Welcome to SWASFT

Non-Executive Directors

Venessa JamesVanessa James

Venessa has a vocational background in general nursing, social work and teaching. An experienced senior manager, she has held executive, board-level appointments in the private education sector and the NHS.


Her specific areas of expertise include corporate governance and commissioning services for people with complex care needs, from which she brings a wealth of experience in partnership, collaborative and contractual working arrangements with NHS organisations, social services and the independent care sector.


She was appointed to the Board of Directors of South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SWASFT) in June 2014.


Venessa is Board champion for social care and the Duty of Candour, and she has a keen interest in applied health psychology research.


She holds qualifications in business management and teaching, including the Masters-equivalent DTEFLA, and is currently studying for a Masters in Advanced Psychology at Plymouth University.


Gail Bragg

Gail Bragg

Gail joined the Board of Directors of South Western Ambulance Service Trust in September 2016.

Professionally, Gail has worked in large Financial Services organisations, in change and operational management.  She specialises in corporate re-structuring to achieve financial returns whilst continuing to deliver operational results.

She has delivered substantial change programmes, such as completing a £5.2bn M&A transaction and negotiating an outsourcing deal worth £1.4bn.  Alongside this she has a very broad management background, including in Risk, IT and Supplier Management.  She has run large operational teams and managed significant financial budgets.

Gail now works as a freelance consultant, and as a non-executive director and committee chair, including for Interactive Investor.  Her community and charitable interests include being a Director of a multi academy Trust and Chair of Governors at a local primary school.

Minesh Khashu

Professor Minesh Khashu

Minesh is a Consultant Neonatologist and Professor of Perinatal Health at Poole Hospital where he has been since 2007.  He is also involved in clinical research at Bournemouth University and supervises PhD students.

Minesh, who lives in Dorset, has undertaken a 10 month NHS Fast Track Executive Leadership programme with Harvard & NHS leadership Academy. 

He has a special interest in quality improvement and safety and large scale transformation projects.

Minesh was appointed to the Board of Directors of South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SWASFT) in May 2017.

Paul Love

Paul Love

Paul qualified as an accountant in 1994.

He is currently Finance Director and Company Secretary for Guinness Care, a not for profit organisation within the Guinness Partnership that provides care and housing support services across England. Prior to this role, Paul has 15 years’ experience as a Finance Director within companies in the housing, welfare to work and arts sector, and has also worked as a financial regulator in the public sector.

Paul has significant Board experience with public service organisations, having served as a non-executive director in the dch group, West Devon Homes and Social Firms UK.

Paul was appointed as a Non-Executive Director to the Board of Directors of South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust in July 2015.

Rahkee Rankin

Rakhee Aggarwal

Rakhee is a registered Mental Health Nurse. She currently works at the University of the West of England as an Associate Head of Department for Nursing and Midwifery, with the responsibility for Business and Workforce Transformation. Rakhee is also a treasurer for a charity in South Gloucestershire, with focus on race equality.

Rakhee has a Masters in Teaching and Learning for Health Professionals.  She has been in the role for 9 years.  

Prior to this she was a Mental Health Nursing Lecturer for four years.

She lives in Bristol and has recently undertaken NED training and been part of a mentoring scheme to gain Board insight.

Rakhee was appointed to the Board of Directors of South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SWASFT) in May 2017.

Ian Reynolds

Dr Ian Reynolds

Dr. Ian Reynolds has a healthcare, science and regulatory background in both public and private companies. Ian was previously Deputy Chairman of the Food Standards Agency, Chairman of the Meat Hygiene Service and Chairman of the Greyhound Regulatory Board and NED for Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire Strategic Health Authority. Ian is currently also Chairman of Chime, a social enterprise company. During Ian's executive career he was Chief Executive of Nottingham Health Authority and of Priory Hospitals.

Achievements include acquisitions and company turnarounds in animal health pharmaceuticals, saving the Nottingham site of the raising of the Royal Standard where King Charles started the civil war for the nation and increasing standards in the Meat Hygiene Service to better protect the public.

Susan Bradford

Susan is a lawyer and spent a number of years acting on behalf of NHS Trusts in high value, complex, negligence claims, as well as undertaking healthcare regulatory work.

Currently she is a Commissioner with the Commission on Human Medicines, a body which advises on the safety and efficacy of medicines; a Lay Panel Member on the General Pharmaceutical Council’s Accreditation Panel, which evaluates undergraduate pharmacy degrees; and has been appointed by a number of south-west councils as an Independent Person in children’s social care complaints. In voluntary capacity she is a Lay Member on the Central Bristol Clinical Research Ethics Committee, where she has a role in protecting the interests of those who participate in medical research and ensuring that research is conducted in an ethical manner.

She was appointed to the Board of Directors of South Western Ambulance Service in September 2018, having spent a year with the Trust in an associate non-executive capacity.


South Western Ambulance Charity logo

South Western Ambulance Charity

The South Western Ambulance Charity, founded in 1995, uses gifted monies to benefit those in our communities who use our service and to improve the welfare of the staff and volunteers of the South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust. 

Our charitable support covers Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Wiltshire including Bristol and Swindon.

If you would like to show your appreciation for the care that you or your loved one has received from us in the form of a charitable donation please visit our online giving website: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/charities/SWASC.