Naomi Hankinson qualified as an occupational therapist in 1985, after taking a degree in philosophy at Manchester University. In the early years of her career she worked in mental health services, in professional, general and project management roles. In 2001 Naomi joined the North East London Mental Health Trust as joint Director of Therapies and was later seconded for two years to the Department of Health’s National Social Inclusion Programme leading on workforce. Naomi went on to become its Assistant Director for Evidence and Innovation, producing the Capabilities for Inclusive Practice, making a valuable contribution to the social inclusion agenda. In addition, Naomi provided support to develop the Department of Health’s ‘New Ways of Working’ for staff working in mental health services. She was made Visiting Fellow at London South Bank University during this time.

Naomi has worked as a Development Consultant at the University of Central Lancashire Inclusion Institute, where she continued to focus on service and workforce development, including professional engagement, as well as working as a consultant in health and social care. She continues to coach and supervise individuals and review services.

Naomi has contributed as a non-executive and trustee on various organisations and was voted on to the British Association and College of Occupational Therapists Council as its Chairman in June 2009, serving four years in this role. She has previously chaired the Audit Committee of the professional body, and in 2017 was elected to the vice- presidency of the Council of Occupational Therapists for the European Countries for a four year term.