‘Absolute privilege’: East London health boss Lorraine Sunduza awarded OBE

Lorraine Sunduza receives her OBE from the Princess Royal. Photograph: courtesy ELFT

Local health boss Lorraine Sunduza has been awarded an OBE for her contribution to the NHS.

Sunduza was appointed as chief executive of the East London NHS Foundation Trust (ELFT) in May, having served in the role on an interim basis since August 2023.

Now she is the proud recipient of an Order of the British Empire medal in recognition of her work in mental and community health.

Sunduza, who was given her award by the Princess Royal, said: “It was an absolute privilege and honour to receive my OBE from the Princess Royal, and humbling to be recognised for this important work.

“I was also delighted to have my parents visiting from Zimbabwe and my daughter alongside me.

“I could not have done the work I have for the Trust without their support, and that of colleagues and friends.”

Sunduza first joined ELFT in 2002 as a charge nurse in forensic services, starting her professional journey in adult mental health.

In 2018, she became the Trust’s chief nurse, and three years later was promoted to deputy chief executive.

ELFT chair Eileen Taylor added: “This ceremony recognises Lorraine’s outstanding leadership and dedication to the communities we serve in east London and Bedfordshire, and I cannot think of anybody more deserving of this honour.”

The Trust provides mental health, community, primary and specialist healthcare in Hackney, Tower Hamlets, Newham, and the City of London, as well as in Bedfordshire and Luton. It has 7,000 staff and operates from over 100 sites.