Our trustees bring a wealth of experience from across the fields of management, business, education and social enterprise.
Jeffrey Defries – chair of trustees
Jeffrey Defries is the founder and chief executive of icould, an online careers charity (www.icould.com). Formerly chief executive of the specialist careers and research charity CRAC, Jeffrey started his career in university administration, before taking roles at the Institute of Cancer Research as deputy secretary then secretary. He then joined the Science Museum as assistant director, moving on to the London Business School as deputy dean and secretary, and later the NHS University (NHSU) as director of corporate services. CPFA qualified, Jeffrey has held a number of not-for-profit and charity board positions in the UK and Europe including as senior advisor to the European Foundation for Management Development.
Steven has significant Leadership and Operational Management experience. He has held several senior global positions for a large multinational bank, including COO, CRAO and Business Head roles. In his current role, Steven leads a global Credit focused domain with a team of c.2,500 people across 35 markets around the world. Steven has a had a long-standing relationship with The Children’s Literacy Charity as a supporter and adviser prior to talking up his role on as Trustee.
Isabel has over 30 years experience of working in corporate communications and spent 10 years as managing director of one of the UK’s top public relations consultancies. As well as leading significant agency growth and new business acquisition, Isabel’s particular area of expertise has been working with organisations going through change. She has extensive experience of reputation management and strategic communications across both the public and private sectors.
Isabel has been a trustee of a Suffolk based charity working with adults with learning difficulties and has also provided volunteer reading support in primary schools. She is passionate about the power of literacy to improve the lives of young people.
Neal Lodhia is a qualified lawyer and hedge fund professional holding three degrees in law from prestigious universities, specifically targeted on commercial law. Neal is a serial investor in a range of businesses within the United Kingdom, and dedicated supporter of charitable projects.
Andrew Martin has 28 years of experience working in education. His career began with teaching in the UK, Pakistan and Belgium and from there he became part of the national steering group for the NCSL, (Now NCTL) creating and launching the first national programme for middle leaders. In 2009 Andrew formed his own company and has worked nationally, supporting schools, academies, dioceses and Multi Academy Trusts (MATs) as an advisor, mentor, project director and director of business. He spent three years as academy advisor for the Church of England Education Office, supporting and engaging with their schools and dioceses and helping to shape national policy. Andrew continues to work with The Church of England Foundation for Educational Leadership on their national MAT Steering Group, MAT CEO development programme and network activity.
In 1992, Michael Momoh was the first child to be supported by The Children’s Literacy Charity (then known as Springboard for Children). After several years working with the Local Housing Authority and associated agencies in a variety of roles, he is now as a Property Acquisition Consultant, sourcing property for supported housing. He has an MBA from the University of Greenwich.
Dr Jenny Thomson
Dr Jenny Thomson is a senior academic at the University of Sheffield, having previously worked at the University of Cambridge, UK and Harvard University, USA. A speech and language therapist by training, Jenny’s teaching and research focuses on the links between spoken and written language difficulties, as well as digital literacy