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New governors join Airedale NHSFT

Airedale NHS Foundation Trust has welcomed five new Public Governors after elections took place in February.

The Council of Governors has 20 members:  12 public Governors who are elected by public members, 4 staff Governors who are elected by staff members and 4 stakeholder Governors who are nominated by our partner organisations.

Governors hold the non executive directors to account for the performance of the Board and represent the interests of the members and the public.

 The new governors are:

  • Cath Bacon, representing Bingley Rural
  • Linda Dobson, representing Keighley Central and East
  • Ernest Cockburn, representing Keighley West and Worth Valley
  • Alan Walker, representing Settle and Mid Craven
  • Robert Minton-Taylor, representing South Craven

and one new Staff Governor, Naheem Ahmed, who represents the non-clinical, ‘all other’ staff group.

Public governors Karen Ellison, Jerry Stanford, Olukayode Dada and Paul Maskell were all re-elected along with David Haston, Staff Governor.

Karen Ellison, representing Ilkley and Wharfedale, remains as Lead Governor.

Anyone over the age of 16 can stand for election as a governor to represent the area they live in, no previous knowledge is necessary and they are elected by the public.  Governors do though bring their own personal and life experiences to the council.

Robert Minton-Taylor is the new governor representing South Craven and has a background in journalism and lecturing. He has worked with HRH Prince of Wales’s Princes Youth Business Trust and is currently a visiting fellow at Leeds Business School, part of Leeds Beckett University. He is also an ambassador for stroke care, having needed the service himself.

Robert says:

“I suffered a devastating brain haemorrhage in September 2019 and my life was saved by Bradford Royal Infirmary and I was rehabilitated by Airedale General Hospital. I want to serve the hospitals that helped me recover. My key focus as a governor is on an integrated service between GP surgeries and hospitals for stroke survivors, so that patients can regain their independence and lead fulfilled lives.”

New staff Governor Naheem Ahmed is an accountant at the trust and has extensive experience of business operations and presenting complicated data in a succinct and clear way to a variety of key stakeholders.

Naheem says:

“As a local resident, a staff member and someone who has a strong emotional attachment to Airedale, it is an honour to give back to my community as a governor.   I hope my financial and analytical expertise will enhance both patient care and also staff experience.”

Your governors would like to hear from you if you have any comments to make about the hospital. To contact your governor, email or telephone 01535 294540.

To find out more about the governors go to the trust website:

The results of the voting are on the website here: