Anna Walker, chief executive, Healthcare Commission

Anna Walker’s standing in the HSJ50 has been a yo-yo affair, but although the Healthcare Commission is being phased out, it continues to produce hard-hitting reports that make uncomfortable reading.

This year it served NHS trusts with a wake-up call to improve hygiene standards or risk service closures. As part of this drive, it announced surprise hygiene checks for every acute trust. Maternity services were also given a stern warning to clean up their act.

Inspections were stepped up for learning disability services, in what Ms Walker hoped would be a turning point in a “bleak picture” of services. Her previous role was with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.