Kate Kirk

Kate Kirk is a writer and communications consultant who has worked for the Asian Development Bank, leading international business schools and the World Health Organization, among others. Her current projects include a book on leadership skills and working with a health analytics group. A niece of Dame Cicely, Kate volunteered at St Christopher’s Hospice in her youth. She has volunteered and been on the Board of Trustees of the Arthur Rank Hospice Charity in Cambridge since 2007, stepping down in 2022 to devote more time to Cicely Saunders International and her aunt’s legacy. She became Chair of Cicely Saunders International in 2023.

Dr Kathleen Foley

Dr Foley is Attending Neurologist in the Pain and Palliative Care Service at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Centre (MSKCC) in New York City and Professor of Neurology, Neuroscience and Clinical Pharmacology at Weill Medical College of Cornell University.

Sir Cyril Chantler GBE

Sir Cyril is a British medical doctor who was Consultant Paediatrician at Guy’s Hospital from 1971 to 2000, and Professor of Paediatric Nephrology at London University, 1990–2000, and emeritus since 2001. He was knighted in 1996 and was appointed Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire (GBE) in the 2017 New Year Honours for services to leadership in healthcare. He is an adviser to the All Party Parliamentary Health Group of the UK Parliament.

Howell James CBE

Howell James is a communications adviser and former Vice-Chairman of Corporate Affairs at Barclays. He has had a long career as a communications adviser in government, broadcasting, and multi-national business.

Sir Hugh Taylor KCB

Sir Hugh is Chairman of The Health Foundation. Between 2011 and 2022 he was Chairman of Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust; and for the last three years of that period he was also Chairman of King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. He has been a Trustee of Macmillan Cancer Support, Nuffield Trust and the Royal College of Physicians. His substantive career was in the Civil Service, from which he retired in 2010 as Permanent Secretary of the Department of Health.

Pam Garside

Pam Garside is a management consultant working in health care systems and digital health in the UK and USA,  and an angel investor. She is a Fellow of the Judge Business School of the University of Cambridge and a member of the Investment Committee of Cambridge Enterprise, the technology transfer company of the University. Pam founded and co-chairs The Cambridge Health Network, is chair of Cambridge Angels and sits on the board of Crown Place Venture Capital Trust. She holds a BSc from the University of Durham and a Masters Degree in Hospital and Health Care Administration from the University of Minnesota.


Gareth Williams

Gareth Williams is a Non Executive Director of SAGA plc and WNS holdings, a US listed company. He also does some consulting on leadership development. His background is primarily in Human Resources. He spent 10 years with Ford Motor Company and 30 years with Grand Met and Diageo. Between 1999 and 2013 he was Global Human Resources Director for Diageo and a member of its Executive Committee.

International Scientific Expert Panel

Professor Eduardo Bruera

Professor and FT McGraw Chair in the Treatment of Cancer, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Centre.  Chair, Department of Palliative Care and Rehabilitation Medicine, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Centre, USA. Past President, International Association of Hospice and Palliative Care.

Professor Harvey Chochinov

Professor, Department of Family Medicine, Division of Palliative Care, University of Manitoba. Director, Manitoba Palliative Care Research Unit. Canada Research Chair in Palliative Care

Professor Ilora Finlay, Baroness Finlay of Llandaff

Professor of Palliative Medicine, University of Wales College of Medicine. Consultant in Palliative Medicine, Holme Tower, Marie Curie Centre, Penarth. Honorary Professorial Associate, University of Melbourne. Honorary International Adviser to Hong Kong Association for Palliative Medicine. Honorary Professor, University of Ulyanovsk. Johanna Bijtel Visiting Professorship, University of Groningen. Member of the UK’s House of Lords.

Professor Joan Teno

Professor of Medicine (OHSU)
Adjunct Professor of Health Systems, Policy, and Practice (Brown School of Public Health), USA

Professor Per Sjogren

Adjunct Professor in Pharmacology and Pharmacotherapy at the Pharmaceutical Faculty of University of Copenhagen.  Consultant at Section of Acute Pain Management and Palliative Medicine.  Professor in palliative medicine, Department of Oncology, Rigshospitalet, University of Copenhagen.

Scientific Director

Professor Irene Higginson

Professor of Palliative Care and Policy,
NIHR Senior Investigator (emeritus)
Executive Dean, Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery & Palliative Care, King’s College London

Life President

John B McGrath

John was Chair of Cicely Saunders International from 2001 to 2023 and was part of the original group that came together with Dame Cicely Saunders to create the Cicely Saunders Foundation, the palliative care charity now known as Cicely Saunders International.  He was previously Director of ITV plc, Chair of The Boots Company. Grand Metropolitan and Group Chief Executive of Diageo plc.


Sir David Walker

Sir David Walker is a former trustee of Cicely Saunders International.  He became Patron in 2015.


Administrative Director

Sian Best