Trading Company Directors

Dick Richardson

Chair & Non-executive Director

W A (Dick) Richardson was unusually trained by the RAF both as a helicopter pilot and engineer officer. Amongst many other military missions he was a maintenance test pilot and the engineering officer procuring the Chinook from Boeing.

After reaching senior rank he commenced a second career in the civil helicopter industry and was Engineering Director for McAlpine Helicopters and then Commercial Director for Airbus Helicopters UK. He pioneered the use of helicopters by the UK Police and Ambulance Services, becoming very familiar with both helicopter MRO and the design and installation of complex upgrades.

He introduced “power-by-the-Hour” to the UK helicopter industry. Since February 2012 he has run his own consultancy, Luxopus Limited. He is a Chartered Engineer and a Fellow of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers.

Paddy Dixon

Non-executive Director

E.P. Dixon (Paddy) joined the RAF in Logistics and Material Management.

Worked for Lockheed Aircraft in Saudi Arabia as project management for the Civil Air Traffic control systems for the whole of Saudi from the desert upwards.

He joined McAlpine Helicopters, Eurocopter, Airbus Helicopters. Worked on many projects including PBH,SBH, RBH and FMP to support the police and air ambulance helicopters.

Edmund Probert

Non-executive Director

Edmund has practised as a commercial lawyer in Devon for the past 30 years. He is married with four children and has an unhealthy interest in old French cars.

Nicola Steevenson

Non-executive Director

Nicola (Nic) served for 10 years in the RAF as a Tornado Navigator. She specialised in Air Defence and became a highly qualified instructor. Latterly she flew with test pilots on a developmental missile firings team.

In addition to her military experience, Nic worked as Chief Ground Instructor for Flybe. Here she had oversight of and instructed pilot ground school training.

Fascinated by human performance she went on to set up her own company, Human Performance Solutions. Through this she provides consultancy for Baines Simmons, specialists in Aviation Safety, as well as Atrainability who work closely with the NHS providing Human Factors training.

She is also a Crew Resource Management Trainer and provides CRM training to Devon Air Ambulance Crews.

Nic has two young daughters and enjoys escaping with the family to explore Dartmoor and the local beaches.

Heléna Holt

Executive Director, Accountable Manager & Caldicott Guardian

I became Chief Executive of Devon Air Ambulance in October 2007 after returning to my home county of Devon after many years in London. Prior to this I was Director of the Attlee Foundation and before that St James’s House, a mental health charity in North London. I have served as a trustee, holding positions as Chair and Treasurer in the councils for voluntary services for both Camden & Tower Hamlets, and I am currently Treasurer of Exeter based charity CEDA.

Caroline Creer

Executive Director of Fundraising

I started volunteering for the Charity in mid 1997, and joined the team officially in the November heading up our retail team and latterly as Fundraising Director, Deputy CEO and Complaints Officer

I am a member of the Senior Leadership Team. I also enjoy getting involved in the bigger picture of our industry, being a member of the Institute of Fundraising and Vice Chair of the Comms Committee of the Association of Air Ambulances.

Nigel Hare

Nigel Hare

Executive Director of Operations & CQC Registered Manager

Nigel has worked in Pre-hospital Care since 1985, joining Devon Air Ambulance as an Aircrew Paramedic in 1997. As Operations Director and our Registered Manager with the Care Quality Commission, Nigel is accountable for the ‘safe, effective, caring, responsive and well led’* delivery of our Patient Services as an Independent Healthcare Services Provider. This includes:
• Ensuring we are deployed to the patients who will benefit most from the Enhanced and Critical Care our service provides.
• The welfare, training, development and quality assurance processes of our doctors, paramedics and support staff.
• The delivery of high quality clinical care to patients.
• Post incident support to patients, their relatives and carers through our ‘Patient Support Service’.
• Collaboration the NHS and other emergency services.

Nigel is part of our Senior Leadership Team and a Director of Devon Air Ambulance Trading Company Limited.

*as required by The Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014

Ian Payne

Executive Director of Flight Operations

Ian served 15 years in the Royal Navy in a variety of appointments, latterly flying aircraft carrier based Sea King helicopters in roles that included Anti-Submarine Warfare Instructor and Airborne Early Warning.
Ian left to work for Police Aviation Services in both management and UK-wide flying roles, subsequently joining Devon and Cornwall Police as an operational pilot and head of air operations in 2000.
He joined DAA in 2014 and flew at both Exeter and Eaglescott bases until enforced ‘retirement’ from flying in 2016. He is responsible for overseeing all aspects of operational flying, training and engineering support.

Martin Bell

Executive Director of Retail & People Development

My background is in retail management, profit protection, audit, HR and Learning and Development. I joined Devon Air Ambulance in May 2012. I am responsible for developing and implementing the Retail income strategy for the trust and I oversee the retail performance of the Charity. I am also responsible for the oversight of our HR functions, recruitment practise and People Development across all departments of the Devon Air Ambulance.
Finance & Infrastructure Director

Dave Hawes

Executive Director of Finance & Infrastructure

I joined the Charity in November 2014. I have previously worked in London and Sydney for top 10 accountancy practice BDO and for the past 5 years have been working in Exeter for Capita Asset Services.
Joining DAAT is a challenge but it allows me to do a job that combines doing something very worthwhile for an organisation which makes a tangible difference to people’s lives with a senior management role where there are opportunities to influence and contribute to DAAT’s continuing success.
As a member of the Senior Leadership Team, I am part of the team responsible for the strategic oversight of Devon Air Ambulance, with a focus on the financial elements. This includes overseeing the Finance Team and a broader responsibility for the infrastructure across the organisation. It's a varied and interesting role, taking in legacies, cash forecasting and controls while interacting with other Charities, businesses and organisations.
Tony Hudson

Tony Hudson

Non-executive Director

Tony is currently Consultant in Emergency Medicine at the RD&E, with a special interest in caring for patients who have suffered traumatic injuries. Tony has previously worked as an Emergency Department Consultant in Yeovil and at Derriford and, before this, was a Medical Officer in the Royal Navy, serving with the Royal Marines. In his spare time, Tony enjoys getting outdoors particularly sailing (including across the Atlantic and Indian Oceans!), kayaking, hill walking and has taken part in a mountain marathon.