ABOUT US

meet the team

Central Team


Executive Leadership Team
Jackie Waters-Dewhurst
Chief Executive Officer

About Jackie

Jacqueline Waters-Dewhurst has spent over 20 years in education starting in the primary sector. She has significant experience in leadership and the transformation of organisations having taken up the role of Diocesan Director of Education in Bristol diocese prior to being appointed as Director of Education for the Diocese of Lincoln.

In both organisations she has introduced the academy strategies, set up a Multi-Academy Trust and transformed teams by increasing capacity and skills in order to better serve schools in an ever-changing educational landscape.

She has served nationally on the National Society Council and was chair of the North Somerset Strategic Schools Forum and has chaired a number of governing boards of both schools and academies including; Westhaven Special School, Weston St Mary Church of England Primary school and St Lawrence Academy Trust Scunthorpe.

Jacqueline is passionate about ensuring that the wider diocese understands the gift that it has in its church schools and her dedication to the work of LAAT is an outworking of the belief that church schools are stronger together.

Having overseen the development of LAAT from 4 schools to 18 whilst also working for the Diocesan Board of Education Jackie feels that the time is now right to move over and concentrate solely on LAAT. As of September 2021 she will be stepping back from her role as Diocesan Director of Education to concentrate on being CEO of LAAT.

Tamara Allen
DEPuty CEO

About Tamara

Tamara is the Deputy CEO for LAAT and joined in January 2020 from Cambridgeshire where she was an Executive Headteacher within a Diocesan Multi Academy Trust after working for Cambridgeshire for 15 years prior.  She has a wealth of experience in the sustainable improvement of schools, putting the quality of teaching and learning at the heart of this.  With eighteen in years in primary education, Tamara brings this extensive knowledge of the sector to  LAAT. She is a passionate advocate for teacher professional development and the development of strong collaborative networks of teachers to improve the life chances of children.

LEANNE HOLMES
FINANCE & OPERATIONS DIRECTOR

About Leanne

Leanne Holmes, BA ACA – Finance and Operations Director, LAAT. 21 years post qualification experience across a wide range of sectors and a proven track record of delivering transformation in the finance function.

Gained chartered accountancy qualifications with Streets Chartered Accountants, where areas of work covered included both internal and external audit, statutory accounts preparation and taxation.

Before joining LAAT, Leanne worked as Trust Financial Controller at The Orders of St John Care Trust, a leading national care operator and registered charity, with a turnover of c£130m and c4500 employees. Responsible for a finance team of 40, overseeing all transactional and group accounting functions.

Joined LAAT in May 2015, initially when the Trust comprised of 5 schools. Since her appointment, has overseen the conversion of a further 15 schools. Responsible for overseeing back office support functions across the Trust including Finance, HR, Estates, Health and Safety and ICT.

NICOLA BAILEY
GOVERNANCE AND COMPLIANCE LEAD

About Nicola

Nicky was appointed to the LAAT team in October 2022 as Governance and Compliance Lead. She has over 20 years’ experience of working in the education sector and 15 years working in a Governance role. Before joining the LAAT, Nicky was employed as Strategic Director for Governance in a primary and secondary Trust in South Yorkshire where she served as a member of the Executive Leadership Team contributing to the Strategic Direction of the Trust and leading on Governance at a Board and school level. Nicky is passionate about education and improving the life chances for all children and is delighted to be part of the LAAT family.

LAURA LOWE
DIRECTOR OF COLLEAGUE SERVICES

About Laura

Laura joined the LAAT in April 2016 to work within HR. Laura is now Head of HR for the Trust and a Chartered member of the CIPD.

Laura has over 15 years’ experience in local government HR, Recruitment and payroll. Over this time Laura has developed an understanding of the sector and has knowledge and expertise to really support our schools grow and develop. She works closely with trade unions to ensure that our HR processes and policies are in place to support our employees as well meet our business needs. With a keen focus on wellbeing, Laura is passionate about providing our employees with a safe, nurturing and supportive working environment.

Governance and Compliance

Nicola Bailey
Governance and Compliance Lead

About Nicola

Nicky was appointed to the LAAT team in October 2022 as Governance and Compliance Lead. She has over 20 years’ experience of working in the education sector and 15 years working in a Governance role. Before joining the LAAT, Nicky was employed as Strategic Director for Governance in a primary and secondary Trust in South Yorkshire where she served as a member of the Executive Leadership Team contributing to the Strategic Direction of the Trust and leading on Governance at a Board and school level. Nicky is passionate about education and improving the life chances for all children and is delighted to be part of the LAAT family.

