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Four Elected to National Axial Spondyloarthritis Society (NASS) Board of Trustees

NASS is delighted to announce that its Members have elected four people onto its Board of Trustees and their appointment was confirmed at Members Day on 12 June 2021.

The people NASS welcomed to its Board of Trustees are: 

Gillian Eames 

Gillian has been re-elected and has been a NASS Trustee for a total of 15 years. She has lived with axial SpA for over 30 years and says she has stayed in control of the condition with the help of NASS and RNHRD in Bath. 

She has supported many fundraising events over a number the years and volunteers for NASS.  

She is a well-respected member of the axial SpA community and enjoys ensuring that other people get the right support and treatments. Gillian has also supported many NASS fundraising events and has volunteers for the charity. 

Gillian lives in Bromley, Kent and has two grown-up sons. 

Poppy Hocken 

Poppy has been an active member of NASS for a number of years and has served one term as a trustee. Poppy recently retired as a rheumatology clinical research nurse in Bath where she had worked on many of the Biologic drug trials.  

Poppy has lived with her axial SpA since her late teens and waited 14yrs for a diagnosis and feels strongly that this delay to diagnosis has to change.  

She has also recently worked on the NASS Aspiring to Excellence Programme and has completed numerous fundraising challenges. 

Poppy lives in Bath with her husband. They have eight children between them and three have axial SpA.  

Hannah Murphy 

This will be Hannah’s first term as a NASS Trustee. She has worked as a policy adviser in Whitehall and as a political adviser in the Senedd.  

She is currently Head of Public Policy at the England and Wales Cricket Board, regularly engaging with Minister and Parliamentarians in Westminster and in Cardiff Bay. In September 2019, she joined the Board of Sport Wales, advising them on their young engagement and facilities strategy. 

Hannah was diagnosed with axial spondyloarthritis in November 2018 after a decade of missed diagnoses. 

Dr Lesley Kay 

Lesley has become one of our two healthcare trustees. She is a consultant rheumatologist in Newcastle upon Tyne and set up a specialist spondyloarthritis clinic in 1995. Her team were also part of the first cohort of NASS’s ‘Aspiring to Excellence’ programme. 

She brings a wide knowledge of the NHS, as co-lead for rheumatology in the NHS’s biggest quality improvement programme (GIRFT), in the NHS recovery programme and as deputy medical director for the Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch.  

Welcoming the Trustees, Dr Dale Webb, CEO of NASS commented: 

“Our Trustees contribute a vast amount of external expertise as well as experience of living with axial SpA. Their advice on the strategic direction of our work is invaluable and helps ensure we are able to achieve our mission of transforming the treatment and care of axial SpA, so everyone can live well with the condition. I very much look forward to working with all our Trustees over the next year.” 

Notes for Editors 

About the National Axial Spondyloarthritis Society (NASS) 

At NASS we transform the diagnosis and care of people living with axial SpA. It’s an invisible and misdiagnosed condition. Often leaving people feeling powerless, in increasing pain and extreme exhaustion. 

We campaign policy makers for early diagnosis and better services. 

We work with the NHS to get axial SpA identified and diagnosed quickly. 

We’re determined that everyone receives effective care. We make sure people with axial SpA get the latest information and the support they need to tackle living with the condition. And we build an active community, online and through our local branches across the UK. We are with them all the way. 

Axial SpA may work silently. 

About NASS Trustees 

The NASS Board is a body of 12 trustees which, as defined by The Charities Act 2011, is responsible under the charity’s governing document for controlling the administration and management of the charity. 

The Board meets four times a year and Trustees are expected to attend all four Board meetings each year. In addition, trustees are encouraged to attend some of the events organised by NASS. 

Trustees are elected by NASS Members, with elections taking place one a year.