Our Industry Ambassadors

Dom Raban

Dom Raban is the co-founder and CEO of Xploro, a patient engagement platform that uses augmented reality, artificial intelligence and games to reduce anxiety for young patients. Dom established Xploro after his daughter had recovered from cancer treatment. He realised that the lack of information she received about treatments, people and places increased her anxiety and has affected her long-term engagement with health services. This led him to the conclusion that age-appropriate information can be a bona fide clinical therapy. Now the award-winning platform is in use in hospitals in the UK, USA, Europe and Africa with global headquarters in Cleveland, Ohio. Dom has been creating ‘stuff’ for over 40 years, from punk fanzines in the 1970s to content for emerging technology platforms now. He’s been in the digital space since the start, building his first website in 1995 and his first 3D virtual environment in 1996. He is also Chair of Corporation Pop, a digital innovation agency that specialises in a user-centred design approach to develop apps, games and software.

Stephen Hamblin

A startup focused on knowledge-based AI and graph-based machine learning for healthcare operations. A technical and operational leader who specialises in building technology and teams, with expertise in AI/ML, data science, software engineering, and the life sciences & digital health. Holds an M.Sc. and Ph.D. in evolutionary biology and spent nearly five years as a postdoctoral researcher before leaving to become a data scientist and entrepreneur. Also advises other startups and is an angel investor in several UK companies.

Hannah Richardson

Hannah Richardson is Senior Manager, Compliance & Regulatory in Health Futures at Microsoft Research. She is involved across a range of policy areas including AI as a medical device, including previously acting as an honorary fellow of the PHG Foundation. At Microsoft Research she works collaboratively with research teams to ensure regulatory compliance, with a focus on data governance, privacy, and responsible AI. Hannah has previously led quality and regulatory for a range of small to medium life science and medical device companies.

Dr Roberto Liddi

Experienced regulatory professional with a demonstrated history of working in the medical device manufacturing industry. Skilled in U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Regulations, Regulatory Strategy, Corrective and Preventive Action (CAPA), Quality Auditing, Risk Management and CE marking. He has experience in a variety of medical device industries, spanning from orthopaedic device, to neurosurgical and3D printed implantable devices, IVD and Software as Medical Device. Strong healthcare services professional with a Doctorate in Biological Sciences focused in Human Biology and Immunolgy from Università degli Studi di Bari. Previous member of Advisory Group to the European Commission and current Chair of the Digital Health Group – ABHI. Caldicott Guardian and DPO listed. Member of the NIHR D4D Industry Committee.

Michael Young

Michael is the founder of Lindus Health, supporting medtech and biotech companies to run transformationally faster clinical trials. He was previously a Special Adviser to the UK Prime Minister, where he advised the UK government on life sciences. He is passionate about improving health outcomes and quality of life for people with long term medical conditions.

Dr Nayan Kalnad

Dr Nayan Kalnad is the CEO of Avegen, a digital healthcare company building transformative Digital Health Products. He has over 20 years of experience in healthcare, beginning his career as a practising medic before transitioning into the world of pharma to work at the forefront of digital health. He understands the challenges facing today’s healthcare innovators from every angle. He is motivated by the needs of the patient, can empathise with the challenges facing clinicians and is energised by how Avegen’s work impacts lives. Nayan studied medicine at Manipal University, one of India’s leading universities and has an MBA from London Business School.

Mandana Ahmadi

Mandana has always been passionate about mental health and how to use technology for social good. She has spent her career seeking a deep understanding of the human mind in order to protect and heal it. Mandana has worked with the International Brain Laboratory, and achieved her PhD in Computational Neuroscience from UCL Gatsby. Mandana is passionate about leveraging technology to create meaningful change and believes that her startup, Alena, can be used as a tool to empower people to take charge of their mental health. Her life’s mission is to make the world a better place for everyone, one person at a time. As founder and CEO of Alena, Mandana is dedicated to tackling the world’s mental health crisis, starting first with social anxiety. Alena is harnessing the power of computational neuroscience to decode the cognitive processes that are involved in social anxiety. The app assesses and measures the health of these cognitive processes and delivers a personalised app-based program.

