About Us

Our Trustees and Patrons

Sir David Bell, Chairman

Sir David Bell is the Chair of Trustees for The Transformation Trust. He is also a non-executive director of the Economist, Chairman of Sadlers Wells, the University of Roehampton, Crisis, Common Purpose, the London Transport Museum, the Media Standards Trust, the Institute of War and Peace Reporting and the Walpole Committee.

He also serves on the boards of the International Youth Foundation, Plan International, and Silatech and is a Trustee of the Centre for the Study of Financial Innovation and a member of the Honorary Council of the Royal National Theatre.

David was Chairman of the Financial Times from 1996 until his retirement at the end of 2009 and served on the board of Pearson plc for thirteen years until May 2009. Until his retirement David also served as Chairman of Pearson Inc. and as Pearson’s Director for People. He was also Chairman of the Millennium Bridge Trust (1995-2002), responsible for conceiving the first new bridge across Thames in the centre of London for 100 years.

David was educated at Cambridge University and the University of Pennsylvania. He received his knighthood for services to industry, the arts and charity.

Tim Byles CBE

In June 2011, Tim Byles CBE became Chief Executive of Cornerstone. From November 2006 until May 2011, he was Chief Executive at Partnerships for Schools .

He was previously Chief Executive of Norfolk County Council, where his achievements included raising the council’s performance to the highest level, creating a wide range of public private partnerships for improved service delivery, and developing trading subsidiaries turning over more than £100m per annum.

Before joining Norfolk in 1996 as one of the youngest chief executives in the country, Tim was Director of Economic Development at Kent County Council. During his time in Kent and Norfolk, he was involved in large-scale schools and commercial premises procurement projects.

Tim has worked extensively with central government in his roles as Chair of the Local Government Chief Executive’s Taskforce, the Local Government Construction Taskforce, and the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives (SOLACE), a position he held for four years. He also served as National Procurement Champion for the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister.

Tim received a CBE in the 2006 Queen’s Birthday Honours list, for services to Local Government.

Sir David Carter

I was the product of a comprehensive school in South Wales, and was the first member of my family to go to university. Making a difference to the lives of children similar to me has motivated me throughout my career.

I became the National Schools Commissioner (NSC) in February 2016 having had the majority of my previous leadership experience in the school system. As NSC, I lead a team that oversees the 6500 academies in England and intervenes with them when performance standards fall. Our focus is on building capacity so that the trusts that run them can sustain improvement over time.

Before I joined the Civil Service I was a CEO in a multi academy trust in Bristol. The scale of this challenge where I was responsible for 12 schools, 5000 children and 1200 staff was excellent preparation for my current role where my leadership span of control extends across eight regional offices. The majority of the schools that we sponsored had failed for years and my experience of leading rapid improvement in disadvantaged communities informs my thinking in my current role.

I have learned that the best strategies need teams to be well supported and intelligently held to account. As NSC I expect high performance from my RSC team, and I have built our strategy around two priorities. Firstly, growing the capacity of the school system to support weaker schools, and secondly, improving the system so that weaker schools get stronger and stronger schools become world class.                                                   

As well as sharing my own experiences with colleagues from more traditional Civil Service backgrounds, feedback on my own performance has been important to me. Last year I was placed in the top 10% of performers and I want to sustain this. My role as NSC is sector facing and in the first eight months I spent 60% of my time working in the regions. The feedback that I was given pointed out that whilst my visibility to the profession was important, I needed to improve the balance of my time so that I was just as available to my team in the DFE. Having reflected on this, I am now developing my range of strategic leadership skills as a result of attending a wider range of internal meetings and discussions that depend upon the views of me and my team. 

I believe that I demonstrate the core values of the Civil Service. I recognise my role is high profile and that my views and presentations are widely reported in the press and social media. I write a monthly column for the Times Educational Supplement and I have also been interviewed by BBC Radio 4 and 5 as well as appearing on BBC Newsnight to discuss the academies programme. Ministers and senior colleagues have placed their trust and confidence in me. I repay this by ensuring that I do not compromise the ministerial team nor my colleagues by offering views that are personal or biased. 

I want to develop as a leader and am ambitious to become a Director General. I want the HPDS programme to enable me to learn from a wider network of colleagues who may have more political and strategic experience than me, but I where I can make a contribution to the programme by sharing my direct experience of leading a growing successful organisation and overseeing a new regional structure in the school system. I want make a wider contribution as a senior Civil Servant. I am ambitious for our country and for its residents and participation in the HPDS programme would support this aim.

Ian Cleland

Ian has dedicated his career to developing students and adults alike, helping them fulfil their potential. He has wide-ranging experience in school leadership and management, having been deputy head teacher in a large community school and interim head in two secondary schools as part of their recovery from significant weakness. Ian’s impressive achievements include moving the performance of a local authority’s schools from 35th to 5th in the metropolitan league tables.

Ian Cleland was Chief Executive of The Ormiston Academies Trust, a not-for-profit organisation which provides services, products and programmes to help schools realise their full potential. In 2013 Ian set up Academy Transformation Trust, an academy sponsor where he is Chief Executive.