Emma FairhAll
Governance and Compliance Assistant

About Emma

I joined the LAAT in January 2018 to support St Peter’s Primary School, Cleethorpes. I was previously at Ulceby St Nicolas Primary School as their Business and Operations Partner

Although I’ve worked in education since 2018, I do have a wealth of experience as a school governor for both Primary and Secondary schools in Lincolnshire.

Before my time with the LAAT I worked predominantly in marketing, organising events all over the world for corporate and private clients.  

Educational Development Team

TAMARA ALLEN
DEPUTY CEO

About Tamara

Tamara is the Deputy CEO for LAAT and joined in January 2020 from Cambridgeshire where she was an Executive Headteacher within a Diocesan Multi Academy Trust after working for Cambridgeshire for 15 years prior.  She has a wealth of experience in the sustainable improvement of schools, putting the quality of teaching and learning at the heart of this.  With eighteen in years in primary education, Tamara brings this extensive knowledge of the sector to  LAAT. She is a passionate advocate for teacher professional development and the development of strong collaborative networks of teachers to improve the life chances of children.

Vicky Matthews
Educational Development Advisor

About Vicky

I have over 12 years’ experience and a proven track record in church school leadership and improvement, including outstanding SIAMS inspections and taking on a special measures school, turning it into a securely good school in all areas in under 24 months. I have been part of the Lincoln Anglican Academy Trust (LAAT) since 2016, first as an Executive Headteacher and now as an Education Development Adviser. My particular areas of expertise are quality of education,  Pupil Premium, curriculum development, as well as training and coaching leaders at all levels. I am also a qualified coach for NPQH participants through the Chartered College of Education.  

As well as embracing the LAAT’s philosophy of Excellence, Exploration and Encouragement, I also endeavour to live by my own values of showing acts of kindness, being courageous and successful. These are the values that I trust to have a positive impact on the lives of the children we serve every day. 

Sam eden
Educational Development Advisor

About Sam

Having successfully led the headship of a local authority school for over 10 years, I am thrilled to have joined LAAT as the Trust Headteacher. During my time within educational leadership, I have undertaken many additional roles such as executive leadership as well as undertaking work as a Local Leader of Education across Lincolnshire, supporting a wide variety of schools. I am incredibly passionate about education and ensuring that every child has the opportunity to access the very best provision and be taught in a fantastic school. I am delighted to work within LAAT’s schools and will ensure that the Trust vision and values of ‘Excellence, Exploration and Encouragement’ are lived out through my role as Trust Headteacher.

Charlotte Hickerton
Trust Headteacher

About Charlotte

Having worked in education for 22 years, I am delighted to join the LAAT team as the Trust Headteacher from September 2023. Having worked in headship for the last 10 years in both rural and inner-city settings, I hope to bring a wealth of experience as a successful school leader, LLE, values ambassador, diocesan associate advisor and pupil premium reviewer. I am particularly passionate about high quality outcomes across the full curriculum for all children, especially disadvantaged and those with SEND. Inclusion for all is my core principle, as well as promoting equality and diversity through a values- based approach. I love being a Church of England school leader and genuinely believe that there is no more rewarding job, working collaboratively to transform children’s lives. In my new role, I will be working alongside headteachers within the trust to provide additional capacity to support school improvement where needed. I’m looking forward to serving the LAAT schools and their communities, promoting excellence, exploring together, and encouraging all to flourish.

Iqbal Hussain
Trust Data Analyst

About Iqbal

I joined LAAT in March 2022 as the Trust Data Analyst. Previously I worked in a secondary school as Data Manager for over 8 years.

Prior to working in the education sector, I worked as a Data Coordinator for the Children’s Society. I also enjoyed my time working as a Marketing Officer at Revitalise, a charity that provides respite holidays for disabled people and carers.

I have now joined the school improvement team at LAAT to support my colleagues with data analysis for all our schools and to provide an overall trust overview.

Dee Goodwin
Education Welfare Officer

About Dee

I have been a qualified Education Welfare Officer for over 15 years.

