Public appointment: Members appointed to Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS Board

Public appointments news release

The Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care, Neil Gray MSP, today announced the appointment of six Members of Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS Board.


Mr Brian Auld is a Chartered Environmental Health Officer and registered safety professional, and is currently Head of Health, Safety and Sustainability at Scottish Canals. He brings over 20 years’ regulatory, enforcement, and assurance experience gained within the public and third sectors across different industries in Scotland. Brian was one of the first Inspectors appointed during the creation of the Healthcare Environment Inspectorate (HEI) and was responsible for the inspection of NHS services and the regulation of private healthcare. He is the former Director of Professional Development with the Royal Environmental Health Institute of Scotland (REHIS) and Head of Safety, Risk and Compliance with the Church of Scotland General Trustees. Brian is passionate about continuous improvement, organisational governance and risk management and looks forward to bringing his experience to Greater Glasgow and Clyde Health Board as the Whistleblowing Champion member.

Ms Elizabeth Cairns has 30 years’ career experience dedicated to working in the public and third sectors. She is a former Chief Executive of a not-for-profit organisation. Elizabeth has extensive experience in governance, leadership, financial strategy, formulating and implementing strategic plans and priorities, delivering a people focused service and working collaboratively within a multi-agency environment. She is a qualified CIPFA accountant and a LLB Strathclyde University graduate. She has a BA in Business Economics and a post graduate qualification in Mediation and Conflict Resolution.

Mr Martin Cawley has worked in the health and social care sector for around 40 years.  A learning disability nurse by profession, he worked in the NHS for the earlier part of his career before joining the third sector.  Martin has held senior positions in the voluntary sector as Director of Services with Quarriers and spent eight years as CEO of Turning Point Scotland.  He also spent three years as Director for Scotland at the National Lottery Community Fund.  In his most recent role Martin was CEO of Beatson Cancer Charity for five years. During his career he has held a number of non executive roles and been involved in various national working groups and umbrella organisations.  Martin is looking forward to bringing his experience to the NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde Board.

Ms Catherine (Cath) Cooney brings many years’ experience from senior programme and policy leadership roles across the public sector, public health, inequalities-sensitive practice, health and social care, as well as the voluntary sector in Scotland and the UK. From her first role as an NHS Medical Laboratory Scientist, she has held leadership positions across the NHS, and community and third sectors with a particular focus on working in partnership to address the causes and consequences of inequalities, fostering community and stakeholder engagement, and strengthening the voice of lived experience. She recently completed her term as a member of the Advisory Board for Safer Gambling of Great Britain with a focus on public health and lived experience-informed approaches to addressing gambling harms. Cath is currently an Associate Director at the Health and Social Care Alliance Scotland, a Director at the Scottish Leadership Institute, and works independently in supporting leadership development and capabilities in systems change.

Ms Lesley-Ann McDonald graduated from Glasgow University in 1989 and worked in private practice in Glasgow before moving to the public sector as a solicitor for the then Comhairle nan Eilean in 1993. During her career in the Western Isles, she acquired further skills in governance, corporate policy and community planning and was involved in the establishment of health and social care partnerships. Since retiring in 2018 she has volunteered with Clydesdale Foodbank and has been a Board member of Clydesdale Housing Association since 2022. In these roles she has gained insight to the difficulties faced by the most vulnerable in society as well as the impact of positive interventions such as the provision of good quality affordable housing. As an unpaid carer to her elderly father, she has first hand experience of the challenges and opportunities of health and social care integration.  

Ms Karen Turner has over 40 years’ experience working in health, including as Director of Mental Health for NHS England (2015 – 2018) where she oversaw a new plan and funding for the expansion of mental health services in England. She has had different roles in the NHS, in the prevention of poor health and in health policy, and particularly enjoys working with patient partners, with staff, local councils and research academics to deliver effective and compassionate care to patients. Karen is a lay trustee and Honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists. She is Chair of Strength and Learning through Horses, which offers equine therapy and education to young people facing disadvantage. She looks forward to bringing her experience to Greater Glasgow and Clyde Health Board to support health improvement and delivery for its residents.


These appointments will be for four years and will run from 1 July 2024 to 30 June 2028.

These appointments are regulated by the Ethical Standards Commissioner.


These appointments are part-time and attract a remuneration of £9,030 per annum for a time commitment of one day per week.

Other ministerial appointments

Mr Auld, Ms Cairns, Mr Cawley, Ms Cooney and Ms Turner do not hold any other public appointments.

Ms McDonald is also a Member of Lanarkshire NHS Board which attracts renumeration of £13,545 per annum for a time commitment of 1.5 days per week.

Political activity

All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process.  However, in accordance with the original Nolan recommendations, there is a requirement for appointees’ political activity within the last five years (if there is any to be declared) to be made public.   

Mr Auld, Ms Cairns, Mr Cawley, Ms Cooney, Ms McDonald and Ms Turner have had no political activity within the last five years.


NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde is the largest health system in Scotland and one of the largest in the UK.  It is responsible for meeting the health needs of around 1.14m people living in the area, and provides a comprehensive range of community and hospital based services for the population. 

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