The Seafarers Hospital Society (SHS) has announced the appointment of a new Chief Executive Officer, Sandra Welch, formerly Chief Operating Officer at the Sailors’ Society and Director of their Programme team.

Welcoming the appointment, SHS Chair Peter McEwen said:

“We are delighted to welcome Sandra Welch as our new CEO and look forward to working with her over the coming years. She brings a wealth of experience of dealing with seafarers, running projects and managing people, which, together with her strategic approach, made her the perfect choice for the job.”

Sandra will be joining the Society in early May, following the retirement of Secretary, Peter Coulson in August of last year. She joined the Sailors’ Society in 2014 following 18 years in a variety of community development roles at The Salvation Army, both in the UK and abroad.

Sandra Welch

Sandra said:

“It is a real privilege to have been appointed CEO of Seafarers Hospital Society. I look forward to joining the Society at this point in its history and taking up the challenge of leading it in furthering the development of its broad range of first-rate health services to the seafaring community in the United Kingdom.”

Sandra’s appointment comes at an interesting and exciting time for the Society, with a number of recent successes in the health development arena, including the SeaFit Programme for fishermen, the creation of the Seafarers Physiotherapy Network and the development of a standard in Mental Health training. With those successes, there have been some significant changes to the role.

Peter McEwen added:

“The role has changed significantly, with a greater emphasis on the ambassadorial aspects of the job. We also envisage more day-to-day involvement in our health development work.

“We’ll be recruiting an administrator to take on some of the governance-related tasks enabling Sandra to focus on team building, strategy development and external relations. We’ll also be looking at how we can use her experience of the merchant navy sector to help us continue to develop our services to this particular group. With our Bicentenary in 2021, we will be looking forward to new projects for all sectors.”