Previously known as The Transformation Trust

Amy Leonard MBE

Chief Executive


Amy set up The Talent Foundry, (previously known as the Transformation Trust) in early 2009 and is the driving force behind achievements including the establishment of Rock Assembly as an annual end-of-term futures fair and pop concert for over 10,000 young people at Wembley Arena. Alongside her role as CEO, Amy is a consultant advising a range of organisations on their communications and positioning. In the 2020 New Year Honours List, Amy was awarded an MBE in recognition of her establishing the charity and for services to young people and education.

Susannah French

Operations Director


Before joining the team in January 2016, Susannah worked as a Business Manager in a school. Prior to that she was a Business Manager for the Local Authority as part of their School Improvement team. She also worked as a Programme Leader working as part of the 14-19 Team to manage a large programme of Flexible Learning for KS4 students across the Borough. She has a first-class degree in Law, 12 years experience as a school governor and has extensive experience in the Financial and Education sectors.

Cate Smith

Head of Programmes


Cate joined the team as a Programme Manager in August 2017 after working in Beirut, Lebanon for five years. While in Beirut, she worked at the United Nations (UNRWA) coordinating an EU-funded employability project, before moving on to manage humanitarian relief and development programmes, including an emergency maternal health project funded by the UN's Syria Emergency Relief Fund. Cate sits on the Editorial Board of Studies in Ethnicity and Nationalism, a peer-reviewed, inter-disciplinary academic journal. She is also the Chair of the Barclays Lifeskills Youth Advisory Council (LYAC). Cate holds a first-class honours degree in International Relations from the University of Leeds.

Grace Gabriel Stogdon

Programme Manager


Grace joined the team in November 2019 as a Programme Manager having previously worked on programmes enabling young people to identify social issues and develop their skills to be able to take action on them. Before that, Grace worked at the Greater London Authority (GLA) focussing on widening participation for young Londoners to volunteer in their community.

Grace read American Studies at the University of East Anglia and spent a year studying abroad in Kansas. More widely, she believes in removing barriers to education and empowering young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to realise they have the skills and attributes to be successful in whatever path they choose.

Tom Owen

Programme Coordinator


Tom joined the team in January 2019 as Programme Coordinator for the LifeSkills created with Barclays programme.

After completing his LLB in Law at Durham University, Tom worked in communication and events for a US-UK start-up, before moving into the third sector.

He previously volunteered in Cambodia on an inclusive education programme aimed at improving engagement between pupils and their community. He is passionate about removing inequality in education and wider society.

Kieran Proctor

Senior Schools Liaison Officer


Kieran joined the team as a Schools Liaison Officer in September 2018. Kieran graduated with a BA Hons Drama and Performance degree which he studied in London. During this time Kieran worked on several projects which explored different aspects of theatre on and off stage.

Kieran developed a particular passion for educational outreach through his applied theatre module where he and his peers created a workshop for young audiences. In his spare time, he volunteers with an inclusive theatre charity supporting young people with drama activities.

Maddie Hayden

Senior Schools Liaison Officer


Maddie joined the team in November 2018 as a Schools Liaison Officer. Maddie holds an MA in Applied Anthropology and Community Development and a BA Hons in Anthropology. Maddie has participated in a range of social action projects targeting marginalised communities, during which time she developed a passion for supporting youth projects. Alongside this, Maddie has volunteered extensively at City Farms, youth clubs, and as an early-years Teaching Assistant in schools across Asia.

Vikki Barber

Finance Officer


Vikki joined the team in April 2019 as a Finance Officer Maternity Cover to work alongside the Operations Director.

Vikki has over 20 years’ experience in Marketing and Business Development in a range of industries from luxury brands, construction and, most recently, education. She also has extensive experience in customer relations and events organising.

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Jordan Konda

Schools Liaison Officer


Jordan joined the team in September 2019 as a Schools Liaison Officer.

After completing sixth form, Jordan worked for a local education charity. Since joining us, Jordan has worked on a number of programmes, providing vital support to schools and colleagues.

He is particularly passionate about working with and helping disadvantaged students.

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Alex Brodie

Programme Support Officer


Alex joined the team in October 2019. After graduating from the University of Birmingham in July 2018 with a BA in Geography, Alex worked in the retail industry gaining valuable experience in customer service. Alex has a keen interest in politics and socio-economic issues concerning disadvantaged communities, especially the challenges that younger members of these communities face.

Kirsten Flynn

Company Secretary


Kirsten joined the team as Company Secretary in April 2012 on a voluntary basis. She is a Project Director and Company Secretary at Cornerstone Property Assets, a social investment mutual created specifically to work in partnership with public authorities to make better use of local authority assets to the benefit of local communities. Kirsten is a MCIPS qualified procurement professional and PRINCE 2 qualified project manager with 17 years public and private sector experience.

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Our Core Team

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