Louise Cooper

Louise Cooper

CEO

Louise became CEO of Governors for Schools in April 2017. She brings a rich and diverse set of skills and experiences from more than 20 years in the private, public and not-for-profit sectors. Most recently, she was Business Development Director at the social enterprise London Early Years Foundation, where she grew their nursery portfolio from 24 to 38 nurseries. Her private sector experience was with LEK Consulting, a strategy consulting firm, and the global retailer Tesco. She also led UnLtd South Africa in Cape Town, a non-profit organisation which supports local entrepreneurs. Louise is currently a governor of a primary school in north London. She holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and an MChem from Oxford University.

William Durham

William Durham

London Team Leader

In addition to managing the London team, William leads our work on promoting the role school governors can play in driving employability outcomes in schools. William joined the charity in November 2015 and was previously in the National Team. He is currently a Co-Chair of Governors at a large primary school in Islington. He has a degree in History as well as an MA in Heritage Resource Management.

Hannah Stolton

Hannah Stolton

National Team Leader

Hannah has a background in recruitment as manager of an in-house agency and is bringing her experience in this field to managing the National Team for Governors for Schools. She managed the development of our systems to enable us to spend less time on administration and more time reaching out to potential volunteers and schools. She has a degree in English Literature from Roehampton University, with QTS. Hannah is currently chair of governors at a village primary school in Essex.

Annwen Bates

Annwen Bates

Fundraising Manager

In early 2018 Annwen joined Governors for Schools. She moved from a government role to fundraising in 2009 and subsequently specialised in trusts and foundations. Originally from Cape Town, where she worked briefly as a music and English teacher, Annwen has also lectured in art history and published on visual representations of HIV/AIDS.

Julie Thiberg

Julie Thiberg

Business Development Manager

Julie oversees business development for Governors for Schools. Julie previously worked at a Royal Jeweller managing projects in the Middle East and for the UK Royal Household and prior to this, worked in business development for Strategy International - a private sector strategic business development network. Originally from Denmark, Julie worked in various continents before settling in the UK and studied her business management degree in London, New York and Copenhagen – she now brings a bit of Scandinavian flair to the Charity.

Emma Hawker

Emma Hawker

Multi Academy Trust Account Manager

Emma joined Governors for Schools in November 2017 and brings a range of experience in the education sector. Emma taught in in Essex for several years before joining EES for Schools as an Education Adviser, specialising in assessment. She has also developed assessment software used in schools across the country. Emma has a BA (Hons) from Brunel University and achieved QTS after completing a Primary PGCE at the University of Greenwich. She is a governor at a large infant school in Southend-on-Sea.

Oliver Kean

Oliver Kean

Service Development Manager

In his role as Service Development Manager, Oliver works to enhance our offer of services and resources for volunteers. Oliver has seven years’ experience supporting governors and school leaders with The Key and Governors for Schools. He has a degree in history from the University of Manchester.

Adam Balzano

Adam Balzano

South West Area Manager

Adam has been with Governors for Schools for 6 years. When Adam realised he was not going to play professional Rugby for Gloucester and Wales he committed himself to a career in education (his other burning passion). Adam has been a school governor for 5 years and is currently serving at a primary school in East London. 

Christina Reed

Christina Reed

West Midlands Area Manager

Chrissie has a BA (Hons) in English Literature from Queen Mary University in East London and has lived in London for a number of years. She came to Governors for Schools in March 2017 having worked previously as Assistant Director at an education centre and as an educational leader for International students.

Gabrielle Brown

Gabrielle Brown

East of England Area Manager

Gabrielle graduated from the University of Reading with a Bsc (Hons) in Psychology with a Professional Placement. Before joining Governors for Schools Gabrielle was employed by the NHS working as an Honorary Assistant Psychologist at a children’s mental health clinic.

Abigail Bush

Abigail Bush

Yorkshire and North East England Area Manager

Abigail was born and raised in the Cayman Islands. She has a BSc in Childhood Studies from the University of Bristol and an MA in Sociology of Childhood and Children’s Rights from UCL. Before joining Governors for Schools she did short-breaks with children at a disability charity and worked as a Project Coordinator at a support hub for people affected by the Grenfell Tower fire.

Eoghan Kelly

Eoghan Kelly

South East Area Manager

Eoghan recently joined Governors for Schools as the Area Manager for the South East. Originally from Northern Ireland, he has three degrees(!) in Politics from three countries. He previously worked in events as an education researcher.

Emma Harris

Emma Harris

North West Area Manager

Emma joined Governors for Schools in 2018 pursuing her passion for education. She had previously led North West regional recruitment campaigns for local authority children’s services, as well as having a senior marketing role at a national charity. She has a BA in English from Nottingham Trent University and is a governor at a nursery school in Stockport.

Raheem Pillay

Raheem Pillay

Area Administrator

Before joining Governors for Schools, Raheem was an administration volunteer for CEN (Communities Empowerment Network), a charity that supports, advises and represents parents and helps reintegrate pupils excluded from school back into education. Raheem holds a degree in Psychosocial Studies from Anglia Ruskin University and in his spare time does Parkour.

Jill McAusland

Jill McAusland

Central London Area Manager & School Engagement Officer

Jill joined Governors for Schools in July 2015 as a National Team Area Manager before moving across to the London Team the following year. Having attended Rose Bruford College, where she graduated with a First Class Honours BA in Acting, Jill continues to pursue a professional acting career in theatre and television, alongside working at Governors for Schools.

Craig Perryman

Craig Perryman

North & East London Area Manager

Craig joined Governors For Schools in 2017 and has been the good luck charm to the London Team ever since. Craig graduated with a BSc (Hons) in Psychology but always longed to direct films for the big screen in Hollywood. If he isn’t handling and liaising with volunteers, he’s filming and editing videos for the company website.

Katie Punter

Katie Punter

South London Area Manager

Katie joined the team in 2016 and has been South London Area Manager since 2017. She also looks after some of our valued business partnerships. Before Governors for Schools, and since graduating from the University of Cambridge in English, she has run a preschool group and acquired a CELTA qualification to teach English to adults. She is passionate about improving educational outcomes through excellent school governance.

Vanessa Johnson

Vanessa Johnson

Marketing Executive

Vanessa has been working at Governors for Schools for just over 4 years. Starting out with the charity as an apprentice, Vanessa worked her way up from Area Co-ordinator to Area Manager for the National team and is now the Marketing Executive for the charity. Vanessa is a self-taught Graphic designer and Animator.

Lydia Bower

Lydia Bower

Marketing and Communications Manager

Lydia joined Governors for Schools in May 2018 after spending two years working as a copywriter in the London tech startup scene. Having worked and volunteered for the RNLI, Oxfam, and women’s charities in the past, Lydia made the move to the charity sector full time to use her written and creative skills to encourage more people to become school governors – and positively impact social mobility. Lydia graduated from the University of Exeter with a degree in English and Politics and spent a year studying at the University of Sydney as part of her degree.