Advanced Care Research Centre

The ACRC Advisory Board

The ACRC Advisory Board is responsible for the governance of the Advanced Care Research Centre.

The Advanced Care Research Centre Advisory Board was created to ensure that the outputs and benefits expected of the ACRC are realised. The board membership's representatives' services contribute to the overall strategy of the ACRC and the portfolio of workpackages it delivers. The board's mandate is to provide collective direction to the ACRC through their support and challenge at board meetings, give guidance to the University of Edinburgh, the Academic Lead and the ACRC Manager regarding leadership of the ACRC and its workstreams on a day-to-day basis and to provide guidance and advice for the way in which the ACRC operates from an ethical, public engagement, safeguarding, financial sustainability and expenditure through oversight of policy and legal compliance.  


Board Members

Prof Sir Lewis Ritchie OBE FRSE (Chair)

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Professor Sir Lewis Ritchie OBE FRSE is James Mackenzie Professor of General Practice at the University of Aberdeen. He also holds Honorary Professorial Chairs at the University of Edinburgh and the University of the Highlands & Islands (UHI).

He has previously served as a Principal General Practitioner, Consultant in Public Health Medicine and Director of Public Health in Grampian. He has led/chaired numerous NHS Scotland/Scottish Government/Academic Advisory Committees and Reports. He has received separate UK National Professional Awards in: General Practice/Primary Care; Public Health; Computing Science; Cardiovascular Prevention and Internationally, in General Practice/Primary Care. 

He was appointed OBE in 2001 for services to general practice and primary care in Scotland and subsequently knighted in 2011 for services to the NHS in Scotland.

Prof Jill Manthorpe CBE (Deputy Chair)

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Jill Manthorpe is Professor of Social Work at King's College London and Director of the NIHR Policy Research Programme in Health and Social Care Workforce. She has a long-standing interest in gerontological policy research and practice development across the UK and is visiting professor at National Universities of Singapore and Melbourne, and Queen's University Belfast. Jill is a Trustee of a large not for profit care home provider.

Prof David Grayson CBE

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Prof David Grayson CBE has a long-term, personal  interest and involvement in Social Care, Good Later Life, Disability Rights, Inclusion and Caring. He is an ambassador for the Age Irrelevance campaign. He is the immediate past chair of Carers UK and of Leonard Cheshire Disability. Previously, David chaired the social housing and extra-care housing provider Housing 21 and was the chair of the UK’s National Disability Council (forerunner of the Disability Rights Commission and the Equality and Human Rights Commission). Professionally, David is Emeritus Professor of Corporate Responsibility at Cranfield School of Management, adviser to businesses on sustainable business and author of numerous books on Responsible Business and Corporate Sustainability. 

Prof Kamlesh Khunti CBE

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Kamlesh Khunti is Professor of Primary Care Diabetes and Vascular Medicine at the University of Leicester, UK. Professor Khunti is also Director of the UK National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) in Applied Research Collaborations (ARC) East Midlands and the National NIHR ARC Lead for MultiMorbidity, Director of Centre for BME Health and Director of The Real World Evidence Unit. He is a NIHR Senior Investigator and Principal Investigator on several major national and international studies.​​​

Prof Irene McAra-McWilliam OBE

Professor Irene McAra-McWilliam OBE

Irene McAra-McWilliam has international experience of creative leadership having worked as Director of Design Research for multinational Philips Electronics and Professor of Interaction Design at The Royal College of Art. She is Deputy Director Research & Innovation at The Glasgow School of Art and is responsible for establishing GSA’s Highlands and Islands Campus and the GSA’s new Innovation School. She was awarded the OBE in recognition of her work in Higher Education, Innovation and Design.

Philomena O’Malley 

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Phil is pleased to join the Advisory Board and to be a voice supporting people in later life. She believes that older adults are currently overlooked, under supported, and need to be respected and recognised as part of an inclusive and caring society. Phil is particularly aware of the skills and abilities that older people have and believes that these need to be acknowledged in the community. 

In her professional life, Phil worked as a social worker and then a therapist until she retired at the age of 70. 

Ian C Ritchie CBE, FREng, FRSE, FBCS

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Ian Ritchie is the non-executive Chairman of Tern plc, Computer Applications Service, and Krotos; he is a board director of Shotscope Ltd., and was Chairman of iomart Group plc from 2008-2018. He serves on the board of the National Theatre of Scotland, and the Scottish Council for Development and Industry (SCDI).

He founded OWL in 1984 which pioneered hypertext technology (a forerunner to the World Wide Web) and which was sold to Panasonic in 1989. Since then he has been involved in over 50 start-up high-tech businesses.

His writes a column in Scottish Business Insider magazine and his TED talk has been viewed over 600,000 times.

Debbie Smith 

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Debbie is passionate about making radical improvements to the quality of life of older adults.  She is keen to support making step change improvements to add not just years to life but quality of life to years! She believes that this needs to be achieved through full engagement with people with relevant lived experience. 

Professionally, Debbie worked in senior positions in health, social care and housing for people in later life for over 35 years. She also has lived experience of providing support and direct care for her parents who experienced long term conditions and dementia.