Chair of Trustees

Dr Ann Hoskins, Chair of Trustees

Dr Ann Hoskins MB BCh, BAO, MCommH, FFPHM

Ann has over 30 years’ experience working in public health in the UK and the Republic of Yemen. She has successfully led innovations in health strategy, policy development and programme implementation to improve health and tackle health inequalities. She has held local, regional and national senior PH leadership positions, with a special interest in children and families.Ann continues her interest in maternal and child care in developing countries through her membership of the External Advisory Group, Centre for Maternal and Newborn Health at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine. She is a non-executive board member of Plus Dane Housing Association.


Kirsten Johnston, TreasurerKirstin Johnston - Chartered Accountant

Kirstin has over 10 years experience working in the financial services industry, having qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 2010 with the Institute of Chartered Accountants Scotland. Her career to date has been spent leading external audits at Deloitte in both Scotland and London before joining internal audit at Credit Suisse where she continues to work today. She has experience in numerous industries including charities, consumer goods and financial services.

Kirstin has two children under the age of three and as a result has a very keen interest in both child care and development which drew her to the charity. The skills and expertise forged in her career to date, alongside a natural interest in the work of the charity led her to apply for the Treasurer position, a role where she believes she can add real value.

Nadia GabbieNadia Gabbie - PR and Communications Expert

Nadia is a highly experienced PR and Communications expert with a career spanning 25 years. She offers strategic communications advice in an in-house capacity to a range of consumer-facing technology businesses. Nadia has founded her own PR agency and led teams in large networked and global agencies throughout her career. During this time she has represented a wide range of consumer-facing brands, from retail to family entertainment, and from sport to travel.

Nadia's focus is on helping brands and organisations to protect their reputations. In this capacity she is an expert in crisis communications as well as in proactive and creative consumer campaign development and delivery. Her specialist expertise is in joining the lines between public relations and social media, and developing strategic plans to help brand storytelling.

A mother to three sons and married to a gynaecologist, Nadia also has a particular passion for Best Beginnings' vision to achieve an equal start in life for all. Alongside Best Beginnings, Nadia works in an advisory capacity for First Story, a charity which encourages and champions literacy in children by providing creative off-curriculum writing workings in low-income area schools.

Hilary RussellHilary Russell - PR and Fundraising Advisor

Hilary is a highly experienced PR and Fundraising Advisor with considerable expertise in the not-for-profit sector. With a diverse range of interests and experiences, she is the Director of a variety of business ventures, including a leading hotel in Cambridge, an East Anglian property business and a farming business. Hilary is also a member of the Worshipful Company of Farmers Livery Company, as well as the Advisory Council for the Sheriffs’ & Recorder’s Fund based at the Old Bailey and has an active interest in the prison and probation service and reform of prisoners.

In the past she has worked on large projects for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust, Music in Hospitals and Bees for Development. In 2002, Hilary was a founding member of the charity, Blue Smile, based in Cambridge. The charity works in primary schools supporting children through early intervention and arts based therapy.

Hilary has four children and is based in London and Cambridge.  With a degree in Natural Sciences from Durham University majoring in Psychology and Zoology, she has always had an interest in mental health and wellbeing, which has driven her passion for Best Beginnings' vision and work. 


Seb OrtonSeb Orton - Corporate partner at Eversheds Sutherland Law firm

Seb is a corporate partner at Eversheds Sutherland specialising in capital markets. Before joining the company he worked a different global firm where he also led the London pro bono practice and oversaw work for a number of charities, including Best Beginnings.

Seb sits on the Board’s Risk Committee. As a corporate lawyer, the essence of his day job is to prepare companies for listings on the London Stock Exchange and to brief boards of directors on their duties and responsibilities while helping them ensure they have adequate systems and controls in place to deal with the next stage in their development. These skills will assist the charity to maintain good standards of governance going forward.

Seb has two children and is based in London and has a strong interest in reducing inequality throughout the UK while furthering the parity of esteem narrative around mental health.

Claire Lyons-CollinsClare Lyons-Collins - MH Innovation and Improvement at NHS Improvement

Clare led the development of the national improvement model for mental health, Valued care in mental health: Improving for excellence on behalf of NHS Improvement. This was co-produced with mental health trusts across England. She has a long history of transformation in the NHS working across community, acute care and commissioning. She originally trained as an Occupational Therapist, holds a MBA from Henley Business School and was recently invited to become a leadership fellow at St. George’s House, Windsor Castle.

She lives in South West London, with her husband and two children. She has lived experience of postnatal depression giving her invaluable insight into perinatal mental health.

