School of Business

Cheryl Davenport

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Cheryl has 34 years’ experience as a leader in the public sector, private sector, and in membership bodies in both the UK and USA.

Originally an NHS graduate management trainee, during the early part of her career she led clinical services such as pharmacy, physiotherapy, anaesthetics and ITU, in hospitals in Norfolk, Derbyshire, and Tyne and Wear.

Between 1999 and 2005 she was a senior health care consultant at PricewaterhouseCoopers and then worked abroad, as the Executive Director for the Massachusetts Psychiatric Society, where she was appointed Chair of the American Psychiatric Association’s national Executive Director’s Network.

On returning the UK, between 2005 and 2014 she held Board Director roles in the NHS in the East Midlands with portfolios spanning strategy, policy, commissioning, and business development, in primary care, community services and mental health services.

In 2014 she was jointly appointed Leicestershire’s Director of Health and Care Integration, by the County Council and the County’s two NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups. She directed Leicestershire’s (£60m) Better Care Fund, a multiagency transformation programme focused on health, care, housing, and prevention, working closely with all tiers of local government, the NHS and many other partners, winning a Local Government Chronicle national award for innovation in the integration of health and housing.

In May 2020 Cheryl took the helm as Managing Director of the East of England Local Government Association (EELGA), a politically led membership organisation supporting the leadership teams of the fifty local authorities within Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Essex.

During her tenure as MD of EELGA, she played a pivotal role in coordinating the regional response to the Covid pandemic and revitalised EELGA’s policy and advocacy programme, working with central government and many regional partners tackling Covid recovery, economic growth, inequalities and levelling up, climate change and green energy, housing, and multiple national migration programmes, as well as transforming EELGA’s entire core membership offer and redeveloping EELGA’s commercial strategy.

In 2019 she was made Honorary Professor of Health and Life Sciences at De Montfort University

An MA alum of the University of Leicester, she is also an active and long-standing member of the Business Advisory Board of the University of Leicester’s School of Business.

Cheryl has a BA (University of East Anglia 1990) and MA (University of Leicester 2010), both in English Literature.

Read about our other Business Advisory Board members

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