At the recent MHM Board of Trustees Meeting, the team said a fond farewell to Len Wilson as he announced his retirement. Below is his goodbye message, and a message from his successor Bruce Howorth.
“After nearly 18 years as a member of the Board of Trustees of MHM, the last seven as its Chair, I retired from the Board at its meeting yesterday, April 19th. MHM has been so much a part of my life over that time that leaving with some sadness can hardly be a surprise. But I know that the future for the organisation is bright, and the Trustees and senior management team can build further on what has been achieved. It has been a privilege to have been a part of MHM’s success. My thanks to everyone in the organisation, but obviously particularly to those who made managing the challenge of chairing as easy as it could be for me and my Trustee colleagues, of course, and the senior team, especially Helen and Zoe, without whose support the Board and its Chair simply couldn’t do the job. I wish everyone well for the future, and there will always be an eye I keep open to watch from a distance what MHM is doing. Bruce Howorth was elected to the Chair of the Board of Trustees following my resignation, and I wish him and my former colleagues every success. ‘Bye, all!”
– Len Wilson
“My first duty as Chair is to express our thanks to Len who has been a Trustee for 18 years and Chair for the last seven. He has helped to navigate MHM through some turbulent times and through his strong partnership with Helen he has helped bring the organisation to the very positive position it is in today. His approach has always been fair although he has been firm when it has been needed, but his touchstone has always been the best interests of MHM. I know he has always had, and I believe always will have those best interests at heart. His will indeed be very big shoes to fill.
On behalf of the staff and Trustees of MHM please accept our thanks and very best wishes, Len.”
– Bruce Howorth, Chair of the Board of Trustees
Len came to the voluntary sector after a professional career in the NHS. He trained and practised as a clinical psychologist, with substantial experience of working with people with enduring mental health problems. After over twenty years in clinical practice, Len moved into service management posts in mental health services, ultimately in Chief Executive roles in mental health, learning disabilities and community services NHS Trusts. He was a Mental Health Act Commissioner from the late 1980s into the mid-1990s.
Having taken early retirement from the NHS, Len worked in healthcare management consultancy, specialising in mental health, taking up assignments ranging from localised service commissioning and delivery issues to national work alongside Department of Health colleagues. Len has worked also in interim Director roles in both charitable organisations and independent sector companies in the social care sector, delivering social care and support to people with mental health problems, learning disabilities and addictions.
MHM has benefitted enormously over the years from Len’s experience gained in his professional life, as he and the rest of the Trustees have built a broad platform to support the charity and the work of its management team.The whole MHM team would like to thank Len for his tireless efforts on behalf of the organisation, and wish him best of luck for the future!
Bruce worked as a solicitor for 26 years with a large North-East firm before leaving in 2014 after 21 years as a Partner. He specialised in health and safety and personal injury law throughout his career, as well as having wide ranging management responsibilities within his firm. Bruce’s relationship with MHM goes back to 2006 and he has been closely involved in advising the organisation ever since, and we are thrilled to have him as our new Chair of the Board.
You can read more about the whole Board of Trustees and Senior Management Team by visiting our ‘Meet the People’ page.