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Who are we?

The Team.

Members

Nigel Robson

Nigel Robson

Member

Nigel Robson
Nigel Robson

Nigel was born in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, and his involvement in Academies stretches back to 2002, when as Chair of the Chamber of Commerce in the North East he was determined to address the issue of historic underperformance of many of the regions LEA secondary schools. He was a lawyer in an international law firm and his positions included International Head of Engineering and Construction, Global Head of Energy, and Managing Partner. He was an accredited Mediator, and Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.

Nigel joined the Board of Emmanuel Schools Foundation in 2008, and became Chair in 2011. He is married with five children, eleven grand-children, living in Cumbria, and his interests are family, Lakeland fell walking, rugby, mountain biking, Tuscan village life and history.

Nigel is chair of United Learning Trust, with lead responsibility for their Northern Secondary Academies, and chairs the Education, Standards and Performance Committee. He is a trustee of the theological training college, St John’s and Cranmer Hall, Durham University. He supports the Carlisle Diocese, including its educational responsibilities through The Good Shepherd MAT.

Dr Beverley Kenny

Dr Beverley Kenny

Member

Dr Beverley Kenny
Dr Beverley Kenny

Beverley Kenny graduated in Medicine in Newcastle in 1983 and was a GP principal in Wallsend for over 20 years.

As a GP, a strong interest in patient empowerment through good quality, evidence based information led Beverley to co-found and develop the website Patient.co.uk. Beverley’s main role is now in medical education and she is currently the course director for Newcastle University's Graduate Entry Medicine (Accelerated) programme.

Pastor Kenneth Stone

Pastor Kenneth Stone

Member

Pastor Kenneth Stone
Pastor Kenneth Stone

I have had connections with King’s for the past five years and have been a regular visitor to school assemblies which I really enjoy, (hopefully the students feel the same way!)

King’s is an important part of our local community and I am delighted to be part of the governance team which work alongside both staff and students in ensuring we accomplish high and consistent standards allowing all our students to achieve their true potential.

I have been pastor of Hemlington Baptist Church for the past eight years and prior to this, I was a senior manager with an international food distribution company servicing the catering industry.

Over recent years I have also supported other local schools and I now serve as Chair of Governors at Viewley Hill Academy in Hemlington.

King’s is a great school with a proud record of achievements. I’m delighted to be part of thispro-active governance team and look forward to supporting both the Principal and all the King’s staff in ensuring we go from strength to strength.

Revd Professor David Wilkinson

Revd Professor David Wilkinson

Member

Revd Professor David Wilkinson
Revd Professor David Wilkinson

In addition to teaching and research in the Department of Theology and Religion at St John’s College, Durham, David is also Principal of the College.

Before working in Durham as a theologian, he was a scientist and then a Methodist minister in inner city Liverpool. His background is research in theoretical astrophysics, where his PhD was in the study of star formation, the chemical evolution of galaxies and terrestrial mass extinctions such as the event which wiped out the dinosaurs. He is a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society and has published a wide range of papers on these subjects.

After this research he trained for the Methodist ministry, studying theology at Cambridge. He then served in a variety of appointments, including a growing church in Liverpool and as Methodist chaplain at Liverpool University.

David arrived in Durham in 1999 and held a Fellowship in Christian Apologetics at St John's College, and was also Associate Director of the Centre for Christian Communication.

His current work involves the relationship of the Christian theology to contemporary culture, from science to pop culture. He has had a long interest in the dialogue of science and religion, especially as it impacts the physical sciences. God, Time and Stephen Hawking (Monarch, 2001) and Christian Eschatology and the Physical Universe (T&T Clark 2010) are examples of that work. This work forms some of the undergraduate and postgraduate teaching that he does in the college where he teaches modules in science and theology. His PhD is in Systematic Theology and explored Christian eschatology.

In addition, he is interested in the relationship of theology to contemporary culture in terms of preaching, missiology and apologetics. He has written on the spirituality in contemporary cinema in The Power of the Force: The Spirituality of the Star Wars Films (Lion, 2000) and on the Christian doctrine of holiness in A Holiness of the Heart (Monarch, 2000).

He has a range of research students working on the science and religion dialogue, the theology of preaching, Christian leadership, Fresh Expressions of church, Methodist ecclesiology, apologetics and the new atheism and the impact of reality television.

Board of Directors (Trustees)

Nigel Robson

Nigel Robson

Chairman/Member

Nigel Robson
Nigel Robson

Nigel was born in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, and his involvement in Academies stretches back to 2002, when as Chair of the Chamber of Commerce in the North East he was determined to address the issue of historic underperformance of many of the regions LEA secondary schools. He was a lawyer in an international law firm and his positions included International Head of Engineering and Construction, Global Head of Energy, and Managing Partner. He was an accredited Mediator, and Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.

