Our weekly guide to healthcare's most influential people No 72

Published: 30/05/2002, Volume II2, No. 5807 Page 10

Name: Dr Jenny Simpson

Job: Chief executive, British Association of Medical Managers

Style: Modest pioneer, who gets everywhere but remains low profile.Set up BAMM to help doctors 'understand how the NHS works and be more effective'and built it up to 2,200 members.Longtime adviser to central government, though 'not through lobbying'.She worked with Philip 'Lord' Hunt in his National Association of Health Authorities days.Developed the 'first proper leadership programme', allowing docs to earn half an MBA - the model adopted by the NHS.Was headhunted to run the NHS Leadership Centre, but said no.Unsung brain behind the NHS University - 'I wrote the papers on the beach... We planned to run it from BAMM.'But the idea was snapped up for Labour's manifesto 'and we couldn't compete with that'.Modernisation board member.Also works with Sheffield's rock musicians and commutes between there, London and Manchester, 'fuelled by black coffee'.

Background: Medical student in Manchester, before working in Sheffield as a junior doctor in paediatrics.Decided she needed 'some management education to be a consultant'and did an MBA.Went on a Department of Health study tour to the US in 1989.Led on resource management at Sheffield Children's Hospital in the early 1990s, then ran resource management at Mersey regional health authority under Geoff Scaife.After getting together with half-a-dozen like-minded docs, she worked to set up BAMM while at Mersey, becoming its full-time chief exec in 1992.

Future prospects: Unlikely to leave her baby - 'I love BAMM', but set for more writing.Expect further ideas from the woman who believes in explaining NHS finance to medics - but probably under someone else's name.