As the chief executive of the UK’s largest air ambulance, Midlands Air Ambulance Charity, Hanna Sebright leads a team that delivers life-saving emergency care to more than 2,000 Midlanders each year
BEEN THERE DONE THAT
I grew up in an RAF family in Cyprus, so gained a life-long interest in flying and travel. After university, I joined British Airways cabin crew on long haul 747s. I left to start a family and then joined Capio Healthcare Hospital Group as business development director. In 2004, I founded my own company which developed a network of hospital screens across the UK. In 2008, I sold the business and joined Midlands Air Ambulance Charity.
IT’S WHAT I DO
As well as chief executive for MAAC, I am a board member of Air Ambulances UK and former chair of the Association of Air Ambulances. I proudly lead a dedicated team who raise more than £9million each year with generous support from our volunteers and the communities we serve, as well as local businesses. This enables us to deliver advanced patient care via our three air ambulance helicopters, three rapid response vehicles and critical care car.
WHAT I’D LIKE TO SEE?
With changing patient needs and a year-on-year four per cent increase in demand for our service, it is imperative we don’t stand still. I am committed to tailoring our service to meet demand – for example, to cope with the rising number of stabbings we are called to and the increase in ‘silver trauma’ as the over-50s become more active. To achieve this, we will continue to reinvest donations into clinical care and build resilience to future-proof our charity.
In 2011, I oversaw the charity’s demerger from the NHS which has allowed us to recruit the right people and then develop a clear set of values and culture that we all aspire to achieve. This in turn has created a team culture enabling innovation and development. We have great people working at MAAC. This is my tenth year and in this time I am proud that we have purchased two of our three helicopters, renovated all three of our airbases and invested heavily in state of the art specialist medical equipment.
BIGGEST LESSON LEARNED
Never forget your roots, personally and professionally. We are a regional charity funded by our donors, volunteers and supporters in the communities we serve. I remain humbled by the selflessness of these people who give to us without having a huge amount themselves. I have also learned that when there is a problem, deal with it head on and don’t to push it down the road hoping it will go away – it never does!
WHAT I LIKE ABOUT BRUM
It’s wonderful to have all the city has to offer on your doorstep, yet within 15 minutes you can find yourself in the peace and beauty of the countryside.
Exercise is the best way to wind down – I love my spin classes and body pump. My sons have left home now, but my greatest joy is when my husband and sons are all together. I also enjoy canal walks and cycling outside – it’s good for the soul!