CSH Chairman Ian Church recognised among the best in the country

March 2012

“An extraordinary chairman of a unique company” 

Ian Church, chairman of Central Surrey Health, has been revealed by the Sunday Times (18th March) as the best non-executive director within the public service sector. Guildford based Church beat off stiff competition to scoop the top prize for the public service category in the prestigious annual Sunday Times awards. Church received his award at a dinner in London attended by leading lights from the world of commerce on Wednesday 14th March. 

The judges noted how Church has ‘steered the Board to create a streamlined, entrepreneurial business that combines the best of the private sector business ethos with the principles of the NHS.’ They were particularly impressed with his leadership in the face of the difficult economic environment. ‘His strategy of being bold, not traditional, in his approach to building a long term business means Central Surrey Health is now recognised at the highest level nationally as a leader in the transformation of community healthcare.' Central Surrey Health, which was named as the country’s first Big Society Award Winner in 2010, was the first group to set up independently from the NHS in 2006. More than 20 others are now following since Cameron launched his ‘mutuals’ vision for all public sector workers in 2010. 

Charlie Mayfield, chairman of the John Lewis Partnership, an employee-owned business similar to Central Surrey Health, says: “Central Surrey Health’s ownership model has helped its passionate nurses and therapists align services around what’s best for their patients, led by an ambitious Board who re-invest profits for the long term. Many congratulations to Ian and the Board of directors – fantastic recognition for a job well done.” 

Ian Church comments: “Central Surrey Health is full of people passionate about delivering exceptional patient care. Its nurses and therapists have risen to the challenge of delivering ever more services with ever less resource, and are proving beyond doubt that it is possible to achieve this without compromising on quality of care. This award goes to them – for their motivation, compassion and dedication to their patients and services.” 

Peter Holbrook, CEO of Social Enterprise UK says: “It’s fantastic news to see one of the country’s leading social enterprises recognised in this way. It’s further evidence of how, with strong commercial leadership, social enterprises really can combine the best social values with the best rigour of business – and it’s their local communities and the tax payer who benefit rather than institutional shareholders.”