We are governed by an independent committee which provides essential support and strategic direction. For legal reasons, it is known as the Scottish Health Council committee. Meet our committee members.
The Scottish Health Council Committee reports to the Board of Healthcare Improvement Scotland.
The Committee meets 4 times a year. Minutes from each meeting are forwarded to the Board of Healthcare Improvement Scotland and are published on our website.
Suzanne Dawson, Chair
Suzanne has non-executive director experience in health and education. She was a member of the Scottish Ambulance Service Board for 8 years where she chaired their Clinical Governance Committee. She was Chair of Borders College leading the Board through a period of transformational change which included a major capital estates project and co-location with Heriot Watt University. She sat as one of the first non-solicitor members on the Law Society of Scotland Council.
Suzanne has spent much of her career in economic development where her focus has been in relationship building, stakeholder engagement and organisational development and has a particular interest in the challenges faced in a rural economy. She is a member of the Board of the Eastgate Theatre & Arts Centre in Peebles and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing.
Dave's career has mainly been spent in mental health nursing in Argyll and the Inner Hebrides; initially as a community mental health nurse and then as a senior manager developing community services across 2,500 square miles – including 25 inhabited islands! A challenge but hugely rewarding. It was in this role that he developed a passion for public involvement.
Since retiring early, he moved to Doune and "on a whim" started working with Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland helping develop their Voices programme. This became a second career for him and he found working with people with long term health challenges and helping them have a say in their care as demanding (and rewarding) as mental health. Dave is married to Suzie, has a miniature Dachshund called Sasha and one son, Phil, who is both a crofter and distiller (legally!) on Harris. His secret other passion is his Morris Traveller called Tabatha.
Simon brings a range of experience. He has extensive experience of working in the voluntary sector to influence mental health policy and practice, most notably as the founding Director of the Scottish Recovery Network where he worked for 12 years. Simon has a PhD in mental health research and on joining the University of Glasgow's Institute of Health and Wellbeing in 2016 he managed a complex clinical trial of a digital interventions for psychosis across 2 countries. He is currently developing a new Masters programme in Digital Health Interventions at the University while continuing to pursue his wider research interests in self-management, mental health recovery and peer support.
Emma has worked with marginalised communities across the UK and developed a passion for ensuring people's voices are heard. Following her degree in Psychology, Emma was an advocate for people living with mental health problems in the community in one of the most deprived areas of the UK. She moved onto working with young people, often at times of crisis, before becoming the CEO of Adventure Unlimited, a charity utilising the power of nature and outdoor pursuits to change people's lives.
In 2011, Emma moved to the Isle of Bute to develop the island's community-owned forest developing a strong commitment to and love of rural Scotland. She became CEO of Scottish Rural Action in 2014, leading 3 successful Scottish Rural Parliaments, and developing a strong voice for rural Scotland.
Most recently, Emma has been travelling in Europe, learning about different cultures and lifestyles, whilst also working as a freelance trainer, facilitator and coach. Emma gained a master's degree in Public Administration in 2011 and is currently working towards the completion of an ILM Level 7 Executive Coaching and Mentoring qualification.
Alison Cox, MBE
Alison started her working life as a chartered physiotherapist, but was forced to rethink her career when she sustained a significant back injury meaning she had to leave clinical work for 2 years. During that time Alison trained as a teacher and decided to continue in teaching rather than returning to physiotherapy following her recovery. She completed a Masters in Educational Management and has been involved in education in a range of roles including lecturing, project co-ordination and management ever since. Alison was asked by Scottish Ministers to establish the BRITE Initiative in 2001 – with a remit to build the competence and capacity of Scottish colleges and universities to be more inclusive, and equip staff to feel confident about enabling all learners to fulfil their potential. This initiative ran successfully for 13 years. Alison has served as both member and Chair of the Board of Lothian Centre for Inclusive Living and LEAD Scotland and was a founding member of Keycomm, the Lothian Communication Technology Service (supporting communication impaired children and adults and AAC users). Alison currently works as a consultant for a wide range of public, private and third sector organisations, focusing on workforce development and tackling health inequalities. She also volunteers in a community-based team seeking to improve the life chances of marginalised young people.
Elizabeth brings over 10 years' experience in research, consultation and stakeholder management across the public, private and third sectors. Having managed large scale research and consultation programmes across Scotland – involving a diverse range of service users and stakeholders – she brings to the Committee an ability to think critically, listen to others and convey multiple perspectives, while also challenging performance or proposals when necessary. She is committed to ensuring that evidence is central to decision making; supporting continuous improvement, promoting innovation and increasing community capacity. Elizabeth currently works full time for Wheatley Group, Scotland's largest housing, care and property management company. She was previously Secretary for the Market Research Society in Scotland on a voluntary basis, maximising networking opportunities and helping to highlight best practice in order to raise awareness of the high quality market and social research undertaken in Scotland.
Jamie is the Business Transformation Manager at the New Tannahill Centre, a community hub located at the heart of Ferguslie Park in Paisley and is responsible for developing and designing projects and services that engage local people in the regeneration of their community.
Prior to this, Jamie undertook a wide range of community and business development roles within the not-for-profit sector which saw him work within local communities across the West of Scotland.
Jamie has also been involved with a number of voluntary roles including acting as a trustee and chairperson of Lifelink, a mental health and wellbeing charity based in Glasgow, and the Springburn Winter Gardens Trust, a charity aiming to redevelop and repurpose the grade A listed winter gardens located in Springburn Park.