Today we say goodbye to James Ellam as Chief Executive of St Oswald’s.
We would like to thank James for his support and leadership after 13 years with us. We will greatly miss James and we wish him and his family all the best for the future.
As I retire from my role after a wonderful 13 years. My initial plans of travelling with my wife are obviously on hold for now but are still eagerly anticipated. I’m feeling huge sadness at leaving this amazing place, especially in the current climate. How our staff and volunteers have rallied round, and put our patients and the Hospice first has been very humbling and wonderful to witness. I couldn’t be prouder.
It’s been an honour and a pleasure to lead such a fantastic charity. Thank you everyone, for your help and support whilst I had the privilege of doing this job. It was easily the highlight of my career, and I will never forget what it meant to work for this magnificent cause.
I will really miss not being able to say a proper goodbye to my ‘St Oswald’s family’ when I leave but I’m also looking forward to spending more time with my lovely family, and deciding ‘what next?’
Leaving has been made a little easier knowing that the Hospice will be in very safe hands. Our new Chief Executive, Steph Edusei joined us on the 1st May and has settled in well. I just wanted to end with a personal thank you to all our supporters for their continued support, we will get through this crisis together and come out the other side even stronger. Thank you everyone for being by St Oswald’s side.
We are delighted to welcome and introduce to you Steph Edusei as our new Chief Executive of St Oswald’s Hospice and we are excited for Steph to lead us into the next chapter. Steph arrives with a wealth of experience in senior roles in the local NHS, including managing hospital and ambulance services, CCG commissioning, and latterly as Chief Executive of Tyneside’s NHS Healthwatch service.
As I enter this new chapter, leading St Oswald’s, I have so many emotions going on. This certainly isn’t how I imagined things would be. I was looking forward to a lovely handover from James, where I would have the luxury of time to see all the parts of the organisation and meet as many of the volunteers and staff as possible. It was going to be my first opportunity to hear from all of the staff and volunteers, and I was planning to take full advantage of that. However, that is not to be.
I’m excited about this new role for me for a number of reasons; firstly, I get to work for such a fantastic organisation. The reputation of the people and services at St Oswald’s is amazing, so to be a part of that is a dream come true for me. Secondly, I feel like I’m going back to my roots. I started my NHS career in hospitals and most of my time has been spent in service delivery organisation. I love the feeling of being able to make a direct impact on the services people experience. Finally, what St Oswald’s does is so important. We support people at a time when many others are not there. We help to make their lives better. What better purpose could there be?
Whilst, it is a strange time to join St Oswald’s, it’s great to see how things have already found a new rhythm. It’s not the way that any of us want it to be but I’m really impressed by how we have continued offer the excellent care in the Hospice, but are also supporting patients out in the community and with family support. We’re starting to look ahead to the time when we can start to provide more services and, to slowly open our shops again, but we’ll only do this when we know we can do it in a safe way that doesn’t put our staff, volunteers, patients and supporters at risk.
Thank you to everyone for their continued support and commitment to St Oswald’s Hospice. We couldn’t do what we do without you, our wonderful community.