Dame Julia Cleverdon

Dame Julia Cleverdon is principally known for the considerable reputation she has acquired as a renowned leader and challenging speaker on business leadership, corporate responsibility, education and women’s development. She has been acclaimed for achieving real innovation and behaviour change in the boardrooms of the UK while Chief Executive of Business in the Community from April 1992 to March 2008.

Under her leadership the business-led organisation grew from £2million to £24 million turnover with 400 staff and encompassed 850 member companies committed to improving their positive impact on society. Inspiring businesses to collaborate together to tackle community need, stem climate change, promote diversity and harness the engagement of business in education were the hallmarks of Julia’s achievements. She developed, with the Prince of Wales, his Seeing is Believing programme involving more than seven thousand business leaders visiting inner city schools, prisons, homeless hostels, community groups and social enterprises in the most deprived communities in the UK.

She is now a Vice President of Business in the Community, and a Special Adviser to the Prince’s Charities on responsible business practice. She was listed by The Times as one of the 50 most influential women in Britain, and is much in demand on corporate and educational platforms as speaker and catalyst. She was appointed CBE in 1996 and CVO in the New Year’s Honours’ list in 2002 and a DCVO in the Queen’s Honours list in 2008. She holds an Honorary LLD from the University of Warwick, and Honorary Degrees from Harper Adams University College for her support of rural communities and the University of Middlesex.

Philip Graf CBE

Philip Graf is Chairman of CfBT Education Trust, a leading education consultancy and service organisation, and an associate of Praesta Partners LLP. He is also Vice Chairman of Crisis.

A Cambridge law graduate, Philip joined the Liverpool Daily Post and Echo in 1983. He subsequently became Chief Executive in 1993. He became Chief Executive of Trinity Mirror Group in 1999 – a position he held until February 2003. In 2003 he was asked by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport to carry out a review of the BBC’s online activities. He is a former Chairman of the Press Standards Board of Finance and of the Broadband Stakeholder Group. He was also Vice Chairman of Ofcom until the end of 2011.

Luke Bradley-Jones

Luke Bradley-Jones was appointed as Sky UK’s Chief Marketing Officer in 2017 and is responsible for brand strategy, product marketing, and customer engagement across all Sky UK’s TV, broadband and mobile products. In his five years at Sky, Luke has overseen the transformation of Sky’s On Demand services, as well as leading the go to market launch of Sky Store, Sky Go Extra, Sky Box Sets and most recently Sky Q.

Before joining Sky, Luke spent five years at BBC Worldwide, the BBC’s commercial arm, initially joining as Head of Strategy before rising to MD of BBC.com and Global iPlayer, responsible for the corporation's online, mobile and digital video-on-demand business. He spent two years in the US where he launched BBC.com and built out a digital VOD business through partnerships with Apple, Netflix, Xbox and Yahoo.

Prior to working at BBC Worldwide, Luke worked at media consultancy Spectrum Strategy Consultants (now Value Partners). 

Josh Krichefski

Josh is Chief Executive Officer of MediaCom, the UK’s largest and most successful media and communications agency.  MediaCom has over 900 people working with over 200 client accounts across 6 offices in the UK.  The agency manages the advertising media accounts for some of the country's smartest advertisers. Companies like Sky, Volkswagen, DFS, GlaxoSmithKline, Procter and Gamble and Universal, working across traditional and emerging media covering everything from TV to Social Media, Print to Content, Out of Home to Mobile, Sponsorship to Search Engine Marketing.  MediaCom’s success was recognised in 2013 with Campaign Magazine’s Agency of the Year award.

Josh is responsible for developing the agency’s strategic business plan each year and ensuring it is delivered.  He leads the senior management board meetings made up of the CEO, Chairman, CFO, Chief Commercial Officer and Managing Director.  This involves working very closely with a team of strong, influential and opinionated people.   The role demands strategic decision-making, change for the agency and seeing changes through to fruition.  For instance, he conceived and executed a full company re-structure in 2013 which has significantly benefited the agency in terms of both effectiveness and efficiency. 

Lord Newby

Lord Newby has been an adviser to The Transformation Trust since its inception in May 2009 and has recently been re-elected as a Trustee.

Having been  Lib Dem Treasury Spokesperson in the Lords prior to the 2010 General Election, Lord Newby was Government Deputy Chief Whip and Treasury Spokesperson from 2012-15. He was Lib Dem chief Whip from 2012 and Leader of the Lib Dem Group in the Lords from 2016.

Before joining the Government, he was Chair of Live Consulting, a corporate responsibility consultancy and Head of Corporate Responsibility at FD, the strategic communications division of FTI Consulting. He was also Chair of Sport for Life International, which manages education programmers linked to major sports stadiums globally, including in Trinidad, Barbados and Pakistan. Lord Newby also held the position of Chair of Sport at The Prince’s Trust and of IDS (UK’s Sport’s international development charity).

