Our Trustees

Our Trust is deeply committed

Our Board of Trustees is ambitious for all children and infused with a passion for education and a commitment to continuous school improvement that enables the best possible outcomes.

It is driven by inquisitive, independent trustees. Conversations are focused on the key strategic issues facing our school. Our trustees are important to us in supporting are drive for school improvement. They act with humility, good judgement, resilience, and determination at all times. The Board of Trustees are:

David Sheldon


David is an experienced trustee and school governor. He began as a parent governor for Bromley Pensnett Primary School, where his own children were educated. He is a creative and innovative manager of transformative change and systems development across public and charitable sector services which has included senior roles with the Environment Agency and St John’s Ambulance.

He has served as a Chair of Governors in both primary and secondary phases of education. His commitment to working with children and families in challenging circumstances is hugely impressive.

David is currently Chair of the Trust Board and provides an important link between Members and the work of the Trust Board.

Viv Randall OBE


Viv has been a teacher for 40 years of which 21 years has been as a headteacher. She has recently retired from her post as Executive Headteacher at Colmore Infant & Nursery school which is a DfE designated teaching school. Viv has also been chair of the Birmingham Performance and Commissioning Group for the last 5 years where she has led the co-ordination of school improvement for both primary and secondary schools across the city.

As a National Leader of Education, she has supported many schools facing challenging circumstances. She has worked closely alongside leadership teams and provided training and coaching for class teachers and governing bodies.

As a Birmingham girl, Viv is exceptionally proud to have been a Birmingham headteacher, giving something back to the city which has provided her with so many opportunities.

Cheryl Millard


Cheryl has recently retired from her post as headteacher of Colmore Junior School where she served for over twenty years. Rated ‘outstanding,’ Colmore Juniors is a popular school, situated in a suburb of Birmingham and serving a very mixed ethnic and socio-economic community. Cheryl was appointed as a National Leader of Education in 2007 and her school gained teaching school status in April 2013. Cheryl is a member of the Birmingham Performance and Commissioning Group working in partnership with Birmingham Local Authority to broker school improvement support for schools. In addition, she has trained and worked alongside HMI to support schools in complex and challenging circumstances. She has served as an occasional OFSTED team inspector on section 5 and section 8 school inspections.

Bernard Peters


Bernard represents Worcester Diocesan Academies Trust. He is an experienced school improvement adviser and a committed Christian. He helps the Trust to ensure it promotes the Christian distinctiveness of Beechwood CE Primary School and advocates for the values and moral purpose of all the Trust schools.

David Peters


David is an experienced biochemical engineer. He worked at Cadbury in Bournville, Birmingham for 35 years. David worked across the organisation in technical roles including:

• a wide range of process and product development projects
• leading UK product development for chocolate and sugar confectionery
• leading the production planning department for the Assortments factory
• leading global chocolate process development
• creating the Cadbury Chocolate University

Since retiring, David has worked as a technical consultant for confectionery businesses, sorting out technical business issues for both start-ups and multi-nationals.

David is also a visiting lecturer at the University of Birmingham in the Chemical Engineering Department.

David is an experienced school governor. He served at Wychall Primary School from the mid 90’s and was chair of governors when the school joined the Trust and also served as a governor at Shenley School in Birmingham.

David is currently a serving governor at Chawson First School in Worcestershire

In his spare time David enjoys playing in a brass band, where he is treasurer and singing with the Worcester Male Voice Choir, of which he is both secretary and a serving Trustee.

David enjoys skiing, windsurfing and hill climbing. He spends most of his summers watching Worcester County Cricket Club.

John McDermott


John is the Finance Director of another Multi-Academy Trust in Birmingham. In this role he is responsible for the financial sustainability and development of the Trust and provides high-quality leadership and management of the Trust’s finance and business functions. This enables the Trust to run efficiently and effectively and ensures delivery of good financial management so that public money is safeguarded and used appropriately.

Previously, John was a Finance Consultant in the education sector for eight years. He has worked in nurseries, maintained schools, academies and multi-academy trusts. John has worked in Catholic, C of E and non-faith schools so has a strong overview of finance across all educational provision.

Robert Bowater


Robert is the Trust’s Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of the Trust.

He joined the Trust on a full-time basis from August 2018, bringing more than 25 years of education services and executive management experience.

Robert has worked in both primary and secondary education and is passionate about the welfare and development of young people to ensure they get the very best opportunities to grow into confident, well-adjusted adults who can make the most of their skills and talents.

He was previously the co-founder and Chief Executive of the drb Group, an education services provider, delivering a diverse range of essential support services from the provision of strategic financial management services, leadership and curriculum support, training and seminars for middle and senior leaders and strategic marketing.
As part of his support to the wider community, Robert was previously a Trustee of the Children’s University through the Central University Trust, a past Governor and Chair of Finance of a Birmingham primary school and actively supports a number of local charities.

Robert’s vision is for the Trust to deliver on its mission and transform pupils’ lives for the better.

Sue Egersdorff


Catherine Griffiths


Mahbub Elahi

Parent Trustee

Mahbub has a post graduate degree in Human Resource Management from the University of Bedfordshire and started his career as a Human Resources Manager with DHL, a global leader in the logistics industry. Having worked in human resources for a number of years, Mahbub changed career by moving into the IT industry as a Warehouse Management System Consultant.

Since then, Mahbub has worked with companies such as Nike, XPO Logistics, Capgemini, Dematic and Wipro both in the UK and in Belgium.

Mahbub currently works as a Business and Warehouse Management System Consultant at Worldwide Chain Stores.

Mahbub is keen to use his skills and expertise to give something back to our local communities and help make a difference to the lives of all pupils.

He is also keen to learn from other trustees, gain new insights from seeing how others respond to situations and collaborate to make effective strategic decisions.

Mahbub is a parent of a child who attends Audley Primary School.

What are our Trustees responsible for?