Around three million people in the UK have kidney disease

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Our trustees

Jeremy Hughes

Professor Jeremy Hughes - Chair of trustees

Jeremy Hughes is Professor of Experimental Nephrology at the University of Edinburgh and Honorary Consultant in the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary.

He joined the Kidney Research UK Research Grants Committee in 2011 and became Chair of the committee in 2013. He became a Trustee of Kidney Research UK in 2018.

He has previously held MRC and Wellcome Trust Research Fellowships in London, Seattle and Edinburgh. His research interests are broad and have primarily focussed upon the study of inflammation, scarring and healing within the kidney.

He is very much involved with medical student education and is Head of Year 3 at Edinburgh Medical School. He is also Programme Lead for the Health Sciences degree programme that aims to provide students with the skills to become future (maybe renal!) researchers.

Outside work, he loves music, cinema, theatre and walking the dog on the beach.

Adrian Akers

Adrian Akers

Adrian retired as a garden designer, having previously worked in the City of London for 30 years managing investment portfolios, latterly for family trusts, universities and a wide range of charities.

Married with two adult children, he plays tennis, real tennis and golf. His other interests include gardening, genealogy, investment, travelling and mountain walking.

Sunil Bhandari

Professor Sunil Bhandari

Sunil has been an NHS Consultant since 2000, having worked at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in Sydney in renal medicine, before moving to the deprived area of Hull and East Yorkshire, with the purpose of making a difference to the lives of people with kidney disease.

He has a combined interest in teaching and research, serving as co-director of the UK Advanced Nephrology Course and is current vice chair of the Renal Association Education and Training Committee. He is also the International Director for the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh aiming to improve healthcare, training and education worldwide.
He has been involved in research, both clinical and basic science that focuses on delaying renal progression, improving anaemia management and understanding the mechanisms around why the heart fails in renal disease.Sunil is a keen water skier and has a passion for DIY.

David Hughes

David Hughes

David has been an NHS Consultant since 1993 looking after children with kidney diseases. After training in paediatric nephrology in Glasgow and Toronto, he took up his first consultant post at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool. In 2005 he moved to the Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Glasgow.

David was the national clinical lead during the initial five years establishing the Scottish Paediatric Renal and Urology Network. This government-supported initiative established a national managed clinical network delivering specialist paediatric renal services closer to home in all paediatric centres across Scotland.

In 2015 David was elected President of the British Association for Paediatric Nephrology. During his three-year tenure he also served as a trustee of the Renal Association.

David has witnessed exciting developments in scientific and clinical research in UK paediatric nephrology through his consultant career. He has been an active supporter of and participant in multi-centre research led by his clinical colleagues nationally. He believes that the integration of research findings into paediatric clinical practice is a key part of improving everyday care to children. Research and clinical networks have afforded an opportunity both to collaborate in research and to disseminate learning.

David’s interests include travel, photography, music and, as a guilty pleasure, reading crime novels.

Deirdre Jennings

Deirdre Jennings

Deirdre Jennings is an experienced Managing Director and Consultant in Financial Services and Fintech industry working across Asia and Europe. She has a background in research with a PhD in Monte Carlo Simulations of Chemical Systems and is currently studying for a professional certificate in accounting.

Deirdre’s partner, Jamie, was diagnosed with kidney failure in 2015, accelerating their plans to move back from Singapore to UK.

Both Deirdre and Jamie love to travel and have arranged holiday dialysis across Asia and Europe.

Tom Kelly

Tom Kelly

Tom joined Kidney Research UK as a Trustee in December 2016. He works for an US investment bank in London, where he manages a Change Delivery Team supporting the delivery of the firm’s strategic transformation agenda. He has worked in financial services and communications for over five years, with a variety of roles covering risk management, regulatory compliance, commodities and operational transformation.

Prior to entering the private sector Tom served for 12 years as an officer in the British Army, including operational tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, which culminated in being selected as an instructor at the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst.

He is married with two children. His daughter has chronic kidney disease, resulting from trauma at birth, and he is passionate about paediatric research and supporting families whose children have renal conditions.

