Steering Group

Alicia Ridout (Chair)

Alicia Redout
Alicia Ridout

Alicia is a registered Occupational Therapist with over 25 years of experience encompassing industry, NHS, private healthcare and the 3rd sector. She has significant experience working with people in a wide range of settings across the UK, delivering transformation programmes, service improvement projects and innovation and is passionate about user and carer involvement in care planning, delivery and evaluation.

Alicia has spent much of her career working in mental health and liaison psychiatry, commissioning, Higher Education innovation and more recently as Deputy Director of the mHabitat, an innovative NHS service focused on people driven digital interventions.

Alicia is a member of the College of Occupational Therapists National Conference Planning Committee and is actively involved in AHP/Nursing informatics and development of competencies to support health professional’s use of digital tools. She is a Dementia Champion, has a visiting role at the University of Leeds and chairs an MRC research project advisory group.

She has published research and has just completed a project exploring the occupational impact on working carers in Leeds funded by the COT, to develop new approaches to ill health prevention.  Alicia is product owner of the first Leeds Mental Health Information portal (MindWell)and is the R & D lead for the mHabitat.

Donna Rowen

Donna Rowen
Donna Rowen

Donna Rowen, PhD is a health economist within the Health Economics and Decision Science section of ScHARR. She has extensive experience relating to deriving health state utility values.

Donna has been involved in the development of several condition-specific preference based measures from existing instruments including cancer, dementia, diabetes, epilepsy, flushing and myelofibrosis. Her personal research interests include: measuring and valuing health and quality of life, modelling preference data, mapping between measures of health, methodology of developing preference-based measures of health from existing measures and social weighting of QALYs for Burden of Illness. Donna has published over 50 peer reviewed papers and book chapters.

Professor John Keady

Professor John Keady
Professor John Keady

Professor John Keady is a registered mental health nurse and completed his part-time PhD in dementia studies in 1999 using a grounded theory methodology. Prior to this, he practised for several years as a community psychiatric nurse in dementia care, a position he held in North Wales. Since 2006 John has worked at the University of Manchester where he holds a joint position between the University and the Greater Manchester West Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust.

John currently leads the inter-disciplinary Dementia and Ageing Research Team at the School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work and is Chief Investigator on the multi-site ESRC/NIHR Neighbourhoods and Dementia Study [2014-2019]: www.neighbourhoodsanddementia.org  He is founding and co-editor of the bi-monthly Sage journal: Dementia: the international journal of social research and practice, first published in 2002. John is also a Senior Fellow at the NIHR School for Social Care Research.

Val Hewison

Val Hewison
Val Hewison

Val Hewison is the CEO of Carers Leeds, the vital support service for Carers throughout Leeds.

Working at a strategic and at a local level, Val has led Carers Leeds for over 10 years.  Her determination and hard work has transformed the support available to carers by working together with other services in Leeds to develop a single Point of Access service.  The positive impact that this has had for the 72,000 unpaid carers has focused Val’s determination to ensure every carer is recognised and supported to continue caring.

This passion for supporting carers was developed through Val’s personal experiences and her extensive qualifications in social care and management.

Working with businesses, communities, health care and social care, Val aims to keep carers at the top of the agenda and influence positive change to improve the lives of carers.

Matt Murray

Matt Murray
Matt Murray

Matt is Research Engagement Manager at Alzheimer’s Society where for over 6 years he has led the Society’s Patient & Public Involvement (PPI) and Research Partnerships programmes.  At the core of Alzheimer’s Society’s PPI programme is the Research Network, which consists of 270 people affected by dementia who support dementia research across all stages of the research process, from design to delivery, to dissemination.

Matt reviews for the Involvement & Engagement Journal and his work on PPI has been published in four different research journals.

Claire Hulme

Claire Hulme
Claire Hulme

Claire is Professor of Health Economics and Head of the Academic Unit of Health Economics.  Her research is around the economic evaluation of community programmes spanning the health and social care sectors and economic evaluation alongside clinical trials.  Her current portfolio includes trials in oncology, dentistry, musculoskeletal, stroke and complex interventions.  Her community-based research includes dementia, physical activity and rehabilitation.  In addition to evaluation work, her research interests lie in the areas of health and employment and informal care.

Claire sits on the National Institute for Health Research Technology Assessment Commissioning Board, the Scientific Panel of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy and the HEE/NIHR Integrated Clinical Academic Programme review panel.

Chris North

Chris is Dementia Lead at Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust, having spent 20 years working as a mental health nurse for older people.  He is also amongst the first cohort of Older People’s Nursing Fellows to graduate from Health Education England’s training programme delivered by King’s College, London.  His experience includes leading and developing Memory Assessment Services, Older People’s Community Mental Health Teams, Intensive Home Treatment and Acute Hospital Mental Health Liaison teams for older people with complex morbidities.

He has been or is currently involved in research around the identification and management of delirium in care homes, the experiences of South-Asian families accessing Memory Clinics, the development and implementation of a clinical tool to enhance the detection and management of delirium, dementia and depression for older people in hospital settings, the willingness of family members of people with dementia to adopt a carer role, and a post-diagnostic self-care educational programme for people newly diagnosed with dementia.

Tessa Gutteridge

Tessa Gutteridge
Tessa Gutteridge

Tessa has worked with, been fascinated by and committed to people living with young onset dementia since 1996.  Having researched the impact of this condition on individuals and families, she was instrumental in developing YDUK’s range of award-winning services in Oxfordshire.

She is keen to share what works well farther afield.  Her values and approach are shaped by her personal experience with dementia as well as her background in mental health advocacy and advice work.  This follows an initial career in business and publishing.

Maria Kimina

Maria Kimina
Maria Kimina

Maria Kimina is a Research and Development Manager at Carers UK and leads Carers UK’s research on technology enabled health and care products and services, exploring how they can play a key role in supporting people who care unpaid for a loved one who is older, disabled or seriously ill.

With extensive research and project management expertise, Maria has a long track record of managing research projects focusing on carers’ awareness, perceptions and behaviour in relation to technology enabled health and care products and services, identifying among other things barriers to adoption and potential impact on the quality of life and carers and the people they support.