How do we operate?

The PVRI is a registered charity in the UK with the Charity Commission. It is also a limited company by guarantee, registered with the UK Companies House. It is governed by a group of Trustees who form the Council of the PVRI. The PVRI’s constitution, including our mission statement and how each of our departments work, can be viewed by clicking on the button below.

PVRI's structure

PVRI Structure & Governance

Council of the PVRI/Board of Trustees

Werner Seeger (PVRI President 2020/21)

Professor Seeger is based at the Department of Internal Medicine, Justus Liebig University, Giessen, where he is the Medical Executive Director of the University Hospital, Giessen and Marburg.

His main areas of research include pulmonary circulation, acute lung injury, pneumonia and sepsis, chronic respiratory failure and aerosol medicine.

He has held numerous academic posts and is currently:



Sir David Melville CBE (Chair of the Board & Trustee)

Professor Sir David Melville was educated at Sheffield and Columbia Universities and is the former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Kent and Middlesex University. Prior to that he was a professor of physics working at seven UK universities. His research was in the fields of solid-state physics and biophysics. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Physics and a Senior Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (USA). He has worked in a number of Government roles including CEO of the Further Education Funding Council and Thames Gateway Skills Envoy as well as being an advisor to successive government ministers on education matters. He has also been a chair or member of several national reviews and enquiries relating to schools, colleges and universities,  as well as research funding councils and committees. He has chaired six national public sector bodies and recently stood down after nine years as chair of Pearson Education Ltd, the UK board of Pearson plc. As well as involvement in his local community in Faversham, Kent, and being a patron of a number of charities he is currently on the board of Policy Connect - a cross-party parliamentary think-tank, and the Higher Education Commission, and is chair of the All Souls Group.


  • Appointed a CBE in 2001 for services to Education
  • Appointed a Knight Bachelor in 2007 for services to Higher and Further Education
  • Awarded Honorary Degrees from Middlesex, Sheffield, Derby, Southampton, Kent and Manchester Metropolitan Universities
  • NASA Scholar
  • Award for Outstanding contributions to Race Equality in Further Education

Stephanie Barwick (Chief Executive Officer & Company Secretary)

Stephanie is a passionate, outgoing and innovative business executive with experience spanning over different industries, countries and cultures. She has held senior positions in the public, private and charitable sectors, where she gained extensive senior leadership experience and knowledge in entrepreneurship, business start-up and not-for-profit management. She is an outstanding communicator and skilled networker who can shape organisational strategy into meaningful operational plans and lead organisations through major transformation and change.

Stephanie joined the PVRI in April 2014 as its first external Chief Executive. Since then she has transformed the organisation into a global medical society with an international reputation. She has driven the growth of PVRI memberships from 400 to over 7,500 in 104 different countries, increased the Institute’s annual income by over 200% and overseen the publication of more than 800 articles. She is highly skilled at delivering effective governance, managing diverse stakeholders and driving business transformation that increases participation, improves efficiencies and achieves a greater impact on the charitable mission.

In her previous position at the University of Kent, she was awarded the prestigious ‘Barbara Morris Prize’ in recognition of her outstanding achievements and services to student employability. 

Stephanie is fluent in four languages and holds degrees from Munich University in Germany and a recent first-class Executive Master’s Degree in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Warwick, UK, currently ranked 6th best worldwide. With a strong altruistic mindset and purpose-driven attitude, she is a charismatic and caring leader who displays a great sense of integrity, responsibility and humility.


Paul Corris (Chief Medical Scientific Officer & Trustee)

Paul Corris is Emeritus Professor of Thoracic Medicine and faculty member of the Institute of Cellular Medicine at Newcastle University.

He holds an honorary consultant physician contract at The Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK) and directed the National Pulmonary Vascular Service (NPVS) in Newcastle, being one of a small group who set up the UK National Service in 2001.

He played a major international role in establishing lung transplantation as a viable clinical entity and directed the NPVS from 2012 to 2017. Paul is also a Past-President of both the British Thoracic Society and the International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation.

He was President of the Pulmonary Vascular Research Institute for and also held the position of PVRI Chief Medical Scientific Officer for the 2018/19 term, as well currently acting as the Chair of the PVRI Interim Board of Directors.

He has been a faculty member and author of guidelines within his speciality interests for many societies and world health groups. His research has been highly cited and is focused on translational and clinical science relating to both lung transplantation and pulmonary hypertension.

