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Governance: Members and Trustees

Whitefield is structured as a multi-academy trust



(Guardians of the Constitution) 

Andrew Howat
Caroline Sheppard, OBE
Deborah Malcolm
Owen O'Regan
Stephen Unwin


(Responsibility as sponsor for any sponsored or supported academy)

Kirstie Fulthorpe
Jo Conduit 
Andrew Howat – Chair
Dr John Hogan
Louise Hutchinson
Richard Kramer
Amy MacLaren
Owen O'Regan
Jasvinder Paik
Philip Sams
Neil Swift

Company Secretary: Suzanne Clarke 


You can find governance information including, dates of appointment and terms of office on the government's information website here
You can read about the work of the Advisory Councils in the Scheme of Delegation

Biographies of members and Trustees

Andrew Howat

Andrew is a Senior Executive, with 38 years’ experience of financial markets in Europe, U.K. and U.S.A. He spent 25 years in investment banking, in trading and  treasury roles, after which he spent 12 years at LCH.Clearnet Group Ltd. the leading global CCP. Most recently, Andrew worked as a Business Development Consultant for Calypso Technology, a leading U.S. Fintech company and SAFE an emerging South African equities exchange. He has broad experience in Treasury, Investment and Risk Management.

Now retired, Andrew dedicates his time to his passion for education and child welfare. He became Chair of Montessori Group UK, which supports quality Montessori provision throughout the world, in September 2019 and joined the board of Whitefield Trust, becoming Chair in March 2020.  Prior to this he spent 10 years as a Governor of Chigwell School where he chaired the Risk and Control Committee.


Deborah Malcolm MBACP, BA (Hons)

My name is Deborah Malcolm and I am a Member of the Whitefield Academy Trust. I currently run my own practice as a Psychotherapist offering both short and long-term therapy to clients within the UK and overseas. I specialise in working with Trauma, Cultural Identity and Relationship Issues.

I joined Whitefield Academy (formerly known as Whitefield Schools and Centre) in 2007 as a Parent Governor. I was elected Chair of the Governing Body in 2008-2011, and thereafter I continued to remain on the Board as a Governor. In 2017 I joined the Whitefield Advisory Council and the Whitefield Academy Trust as a Member. To this day I continue to serve as a Member of the Whitefield Academy Trust.

I have a huge interest in mental health and nutrition. I also have a strong passion for empowering BAME women in Leadership, as well as working with racial and ethnic disparities in mental health.


Stephen Unwin

Stephen Unwin studied at the University of Cambridge.  He is a well-established and experienced theatre and opera director, writer and teacher.  He is also the father of a young man with severe learning disabilities who was a pupil at Whitefield for several years.  Since 2016 Stephen has been Chairman of KIDS, a national charity which supports disabled children, young people and their families, and is a regular campaigner for the rights and opportunities of disabled young people.    


Kirstie Fulthorpe BEd (Hons), NPQH, FCCT, FRSA

Kirstie Fulthorpe joined Whitefield Academy Trust as its Chief Executive in September 2020.  In that capacity she also serves as a Director on our Board. Kirstie has extensive teaching and leadership experience, having worked in education for over 30 years. Before joining Whitefield, Kirstie was the Director of Education and Children’s Services for the National Autistic Society. Previously Kirstie was one of Her Majesty’s Inspectors for Ofsted, a Regional Director for Oasis Community Learning and a Principal for the Harris Federation. She has contributed to national and international training and development and has particular expertise in early years education, primary and special needs.


Richard Kramer

Richard was appointed Sense and Sense International Chief Executive in July 2018, having joined as Deputy Chief Executive in 2013.

Prior to joining Sense, Richard worked at Turning Point, the social enterprise organisation, for ten years. He held a number of director-level posts, including leading the business function, Connected Care, which involved service users in the design and delivery of services across England.

A qualified solicitor, Richard has worked for public affairs consultancy NCVO, and was Mencap's Head of Campaigns for four years. Richard was also a trustee of Respond for ten years.  He is a board member of the Campaign to End Loneliness and vice-chair of the Disabled Children's Partnership.


Neil Swift

Neil is currently the Chief Executive at the Single Source Regulations Office (SSRO), an executive non-departmental public body, sponsored by the Ministry of Defence, which plays a key role in the regulation of single source, or non-competitive defence contracts. Neil joined the SSRO in 2015 and was appointed as Chief Executive in May 2018 having previously been the Chief Operating Officer.

Neil started his career as an engineer with British Aerospace before changing direction to train as an accountant with KPMG. After a move to the public sector Neil worked in several frontline operational finance roles across the public sector including as Deputy Director of Finance at a large NHS Trust in London. Neil joined the Audit Commission in 2003, initially as a Senior Manager and Health Policy Lead as which he worked on a range of national studies and publications before becoming Head of Technical Support for the Commission’s Audit Practice in 2007. He was appointed Associate Controller Corporate Resources in 2012 and was responsible for the delivery of all support services during the transition to and eventual closure of the Commission.