Phil Kunovski

Phil leads research and development into new smart garment platforms for biosensing within sports, fitness, and medical markets. In this role, as well as successfully managing past and multiple current projects, he is responsible for new technology development, and oversees quality assurance and regulatory affairs, new business development and client relations. Under Phil’s leadership, KYMIRA’s R&D has achieved over £2.8 million in government grant funding across 15 R&D projects, culminating into KYMIRA’s priority smart garment platform, due for launch onto the elite sports performance market in the next year. Phil holds an MEng in Electronic Engineering and Cybernetics, and a PhD in Electronic Engineering from the University of Reading. Phil has skills in product development from initial concept through to prototyping, testing, design for manufacture, writing and licensing of patents; and runs several collaborative, industrial and academic projects; overseeing KYMIRA’s several R&D programmes.

Ian Newington

As Assistant Director, Innovations at LGC grant Management Group, I am actively involved in all our HealthTech programmes (NIHR i4i, SBRI Healthcare, AI Award and NHS England Cancer Programme) and I interact with many innovators, especially SMEs, signposting them to funding, expertise and support for clinical studies. A chemist by training, I joined Kodak European R&D labs, rising to Principal Scientist. In 2005, I joined GE Healthcare Imaging R&D as a Principal Researcher working on novel agents for X-ray, MRI, PET and SPECT imaging, eventually leading the discovery portfolio in neurodegeneration. I am a (co-)inventor on 38 patent applications. In my spare time, I am a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry, a member of UKRI Peer Review College, the External Advisory Boards for CPI and the NHSE Cancer Innovation Programme. I am a mentor for UKRI Future Leaders, NHS Clinical Entrepreneurs and KQ Labs Accelerator.

Jason Brannan

Jason has 24 years direct experience in supporting businesses of all sizes in the development and adoption of their technologies to support healthcare, working across primary, secondary and private healthcare, the private and the public sector, encompassing regional, national and international experience. At the Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre Jason has responsibility for strategy and strategic implementation, including the delivery of the R&D for Business pillar, with a particular interest in engaging research across the wider organisation (university), to ensure holistic delivery to business in supporting mission based strategic and operational road maps. Jason sits on a range of healthcare sector specific and wider regional panels around business and industry.

Jen Turner

Jen has been a physiotherapist for 30 years, with experience working both in the NHS and private sector. Jen developed the S-Press® portable leg strengthening device after years of frustration at seeing the harmful affects of deconditioning, slow physical recovery on her patients, and the lack of effective targeted strengthening equipment for use in hospitals. Jen says ‘“My passion is exceptional patient care. To enable people to achieve their best physical and emotional outcomes and make a positive and lasting difference to peoples’ lives at a time when they are potentially at their lowest physical and psychological state.” The S-Press is the essential physiotherapy tool to speed up physical recovery and shorten length of stay and is now in use in the NHS. Over 6 years of development of the S-Press, Jen has managed the challenging transition from clinician to entrepreneur with a lot of help from others and is now able to offer that help to others herself. As an experienced clinician, industry ambassador for D4D and a winner of the 2020/21 Innovate UK Women in Innovation Award, Jen is perfectly placed to mentor other clinicians navigating the innovation landscape. From PPIE, patient centred design, regulatory challenges, funding applications, IRAS completion and ethics approval advice, to running focus groups and a clinical trial, these are all things that Jen has successfully negotiated and achieved.

Nicola Tiffany

Nicola heads up the multi-award-winning creative agency HMA specialising in the delivery of health- and science-focused digital solutions. With over 20 years’ experience, Nicola has worked across the health and care ecosystem providing design, development and marketing services for NHS organisations, NHS-commissioned services, start-up innovators, healthtech providers and global pharmaceuticals as well as collaborating on digital health research projects. An advocate for user-centred design and embedding co-design processes into the creation of digital health products, Nicola is an active member of the digital health community, devoting time to work on projects such as the delivery of masterclasses for the YHAHSN Propel@YH digital health accelerator. She also works closely with schools and colleges, supporting educators to weave digital components into more traditional curriculum subjects and encouraging children and young people to pursue a career in the creative and digital industries. Nicola is also a board director of the Design Business Association which champions the transformative power of design, promoting its strategic and economic value to business and government.