Gideon HurwitzGideon Hurwitz - FinTech Innovation Lab manager

Gideon is currently the FinTech Innovation Lab manager for the technology consultancy firm, Accenture. His experience at the London Innovation Centre (9 months) allowed him an acute insight into the evolving digital trends and how they are impacting firms today. His background in sales strategy, analytics and research has enabled him to set up an internal initiative called “Re:Think”, a thought-leadership platform discussing the issues of today. He has done pro-bono work on the side, supporting the Accenture Development Partnerships team in their offerings to charities. Gideon has a keen interested in the start-up world and is an advocate of education-for-all. 

Dhaval PondaDhaval Ponda - Global Head of Sales & BD, Media & Entertainment at Tata Communications

Dhaval currently heads the global business team of media & entertainment of Tata Communications based out of London. As one of the early founding members of the team, Dhaval has played an active role in scaling and effectively managing the global business resulting in one of the fastest growing players in the world of sports and new age media. As a very active leader in the world of digital media, sports & technology, Dhaval is often found discussing the future trends likely to impact not only the world of business but also every day walk of life.

 As an electronics engineer and MBA in Finance & Strategy from Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Dhaval has explored the effective deployment of UN Human Development Index (HDI) to better deploy real world policy in the developing world. He is passionate about the role of technology to impact the public health and education sectors.

Lisa Quest - Partner and Co-Head of Economic Crime Risk and Compliance at Oliver Wyman

Lisa has over 15 years-experience advising governments across Europe as a Partner and Co-Head of Economic Crime Risk and Compliance team for Oliver Wyman. She advises governments and public-private partnerships globally on regulatory reform, digitalisation and organisational effectiveness.  Outside of work, Lisa is a Visiting Academic Fellow at the London School of Economics, Centre for Risk and Regulation and a Non-Executive Director of the Green Hat Foundation. 

Birte Harlev-Lam OBE - Senior Clinical Leader and Executive Director Midwife at RCM

Birte is a senior clinical leader with significant midwifery, children’s and general healthcare expertise underpinned by over 35 years of experience in clinical, management and strategic roles. She has worked across all settings as a midwife and held a number of senior positions including Director of Midwifery and Divisional Manager for Women’s and Children’s Services in both London and Cambridge, Regional Strategic Maternity Lead and nationally as the Head of Maternity and Children’s Services in NHS England. She then joined NHS Improvement as the Clinical Director for Maternity and Children where her remit involved supporting maternity and children’s services to make quality improvements ensuring women, children and their families’ had consistently safe, high quality, compassionate care. For the past two years Birte have been the Executive Director Midwife at the Royal College of midwives, where she is responsible for the setting the professional strategic direction and delivery agenda locally, nationally and internationally on behalf of the organisation.

Birte believes passionately in the importance of leadership and quality improvement, and how this links to safe, equitable and personalised care.

Birte Harlev-Lam OBE


Angela Horsley MBE - ECHO transition Partnership Manager at Hospice UK

The focus of Angela’s working life and her passion for her chosen career is the continuous improvement of healthcare for children and young people. Within her previous national role as Head of Children, Young People and Transition, NHS Improvement, Angela provided nursing advice relating to children and young people’s health care to the Chief Nursing Officer, England.  In 2018 she developed an Improvement and Assessment Framework for children and young people. This followed a review she undertook of children and young people’s services who were rated as “Requires Improvement” or “Inadequate” by the CQC.  Her role also included visiting services and supporting them to improve the care they give to children and young people.  From 2019-2021 Angela led on an England wide collaborative that aimed to improve healthcare transition for children and young people requiring physical and mental health care.

With over forty years’ experience as a nurse, earlier roles include: Head of East Midlands Maternity and Children’s Network, Senior Nurse for Children and Young People, NHS England, and Clinical Lead at the Nottingham Children’s hospital. She has worked in a variety of roles in the UK and abroad and was instrumental in the commissioning of the Royal Aberdeen Children’s hospital.

She is a registered general nurse, registered sick children’s nurse and Advanced Neonatal Nurse Practitioner. She has published and presented widely and is a former chair of the Association of Chief Children’s Nurses (ACCN).

Angela has recently retired from the NHS but now works for Hospice UK as the ECHO Transition Partnership Manager.  She is also a Volunteer Counsellor for Childline.

Outside of work, Angela is a keen gardener and cyclist.

Lorraine Barclay - Deputy Chair

Lorraine has over 20 years’ experience in Financial Services and is recognised for her collaborative leadership style, together with her ability to drive transformational change and growth. Her experience covers a range of different cultures across Europe, the USA and Asia. She is an active supporter of community projects including being both a Trustee of Leadership Through Sport and Business and Patron of the West Ham Foundation, as well as her positions as the Best Beginnings’ Treasurer. 

From February 2020-February 2021, Lorraine was a fundraising strategist for the Renaissance Foundation, covering the design of an emergency Covid-19 fundraising strategy and support for policy implementations. She was also a policy developer and writer for NHS Charities Together.