Trustees and Council Members

Our Trustees

Sir Edmund Verney


Sir Edmund graduated from York University and pursued a career as a chartered surveyor before returning home to Claydon Estate to administer the estate’s mix of farming, forestry and residential and commercial properties. 

Sir Edmund is now retired and the estate is managed by his son and daughter in law. 

Sir Edmund has held various offices during his lifetime including Prime Warden of the Woshipful Company of Dyers (2001) and High Sheriff of Buckinghamshire (1998).

Claydon House has been Sir Edmund’s family’s home since 1620 and is where Florence Nightingale lived for much of her later life after her sister, Parthenope, married Sir Edmund’s great great grandfather. The house is now owned by the National Trust and The Claydon House Trust (of which Sir Edmund is a Trustee) owns and administers a large collection of Florence Nightingale’s letters and memorabilia.

Tom Bonham Carter

Trustee and Acting Chair

Tom attended Magdalene College Cambridge gaining an MA in economics. On graduating he attended the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and served with the Irish Guards. On leaving military service, Tom pursued a career in investment management working for several global companies both in the UK and overseas, rising to chief executive level.   

As an investment manager, one of the key areas of Tom’s interest was the effectiveness of senior management and their Boards in the development and implementation of corporate strategy, and in turn how those strategies met the interests of institutional investors’ needs.

In 2006 Tom co-founded Armstrong Bonham Carter working with Boards to help them improve their effectiveness. In 2017 He founded The Effective Board LLP (TEB) to continue this work. He has conducted a substantial number of board reviews for FTSE 100, FTSE 250, FTSE Smaller Companies, and private companies across a wide range of sectors. He has also advised some charities on governance issues. Tom has a direct family connection to Florence Nightingale; the Bonham Carter’s having being Trustees of the Nightingale Fund through the generations.

Our Council Members

Caroline Gale

Vice Chair

Caroline started her career by undertaking her orthopaedic nurse training but left shortly after to pursue an alternative career and bring up a family. Caroline returned to nursing as a mature student in 1997 and undertook her training via the “Project 2000” route. After working on acute medical wards, medical assessment and the Emergency Department, Caroline then moved to work in Palliative care in both the acute and hospice settings. She has recently completed an MSc in Advanced Practice, supported by the Nightingale Fund, and is working as a Consultant Nurse for Older People

Steve King FCCA


Steve has been an accountant within general practice throughout his working life.  Currently working for Ensors Accountants LLP in Ipswich as manager of the Business Services Team.  The 25 person strong team is responsible for clients cross a variety of sectors.  Away from work Steve coaches a grassroots football team and enjoys running. 

Judy Cowling

Council Member

Judy started working for the NHS as a cleaner and domestic supervisor until she was old enough to commence nurse training at St Thomas’ in 1970. After registration she gained staff nurse experience on general wards in the UK and the Bahamas, prior to taking up a medical ward sister’s post. During her spare time, she studied for a BA (Hons) degree with the Open University, graduating in the same year that she completed a Certificate in Education at Cardiff University. After 3 years teaching pre and post registration students, mainly in social sciences, she returned to the wards as Clinical Nurse Specialist in Elderly Care, with responsibility as a ward sister and the development of the elderly care unit. During this period, she was seconded to the NHS Executive, working on the Older Person’s Modernisation Programme. After her secondment she set up a discharge facilitation service in her acute hospital, moving to a different Trust as Matron for Surgery before retiring from the NHS. After retirement she worked as Nurse Manager for a care company providing home care and temporary staff. She continues to work for the company with an audit role, and on an ad hoc basis.

Tim Yorston

Council Member

Tim has worked as a nurse since 1986 and has practiced in the speciality of urgent and emergency care since 1990. The majority of this time has been as an Emergency Nurse Practitioner (ENP), nurse manager and more recently as a consultant nurse since 2018. His area of interest and expertise is urgent care, including the autonomous clinical management of patients with unscheduled minor injuries and illness. Tim holds a MSc in Advanced Nursing Practice and is an independent prescriber. He is currently Consultant Nurse and joint Trust professional Lead for Advanced Practice.

