Hospice announces new Chief Executive

Categories: Leadership and People & Places.

 Worcestershire’s St Richard’s Hospice has announced the appointment of Mike Wilkerson as the charity’s new Chief Executive.

 Mr Wilkerson will take up the role after the current Chief Executive, June Patel, took the decision to step down later this year, following 11 years with the organisation.

Mr Wilkerson joins St Richard’s from Saint Catherine’s Hospice in North Yorkshire where he has been Chief Executive for the last eight years. He has extensive experience of working in palliative and end of life care, with previous roles at Rotherham Hospice and St Wilfrid’s Hospice in West Sussex.

Mr Wilkerson said, “I am delighted and excited to be joining St Richard’s Hospice as the next Chief Executive and am incredibly grateful for the opportunity to be part of the team. I am passionate about the high-quality care and support St Richard’s provides to all those with a serious progressive illness, to their families and carers. St Richard’s is a fantastic, modern hospice, set in a beautiful location and grounds, with an excellent reputation. The incredible staff and volunteers, supporters and donors make St Richard’s the wonderful place it is today, and I am very much looking forward to getting to know everyone involved.”

Before taking up the post in early 2023, Mr Wilkerson and his wife Alison will be moving to the area.

Chair of St Richard’s Governors, Jenny Cowpe, said: “We are delighted that Mike will be our new Chief Executive and we look forward to him leading our dedicated and highly-respected team in the future. His experience will help shape continuous improvements in the quality care that the hospice provides for more than 3,100 patients, loved ones and bereaved people each year in our community.”

Mrs Cowpe also paid tribute to Mrs Patel, who has been Chief Executive since 2017: “On behalf of the Council of Governors I would like to thank June for the exceptional contribution she has made to St Richard’s since she joined us originally as our Care Director in 2011.

“June’s outstanding enthusiasm, compassion, commitment and leadership skills have enabled St Richard’s to greatly expand our facilities and services for patients and families.

Her extraordinary resilience has led us successfully through the pandemic thus far, whilst retaining a healthy financial position.

In addition, her ability to engage, and work with, our partners in Worcestershire has ensured that we have been able to influence the development of services for those in our community with serious progressive illnesses, as well as the training of nurses and medical staff to provide them.

“She leaves us as one of the county’s most-loved charities – having touched many lives locally – and with a highly respected team. We will miss her, but wish June all the very best as she pursues new interests and adventures.”

St Richard’s Hospice is an independent charity caring for adults with a serious progressive illness, improving their quality of life from diagnosis, during treatment to their last days and supporting those important to them.

Each year the hospice team supports more than 3,100 patients, family members and bereaved people in Worcestershire. All St Richard’s services are provided free of charge

It costs £9.72m to run the hospice (21/22 audited accounts), which includes patient care and all the necessary support services.

St Richard’s is an independent charity and relies on donations and gifts in wills for the majority of its income, with the remainder funded by the NHS.

For more information about St Richard’s Hospice visit www.strichards.org.uk



More information about St Richard’s Hospice

Who does St Richard’s Hospice care for?

St Richard’s cares for people with a serious progressive illness who have complex needs which cannot be met by other services. These include cancer, and neurological, respiratory, cardiac and renal conditions.

All its services are available to people registered with a South Worcestershire GP. The St Richard’s In-patient Unit cares for people across Worcestershire.

St Richard’s cares for people by:

  • early involvement in the course of a person’s illness alongside other therapies that are intended to prolong life
  • enabling people to manage their illness and remain independent for as long as possible
  • helping people to control their pain and other worrying symptoms
  • helping people with emotional, social, practical and spiritual issues
  • supporting families and carers before and through bereavement
  • working in partnership with other health care providers and organisations
  • encouraging wider understanding that death is a part of life
  • supporting the local community to be well informed about the care available to them
  • supporting the health and social care workforce through education to provide high-quality, individualised care.

Where they care

St Richard’s offers free care and support for people in the hospice, in the community, in GP surgeries, at clinics or by telephone.

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