Here you will find information about the Association of Breast Surgery's Trustees. If you wish to contact any of the Trustees please do so via the ABS by sending an email to

Miss Leena Chagla


Miss Leena Chagla heads the breast unit at St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals which is actively involved in clinical innovation and trials. She continues to publish regularly in peer reviewed journals. She qualified from Grant Medical College, Mumbai, and went on to train at JJ Hospital and Tata Memorial Cancer Centre before joining the Merseyside registrar rotation in the UK. She has held multiple posts within ABS, including the post of Honorary Secretary, before she was elected Vice President. Leena was instrumental in setting up the International Forum at ABS with a view to sharing good practice globally.  She facilitates the National Oncoplastic Fellows meeting in Liverpool, annually. She is committed to improving and standardising breast cancer care through educating and training both professionals and lay people alike. She represented Liverpool and Northern Counties in water-polo and enjoys all sport.

Prof John Benson

Honorary Secretary

Miss Karina Cox

Clinical Practice & Standards Committee Chair

Miss Sue Down

Education & Training Committee Chair

Sue Down is a Consultant Oncoplastic breast surgeon at James Paget University Hospital and Honorary Associate Professor at the University of East Anglia.  She undertook her undergraduate and basic surgical training in Manchester and gained a PhD in Cancer Studies at the University of Birmingham. She then undertook a National Oncoplastic Fellowship in Birmingham, enabling her to gain experience in advanced oncoplastic techniques.  She is currently Clinical Lead for Breast Surgery and Deputy Research Lead at JPUH Trust. In addition to her clinical role, she is Course Director for four award-winning online Mastership programmes in Specialist Breast Surgery at the University of East Anglia, delivering oncoplastic breast surgery teaching in over 50 countries worldwide.

Ms Sarah Downey

Vice President

I trained in Nottingham, Bristol, Manchester and Yorkshire. I have been a consultant surgeon at the James Paget Hospital since 2005, and I have also had the privilege of serving on a number of national and regional leadership committees. I have had a keen interest in training at all levels and across professions. I was an MRCS examiner and Chair of the Court at the time of significant changes to the format. For 5 years, I was Divisional Director which gave me a broader understanding of the relationship between service provision and training. More recently, I have been Chair of the oncoplastic breast Training Interface group, a member of the SAC in General Surgery and appointed as Training Programme Director for the East of England. I am currently a QA surgeon. Out of work, I am a keen gardener.

Mrs Katy Ellis

Nursing Trustee

Katy is a Nurse Consultant in Breast at the Nightingale Breast Unit, Manchester Foundation Trust. Katy qualified as a registered nurse in 1996 and began her professional career in theatres before becoming a Surgical Care Practitioner. In 2006 Katy undertook a masters module in advanced skills in breast care before undertaking the Advanced Clinical Practice Msc at the University of Central Lancashire. Katy was a Lead Clinical Nurse Specialist in Breast care for 10 years in Stockport, a unit which supported newly diagnosed breast cancer patients through to palliative care. Since 2019 Katy has worked at MFT, initially in the role of Advanced Nurse Practitioner and more recently as a Nurse Consultant. In 2021 Katy was awarded, along with a colleague, the National Nursing Times Award in Cancer Care for the implementation of a telephone assessment clinic for breast pain. Katy’s current role is 50% clinical and 50% research and she is currently working towards her PhD.

Katy is passionate about her role as a nurse and the value that nursing brings to a patients experience.

Mr Douglas Ferguson

Honorary Treasurer

Mr Douglas Ferguson qualified in 1993 (St George’s, London), achieved FRCS (Eng) in 1997, a TiG Oncoplastic Fellowship in 2004 and in 2005 both an MS and the Gold medal for FRCS(GenSurg). He was appointed Exeter’s first Oncoplastic Surgeon in 2006 and Clinical Lead 2009; developing an accredited Oncoplastic centre of excellence, with National TiG Fellow Host status and is the ABS TiG rep. He has worked on regional STCs, as RCSEng College, University representative and as Medical Director at AAC panels. He established and convened several Oncoplastic SWOBS Courses. He was a RCSE Breast Tutor and is Faculty for ABS courses portfolio. He is a University of Exeter Hon Associate Professor for teaching/ research, supervises an MD student and is PI for 9 NCRN trials. He was privileged to be elected as ABS Honorary Treasurer in 2019.  He is the Chairman and a coach of his junior football club and continues to learn the guitar!