He has a wide experience of very successful committee work and his background would make him a suitable candidate for the Science Committee of the WHF. He has an unrivalled global reputation for his energy, wisdom, integrity and clarity of thinking, with an uncanny ability to bring groups together to achieve a common aim.



  • Recipient of the British Thoracic Society Medal 2018, in recognition of his leadership in and contribution to clinical and scientific work resulting in benefit to patients and the inspiration of peers.
  • Received the 2018 PVRI Life Achievement Award for his significant contribution in the field of pulmonary hypertension.

Martin Wilkins (Treasurer & Treasurer)

Martin R. Wilkins MD (FRCP FBPhS FMedSci) is Head of Department of Medicine, Imperial College, London, and is a physician-scientist with a background in clinical pharmacology and toxicology. 

He has spent the past 25 years investigating the molecular pathology of pulmonary hypertension with a view to identifying novel drug targets and better ways of monitoring pulmonary vascular disease. 

He has published widely on the cyclic GMP signalling pathway and circulating biomarkers. More recently he has investigated the role of iron homeostasis and zinc transport in pulmonary vascular disease. 

His research is supported by the British Heart FoundationMedical Research Council, the Wellcome Trust and the National Institute of Health Research.

Stuart Rich (Founder & Trustee)

Dr Stuart Rich MD is a cardiologist and Director of Pulmonary Vascular Disease Programme at the Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute and a Professor at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine.

He is one of the world’s most recognised experts on pulmonary vascular diseases. For more than three decades he has dedicated his research and clinical efforts to finding better solutions for pulmonary hypertension. Dr Rich completed his residency training in medicine at Washington University in St Louis, and fellowship in cardiology at the University of Chicago.

His career began at the University of Illinois, where he was the principal investigator for the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) Registry on Primary Pulmonary Hypertension, the first of its kind, and has been the leader of the largest clinical centre in the US for evaluating and treating patients with pulmonary hypertension since 1980.

Dr Rich has conducted cutting-edge research on the molecular mechanisms and epidemiology; clinical presentation, natural history, and has been at the forefront of the development of virtually every new form of pulmonary hypertension treatment. His pioneering research has led to a greater understanding of all types/stages of pulmonary hypertension, as well as the use of new therapeutic procedures and devices.

Sir Graham Wylie (Trustee)

Sir Graham was one of the original founders of The Sage Group Plc (“Sage”) progamming the original Sage Accounting software whilst still at Newcastle University studying for a joint honours degree in Computer Science and Statistics in 1981. After leaving University in 1989 Graham along with three other colleagues floated the business on the London Stock Exchange. Following flotation Graham became Managing Director of Sage (UK) and a Group Director of The Sage Group Plc. Under Graham’s leadership, Sage (UK) became a market leader in the accounts and payroll software market with almost 1 in 3 of all VAT registered UK businesses using a Sage product by 2003. Graham “retired” from Sage in 2003 and at the time The Sage Group Plc employed 6,000 people, had 3,000,000 customers and was a huge financial success with revenues of £560m, profits of £151m and a market capitalisation of £2.5b. 

In 2004 Graham purchased the Close House estate from Newcastle University and has since developed into one of the top 100 golf resorts in the UK & Ireland.  Close House has the only PGA Academy in the North of England and hosted the PGA Seniors championship and the EuroPro tour in 2015. Close House then successfully hosted the European Tour’s British Masters in 2017 and 2020 attracting a host of famous players to the North East. 

In 2012, Graham embarked on a brand-new venture called Speedflex. This is an exercise machine and concept that helps improve the cardiovascular system and fitness and can be used by everyone. The intention is to create Speedflex centres throughout the UK but, in time, also Worldwide as Graham holds the exclusive licence for all these territories.  

In 2015 Graham successfully chaired the local organising committee for the British Transplant Games. Due to their success Graham was asked to bid for the World Transplant Games and subsequently was awarded the games which were held in Newcastle/Gateshead in August 2019 and again Graham was Chairman of the Organising Committee. The games were a huge success and helped spread the important message of signing up to be an Organ Donor and saving many lives.   

Graham is married with four children and three grandchildren. In 2009 his wife Andrea gave birth to twins but one of them had a serious heart defect. Kiera has had open heart surgery three times in the space of her first two years and Graham is indebted to the Children’s Heart Unit at the Freeman hospital for saving his daughter’s life. He is now a patron of CHUF, the charity to raise money for the hospital, and has raised several millions of pounds over the recent years to help fund the building of an accommodation facility for parents of children going through surgery as well as updating much of the equipment used by the children’s heart unit. 

