Dame Marianne Griffiths is in her twelfth year as chief executive of Western Sussex Hospitals and often says that she has the best job in the world. She has led the trust from its creation from a merger in 2009 to being awarded Foundation Trust status four years later and in 2019 becoming the first acute trust to be rated Outstanding in all five areas inspected by health watchdog the Care Quality Commission.
Originally from Limerick, in Ireland, Marianne began her career training as a nurse, before reading Psychology at the University of Exeter and completing Chartered Accountancy examinations with Peat Marwick, now KPMG.
Marianne joined the acute provider sector in 2009 from NHS South East Coast, where she was Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Commissioning and Delivery, having previously been Chief Executive at Kent and Medway Strategic Health Authority. Her other roles in the NHS have also included a joint appointment in West Sussex as Head of Commissioning Social Services and Director of Strategic Development for the Health Authority.
In April 2017, Marianne also became chief executive of Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust when, at the request of NHS Improvement, she and her fellow board members entered into a three-year joint management contract to lead the teaching hospital and regional trauma centre, while continuing their tenure of Western Sussex Hospitals. In January 2018, BSUH was awarded a Good rating by the CQC, marking one of the most successful turnarounds of a trust placed in special measures by the health watchdog.
In 2018 Marianne was named the top chief executive in the Health Service Journal’s ranking of NHS bosses, a title she retained in 2019, having been made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in the New Year Honours List for services to the NHS.