County Council health chief to retire

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One of Hampshire’s top health chiefs will leave his role this summer.

The director of adults’ health and care is responsible for enabling the people of Hampshire to stay well and live independently and for supporting the most vulnerable within our communities.

Graham Allen has carried out this role since May 2016 but will retire at the end of August. Mr Allen qualified as a social worker in 1994 and has held different practitioner and managerial roles, working in criminal justice and social care.

Under his management, the most recent plan involved closing seven care homes in the county as part of the controversial £173m transformation project to update the state of the houses and expand or refurbish them.

Hampshire County Council has confirmed that the director will retire at the end of August and be replaced by Jess Hutchinson, currently assistant director for younger adults and principal social worker at the council.

A spokesperson of Hampshire County Council said: “Following a robust assessment and appointment process, the county council’s cross-party member appointment panel unanimously agreed on Wednesday, May 22nd, to the appointment of Jess Hutchinson as director of adults’ health and care.

“Currently, the local authority’s assistant director for younger adults and principal social worker, Jess, will take over from Graham when he retires at the end of August this year.”

Mrs Hutchinson started out working as a volunteer for a young woman with physical disabilities and then supported people to move out of long-stay hospitals.

She qualified as a social worker in 1998, working with people with learning disabilities. Since then, she has remained in Hampshire County Council in various management and leadership roles, reaching 25 years of service.

The director of adults’ health and care and deputy chief executive were among 38 county council staff members who were paid more than £100,000 in 2022/23.

According to the Taxpayers’ Alliance Rich List, published on April 9th 2024, Graham Allen, director of adults’ health and care and deputy chief executive, earned £178,640 last year.

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