In 2015 Graham decided to start his own charitable foundation, the Graham Wylie Foundation, set up to Help, Educate and Inspire the Children and young people in the North East. The Foundation funds local projects the most recent being a Music Therapy Centre in Newcastle, which was opened in the Spring of 2018 by Sting. This centre is the first of its kind outside of London.


  • Contribution to the North East region has been acknowledged by the awards of honorary doctorates at both Newcastle and Northumbria University 
  • Honoured by the Queen with a CBE.
  • Received a Knighthood in the 2020 New Year’s Honours list.

Gérald Simonneau

Professor Gérald Simonneau is an Emeritus Professor at the Paris-Sud University, France, and Senior Consultant at the National Reference Centre for Pulmonary Vascular Disease in Bicetre and Marie Lannelongue University Hospitals, France.

He has been President of the working group on pulmonary circulation of the European Society of Cardiology


Professor Simonneau has been published widely in the fields of pulmonary hypertension, pulmonary vascular diseases and pneumology. Peer-reviewed journals he has featured in include:


Paul Hassoun

Dr Paul M Hassoun is a Professor of Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in the USA. His areas of clinical expertise include pulmonary disease and critical care medicine. 

Dr Hassoun earned his MD from the Faculté de Médecine Lariboisière-Saint Louis (Paris VII, France) and completed a residency in Internal Medicine at Brigham Women's Hospital, as well as a Pulmonary and Critical Care fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital (both at Harvard Medical School, Boston).

Dr Hassoun serves as the Director of the Pulmonary Hypertension Programme, a large clinical programme dedicated to the diagnosis and treatment, in a multidisciplinary fashion, of all five disease groups from the World Classification of Pulmonary Hypertension (PH).

Over the past two decades, Dr Hassoun has led programmatic efforts for clinical and basic research in PH. Dr Hassoun's research interests include pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) with a focus on highly translational research to understand the complex pathobiology of scleroderma-associated PAH, and acute lung injury.

He is a member of numerous professional organisations, including the American Thoracic Society, the European Respiratory Society, and the American Heart Association, not to mention serving as PVRI President during the 2018/19 term.

Bert van den Bergh (Former Trustee)

Bert van den Bergh is President of Revalesio Corporation where he leads the development and commercialisation of the company’s RNS60 therapeutic.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Nijenrode Business School (The Netherlands) and an MBA from Interfaculty Delft/Rotterdam, now the Rotterdam School of Management (The Netherlands).

Bert has a proven track record of successfully commercialising novel medicines and has led business operations at major pharmaceutical companies around the world. He started his career at Eli Lilly & Company, working his way up to multiple senior executive positions across the company’s US and European operations.

Most notably, he served as President of Neuroscience Products, President of European Operations and General Manager for the UK and Germany. In these roles, Bert was instrumental in the development, commercialisation, and lifecycle management of innovative pharmaceuticals like Cymbalta, Prozac, Strattera and Zyprexa. 

Most recently, Bert served as Chairman of the Board at Correvio, LLC. In addition to his role at Revalesio, Bert serves on a variety of non-profit boards and advisory committees, including the PVRI, Mental Health America and Peers for Progress.

Sir Magdi Yacoub (Patron)

Professor Sir Magdi Yacoub FRS, OM is Professor of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College London, Founder and Director of Research at the Magdi Yacoub Institute at Harefield Heart Science Centre, Founder and President of the chain of Hope and Founder and Director of the Magdi Yacoub Heart Foundation which created the Aswan Heart Centre.

Born in Egypt and graduated from Cairo University Medical School in 1957 he trained in London and held an Assistant Professorship at the University of Chicago. A former British Heart Foundation Professor of Cardiothoracic Surgery for over 20 years and Consultant Cardiothoracic Surgeon at Harefield Hospital from 1969-2001 and Royal Brompton Hospital from 1986-2001, Professor Yacoub established the largest heart and lung transplantation programme in the world at Harefield Hospital where more than 2,500 transplant operations have been performed. He has developed novel operations for several complex congenital heart anomalies.

Research led by Professor Sir Magdi Yacoub include tissue engineering heart valves, myocardial regeneration, novel left ventricular assist devices and wireless sensors with collaborations within Imperial College, nationally and internationally. He has also supervised over 20 higher degree (PhD/MD) students and authored or co-authored more than 1,400 published papers and numerous book chapters on topics including Transplantation, Paediatric Cardiac Surgery, Aortic valve surgery.