Fiona Ryland

Fiona became a Trustee of the Transformation Trust in May 2015. Fiona joined Compass in November 2008 following 5 years in HR Operations at Comet. Prior to this, Fiona had worked at retailers including Dixons, Asda and Safeway in operational roles. Since joining Compass, Fiona has looked after numerous parts of the business including managing the HR Shared Services and most recently supporting the Business & Industry sectors.

In February 2013 Fiona was appointed as HR Director for Compass Group UK & Ireland, bringing her wealth of experience to the exec table. As a passionate people person, Fiona likes nothing more than meeting colleagues and clients throughout the business and cites seeing people grow and develop themselves and their careers as the most rewarding part of her role.

A Bath University alumni with a BEng in Chemical Engineering, Fiona is married to Anthony, loves to travel (having recently trekked in Nepal) and is an avid Leyton Orient FC supporter

Baroness Margaret Sharp

Margaret Sharp, Baroness Sharp of Guildford, is a Liberal Democrat member of the House of Lords. Margaret is also Vice-Chair of the All-Party Group for Skills.

A Cambridge educated economist, her career spanned the civil service and academia, with spells in the Treasury, at LSE and, from 1980 through 2000, at the University of Sussex leading a research group at SPRU (Science Policy Research Unit). Her work there centred on issues in innovation, science and technology policy in two areas: first, the development of EU policies towards science and technology, and, secondly, the emergence of biotechnology and its impact on the pharmaceutical industry.

An active Liberal Democrat, she stood four times for the party in Parliamentary elections and in 1998 joined their benches in the House of Lords where she took over the front bench position on education in 2000. She is also governor of two schools in Guildford, a member of the corporation of Guildford College, an honorary fellow of Birkbeck College and of the City and Guilds Institute and an associate fellow of her former Cambridge College, Newham. She has an honorary doctorate from the University of Sussex and remains a visiting fellow of SPRU there.

Julia Tyler

Julia became a Trustee of the Transformation trust in March 2017. She led the degree programmes at London Business School until September 2016 with responsibility for developing and delivering the strategic plan for degree education, generating some 60% of the fee revenue of this leading international business school.

Prior to this Julia was Executive Vice President at GMAC, the US based organisation, which runs the GMAT test for entry to leading business schools. She created the first subsidiary outside America and then led international operations and relationships with business schools worldwide, with centres in the US, London, Hong Kong and India and was the sole member of the executive team based outside the US. International test taking came to exceed domestic in this period.

Earlier in her career, Julia was a consultant for Coopers&Lybrand (now IBM); led the operations at the Open University Business School and also worked in the then polytechnic sector.

A graduate of both Oxford and London universities, Julia is a trustee for the Thomas Wall Trust and a consultant to charities and not for profit organisations. 

Rachel Wolf

Rachel founded New Schools Network in 2009 and was its director until 2013. She was previously an education policy adviser to Michael Gove. She now works in New York and remains a Trustee of New Schools Network.


Lord David Puttnam

David Puttnam spent thirty years as an independent film producer. His many award winning films include The Mission, the Killing Fields, Local Hero, Chariots of Fire, Midnight Express, Bugsy Malone, and the Memphis Belle.

He retired from film production in 1998 and now focuses on his work in education and the environment. He is Chancellor of the Open University. In 1998 he founded that National Teaching Awards which he chaired until October 2008. He served as the first Chair of the General Teaching Council (2000-2002), and on a variety of other public bodies. He was founding Chair of the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts, and for ten years chaired the National Museum of Photography, Film and Television, as well as serving as a Trustee of both the Tate Gallery and the Science Museum.

He was also Vice President and Chair of Trustees at BAFTA (British Academy of Film & Television Arts) from 1994 to 2004, and was awarded a BAFTA Fellowship in 2006.

He was appointed President of UNICEF UK in July 2002, and has played a key role in promoting UNICEF’s advocacy, awareness and fundraising objectives.

In February 2006, became Deputy Chairman of Channel Four, and in April 2006 Chairman of Futurelab. He is also on the board of directors of learning technology company Promethean. In April 2007 he became the Chairman of Profero. In the same month he was also appointed Chairman of the Joint Parliamentary Climate Change Bill Scrutiny Committee. Also in 2007 he was appointed as Chairman of North Music Trust, The Sage Gateshead. Most recently he was made President of the Film Distributors’ Association (FDA).

David was awarded a CBE in 1982, received a Knighthood in 1995 and was appointed to the House of Lords in 1997. In France he has been honoured as a Chevalier (’85), Officer (’92) and, most recently (2006) Commander of Arts and Letters.

Sir Tim Brighouse

Recently Chief Adviser for London Schools and formerly Chief Education Officer of Birmingham and Oxfordshire, Tim Brighouse graduated in Modern History from Oxford University in 1961. He taught in state schools and was Professor of Education at Keele University for four years between his posts in Oxfordshire and Birmingham. He has written books on school improvement, is a school governor and has been a non-executive board member of Research Machines plc.