Nigel joined the Board of Emmanuel Schools Foundation in 2008, and became Chair in 2011. He is married with five children, eleven grand-children, living in Cumbria, and his interests are family, Lakeland fell walking, rugby, mountain biking, Tuscan village life and history.

Nigel is chair of United Learning Trust, with lead responsibility for their Northern Secondary Academies, and chairs the Education, Standards and Performance Committee. He is a trustee of the theological training college, St John’s and Cranmer Hall, Durham University. He supports the Carlisle Diocese, including its educational responsibilities through The Good Shepherd MAT.

Maura Regan

Maura Regan

Vice Chair/Trustee

Maura Regan
Maura Regan

Maura is the architect of Carmel Education Trust, having led the successful transformation of Carmel College from a single outstanding College to the lead school in a Multi-Academy Trust (MAT).The Trust is recognised as a leading organisation nationally.

In her role as an NLE, Maura and her Leadership Team have supported schools across the region from all phases, all of which are now showing significant improvements in outcomes for students.

Carmel College is one of the top performing schools nationally and as a Teaching School leads initiatives across the region focussing on ITT provision, work force development and School to School support.

Maura has been highly pro-active in supporting NETSP (North East Teaching Schools Partnership) in the delivery of NPQH, NPQSL and NPQML and a National College programme ‘Women into Headship’.

She is a Trustee of Schools North East and a Director for the Church of England Diocese of Carlisle Good Shepherd Multi Academy Trust.

Maura is regularly invited to address national audiences on the benefits and complexities of establishing and leading a Multi-Academy Trust in accordance with the principles of subsidiarity, solidarity and support for the common good. She is passionate about making a difference and believes that ‘every child should be given every opportunity to succeed’.

Professor Mark Pike

Professor Mark Pike

CEO/Trustee

Professor Mark Pike
Professor Mark Pike

Mark Pike was appointed as Chief Executive Officer of ESF with effect from 1st September 2017 and resigned as a Member with effect from 14th July, 2017.

Mark is a Trustee of the Emmanuel Schools Foundation and is an educationist with almost 30 years’ experience in secondary education, teacher training, the continuing professional development of teachers and school leadership. He is also Professor of Education at the University of Leeds and Visiting Professor at Dreistar Educatief, The Netherlands’ No 1 ranked teacher-education University.

Mark’s areas of specialism as an educator include: teaching and learning in schools, school leadership and character education. His ESRC-sponsored PhD at Southampton University focussed on how to engage, motivate and raise the attainment of 14-16-year olds. Since then he has published numerous articles and books on different aspects of schooling (including the contribution of Christian-ethos schools to society) and speaks at conferences on education in places such as The Netherlands, Germany, US, UK and China. Funded by a £1.1m Templeton grant, Mark leads an international team of educators working on character education in schools and enjoys helping school leaders and teachers improve their practice.

Mark has lived in Yorkshire for 20 years; after a first degree at the University of Leeds and a teacher’s certificate at Nottingham University, he served as a teacher and curriculum manager in secondary schools for ten years before moving into teacher training and school leadership. He has been married to Barbara for 25 years (who he met as an undergraduate before they were teachers at the same school) and they now have three children at Trinity Academy. He enjoys travelling, especially in the US and Germany, walking coastal paths, black and white photography, reading good books (especially C.S. Lewis’ fiction, theology and ethics), cycling, swimming, supporting his local church and spending time with his family.

Mark’s webpage at the University of Leeds:

http://www.education.leeds.ac.uk/people/academic/pike

Information on the character education project that Mark leads in schools:

http://1r2qwo2yg0am48qb2w3qswxs.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/files/2015/07/2016-EE-final-international.pdf

Martin Oldknow

Martin Oldknow

Trustee

Martin Oldknow
Martin Oldknow

Martin recently retired from South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service after a career spanning 30 years. Martin reached the rank of Group Manager (Divisional Officer) and was Head of the Technical Fire Safety department. Martin has over 15 years’ experience in Fire Safety and Emergency Planning. 

He now runs his own Fire Safety Consultancy and Training Company. Martin is educated to degree standard and possesses a BA (Hons) in Law awarded by the University of Kent. He also has a University certificate in Forensic Science from the University of Central Lancashire. Martin has been a school governor for over 25 years. 

Most recently he took over as chair of a school in special measures and working with the Executive Head Teacher managed to turn the school around; it was categorised as ‘Good’ within 14 months. 

