Richard is Chief Operating Officer at JFS (academy trust) and a non-executive director at Sirius Legal Limited. Previously Richard was a senior consultant at PA Consulting. Richard has also held a number of senior operational posts, including being the Global Operations Director at the Financial Times. In the past he has been a school governor and chair of the finance committee, and also the chair and trustee at a local Hertfordshire charity.
Trustee, Member of FARE Committee
Neil is a senior finance professional with multi-sector experience across NHS/healthcare, pharma, FMCG/retail and charity sectors, who has specialised in change management, restructuring and business turnaround. He has held a number of finance director positions and is currently CFO of a consultancy business. Neil also has knowledge and experience within the education sector through his involvement with The Orchard Primary School as a parent governor.
Rebecca has enjoyed a broad range of roles and responsibilities in the education sector during her career which, to date, has spanned more than twenty years. She is passionate about working collaboratively with a range of stakeholders in order to provide the best possible learning opportunities and life experiences for children and young people so they can flourish and reach their full potential. As a result, in addition to two headships in outstanding schools, Rebecca has embraced many other exciting leadership opportunities, which have included working with amazing teams in order to set up and lead a cluster of Children’s Centres, an Extended Education Support Service and a Teaching School. Throughout her career, Rebecca has also had the pleasure of offering school improvement support in a range of schools, including when working as a National Leader of Education.
Trustee, member of HR and SC Committees
Lisa is a Fellow Member of the CIPD and holds a Masters degree in strategic change. She is currently the Director of Human Resources at The Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons where she has held the position since May 2019. Lisa has experience in a wide variety of sectors some of which include not for profit, real estate and financial services. She has over 15 years of experience in human resources and has delivered successful change programmes and designed people strategies to support employee engagement and deliver business performance.
Paul is a qualified accountant (FCA) who has broad experience in finance with several companies in the commercial sector, before specialising in academies finance since 2008. His most recent role was as Chief Finance Officer for the Learning in Harmony Trust, from which he retired in June 2020. He also has experience of being a Vice-Chair and Chair of Governors in schools in his home borough, and experience as a director of an education support services organisation. He is very keen to maintain his involvement in supporting excellent education for children as a Member of the Trust.
Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education), University of Westminster, strategic leadership (education, policy, learning, teaching and quality assurance), teacher training, wider children’s work force, school governance
Graham is the Managing Director of Cheeky Munkey, an IT services company based in Hertfordshire. Graham was Vice Chair of Oaklands College and Board Member of Hertfordshire’s Local Enterprise Partnership as well as holding several other positions with not for profit organisations. Graham is now Chair of Governors at Redbourn Primary school, a board Director with Herts for Learning, a board Director for Wenta, a not for profit business organisation, and Chair of Training Together, a joint venture between West Herts College and Oaklands College.
Trustee (Chair of Board of Trustees), Member of HR and SC Committees
Patrick has had a career in education spanning nearly forty years in both the secondary and primary phase as teacher, headteacher and adviser. As a result, he has gained a wealth of experience, knowledge and understanding of the world of education. The start of the second half of his career saw him enter the advisory service, supporting schools to improve, rising to overall primary team leader. Education, and trying to ensure that every child reaches their full potential, has been a constant and a passion for Patrick throughout his career. Having now retired from full-time work Patrick feels he has the time (and now the energy!) to support the Agora Learning Partnership to the best of his ability.
Trustee, Member of HR and SC Committees
Bonnie is a Senior Treasury Manager at Hilton Corporate Offices in Hertfordshire. She is a Fellow of the Association of Corporate Treasurers. Bonnie started her career as a civil servant before qualifying as an accountant and working for several blue chip organisations. She has over twenty years’ experience in finance and treasury roles, including financial control, statutory reporting, financial site management, cash management and risk assessment. She is the Resources Committee Chair and Finance Lead as a Parent Governor at a primary school in Hertfordshire. She is excited to be a Trustee, being fully on-board with the vision, aim and objectives of the Herts For Learning Multi Academy Trust and the potential synergy the Trust has to offer, inclusively, and to prospective schools.
Trustee, Member of FARE Committee
Niraj is a qualified Actuary, with 24 years experience in insurance and financial services, operating both at executive and non-executive director level.
Trustee, Member of HR and SC Committees
Carol is a solicitor and was a corporate partner in a London law firm for 20 years. She headed the firm’s corporate governance advisory team, covering topics such as board structures and behaviours, accounting and audit, risk management, culture, diversity and stakeholder engagement. She was also head of the firm’s UK corporate knowledge management team, responsible for analysing new law and regulation, the firm’s knowledge resources and its corporate training programme. Having retired as a partner she now does some part-time corporate governance consultancy work and is a trustee of a homeless charity in Hertfordshire.
Andrew Simmons, OBE
Member, Trustee, Chair of HR and SC Committees
Education, skills, children’s support services, preparation for adulthood, national and local policy development, management of multi million pound budgets, working with politicians (local and national), board chair (National Connexions Network)
Trustee, Chair of FARE Committee
Matthew is a solicitor and Partner in a law firm in the City of London specialising in infrastructure and construction dispute resolution. He also regularly provides live project advice to help manage risk and avoid disputes during the procurement and delivery of major infrastructure and construction projects.
Trustee (VICE-CHAIR OF BOARD OF TRUSTEES), member of HR and SC Committees
Lynne has extensive experience in education. Her former roles include two primary headships in Hertfordshire and education advisory work in three local authorities. She developed her knowledge and understanding of multi academy trusts through involvement as a member of a project team working to establish the Herts for Learning MAT and is a former CEO of the Agora Learning Partnership. She holds the professional qualification for school inspectors (PQSI).
For the academic year 2021/22, Patrick McAteer was re-elected as Chair of the Board of Trustees with Lynne Wilson-Leary elected as vice-chair. Matthew Taylor was appointed by the Board as Chair of the Finance, Audit, Risk and Estates (FARE) Committee on 6 October. Elections for the Chairs of the HR and Standards and Curriculum Committees will take place at the first meetings of the academic year (November 2021). Until November, Andrew Simmons remains as Chair of both of these Committees.
Details of business and pecuniary interests for Trustees, Members and the Executive (including appointment and term of office information) and Trustee attendance records can be found at this link
A description of the role and responsibilities of Members and Trustees can be found below: