The governors act as the trustees for the charitable activities of The Petchey Academy and are also the directors of the charitable company for the purposes of company law.

Governors are appointed in accordance with the Articles of Association. Sponsor governors are appointed by the Jack Petchey Foundation. Governors positions are filled by an open recruitment process. 

Governors (Trustees)

Our governors, and their roles, are detailed below:

Dorothy Dalton, Chair of Governors          Appointed: September 2014 (PA to Principal & Chair of Governors)
Pay & Performance Review Committee

Dorothy, a former Headteacher, is a governance specialist in the not-for-profit sector. She has written several books on the subject. She has a ‘first’ in mathematics.

Dorothy is committed to achieving excellence and has high expectations of everyone in the academy (governors, staff, students etc). She whole-heartedly supports the academy’s aims to "Inspire and support every child" and to "Develop independent and accomplished learners".  As a mother of two sons, she believes that parents and the school need to work in partnership to give their child the very best possible start in life.

Dorothy was award the Leonard Cheshire Lifetime Achievement Award for enabling disabled people. During her spare time, from 1983 to 2010, Dorothy organised and led month-long challenging expeditions for disabled and disadvantaged teenagers to remote corners of the world.


Dr Marie Stewart, Sponsor Governor          Appointed: December 2010

Responsibility for Equality & Inclusion and SEND

Every Child Matters Committee 

Due for re-election: December 2018

Marie is a psychologist and is the Director of Taylor-Stewart Associates, consultants specializing in Diversity/Inclusion and the management of change. She has wide experience of work in these areas and is the Link Governor with special responsibility for Equality and Inclusion at the academy.

She is particularly committed to supporting the academy’s work to ensure that every member of our diverse student population has access to rich, supportive educational opportunities to prepare them to make a positive contribution in the future.

Marie has a Teachers Certificate with distinction in theory of education, BSc (Hons) in Psychology with subsidiary Sociology and PhD in Psychology from University of London. She has two honorary degrees: Doctor of the University from University of East London; and Bachelor of Education from Roehampton University.  She was appointed an MBE for services to education, diversity and equal opportunities.


Rosslyn Hudson, Sponsor Governor         Appointed: July 2012

Responsibility for English (incl. Literacy) and Behaviour and Exclusions
Chair of Every Child Matters Committee

Due for re-election: July 2020

After graduating from Edinburgh University, Rosslyn worked in Indonesia for four years first as a VSO and then with the United Nations Development Programme.

 In 1975 she began her career teaching English in north London, mostly working in inner city comprehensive schools. In 1998 she was appointed to the headship of Alexandra Park School, a new secondary comprehensive in Haringey. She retired in 2008 working part-time as an education advisor to the South African High Commission then as a research associate for the Centre for Commonwealth Education at the University of Cambridge, in particular developing the Caribbean Poetry Project.

She has been a governor since 2012.


Anne Canning, Local Authority Governor          Appointed: September 2015

Responsibility for Excelsior (our most able students); Academy attainment &  progress & Annual academy targets
Vice Chair of Every Child Matters Committee

Due for re-election: September 2019

Anne is currently the Group Director of Children, Adults and Community Health within the London Borough of Hackney – a remit which includes education, social care and public health. She was a former headteacher and spent over 30 years teaching in London comprehensive schools before leading on education in two high performing London boroughs – Tower Hamlets and then Hackney. Anne has considerable experience in governance including interim leadership of governing bodies in schools that required intervention to drive improvements. She is committed to the transformational change that a good education brings to improving life chances and involving partners to support this work.


Rose Ferguson, Staff Governor          Elected: November 2008

Responsibility for Disadvantaged & Pupil Premium
Staff welfare & communications with staff

Every Child Matters Committee

Due for re-election: November 2021

Rose is the Student Wellbeing Manager at the academy and has been on the TPA Board of Governors since 2009. Rose has worked with young people, charities and across many local communities for over 25 years. She is committed to the enablement of the highest standard of a nurturing environment for young people who need care beyond their own ability to provide for themselves. Rose is a member of the National Association for Pastoral Care in Education (NAPCE) and is professionally qualified as a ‘Triple P’ practitioner. Additionally Rose has an outstanding ability to Safeguard and promote the welfare of children and young people and coordinate services and interventions with other professions and leadership

Rose has senior staff level experience in people management and leadership development with wide-ranging experience and influence in the public sector.


Sarah Cenci, Teacher Governor          Elected: September 2014

Teacher welfare & communcations with teachers

Finance & General Purposes Committee  

Due for re-election: July 2022

Sarah has been a teacher at The Petchey Academy since 2011. Having started as an NQT,  she is now Lead of DT & Food.  After studying Hotel Management at Westminster College, she built a successful career as a film location caterer, before selling the business to start a family in the 1990’s. Sarah started a new contract catering business in Sussex whilst bringing up her children, and also worked in financial recruitment as a head-hunter.

In early 2000, Sarah made another career change and re-trained as a plumber, specialising in bathroom makeovers. During this time she bought a house in France and lived and worked there for a year as a plumber with her husband, before returning full time to England in 2009.


Mark Sun,  Co-Opted Governor          Appointed: December 2015

Responsibility for Health & Safety
Vice Chair of Audit & Risk Committee

Due for re-election:  December 2019

Mark is a lawyer in the London office of Latham & Watkins LLP and lives in Hackney. He hails from Canada, and obtained degrees in Immunology, Education, and Chemistry before arriving in London to study law in 2007.  Mark joined the board in December 2015 and is proud to serve the Petchey Academy and the Hackney community in his capacity as governor of the board. 


Timothy Wooldridge, Parent Governor           Elected: July 2016

Responsibility for Parental Engagement & Communication and Learning & Teaching
Every Child Matters Committee

Due for re-election: July 2020

As well as being a parent of a child in Year 11, Tim has 27 years of experience in education - 18 as a teacher and 9 as an education consultant in Hackney and Tower Hamlets. Underlying his professional work is a commitment to provide the most effective possible provision in order to give every student the best start in life. As a parent, teacher and resident of Hackney, Tim recognises the ambition, determination and high aspirations of the young people who attend the The Petchey Academy.


Yinka Tomori, Sponsor Governor          Appointed: December 2016

Chair of Finance & General Purposes Committee
Audit & Risk Committee
Pay & Performance Review Committee

Due for re-election: December 2020

Yinka is a chartered accountant specialising in providing business advisory services to the not-for-profit sector. He was, for a number of years, senior manager at one of the country’s leading firms of accountants to the not-for-profit sector, where he was involved with the setting up of financial systems and the statutory audit of several academies. Yinka is vice-chair of the Finance & General Purposes Committee and also sits on the Audit & Risk and the Pay & Performance Review Committees. Yinka’s other voluntary activities include working with a homeless shelter over the winter months and treasurer at his local church.


Ray Davies, Sponsor Governor          Appointed: December 2016 

Chair of Audit & Risk Committee
Finance & General Purposes Committee
Pay & Performance Review Committee

Due for re-election: December 2020

An accomplished UK Chartered Accountant and Former KPMG Partner/ Senior Partner with a wealth of experience working within Banking and Financial Services and with Commercial companies in developing economies both from an audit and assurance services and advisory perspective; covering financial due diligence, financial reporting and risk management and compliance. Ray has always been actively involved in Corporate Governance in Not-for-Profit organisations and comes to The Petchey Academy as Governor with in-depth experience in that area. He is also a Member of the Chartered Institute of Securities and Investments.


Gemma Juma, Sponsor Governor          Appointed: December 2017 

Responsibility for Governor Training; External Relationships; Strategy and strategic options

Chair of Strategic Options
Every Child Matters Committee

Due for re-election: January 2022

Gemma is the Operations Director at Jack Petchey Foundation, a role which spans Finance, HR, IT and grant-making. She has 20 years’ experience of policy development, service delivery, leadership and grant-making in the voluntary sector across the UK, Europe, East Africa and beyond. Gemma has a first class degree in Social Anthropology from Cambridge University and a Master’s degree in Gender and Development from the Institute of Development Studies. She is a keen amateur musician and an active Trustee and community volunteer. Gemma became a Governor in 2017.


Joanne Shand, Co-Opted Governor          Appointed: December 2017 

Responsibility for HR and Recruitment & Retention of Staff
& General Purposes Committee and

Vice Chair of Pay & Performance Committee

Due for re-election:  January 2022



Eleanor Sutton, Co-Opted Governor          Appointed: September 2018 

Responsibility for Careers Involvement of Alumni, Student Leadership and Student Council
& General Purposes Committee, Audit & Risk Committee 

Due for re-election:  September 2022

Eleanor has a BA in Economics from Durham University.  She worked as a Chartered Accountant for 23 years, specialising initially in audit work, and focusing later in her career on work for trusts and charities.  She lives close to The Petchey Academy and is delighted to now be involved with the Academy having for many years observed with interest the students making their way into school with such obvious enthusiasm each morning. Her other voluntary work includes acting as the Independent Examiner for her local church's accounts.


Peter Blackwell, Sponsor Governor          Appointed: September 2018 

Responsibility for Safeguarding & Children in Public Care & Behaviour

Joint behaviour and exclusions governor
Every Child Matters Committee, Audit & Risk Committee 

Due for re-election:  September 2022

Peter has been with ReachOut since 2004, starting out working with young people directly in schools before progressing on to managing fundraising and the London operations of the organisation as it grew from 20 to 500 young people.  He was appointed Chief Executive in 2015. 

Peter also runs his own business, and has served as a school governor at three schools in east London.  He is a trustee of the Hackney Winter Night Shelter, and volunteers as a South East Committee Member for BBC Children in Need. 


Angela Donnelley, Parent Governor                     Appointed: May 2019

Angela is a senior HR leader who has worked in large corporate organisations as well as smaller high growth tech companies. 

She lives in Hackney and her daughter is a student at the school, with two sons who will hopefully also join in the future.  She’s passionate about giving young people a great start in life, and about enabling truly diverse workplaces. 

She works with a number of charities to help make this a reality. She has previously been a governor at Millfields Community School in Hackney. 

Declaration of Interest 2016-17


Andrew Billington

Dorothy Dalton

Rosslyn Hudson

Trudy Kilcullen MBE

Pat Langford

Ron Mills

Marie Stewart MBE

Peter Venn

Former governors for the last 12 months:

Mr May Dare (Appointed: Jul 2012. Stood down: Sept 2016)

Ms Jane Spanton-Walker (Appointed: Dec 2009. Stood down: Aug 2016)

Ms Pat Langford (Appointed: Feb 2006. Stood down: Aug 2016)

Mr Francis Nwokedi (Appointed: Dec 2009. Stood down: Dec 2017)

Non-governor committee members:

Ms Jane Spanton-Walker - Every Child Matters Committee

Mr Peter Venn - Finance & General Purposes Committee

Ms Olayinka Carrol - Finance & General Purposes Committee; Audit & Risk Committee