief Executive and Director of Finance with North Durham University Hospital and Deputy Finance Director at the Royal Victoria Infirmary.

Deirdre Fowler

Interim Director of nursing

Deirdre has been working in the NHS for over 30 years, most recently as the director of nursing at Bedford Hospital NHS Trust. She began her career qualifying as a registered general nurse in 1989 and then a midwife in 1994

Sath Nag

Medical director 

Sath Nag is a consultant in acute medicine, diabetes and endocrinology and was appointed medical director for community care following the trust’s organisation restructure in 2016. Prior to this Sath held the  posts of deputy medical director and clinical director for the diabetes and endocrine directorate.

Non-Executive Directors

Alan Downey


Alan began his career as a Civil Servant in 1981, gaining experience in a wide range of policy areas and working closely with Ministers. He left the Civil Service in 1989 to join KPMG as a management consultant and was promoted to partner in 1997. Over his 25 year career with KPMG he held various Board level positions including Chief Operating Officer of the company’s UK consulting business and Chair of KPMG’s public sector practices across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Following his retirement from KPMG in June 2014 he was for four years a Non-executive Director at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and for three years a member of the Charity Commission’s Audit and Risk Committee.

Appointed as Chair Designate from 1 January 2018 and
Chairman from 1 April 2018 for a three year term

Ada Burns

Deputy chair

Ada has had a lengthy career in local government and public policy. She worked for 25 years in London in roles focussed on housing and regeneration. In 2005 Ada was appointed Chief Executive of Darlington Borough Council, a position she held until 2018. During her time in Darlington Ada was instrumental in the development of the Tees Valley Mayoral Combined Authority, and had a particular interest in programmes to address health inequalities. Ada is a Governor and Resources Committee Chair for Teesside University, Vice Chair of the New Local Government Network (NLGN), and a Director of a Community Arts Centre.

Richard Carter-Ferris

Richard Carter-Ferris

Non-executive member

Richard joined the board in September 2015.  He is an experienced finance professional who has worked at senior level in a number of very large complex businesses.  Previous roles include  director of internal audit at Asda Wal*Mart, global financial controller for GE Plastics,  finance director of National Express, East Coast and finance director of Vantage Airport Group.  He is currently a self-employed consultant providing financial and non-executive support to a range of clients. 

David Heslop

David Heslop

Non-executive member

David joined the board in September 2015 bringing with him decades of expertise developed in the finance and insurance industry. David became director for the teachers’ pension scheme at Capita in 2015. Prior to joining Capita, David was COO for the Pension Protection Fund and had a 20 year career at Aviva, one of the UK’s largest insurance and savings groups. David read statistics at City University and is a Fellow of the Royal Statistical Society and the Institute of Actuaries.

Mike Ducker

Mike Ducker

Non-executive member

Mike Ducker has over 30 years experience in the petrochemicals manufacturing industry on Teesside, with ICI, Huntsman and SABIC. Mike has worked across a broad range of functions from Operations to HR within the Tees Valley, and spent 10 years as the Chairman of the SABIC UK Pension Fund. He is a Trustee for two UK charities, and an advisor to the UK Government on Chemicals Sector Resilience. Mike is married with four sons and two grandchildren, and lives near Thirsk, North Yorkshire. He joined the Board in February 2018.

Debbie Reape

Debbie Reape

Non-executive member and Senior Independent Director

Debbie is a registered general nurse and a registered sick children nurse who has worked in the NHS for 38 years in a number of senior nursing and management roles. Debbie joined South Tees NHS Trust as a non executive director on the 1st November 2018 following on from her retirement in 2017 from Northumbria Healthcare NHS Trust where her last role was as Executive Director of Nursing.
Debbie lives in Newcastle Upon Tyne and has one son.