I have worked within all schools including primary, junior, secondary and specialist secondary schools.

I joined LAAT in November 2022.

I support all LAAT schools with attendance and work with my colleagues, parents, careers, students and outside agencies where there are attendance concerns to look at the barriers and to raise attendance.

I really enjoying working across different schools in the trust and supporting pupils and their families.’

Prior to working with Education, I spent a number of years working with Social Care.

Finance Team

Leanne Holmes
Finance & Operations Director

About Leanne

Leanne Holmes, BA ACA – Finance and Operations Director, LAAT. 21 years post qualification experience across a wide range of sectors and a proven track record of delivering transformation in the finance function.

Gained chartered accountancy qualifications with Streets Chartered Accountants, where areas of work covered included both internal and external audit, statutory accounts preparation and taxation.

Before joining LAAT, Leanne worked as Trust Financial Controller at The Orders of St John Care Trust, a leading national care operator and registered charity, with a turnover of c£130m and c4500 employees. Responsible for a finance team of 40, overseeing all transactional and group accounting functions.

Joined LAAT in May 2015, initially when the Trust comprised of 5 schools. Since her appointment, has overseen the conversion of a further 15 schools. Responsible for overseeing back office support functions across the Trust including Finance, HR, Estates, Health and Safety and ICT.

Linda Ashworth
finance manager
Gill Fitzgibbon
Senior Finance Business Partner

About Gill

Gill joined LAAT in July 2023. With over 20 years’ accountancy experience from manufacturing to service industries in the private sector, to large public sector entities including The Orders of St John Care Trust and the NHS.

More recently Gill’s experience includes time spent in Lincoln College as Finance Manager and Finance Business Partner. In this role, Gill was responsible for and had knowledge of ESFA funding, multi-site organisations, capital revenue projects, budgeting and forecasting, KPIs and benchmarking.

Gill is driven to provide a true partnership between finance and educational operations, and to advise and support schools’ leaders, putting pupils at the heart of decision-making.

Frances White
Finance Business Partner

About Frances

I joined the LAAT in July 2014 when Canon Peter Hall CE Primary School became part of the Trust.

I have over 10 years experience working in the education sector and have worked at Canon Peter Hall, Ulceby St Nicholas and East Ravendale CE Primary School supporting their Administration teams.

In June 2020 I started my role as Business and Operations Partner responsible for Canon Peter Hall and East Ravendale CE Primary School.

Alex Stoker
Assistant accountant

About Alex

Alex joined LAAT in March 2020. Prior to this Alex worked as a finance assistant at Spalding Parish CofE Day School for 3 years before the school joined the LAAT. Alex provides support to all our schools as well as supporting the central finance team as Assistant Accountant for the Trust. Alex is a MAAT qualified Accountant.

Helen Curuk
Finance Assistant

About Helen

Helen joined LAAT in March 2022. Prior to this Helen spent over 20 years working for a refrigeration & commercial vehicle company in their finance team. She is looking forward to using her skills and experience in her role as Finance Clerk. Helen supports all of our schools as well as our Central Team with all the day to day finance functions and queries.

Cherry Gilchrist
Finance Clerk

About Cherry

I have worked in Finance for 7 years, between the Motor Trade and the Education sector. I am currently studying to become AAT qualified; I am looking forward to progressing both with my qualifications and career with LAAT. I support all of our schools as well as our Central Team with all the day-to-day finance functions and queries.

OPERATIONS

Rachel Street
Business and Operations Manager

About Rachel

I joined the LAAT in 2014 when Wainfleet school was one of the first schools to join the Trust.

I have over 12 years experience working in education, most recently as a member of the Central Team as Business and Operations Partner responsible for Wainfleet and Friskney Primary Schools.

I relocated to Lincolnshire in 2008, prior to this I was an Operations & Systems Team Manager in London and the South West.

Shelley Rix
Operations Business Partner

About Shelley

I started working in education in 2013 and joined Whaplode CofE Primary School in 2014.  In 2017 I joined the LAAT when I started working across both Weston St Mary and Whaplode CofE Primary Schools. I was previously Business and Operations Partner responsible for Edenham, Weston St Mary and Whaplode CofE Primary Schools.

Prior to working in education, I worked for a national charity initially in finance and then as a Contracts Manager. 

