Trust Chair is Honorary Graduate from Exeter University
Today (Monday 23 July) the Chair of Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (CFT), Dr. Barbara Vann DL (DSc), joined leading figures from the world of science, sport and literature who received honorary degrees from the University of Exeter at a ceremony held at Truro Cathedral.
Dr. Vann was awarded an honorary science doctorate for her services to children’s mental health; receiving her award alongside novelist Robert McCrum, Natasha Trethewey a former US Poet Laureate, Laura Penhaul leader of the first all-female crew to cross the Pacific and Dr. Andrew Garrad CBE a wind energy pioneer.
Dr. Vann’s career has been dedicated to children and young people. After 23 years as a head-teacher of two secondary schools, she became Chair of CFT in 2015 and was recently elected for a second term. Focussed on the link between health and education, Dr. Vann was instrumental in the establishment of the county’s first integrated health centres as well as reviews of curriculum and styles of teaching and learning that support good health and wellbeing.
Phil Confue, Chief Executive of CFT congratulated Dr. Vann. “It is fitting that Barbara will be Chair of the Trust when we open the county’s first adolescent mental health unit – Sowenna – in May 2019.
“Barbara has made a personal contribution to a number of initiatives which have and will continue to improve the health and wellbeing of young people – it is to her credit that six secondary schools have integrated health centres within the school campus where they are easily accessible to young people. I am delighted to see her contribution recognised in this way.”
“I am overwhelmed by the Honorary Doctorate awarded to me today by the University of Exeter. Enabling children and young people to improve their life chances has been a constant theme during my career. I will continue to strive for change that will enable our children and young people to meet the challenges of life with confidence, enthusiasm and hope” commented Dr. Vann.
A former Governor of Truro and Penwith College, Dr. Vann has chaired the Cornwall Association of Secondary Headteachers, the Cornwall School Centred Initial Teacher Training steering committee and the Schools’ Forum.
She has been a trustee of Falmouth’s National Maritime Museu and the Hall for Cornwall in Truro. Currently she is Chair of the Duchy Health Charity and a patron of the Peninsula Medical Foundation, along with her role at CFT.
In 2008 Dr. Vann was awarded a CCEAM Fellowship and became a Deputy Lieutenant of Cornwall. In 2010 she was awarded the BELMAS Distinguished Service Award. She currently holds an MA from the University of Leicester (1993), a PhD from the University of Tasmania (2006) and has published in academic journals, along with speaking at many international conferences.
Dr. Vann has three sons and seven grandchildren. She prides herself on her long held passion to helping children and young people to be informed decision-makers and agents of change.