Amy Maclaren

Amy is Director of External Relations at the British Science Association, where her remit covers PR, digital and social media, marketing, partnerships and fundraising, policy and thought leadership. Her team are responsible for increasing awareness of – and support for – the organisation, its work and impact amongst stakeholders.


Amy has extensive experience in external relations, stakeholder management and partnership building, including working with business leaders, policy makers, opinion formers and VIPs.  She joined the BSA in June 2014 from award-winning communications consultancy Four Communications, where she led the Campaigning division.


There, her clients included a range of management, leadership, employment and skills organisations (including the Institute of Leadership & Management, Management Today magazine and the Association of Graduate Recruiters); science organisations and campaigns (the Royal Society’s 350th anniversary, Natural History Museum, The Times Cheltenham Science Festival); voluntary organisations (Oxfam, Action on Addiction, Lumos); and women’s and diversity issues. 


Amy has previously worked in education (for Pearson Edexcel) and the arts. She is a Trustee of the Daphne Jackson Trust.


John Hogan

NHS Consultant at local Whipps Cross Hospital appointed in 1992 and now working at St Bartholomew’s Hospital. John was initially a member of Whitefield Development Trust before promotion to the the Board of Whitefield School and thereafter Whitefield Academy Trust. John introduced Project search (which is a project run by the Trust to help young people into careers) to Barts NHS Health Trust. John is also a Non Executive Director at Princess Alexandra NHS Hospital Trust.


Louise Hutchinson

I was attracted to becoming involved with Whitefield Academy because of its reputation for excellence and on account of my experience as Regional Director of a Northern charity providing a community, educational and residential services to children and adults with a visual impairment.  In my current role as Director of the PATROL (Parking and Traffic Regulations Outside London) Joint Committee I make statutory provision for and provide access to independent adjudication in respect of civil parking and traffic penalties issued by more than three hundred local authorities in England (outside London) and Wales.  My role particularly centres around governance, financial accountability, which resonates with my membership of Whitefield’s Finance Committee,  as well as national policy and stakeholder engagement. 


Caroline Sheppard OBE

Caroline Sheppard retired as Chair of the Directors of the Whitefield Academy Trust in January 2020. She had been Chair of Governors of Whitefield Schools since 2011, having been Vice-Chair since 1998 and a governor since 1996. As Chair she played a significant role in the creation of the multi-academy trust with Joseph Clarke School, becoming the first Chair of the Board.

Caroline is a barrister and is Chief Adjudicator of the Traffic Penalty Tribunal. She is a champion of technology for the tribunal and for public service delivery. She is a Member of the Administrative Justice Council, and was elected to the Council of Justice, the all-party law reform and human rights organisation in 2016. She was awarded the OBE in 2017.


Owen O'Regan

Owen O'Regan is a serving primary head teacher in Tower Hamlets, East London. He has been associated with Joseph Clarke School since 2013 and was one of the founding members and directors of the Whitefield Academy Trust. Owen also sits on the Board for the Tower Hamlets Education Partnership, an organisation leading School Improvement across Tower Hamlets' Schools; and the Poplar Partnership, a charity which aims to improve education and health outcomes for families in Poplar, East London.

Owen is passionate about school improvement through high-quality professional learning and development and is committed to partnership working across the education system and beyond.


Jasvinder Paik BA (Hons), MBA, FFA, FIPA

My connection with Whitefield Academy stretches back many years when my son joined reception year. He has progressed over the years with support of like-minded staff and integration at main stream schools and is now studying at University.  As a parent of a SEN Child I’m very well aware of difficulties that parents encounter and the support they need to overcome these hurdles and difficulties.


I joined Whitefield Academy in 2012 as a Parent Governor. In 2019 I joined the Whitefield Academy Trust as a director. To this day I continue to serve as a director of the Whitefield Academy Trust.

In my many professional roles over 40 years I have been lucky enough to have worked with, consulted to and teamed up with a variety of talented management and inspiring people. These work experiences have enabled me to add value and provide insightful contribution at WAT meetings and Focus groups. I have experience of budget setting, monitoring expenditure and compliance with DOA.

Now retired, I enjoy spending time with my family, putting something back in the community my faith encourages community volunteering.


Statutory Documents

For information Trust Members' and Trustees' interests, scheme of financial delegation etc, please see the bottom of our Policies & Key Information Page.

Contacting the Trustees

The chair of Trustees for the whole Trust is Andrew Howat. If you would like to contact the Trustees, you can do so either through the Whitefield Schools or Joseph Clarke School office, or by sending an email to:

Whitefield Academy Trust is a company registered in England and Wales: Registration No. 08878604