He then took the lead in federating the governing body of two schools into a successful hard federation. He has since assisted other schools to become federated. He has been a member of an IEB at Kirk Sandall Junior School and contributed to its improvement prior to it becoming part of an academy trust. 

He currently also sits on two other IEBs. Martin also chairs the school improvement board of a secondary academy that was in special measures and has become the vice chair of the full board. 

The school is now on a sound trajectory to becoming ‘Good’ or better. He is also a National Leader of Governance assisting 5 other schools at present to varying degrees and he is the vice-chair of the Doncaster Education Improvement Board.

Tony Bird

Tony Bird

Trustee

Tony Bird
Tony Bird

Tony is married with three children, and has been Deputy Head of the Royal Grammar School in Newcastle upon Tyne for the last 13 years.

A former Director of Music, Director of Studies, he has a wide experience of all aspects of school leadership. He was an inspector with the Independent Schools' Inspectorate for a number of years, and studied for a Masters Degree in School Improvement, Management of Change and Innovation, and School Systems and Personnel.

In his current management role, he has a particular interest in teaching and learning, professional development of teachers, teacher training, the appointment of staff, and the all-round development of students.

As a trained Lay Preacher in the Methodist Church, he is no stranger to the pulpits of the north east. His interests are music, history, sport, and hill-walking.

Peter Pickthall

Peter Pickthall

Trustee

Peter Pickthall
Peter Pickthall

Peter has recently retired as Group HR Director from R&R Ice Cream (renamed Froneri), the second largest worldwide ice cream manufacturer. In addition to HR duties he was also responsible for staff training and development across all countries.

He is a Justice of the Peace (Magistrate) in Cumbria in both the adult and youth courts and has been Youth Panel chairman for the past 12 years. As a father of two, he has had a real interest in education and school performance, resulting in him serving as a school governor which included a spell as chair of Governors, for over 20 years in both the primary and secondary sectors.

Following a spell in the Army, Peter qualified in agriculture and farm management before working in the chemical industry, becoming head of training and development for the UK business, before moving into HR. Whilst working he completed a second degree in psychology and was a Chartered Manager. He later became Managing Partner in his own HR and Training Consultancy, prior to joining R&R Ice Cream as HR Director.

Currently enjoying retirement, he keeps busy as a Churchwarden and with JP duties. When time allows he likes to escape to go off-shore sailing; he completed an Atlantic circuit (Caribbean and back) in 2013 and plans to do a half Atlantic sail to the Azores and back in 2017.

Stewart McKinlay

Stewart McKinlay

Trustee

Stewart McKinlay
Stewart McKinlay

Stewart is married with four grown up children and in his professional life leads the worldwide Research and Development activities for Smith & Nephew’s Advanced Wound Management Division. His teams research and develop new medical devices to be used in the Healthcare systems of over 130 countries. Stewart has held senior leadership roles within Smith & Nephew for the last 15 years with leadership development, team performance and innovation being core to his skill set.

Stewart is also the chair of Directors for one of East Yorkshire’s largest Churches, Revive Church with its main centre in Hull and is currently co-leading the Revive Church congregation in Cottingham.

Simon Goon

Simon Goon

Trustee

Simon Goon
Simon Goon

Simon is the Chief Operating Officer of Synoptica, an AI company helping businesses to improve their sales by gaining insights on their customers.

Simon originally started out as a chemist but for the last 20 years has held a variety of commercial and strategy development roles in the private and public sectors, including running his own business.

Simon is married with two teenagers and lives in Gateshead.

Executive Team

Professor Mark Pike

Professor Mark Pike

Chief Executive Officer

Professor Mark Pike
Professor Mark Pike

Mark Pike was appointed as Chief Executive Officer of ESF with effect from 1st September 2017 and resigned as a Member with effect from 14th July, 2017.

Mark is a Trustee of the Emmanuel Schools Foundation and is an educationist with almost 30 years’ experience in secondary education, teacher training, the continuing professional development of teachers and school leadership. He is also Professor of Education at the University of Leeds and Visiting Professor at Dreistar Educatief, The Netherlands’ No 1 ranked teacher-education University.

Mark’s areas of specialism as an educator include: teaching and learning in schools, school leadership and character education. His ESRC-sponsored PhD at Southampton University focussed on how to engage, motivate and raise the attainment of 14-16-year olds. Since then he has published numerous articles and books on different aspects of schooling (including the contribution of Christian-ethos schools to society) and speaks at conferences on education in places such as The Netherlands, Germany, US, UK and China. Funded by a £1.1m Templeton grant, Mark leads an international team of educators working on character education in schools and enjoys helping school leaders and teachers improve their practice.

