Our weekly guide to healthcare's most influential people

Name: Dianne Jeffrey Job: Chair, NHS Confederation Style: Chairman, actually.And quite definitely Mrs - she is not at all keen on the sobriquet 'Ms'.'I think people are entitled to be called what we wish to be called, 'says the woman who will help choose the person to fill one of the most influential jobs in health policy when confed chief exec Stephen Thornton leaves at the end of the year.And she's a champion of non-executive directors, running a pioneering training programme for them with Trent region, and driving the confed's recent non-exec work.

She's someone who 'rolls her sleeves up'and gets out on the wards, colleagues say.Was spotted under Alan Milburn's wing at an awards ceremony, when he 'mooched over'and put his arm 'chummily'around her.

Background: Descendent of 'a long line of synagogue singers', aptly named Cantor, she sings in a local choir, but worked in retail sector management training for 15 years.

Became chair of Community Health Care Services North Derbyshire trust in 1993.Elected to the confed chair in 2000, where she has kept a low profile - 'My role is to underpin and not to undermine.'A board member at housing association Anchor Trust, advisory board vice-chair at Oxford Brookes Uni's dementia centre, chair-designate at Derby University, a school governor and member of the children's taskforce.She also chaired the external review of North Lakeland trust after abuse of elderly patients was uncovered, a 'very shocking, very upsetting'but 'instructive' experience.

Future prospects: 'Of course, one doesn't know where one is going in the NHS, 'she admits.But she's in line to be High Sheriff of Derbyshire next year, and must be due a gong soon, too.