He has a passion for readdressing inequalities in global healthcare delivery with a focus on developing cardiac services in many countries including Egypt, The Gulf region, Jamaica, Ethiopia, Mozambique Rwanda and Uganda. Here his teams at Chain of Hope link experts together around the world to bring life-saving treatments to children in developing and war-torn countries.

Continuing his desire to make healthcare accessible to all, his Centre in Aswan, offers state-of-the art medical services, free of charge to all patients regardless of colour, religion, or gender and trains a generation of young Egyptian doctors, nurses, scientists, and technicians at the highest international standards. Advancing basic science and applied research is an integral component of the program and he oversees over 60 scientists and students in the areas of Heart Valve Biology and Tissue Engineering, Myocardial Regeneration, Stem Cell Biology, Mechanisms and treatment of Heart Failure and Pulmonary Hypertension in his Centres.

Among his honours he was awarded a Knighthood for his services to medicine and surgery in 1992 and awarded the Order of Merit by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in the 2014 New Year’s Honours list. He was awarded Fellowship of the Academy of Medical Sciences in 1998 and Fellowship of The Royal Society in 1999. A lifetime outstanding achievement award in recognition of his contribution to medicine was presented to Professor Yacoub by the Secretary of State for Health in the same year. In 2011 was awarded the Order of the Nile for Science and Humanity and the prestigious Lister Medal in 2015 in recognition of his contribution to surgical science.



Lucien Abenhaim (Patron)

Professor Lucien Abenhaim is a pharmacoepidemiologist and an expert in public health. His focus is the impact of numerous drugs on populations and risks associated with work. He is recognised as one of the greatest French General Directos of Health (Surgeon General).

He holds an MD from the University of Paris, an MSc from McGill University and a PhD from The School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences in Paris. He is a Professor of Public Health at the University of Paris 5 and an Honorary Professor of Epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He has previously taught as a Full Professor of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at McGill University. He held the position of General Director of Health of France from 1999–2003. In this later capacity he oversaw the public health of the country and participated in European regulatory decisions. He also was an elected Member of the Executive Committee of the World Health Organization. 

Prof Abenhaim has written many academic papers throughout his career, one of the most influential being "Appetite-Suppressant Drugs and the Risk of Primary Pulmonary Hypertension" that he wrote in 1996. 


Nick Morrell (On the board of Pulmonary Circulation)

Nick Morrell MD (ScD FRCP FMedSci) qualified in Medicine (MB BS) from Charing Cross and Westminster Medical School (now Imperial College, London) in 1987.

He undertook his research MD at Charing Cross Hospital and then spent two years in Denver, Colorado, as a British Heart Foundation fellow before returning as a Lecturer to complete training in General and Respiratory Medicine at the Royal Postgraduate Medical School, Hammersmith Hospital.

He was appointed Senior Lecturer and Honorary Consultant at Hammersmith Hospital, Imperial College in 1998 and was awarded an MRC Clinician Scientist Fellowship. He moved to the University of Cambridge in 2000 as University Lecturer and Honorary Consultant at Addenbrooke’s and Papworth Hospitals, and was appointed Professor of Cardiopulmonary Medicine in 2007.

In 2009, he was awarded a British Heart Foundation Professorship and in 2011 elected to the fellowship of the Academy of Medical Sciences of the UK. He has chaired the programme committees for the British and American Thoracic Societies. He has served on the MRC Clinical Fellowships Committee and was Director of the BHF Cambridge Centre for Cardiovascular Research Excellence (2014-2019).

His current work includes:

Nick has published over 220 papers in this field. More recently, he has been involved in exciting new genomics initiatives in the UK to apply whole genome sequencing to understanding the genetic basis of rare diseases; including pulmonary arterial hypertension and applying this technology to the direct care of patients. 

Ghazwan Butrous (Founder & President Emeritus)

Dr Ghazwan Butrous was a founding member of the Pulmonary Vascular Institute back in 2006 and was awarded the chair of Cardiopulmonary Science at the University of Kent in the same year.

He graduated from Baghdad Medical College in 1976. From 1980 to 1990, he worked in London where he was a fellow and lecturer of Cardiology at St Bartholomew's Hospital Medical School & St George's Hospital Medical School. He was also director of the Cardiac Electrophysiology Laboratory at St George's from 1985 to 1990.

In 1991 he became Senior Lecturer at the St George's Hospital Medical School and Chief Scientific Adviser for Pfizer Research and Development Laboratories in Sandwich, UK. Dr Butrous has been vitally interested in academia and research since he was a medical student, spurring him to create the PVRI.


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