Mark has lived in Yorkshire for 20 years; after a first degree at the University of Leeds and a teacher’s certificate at Nottingham University, he served as a teacher and curriculum manager in secondary schools for ten years before moving into teacher training and school leadership. He has been married to Barbara for 25 years (who he met as an undergraduate before they were teachers at the same school) and they now have three children at Trinity Academy. He enjoys travelling, especially in the US and Germany, walking coastal paths, black and white photography, reading good books (especially C.S. Lewis’ fiction, theology and ethics), cycling, swimming, supporting his local church and spending time with his family.

Mark’s webpage at the University of Leeds:

http://www.education.leeds.ac.uk/people/academic/pike

Information on the character education project that Mark leads in schools:

http://1r2qwo2yg0am48qb2w3qswxs.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/files/2015/07/2016-EE-final-international.pdf

Jonathan Winch

Jonathan Winch

Executive Principal (Educational Standards)

Jonathan Winch
Jonathan Winch

JWinch@esf-mail.org.uk

0191 460 2099

Jonathan Winch was educated at The Latymer School, Edmonton, and then at Durham University where he combined the study of philosophy and psychology with mathematics. He has worked in education all his professional life.

His connection with the Emmanuel Schools Foundation began in 1994, when he joined Emmanuel College as Head of Mathematics, before serving as Vice Principal and then Principal. Jonathan led Emmanuel College for twelve years, from 2004 to 2016, during which time the school maintained an unbroken record of outstanding Ofsted Inspections and consistently achieved examination results placing the school in the top twenty comprehensives of the nation. He is a National Leader of Education.

Jonathan is married to Julie, and their four children all attended Emmanuel. He holds a leadership role in a local church (where he is also a pianist) and enjoys hill walking, reading, travel and ideas.

Vacant

Vacant

Executive Principal (Primary Education)

Vacant
Vacant

Darren Warburton

Darren Warburton

Director of Finance and Support Services

Darren Warburton
Darren Warburton

DWarburton@esf-mail.org.uk

01670 543 400

Darren Warburton was educated at Lancaster University where he obtained his Bachelor’s degree in History and Politics, and a Master’s degree in International Relations and Strategic Studies before qualifying as a Chartered Accountant with the National Audit Office in London.

Since then he has worked in a variety of financial roles in different sectors with Vaux Group plc, Arriva plc and Dewhirst, the clothing manufacturers, before spending 13 years working in the social housing sector with Gentoo Group and Home Group. In his most recent role at Home Group, one of the largest social landlords in the UK and the largest provider of care and support services to vulnerable people, he was a member of the Senior Leadership Team and Head of Finance with responsibility for the Group’s assets including its housing stock of 55,000 homes. This included investment appraisal and funding for a growth strategy for the Group’s house building programme aiming to build 10,000 homes over 5 years nationally for rent and sale.

Principals

Gwyneth Evans

Gwyneth Evans

Bede Academy Principal

Gwyneth Evans
Gwyneth Evans

Gwyneth Evans read History at University in London and completed her PGCE in Newcastle. She has taught History at various schools in the North East throughout her career. She was Head of History, senior teacher responsible for the development of Teaching and Learning across academic departments before becoming Vice Principal responsible for academic standards at Emmanuel College from 2003 to 2007.

Gwyneth has been privileged to work with an excellent team in the establishment and development of an all-through Academy in Blyth, Bede Academy. She is committed to all-through education and the immeasurable benefits that it brings.

Her interests include history, theology, travel, classical music, reading, cooking as well as spending quality time with friends and family.

Matt Waterfield

Matt Waterfield

Emmanuel College Principal

Matt Waterfield
Matt Waterfield

Matt Waterfield joined the Emmanuel Schools Foundation in February 2008 as Assistant to the Director of Schools, having previously taught mathematics, RE and PE and having served as a deputy head teacher. In 2009, he joined the Senior Management Team at Emmanuel College and has been Principal since April 2016.

Matt has a passion for the economic, cultural and spiritual regeneration of the North East. He moved to Northumberland in 1990 and has remained in the region since then.

Matt holds a BA in Archaeology from Newcastle University and an MA in Educational Leadership and Management from the University of Warwick, and has a particular professional interest in leadership studies, character education, effective assessment and curriculum design. He also retains an interest in the history and archaeology the Roman Empire and in Early Christian Studies.

Matt lives in Gateshead with his wife Kerry and their four children. Personal interests include playing and listening to music, watching (regrettably no longer playing) rugby and walking.

