The Academy Team


President, Prof. Brendan Cooper

I have been Consultant Clinical Scientist in Respiratory and Sleep Physiology at University Hospital Birmingham for over 13 years and I also hold an Honorary Professorship in Respiratory & Sleep Physiology with the University of Birmingham. My professional work has spanned over 30 years and involves acting at consultant level as part of the respiratory medicine team and requires my clinical involvement in direct patient care, overseeing one of the largest respiratory physiology departments in Europe and being responsible for teaching and researching in respiratory physiology at both a national and international level.

I have a had a fairly unique role in my profession in that I have been a leader of my professional body for over 25 years, initially as Honorary Chair and more recently President of the Association for Respiratory Technology & Physiology. Furthermore, I have extended my professional leadership profile internationally through the European Respiratory Society as a Group Chair and then as Head of an Assembly (Allied Respiratory Professionals). This in turn has lead to opportunities to be a leader on numerous global respiratory physiology task forces on standards, reference values and international training courses. I have an international reputation as a researcher and clinical specialist in respiratory physiology split between lung function testing and sleep breathing disorders. My work in this area has recently been recognised with my award as a Fellow of the European Respiratory Society. I am the first UK healthcare scientist to be given this prestigious title.

My research career has spanned 34 years and has been varied in respect of; subjects (respiratory physiology, sleep, metabolism and exercise in humans); full-time and part-time research appointments, and my role as a biologist, physiologist, clinician and investigator. I have over 150 peer-reviewed published papers and a further 150 scientific abstracts to my name, and I am actively involved with grant applications (NIHRBLF, etc.), research trials, and I support both undergraduate and postgraduate research staff at the university. I also lead a modest research programme in the Lung Function & Sleep department at QEHB where we are investigating new technologies for assessing breathing and lung function in the early stages of respiratory disease as well as validating commercial diagnostic equipment. I lead a programme of research looking at the acute effects of E-cigarettes on lung function and analysing breathing patterns in disease.

I am proud to be President of AHCS and endeavour to bring all scientists in healthcare together to express “One Voice” on behalf of all our professions.

Head of Business Management, Keisha Asamoah

Keisha is responsible for business planning and delivery; supporting policy development and implementation.

GDPR Consultant, Christine Gifford

Christine is the AHCS GDPR consultant and provides advice on processes and protocol, as well as providing up to date training to our staff.

Leadership Ambassador – Ruth Thomsen

Ruth is the Scientific Director, NHSE London and works with the Academy to promote leadership within the Healthcare Science Community.  Ruth instigated the Practical Skills in Education and Leadership course, which has been delivered to over 450 healthcare scientists since implementation.

Head of Standards, Elaine Jenkins

Elaine is the Head of Standards with oversight of the Academy’s Standards, its Equivalences processes, and quality assurance matters.

Elaine also undertakes project work with other organisations on behalf of the Academy, currently with the Centre for Advancing Practice where she is Lead for the ePortfolio (supported) Route.

STP Lead, Lynne Smith

Lynne is the AHCS STP Programme Lead for the Certificate of Attainment and the Certificate of Equivalence.

Assistant to CEO, Paul Lawton MSc BSc

Job share – Deputy Registrar


Head of Regulation (Deputy Registrar), Jude Savage

Jude is the Head of Regulation (Deputy Registrar) for the AHCS and is responsible for the day-to-day efficient management of the Academy’s registers and directories. This includes the core regulatory functions: registration; fitness to practise; and education quality assurance.

Jude has been working in Healthcare Regulation since 2018, having previously worked in the NHS as a Respiratory and Sleep Physiologist, at the University Hospital Birmingham Trust (2003-2017). She also was a founding faculty member of the University Hospital of Birmingham’s Human Factors (HF)Team and as such has extensive knowledge and experience HF in the Healthcare Environment.

Jude has also taught physiology & Clinical practice as a guest lecturer on the University of Wolverhampton’s Practitioner Training Program for Respiratory Physiology. She also holds a voluntary post as a Safeguarding officer for the Lawn Tennis Association.

Before qualifying as a Clinical Physiologist, Jude worked in I.T. for eight years with experience in a number of areas including Education, Telecommunications and Infrastructure.


Life Science Industry Advisor, Clive Powell

Clive advises and supports the Life Science Industry National Credentialing register by ensuring its standards, policies, procedures and guidance are up to date and relevant.

IT Lead, Mark Dixon

Mark manages the security of all IT equipment, maintenance of the email system and document storage as well as the specification and development of new database systems.

Head of Accreditation, Lizanne Steenkamp

Lizanne is the Head of Accreditation for the Academy for Healthcare Science and has over 10 years of experience in Higher Education as well as accreditation, registration, and equivalence in Healthcare Science professions.

Lizanne received both her Bachelor’s degree in Human Genetics and her Honours Degree in Speech Therapy and Audiology from the University of Pretoria in South Africa and completed the PgCert in Professional and Higher Education at Queen Margaret University in Edinburgh. Lizanne worked as a Speech Language Therapist and Audiologist in South Africa before coming to Scotland in 2005. Between 2005 and 2007 she worked as an Audiologist in the National Health Service in Scotland before joining QMU as a lecturer in Audiology in 2007.

Since 2010, she has been involved with the British Academy of Audiology (BAA) and the Registration Council for Clinical Physiology (RCCP) and now the AHCS in a variety of roles focused on accreditation, registration, and equivalence.


Head of Operations, Fiona Fiorentino

Fiona manages the 5 strong administration team, ensuring back office operational functions operate smoothly.  Fiona also manages the website, SharePoint, internal HR processes, and third party contractual arrangements.

Deputy to Head of Operations – HR, Karen Hinde

Karen is an Administrator for the AHCS, supporting the Life Science Industry register and assisting with the management of the HR Platform and Contract Database. Karen also gives administrative support to the Society for Cardiological Science and Technology (SCST).

Data Analyst & Operations Assistant, Will Smith

Within the administration team at AHCS, I work as a Data Analyst and Operations Assistant where my primary focus is to design and build insightful reports and datasets to support new propositions and operational management. I also analyse business performance metrics with a view to improving business operations and service.

Administration Assistant, Marcia Owen

Marcia leads on equivalence administration and facilitates the Education, Standards and Accreditation Panel and undertakes routine register administration.

Assistant to Head of Projects, Milly Brittain

Milly administers the Clinical Research Practitioner Directory and Register routes, as well as providing administration support to external stakeholders and undertaking routine register administration.

Project Co-Ordinator, Teresa Goulsbra

Teresa is responsible for ensuring project plans are maintained and objectives met in accordance with their schedules as well as general register administration that may arise.

AHCS EDI Clinical Fellow, Basit Abdul

Basit is a Healthcare Scientist specialised in Clinical Engineering.

His current CSO EDI fellowship aims to work across a wide range of system partners (e.g. professional bodies, NHS England OCSO and People Directorate) to inform the development of a national strategy and EDI toolkit that can be embedded at all levels to help support, guide and create a truly inclusive workforce across HCS.

Basit holds two MSc’s in Medical Electronics and in Healthcare Leadership. His first degree is Electronics Engineering. He has won several awards for his engineering, innovation, and project management skills, including the AHCS Award for Inspiring the Healthcare Science Workforce of the Future, and The Healthcare Science Overall Winner, AH Awards 2021.