Professor Liz Lightstone

Professor Liz Lightstone

Liz is Professor of Renal Medicine at Imperial College London and based at the Hammersmith Hospital where she has been a consultant renal physician since 1995. She studied at Cambridge and King's College Hospital Medical School, trained in Renal Medicine at the Hammersmith and did her PhD at UCL, funded by the MRC.  She then won a clinician scientist fellowship from the MRC and returned to what was then the Royal Postgraduate Medical School and has never left!

Her research interests are broad but largely focus on improving the outcomes for patients with glomerulonephritis, especially that due to lupus; and to helping women with kidney disease plan and have successful pregnancies. She is considered an international expert in these areas and has contributed to guidelines in both areas, most recently for the British Society of Rheumatology for Lupus and for NICE and the Renal Association for pregnancy.

Liz has also had a longstanding interest in kidney disease in the BAME community and wrote the ABLE report for the charity back in 2001. She has been delighted to see the launch of the Health Inequalities report in 2019, which has a much broader remit.

She is a passionate advocate of clinicians being trained in research, both basic and translational, and through previous and current roles has actively supported and helped develop academic training programmes for foundation doctors and renal trainees at Imperial and in North West Thames colleges.

Outside of work, Liz is a keen traveller – and in the last few years has enjoyed exploring Sri Lanka, India, Thailand, Australia and Alaska as well as many European cities closer to home. She also enjoys theatre, cinema, live music and one day plans to try glamping at Glastonbury!

Julia Moross

Julia Moross

"I am married with three adult children, having grown up and studied in the North East of England before moving to London to qualify as a Chartered Accountant specialising in tax.

"My son was born with a kidney ailment and was under the care of Dr Richard Trompeter at Great Ormond Street Hospital until the age of 19, before transferring to Professor Alan Salama at the London Clinic for ongoing care.

"For more than 20 years, I have been actively involved with paediatric kidney research and during that time held the position of Secretary, Trustee and latterly Treasurer of Kids Kidney Research.

"I split my time living in London and Los Angeles, and enjoy live music events, theatre, hiking and horse riding in both cities."

Professor Jill Norman

Dr Jill Norman

"I trained in London doing a first degree in zoology at UCL and then a PhD in cancer biology from Imperial Cancer Research Fund (now Cancer Research UK)/University of London.

"I then went to the USA to do post-doctoral work initially at the University of Colorado where I worked on the role of steroids in embryonic development of the urinary tract. This work continued at the University of California in San Francisco.

"I did a second post-docorate at the University of Virginia working on epigenetic regulation of gene expression. A faculty appointment at the University of California in Los Angeles brought about a transition to nephrology and led to a long-standing interest in the pathogenesis of chronic kidney disease.

"After 11 years in the US I returned to the UK to take up a position in the Centre for Nephrology at UCL where I have built up a research programme investigating the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying progressive scarring (fibrosis) of the kidney.

"I have served on a number of committees related to renal research and education and am an active member of the Renal Association, currently serving as Chair of the Research Committee.

"Outside my academic interests I am an active volunteer and work with a number of charities. For the past three years and a half years I have served as a Trustee of the Samaritans Central London Branch."

Iain Pearson

Iain Pearson

Iain retired from Shell International Petroleum. Over some 36 years, he worked in a variety of business roles including as head of Product Management for Lubricants and Global Process Owner for Shell’s commercial customer processes.

Married with one adult daughter, Iain enjoys all sports and still regularly plays golf and – rather geriatric – hockey.

In 2012, Iain’s father died from kidney failure triggered by vasculitis. Iain himself was born with one kidney and, some 15 years ago, was diagnosed with IgA Nephropathy.

Federica Pizzasegola

Federica Pizzasegola

Federica joined Kidney Research UK as a Trustee in September 2015. She has years of experience in Management Consulting across several industries such as oil, banking and insurance and most recently as Head of Transformation for a major UK financial institution.

She volunteers in the charity sector as a senior project manager and, with a passion for medical research, she is currently studying part-time for a Biomedicine Degree.

She is the mother of two girls and spends the majority of her free time at London Zoo!