David Dawes

David Dawes

The King's Academy Principal

David Dawes
David Dawes

David moved back to the North East in 2008 to help lead the opening of one of The King’s Academy’s sister schools, Bede Academy in Blyth, where he was vice principal responsible for academic achievement. In the period prior to joining The King’s Academy, David led the rapid transformation of Stainburn School in Cumbria, as well as helping students to secure the school’s best ever results. However, he notes that his aim is for all pupils to not only leave with outstanding academic qualifications and great personal achievements, but to leave as young people of exceptional character through their moral and spiritual excellence.

Originally from Leeds, David went to the University of Cambridge where he completed a masters’ degree in engineering. He then attended the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, and was commissioned into the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, reaching the rank of Captain and serving in Germany and Bosnia.

Married with three daughters, he went on to work in industry, for Walkers Crisps at Peterlee, then the large US consulting company A T Kearney and, finally, in private equity with a part of Prudential. After studying education at the University of London and qualifying as a mathematics teacher, he worked in two large comprehensive schools in the capital, becoming an assistant headteacher at JFS School in Harrow before joining Bede Academy.

Amongst his interests, David includes swimming and sailing. Trying not to combine these too much, he is a strong advocate for adventurous experiences for young people, noting that the excitement of outdoor pursuits present the natural world alongside the many challenges of physical forces, science, technology, sport, teamwork and personal endeavour.

David Page

David Page

Trinity Academy Principal

David Page
David Page

David Page joined the Emmanuel Schools Foundation in April 2013 as Vice Principal. He had spent 16 years working in schools in Middlesbrough as a teacher of science, Head of Year, Assistant Headteacher and finally as a Vice Principal. David trained with Future Leaders as part of Cohort ’11 and has facilitated on various training programmes including NPQSL and Teaching Leaders. He has been Principal since February 2014.

David obtained a BSc in Biomedical Sciences in 1996 and completed a PGCE in York during 1997. He has been teaching since. His passion for science was born out of watching his father, as a mature student, retrain to become a doctor. His particular passion within the disciplines of science is for microbiology and the study of pathology.

David was born in Sunderland but now resides near Selby in North Yorkshire with his wife Kathryn and their three sons with whom most of his free time is spent.

Support Services Management Team

Joy Saini

Joy Saini

Head of IT

Joy Saini
Joy Saini

JSaini@esf-mail.org.uk

Joy Saini joined the Emmanuel Schools Foundation (ESF) in June 2013 as Head of IT. Having already worked for 14 years in the information technology in both the private and public sector, Joy was able to perfectly align his core strengths.

Joy has the overall responsibility and control of the Foundation’s IT operations, infrastructure, networked communication, data centre, disaster recovery, project delivery, software licences, procurement, contracts management, planning and related on-going advice for the senior stakeholders.

His position sees him identify, develop and direct the IT strategy. He is also responsible for improving and growing IT within the Foundation’s schools and for building core relationships with the stakeholders and partners.

Joy holds a BCA (Bachelor of Computer Applications), MCA (Master of Computer Applications), MSc. Network Systems and an MBA.

Personal interests include music, travel, sports, playing league cricket, coaching (ECB level 2) and spending time with family and friends.

Mark Boyers

Mark Boyers

Project and Facilities Director

Mark Boyers
Mark Boyers

MBoyers@esf-mail.org.uk

After completing a Mechanical Engineering Apprenticeship with a multi-national design consultancy company Mark Boyers, worked as a Commercial Project Planner for an offshore construction company. In 1995 Mark moved into Project Management within the automotive industry working within the tier one supply chain, having responsibility for key projects for major Automotive manufacturers.

In 2003 Mark joined the Emmanuel Schools Foundation as the Project Manager working with the sponsor to develop and deliver the new Academy schools within the group. He was promoted to Project and Facilities Director in 2010.

Mark lives in the North East with his two daughters.

Vacant

Vacant

Head of HR

Vacant
Vacant

Christine Taylor

Christine Taylor

Company Secretary

Christine Taylor
Christine Taylor

CTaylor@esf-mail.org.uk

Christine Taylor is an Associate of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and a Fellow of the Institute of Legal Executives. Christine has worked within the compliance industry throughout much of her career. She worked for a large multinational law firm in Leeds for over ten years before relocating to the North East in 2006.

Christine was the head of a Compliance Unit for a North East law firm for a further four years following which she set up her own compliance business which she still runs today. Christine has also worked for a listed company on the London Stock Exchange in Durham for three years.

She joined the Emmanuel Schools Foundation in 2015 as Company Secretary to the Board. Christine still lives in the North East and has one daughter.