Miss Tracey Irvine

Ordinary Trustee

Tracey has been a Consultant Oncoplastic Surgeon in Guildford since 2009. She has a special interest in oncoplastic breast conservation, neoadjuvant chemotherapy and management of the axilla and runs the Guildford gene carrier clinic for patients in the KSS region. In 2015 she was awarded the Murray Brennan Scholarship by the American College of Surgeons and spent two months in the major cancer centres in the US. She has been Senior Clinical advisor for the breast Getting it Right First Time (GIRFT) programme since 2017 and is CQC Specialty Advisor for breast, setting up the new breast specialty specific inspection. In 2022 she was appointed National Clinical Lead for Breast Cancer.

Mrs Isabella Karat

Ordinary Trustee

Prof Cliona Kirwan

Academic and Research Committee Chair

Cliona is an Oncoplastic Breast Surgeon at the Nightingale Breast Cancer Centre in Manchester, UK. She studied medicine, including a BSc in the History of Medicine, at Charing Cross and Westminster Medical School, London and University College London. Her surgical training was in London, Bristol, Bournemouth, South Africa and Greater Manchester. She completed a PhD entitled ‘The Role of Procoagulants in Cancer and Chemotherapy Induced Venous Thromboembolism’ at the University of Manchester in 2006.

She delivers and teaches in all forms of oncoplastic breast surgery including reconstruction. At the University of Manchester, she leads the Cancer and Thrombosis Research Group, performing basic, translational and clinical research, investigating the symbiotic relationship between cancer and thrombosis. She also supervises MRes, MD and PhD students.

She is Chief Investigator on the TIP Trial and CHAMPion Study and surgical lead for LORIS, PRIMETIME, POETIC-A and FAST-Forward Boost and is on the Sloane Committee. Cliona leads the Association of Breast Surgery guideline development group for Idiopathic Granulomatous Mastitis and is a key member of the International Society of Haemostasis and Thrombosis guideline development group for VTE in breast cancer. She is Director of the North West Surgical Trials Centre, and mentors the North West Research Collaborative and North West Breast Research Collaborative. She also chairs the Scientific Committee for the Prevent Breast Cancer charity.

In her personal life, she enjoys dressmaking, knitting and endurance sports, having previously completed two Ironmans and the Everest Marathon.

Mr Yazan Masannat

Meetings Secretary

Yazan Masannat is a Consultant Breast Surgeon at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary. He is an Honorary Senior Clinical Lecturer at the University of Aberdeen and an E-Tutor with the University of East Anglia. He is on the Board of Trustees of the Association of Breast Surgery as well as a member of their education and training committee. He is the communications lead at the iBRA-net in addition to being an examiner at the European Board of Surgical Oncology and the European Board of Breast Surgery exams (UEMS).  Yazan is the creator of iBreast Book which is a free online educational resource.

Mr Steven Thrush

Aesthetic Breast Surgery Committee Chair

Miss Raghavan Vidya

Ordinary Trustee

Vidya is a Senior Lecturer in Birmingham University and works as Consultant Oncoplastic Breast Surgeon in The Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust. She was a founding member of the ABS Academic & Research Committee and is an active member of the International Breast Forum and IBRA network.  She lead the RCS report on Future of Breast Surgery. She has updated the Oncoplastic Guidelines and produced reports on the National Surgical Gap Analysis and Ethnicity and Breast Cancer in UK. Dedicated to teaching and training, she contributes actively as a Higher Surgical Trainer, delivers lectures, and runs workshops as invited faculty for national and international meetings. Through her role as Royal College, International Surgical Training Programme Lead for Breast Surgery, she is committed to advancing breast training. She has a strong focus towards clinical research exemplified by over 140 publications. She promotes clinical application of Genomics in NHS as Associate Director of Genomics in West Midlands. She is actively involved in clinical trials and has a special interest in Oncoplastic Breast Surgery, new technology and advances in breast surgery.  She has published two books on breast reconstruction and an ebook on Global Breast Training in collaboration with RCS and ABS.

Prof Lynda Wyld

Ordinary Trustee

Professor of Surgical Oncology at University of Sheffield and Consultant Oncoplastic Breast Surgeon at Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.  Significant interest in development of and recognition of breast surgery as a stand alone specialty.  Past chair of the ESSO education and training committee for 6 years, developing numerous courses focused on high quality cancer care, including developing and leading the ESSO Advanced Breast Surgery Course and developing the ESSO Oncoplastic Course.  Senior author of the breast surgery curriculum for BRESO, of which was a founding executive member.   Secretary of the UEMS Breast Exam Board.   Examiner (in breast) for the UK FRCS Intercollegiate Specialty Exam.  Research activity themed around breast cancer in the older women, geriatric oncology, psycho oncology, health services modelling and quality of life research with over 120 peer reviewed publications and 20 book chapters.  Senior author on the European Textbook ‘Management of Breast Cancer for Surgeons’.  Past President of BASO and previous board member of the European Mastology Society (EUSOMA).