A letter of 7 May 2009 from NHS East of England Chairman Keith Pearson JP to chairs throughout the region encourages them to “identify one of your non executive directors to act as a Board level champion for sustainable development and to work with your executive lead.”
As regular readers of this blog site will know, it is not the job of non-executives to ‘mimic’ their executive board member colleagues.
The challenge has to be persuading the BOARD to champion whatever it needs to champion. The board would then require its chief executive to act in line with its own requirements (i.e. that which is important to the board).
Whilst Mr Pearson’s ‘request’ is undoubtedly well meaning, no non-executive director should undertake managerial work – it compromises the independence of the role.