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Professional Nursing Committee

The committee responsible for RCN’s professional work

The RCN’s Professional Nursing Committee fulfils a vital role in helping the RCN to achieve its purpose as a royal college. The committee is the decision-making body of the RCN on professional issues and provides leadership on the work of the RCN in this area. It is accountable to RCN Council.


Reports from recent committee meetings can be downloaded below.


Professional Nursing Committee meeting June 2018: agenda

Professional Nursing Committee meeting June 2018: report of meeting


The committee will next meet on 30 October 2018.



The Professional Nursing Committee has 14 members: one member each from Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and one from each of the nine English regions: East Midlands, Eastern, London, North West, Northern, South East, South West,  West Midlands, Yorkshire and the Humber. They are elected by members in their country or region.


The remaining two members are from the Student and Health Practitioner (Health Care Assistant and Assistant Practitioner) membership categories and are elected by the members of those groups.


You can find out more about the role and remit of the RCN Professional Nursing Committee by reading the Terms of Reference.

Melanie Johnson Professional Nursing Committee

Melanie Johnson (Chair)

Member for Northern region, January 2018 - December 2019

Melanie is currently Executive Director of Nursing and Patient Experience for City Hospitals Sunderland Foundation Trust and South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust. She has held a variety of clinical and management posts across the country and was previously Director of Nursing for NHS Lothian, based in Edinburgh. 

Claire McGuigan Professional Nursing Committee

Claire McGuigan

 Member for Northern Ireland, January 2018 - December 2019

Claire was elected to the RCN UK Professional Committee with effect from January 2018 and became a member of the RCN Northern Ireland Board at the same time. She has nursed in a range of practice settings including operating departments, medicine and hepatobiliary and haematology. Claire also practiced as a Macmillan palliative care nurse specialist. She is currently a Staff Tutor for Nursing, Health and Social Care with the Open University Ireland. 

Theresa Connor Professional Nursing Committee

Theresa Connor

Member for Scotland, January 2018 - December 2021

Theresa is a  Learning Disability charge nurse within an integrated health and social work team. She has a special interest in cancer, palliative care and pain. She is chair of RCN Forth Valley branch and has been an RCN Scotland Board member since 2012.

Denise Llwellyn Professional Nursing Committee

Denise Llewellyn

Member for Wales, January 2018 - December 2021

Denise has worked in the NHS for 38 years, and latterly held the position of Executive Director of Nursing on the Aneurin Bevan University Health Board Wales. In 2015 she was made a Fellow of the RCN and in 2017 was awarded an MBE for services to Nursing in Wales. In 2017 Denise became a trustee of the RCN Foundation and Chair of the RCN Foundation Welsh Committee. 

Jacky Price Professional Nursing Committee

Jacky Price

Member for Eastern region, January 2018 - December 2019

Jacky is an adult and children’s nurse, a nurse lecturer and senior manager in Higher Education and previously in the NHS. Jacky has been a steering group member of the RCN Emergency Care Forum for three years and has recently been elected as Chair of the Eastern Regional Board.

Simon Browes Professional Nursing Committee

Simon Browes

Member for East Midlands region, January 2018 - December 2019

Simon is a consultant nurse with a clinical background in primary, community and urgent healthcare. He has worked in clinical, academic and leadership roles in the UK and New Zealand. Simon is a member of the STP workforce programme team for Nottinghamshire, leading on the ACP strategy, and is a member of the NHS England integrated urgent care steering group. 

Mary Wells Professional Nursing Committee

Mary Wells

Member for London region, January 2018 - December 2019

Mary has recently taken up a post at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust as Lead Nurse for Research. Mary trained at Guys Hospital and South Bank. After specialising in cancer nursing and working as a ward sister at Barts’ Hospital, she worked in a variety of clinical, managerial, educational and research roles,before developing an academic career as a Lecturer and Senior Lecturer at the University of Dundee. She was appointed as a Professor of Cancer Nursing Research and Practice at the Nursing Midwifery and Allied Health Professions Research Unit, University of Stirling, in 2013. 

Sally Young Professional Nursing Committee

Sally Young

Member for North West region, January 2018 - December 2019

Sally was in the Territorial Army and ran the resuscitation department of a field hospital during a tour of duty in Iraq. She has also worked as an Emergency Nurse Practitioner and as a Resilience and Emergency Planning Manager. Currently Sally is employed as part of a corporate nurse team in a quality assurance role.

Dawn Cooper Professional Nursing Committee

Dawn Cooper

Member for South West region, January 2018 - December 2021

Dawn has had a thirty year career in acute nursing spanning different specialities including orthopaedics, neuroscience and intensive care. Dawn is currently an Advanced Nurse Practitioner at Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. She has been an RCN Health and Safety Rep and Steward for more than 15 years and has been active as a Branch and Board member in recent years.

Julie Green Professional Nursing Committee

Julie Green

Member for West Midlands region, January 2018 - December 2021

Julie is an experienced clinician, having worked in a range of positions since 1990. She is currently a Senior Lecturer at Keele University School of Nursing and Midwifery. Julie is a Queen’s Nurse, a member of the Association of District Nurse Educators and Chair of the RCN District Nursing Forum.

Rachel Hollis Professional Nursing Committee

Rachel Hollis

Member for Yorkshire and the Humber, January 2018 - December 2021

Rachel is Lead Nurse for Children’s Cancer and Matron for Haematology and Oncology in the Leeds Children’s Hospital. Whilst Rachel has gained clinical experience in Leeds, she has played an active role in the development of children’s cancer nursing and children’s cancer services at a national level in the UK.

Tracie Culpitt Professional Nursing Committee

Tracie Culpitt

Health Practitioner member, January 2018 - December 2021

Tracie works in Education and Organisational development at a NHS Trust as the lead for Quality Assurance. She currently works with bands 2-4, around apprenticeship standards. She also sits on the RCN Education and Clinical Governance Forums. As the Health Practitioner member of the committee, Tracie is a voice for the unregistered workforce. She is an ex-officio member of the RCN Health Practitioner committee.

Lucy Mason Professional Nursing Committee

Lucy Mason

Student member, January 2018 - December 2019

Lucy sits on the RCN Students Committee as an ex-officio member. As the student member of the Professional Nursing Committee she provides a voice for student nurses.