Collette Hunter
Operations Business Partner

About Collette

I was previously Business and Operations Partner at Spalding Parish Church of England Day School

I joined the LAAT in January 2022 and have over 20 years’ business management experience working in primary schools for a Lincolnshire Local Authority school and, more recently,  a newly formed MAT in Peterborough.  

Before joining the education sector I worked for 14 years in the Ministry of Defence in finance, HR, planning and procurement roles.

Joanna Campbell
Health and Safety Business Partner

About Joanna

Jo joined the LAAT as the Business and Operations Partner responsible for Coningsby St. Michaels and Tattershall Holy Trinity Primary Schools in September 2022.

Prior to joining the LAAT, Jo worked for a global Fast Moving Consumer Goods corporation, gaining over 30 years’ experience of facility management; environmental, health and safety; quality and food safety and most recently developing and delivering capital investment of £10million within a state-of-the-art foods research and development facility.

Jo has a BSc (Hons) in Manufacturing Engineering and is an advocate of promoting STEM subjects to all children particularly girls, and would often provide her voice to in school initiatives and wider ones such as ‘The Big Bang Fair’. She also is keen to promote apprenticeships as that was the route, she originally took into work in 1990!

estates Team

Julian Coles
Estates manager

About Julian

Julian joined LAAT in March 2021 as Property Surveyor, after 15 years working for The Orders of St John Care Trust. With over 35 years of Property Maintenance experience Julian is looking forward to bringing some in-house Property expertise to the Trust, and to working with all the schools on all aspects of the Property Maintenance and Refurbishment.

Paul smith
Senior Area Site Manager

About Paul

I started working for LAAT as a Site Manager in 2014 when The Magdalen C of E and Methodist Primary school joined the Trust. I joined The Magdalen in 2008 as a Part Time Caretaker eventually becoming a Full Time Site Manager in 2010. I then progressed to become an Area Site Manager when Friskney All Saints C of E Primary School joined the Trust over seeing both sites.

On 1st September 2023 I joined the Central Team as The Senior Area Site Manager to work alongside the Estates Manager Julian Coles. I’m really excited about my new role and looking forward to working closely with the other schools within the Trust and their Site Teams.

After leaving school I qualified as a Carpenter and Joiner and for 15 years worked within various sectors plying my trade. I am also into my 22nd year serving as an on-call Fire Fighter at Wainfleet Fire Station. Both roles have provided me with vast experiences that have given me the tools I need to enable me to progress in my roles and career within the schools.

Colleague Services

Laura Lowe
Director of Colleague Services

About Laura

Laura joined the LAAT in April 2016 to work within HR. Laura is now Head of HR for the Trust and a Chartered member of the CIPD.

Laura has over 15 years’ experience in local government HR, Recruitment and payroll. Over this time Laura has developed an understanding of the sector and has knowledge and expertise to really support our schools grow and develop. She works closely with trade unions to ensure that our HR processes and policies are in place to support our employees as well meet our business needs. With a keen focus on wellbeing, Laura is passionate about providing our employees with a safe, nurturing and supportive working environment.

Nicola Southwell
Colleague Services Business Partner

About Nicola

Nicola joined the LAAT in April 2022 to work within HR.  Nicola is the new HR Advisor for the Trust and is currently studying for her CIPD Level 5 Diploma in Human Resource Management.  

Nicola has over 10 years’ experience in HR, coaching and leadership.  Over this time Nicola has advised, coached, and guided leaders to enhance their practical application of people functions, from succession plans to disciplinary, grievance and trade union negotiations.  

Nicola is passionate about people and the HR strategies that unify business ambitions with winning people processes.  She has a keen focus on health and wellbeing providing a great place to work for all our employees.  

Nicola is excited to be embarking on a new career with LAAT, sharing her knowledge of employment law and HR best practice, and helping to steer improvement in colleagues, people processes and performance across the Trust.

ADMINISTRATORS

Kim Smith
ADMINISTRATION ASSISTANT

About Kim

Kim joined the LAAT in September 2022 and works within the Central Team as an Administrator.

She brings with her a wealth of experience gained from 24 years in the Military. During this time Kim had numerous roles in the UK and overseas ranging from personnel administration to supporting the delivery of community support.

She is excited to be embarking on a new career with LAAT, utilising her skills to provide administrative support to the central team and LAAT schools.