Sarah-Jo Davies

Council Member

Sarah-Jo trained at St Thomas’ Hospital and worked as a School Nurse. She currently works for a Children’s Charity supporting families. She has worked in management within Children and Family Centres, worked for the Youth Offending Service, Age UK and in Governance and Quality at a BUPA hospital. Sarah-Jo has also worked as a consultant for a disability charity. She served as a Trustee of the Nightingale Fellowship; a former Chair of Governors at a large secondary school and is a Freeman of the City of London belonging to both an ancient Livery Company and the modern Company of Nurses.

Miranda Sykes

Council Member

Miranda studied midwifery as a mature student, qualifying from the Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery & Palliative Care, King’s College London in 2014. Since this time, she has worked across all areas of midwifery, including both community and hospital-based care. Her specialist areas are mental health and safeguarding, and she has spent the last four years working across both fields as a member of the team supporting vulnerable women. She is currently Joint Lead Specialist Midwife for Mental Health at a London teaching hospital. Miranda is passionate about providing the highest level of care and has undertaken training and workshops in trauma and counselling to support this. She can also regularly be found teaching; both internally to staff and externally to women as part of antenatal and birth preparation classes.  Miranda has worked as the lead on-site representative for the Royal College of Midwives for six years, helping staff members to navigate complex and stressful employment issues.

Jennifer Kalitsi

Council Member

Jennifer qualified as a registered children’s nurse in 2002 from London Southbank University after spending 15 years in corporate banking. She completed a Master of Science in Advanced Nursing Practice in 2015 from the University of Keele and an Independent Prescribing qualification from Kings College London. Her nursing history covers paediatric intensive care, community children’s nursing and children’s continuing care nursing. Jennifer specialised in Paediatric Endocrinology and now works as a lecturer at Kings College London and leads the MSc pre-registration Nursing with registration as a Children’s Nurse programme.

Shona Cornthwaite

Council Member

Shona has spent the majority of her nursing career working as a Specialist Community Public Health Nurse. Having completed adult nurse training at St Thomas’ and post graduate paediatric nurse training at the Evelina Children’s Hospital, she travelled to Australia where she worked in a Special Care Baby Unit whilst also using this time as an opportunity to travel. On returning to the UK, Shona undertook a Post Graduate Diploma in Health Visiting at London South Bank University, initially practising in the Clapham and Streatham areas of Lambeth. Thereafter she worked as a health visitor across a number of different locations in central and north England all with varied and challenging community health needs, also becoming involved in heath visiting development at a local level. Shona completed a BSc in Social Policy and Administration at the LSE and a MA in Health Service Management. Following a brief spell as a nurse lecturer she returned to clinical practice and worked for a number of years as a Designated Nurse for Children Looked After within a large Safeguarding Team developing expertise in this area and an interest in the importance of supporting vulnerable young people, leading her to train and work as a Family Nurse Practitioner supporting pregnant teenagers.  

Sue Martin

Honorary Secretary

Sue has had a long career in nursing specialising in orthopaedics and trauma earlier in her career and palliative care latterly. She gained a Masters in Palliative Care from Kings College London in 2014. Sue has always had an interest in training and practice development and designed and implemented a five year project supporting care homes with end of life care quality improvement. She currently works as a clinical trainer at a hospice. ​

Would you like to become a council member?

The Nightingale Fund welcomes applications from individuals with current or previous experience of healthcare delivery. 

The role is a voluntary position and requires that members commit to attending three Council meetings a year and actively contribute to the operation of the charity. 

If you would like to be considered for the role of Council member, please send a CV with covering letter to the Honorary Secretary at:



On 30 June 2023 the Nightingale Fund and the Florence Nightingale Foundation (FNF) became one charity. Given both organisation’s connections to one of the world’s most famous and influential nurses, it is a fitting union and a privilege to be entrusted with the guardianship of funds raised directly in honour of Florence Nightingale’s work.