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Dame Professor Donna Kinnair is a British nurse and currently Chief Executive and General Secretary of the Royal College of Nursing since August 2018. She has specialised in child protection, providing leadership in major hospital trusts in London, teaching, and advising on legal and governmental committees.


Education and careerEdit

Kinnair initially pursued a maths degree but decided not to complete it. She later returned to education having been encouraged by an occupational health nurse to take up nursing. Kinnair also credits her experience growing up with an asthmatic father with showing her the impact nursing could have on people.[1] She attended the Princess Alexandra School of Nursing at the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel in 1983 to train as a nurse.[2]

Following her training, Kinnair worked with HIV and intensive care patients in east London. She subsequently worked as a health visitor in Hackney, Newham and Tower Hamlets and pursued further studies, gaining a master’s degree in medical law and ethics. Her new qualifications led her to focus on child protection in south London.[2] Notably, she was one of four expert advisers in the 2001 Laming inquiry into the death of eight year old Victoria Climbié.[2][3][4]

Kinnair has had several senior positions in the healthcare sector including:

She has also taught medical law, ethics and child protection in multiple countries including Britain, New Zealand, Russia and Kenya.[2] In addition she has provided advice to the UK government on nursing and midwifery through her work with the prime minister's commission in 2010.[1]

Kinnair was appointed Head of Nursing of the Royal College of Nursing in 2015 before becoming acting Chief Executive in August 2018. She was confirmed as Chief Executive on a permanent basis in April 2019.[3]

Awards and honoursEdit

Personal lifeEdit

Kinnair has three children.[2]


  1. ^ a b "The Big Interview: Dame Professor Donna Kinnair - Harley Street Medical Area London W1". Retrieved 2019-05-20.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g Widdup, Ellen (2008-06-24). "Nurse who helps protect children is made a dame". Evening Standard. Retrieved 2019-05-20.
  3. ^ a b c d "RCN appoints Dame Donna Kinnair as Chief Executive & General Secretary | News | Royal College of Nursing". The Royal College of Nursing. Retrieved 2019-05-20.
  4. ^ a b Carvel, John; editor, social affairs (2001-06-01). "Murderers of Anna, 8, to testify at inquiry". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2019-05-20.
  5. ^ admin. "Dame Prof. Donna Kinnair to receive legend recognition at CA award 2016". C.Hubmagazine. Retrieved 2019-05-20.