David Prosser

David Prosser

David received a kidney from his sister Sylvia in 1987 at The Royal London Hospital, after dialysing for two years. Married in 1982, his wife Sarah and he have three healthy daughters, all born after his transplant. They live in Hertfordshire.

David is a Geography graduate (Bristol, 1981) and he has a Masters Degree in Creative Writing (Cambridge, 2016) and a Masters Degree in Dramatic Writing from Central Saint Martins in London (Distinction, 2018).

A Chartered Accountant by training, in 2013 David left the City of London after a career of 32 years at PwC, where he was a Senior Partner.

David is Chairman of the Board of Governors at The Princess Helena College near Hitchin.

He enjoys playing tennis, keeping fit, going to the theatre, music, and watching rugby and cricket.

Read more of David's story.

Caroline Savage

Caroline Savage

Caroline retired from GlaxoSmithKline where she was Vice President and Head of the Experimental Medicine Unit that facilitated early clinical development of potential new medicines.

Joining industry in 2010 provided unique experiences to witness firsthand how new medicines are developed. Prior to that, from 1998 Caroline was Professor of Nephrology at the University of Birmingham and a consultant in the NHS from 1993. She trained in nephrology at the Hammersmith Hospital and Royal Postgraduate Medical School.

From 2005-2008, Caroline was a Trustee of Kidney Research UK and has also been a member of the Kidney Research UK Grants Committee. Her own research interests have included how inflammatory and immune diseases, such as vasculitis and lupus, can affect the kidneys. She served as Academic Vice President of the Renal Association for three years from 2007. She is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences.

Caroline is a keen sailor – during the summer of 2018 she sailed around the UK and crossed Biscay to northern Spain. Participating in park runs, hiking and skiing provide fun in the winter months. She contributes to her local community as a Parish Councillor and is keen to champion diversity in both social and workplace activities.

Dr Adnan Sharif

Dr Adnan Sharif

Dr Adnan Sharif is a Consultant Transplant Nephrologist at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham.

He graduated from the University of Edinburgh in 2002 and underwent his medical and nephrology training in Cardiff and Birmingham respectively, before starting his consultant post in 2011 with a special interest in kidney transplantation.

He retains an active research focus and is currently Chief Investigator on a number of prospective cohort and randomized clinical trials related to dialysis and kidney transplantation. In addition to his clinical and research interests, he is the secretary of the non-government organization, Doctors Against Forced Organ Harvesting (DAFOH), which campaigns against illegal and unethical organ procurement around the globe and the group was nominated for the 2016 Nobel Peace Prize for its work in this area.

He also sits on the steering committee for Give A Kidney, a registered charity that promotes non-directed altruistic kidney donation and is a member of the National BAME Transplantation Alliance that seeks to promote blood, stem cell and organ donation from minority ethnic groups in the UK.

Charlie Thomson

Dr Charles Tomson

Charlie has been an NHS Consultant looking after people with kidney disease since 1991. He is now based in Newcastle upon Tyne, having previously spent 21 years in Bristol.

He served on the Research Grants Committee at Kidney Research UK from 2003-2007. In 2003-4 he spent a year at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement in Boston, USA. When he returned from the USA he became Chair of the UK Renal Registry, and then President of the Renal Association.

He has been involved in research on several topics, including variation in the quality of kidney care from centre to centre. His major interest is in understanding how to ensure that the results of clinical research are reliably translated into action in routine clinical practice.

He is a keen cyclist. plays saxophone, clarinet and piano, and likes growing vegetables.

Angela Watt

Angela Watt

I come from a family that has been affected by kidney disease over 5 generations and as well as living with chronic kidney disease (CKD) myself I am also the parent of a child with CKD. My family’s experience has enabled me to see the impact that research has had on the treatment and management of this condition. I am passionate about getting patients actively involved in research and ensuring they have access to the best evidence based care available.

Professionally I am a registered nurse and have worked in renal care for almost 20 years, firstly in the Shetland Islands and now in my home town of Newcastle. I am a member of the Renal Association and the Association of Nephrology Nurses UK. I also have a BA Hons degree in Literature.

I am married with 3 children. Away from work I enjoy reading, going to the theatre, travelling and watching cricket and football.