It is with great sadness that Manx Care can confirm that our Non-Executive Board Director, Vanessa Walker, has passed away following a period of illness. Vanessa was diagnosed with cancer in February 2021 and, since then, has fought her illness with incredible strength, grace and determination.
We would like to take this opportunity to offer our sincere condolences to Vanessa’s family and friends who are very much in our thoughts at this time.
As a Non-Executive Director, Vanessa was a remarkable asset, bringing so many different skills and perspectives to the Board of Manx Care. First and foremost she was a nurse, with empathy and care at the centre of everything she did. Secondly, she had extensive experience of working in Local Government, specialising in governance and organisational culture, in the Isle of Man Civil Service leading the Management Advisory Service and as an elected Councillor in East Yorkshire, chairing the Health and Wellbeing Board. All of these attributes were backed up by a strong academic record, alongside her many nursing qualifications. In addition to her very impressive career, she was deeply and personally wedded to the Isle of Man with a house and family on the Island, as well as her many years spent working here – so we got at least six people in Vanessa for the price of one!
But perhaps more than all of these achievements was the value of Vanessa as a person, exuding warmth, wisdom, goodwill – and a wicked sense of humour. She was also very brave and, despite serious illness, continued to play a full role in Manx Care as Chair of our Quality and Safety Committee. At a time when many people would close to shrink into themselves, Vanessa chose to travel, visit new places and thoroughly enjoy every day available to her.
The Board has lost a great colleague, the Island has lost a great friend, and we have all lost a great person.
Andrew Foster CBE (Chairman), Teresa Cope (CEO)