Chief Executive Officer
Chief Operating Officer
People & Culture Officer & Executive Assistant to the Chief Executive Officer
Trust Operations Manager
Senior Finance Officer
Chief Executive Officer
Ian is a National Leader of Education and CEO of Empower Trust. Ian was previously Headteacher of St.Peter’s CE Primary and Nursery School – a National Support School and a National Teaching School. Ian was also Director of the North Shropshire Teaching School Alliance, a National Pupil Premium Grant Reviewer, a founding member of Shropshire Schools Forum, a member of Shropshire’s Central Policy Group, a Trustee of the Market Drayton Learning Partnership Trust, and a member of the Chairs of Headteachers National Executive Board.
Ian was previously Chair of the Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin Teaching Schools Sub-Regional Group and represented the group on the West Midlands Regional Teaching Schools Alliance. Ian met Prime Minister Gordon Brown at No 10 Downing Street and has experience of working with Ministers and DfE officials on education policy issues.
As one of the first cohort of National Leaders of Education, Ian has supported over 20 schools and academies to move out of Ofsted categories. Under Ian’s leadership St Peter’s school became the first Leadership Development School, National Support School and primary National Teaching School in Shropshire.
Ian has designed innovative school-led school-to-school support strategies promoting effective collaboration between schools, leading to improved outcomes for Shropshire children. He played a key role in developing and leading the first £500,000 Strategic School Improvement Fund project focused on improving outcomes for children in 24 schools across Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin.
Ian has worked as West Midlands Associate for the National College of School Leadership (NCSL), promoting leadership development in schools and academies, an Ofsted inspector and a School Improvement Partner. He has delivered keynote speeches at regional and national conferences and was a founding member of the Food for Life National Education Advisory Board.
Ian has also been Headteacher of two primary schools and a large junior school. He has undertaken many part-time roles including Consultant Leader and advisory teacher for both ICT and Curriculum and Assessment.
Chief Operating Officer
Tricia has worked in Education for 8 years and plays a pivotal role as a Senior Leader at Empower Trust. Tricia leads, develops and maintains the sound operation of financial and business policy/practices across the Trust ensuring that all requirements of the Academy Trust handbook are effectively fulfilled.
Before moving into the Education sector in 2013, Tricia worked for 12 years in the legal public sector working in roles such as press and media relations, training and development and business management.
Between 2013 and 2018 Tricia worked as a School Business Manager in a large primary school and it was here that she completed her Level 5 ILM Accredited Diploma in School Business Management in 2016.
Tricia joined the Trust at its inception in 2018 as the Trust Finance & Business Manager. Her role has evolved and she is now the Chief Operating Officer (COO) also incorporating the role of Chief Finance Officer (CFO) for the Trust. She recently completed her CIPFA Level 7 Diploma in School/Financial and Operational Leadership and Certificate in Financial Reporting for Academies (Cert FRA). She is also a member of ISBL (Institute of School Business Leaders).
Tricia is currently undertaking the accreditation process to become an independent SRMA (Schools Resource Management Advisor). The SRMA programme is part of the DfE’s wider work to help schools achieve excellent school resource management.
Trust Office Manager
Michelle is an experienced Executive Assistant having over 15 years’ experience within an educational setting. Her experience includes providing Professional Assistant duties to the Headteacher and Senior Leadership Team in two secondary schools whilst undertaking an additional role as Educational Visits Coordinator.
Michelle also has previous experience as a PA for a Managing Director and managed an Adult Education Programme, a conference centre and community facility hire at a large College. Michelle has experience in Human Resources, she holds an Associate CIPD qualification and is currently working towards a CIPD Diploma in People Management. She is a member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development, the professional body for HR and people development.
Michelle joined the Trust at the point of its formation in 2018 and her role has developed and grown over the past few years. Michelle provides Executive Assistant duties to the CEO, ensures the efficient running of the Central Team office and provides a link between the Central Team and Trust schools, Headteachers, Governors and Trustees. Michelle is the appointed Trust Governance Professional and has completed an accredited qualification to support her in this role.
Michelle has recently been appointed to the role of People & Culture Officer across the Trust and is looking forward to further developing the role, particularly in relation to mental health in the workplace and staff wellbeing, an area she is extremely passionate about.
Trust Operations Manager
Suzanne has been working at St George’s Junior School currently as School Business Manager whilst on Secondment to Empower Trust as Operations Manager.
Before moving from Ireland and working in the education sector she worked in private business for and over 20 years within the procurement and engineering industry, firstly in admin and finance posts and through progression of her career to end in a project management role working closely with the directors of the business from a central team function serving UK, Ireland & European customers. Her experience in this employment allowed her to grow with the business from the start of its journey into a very successful business supporting blue chip manufacturing companies giving her excellent skills and experience that she could bring to the trust in many business functions.
Having proven over the years significant cost savings to the school budget as well as excellent facilities & property management, finance management, health & safety and project & event management she is looking forward to working with the schools in the Trust.
She has qualifications in finance, procurement and a Degree in Science in Event Management. Currently studying towards ILM Level 5 School Business Leaders and is a member of the ISBL.
Becky is the Financial Officer for Empower Trust based at the central office. Becky joined us in 2018 as a Financial Administrator. In October 2019, she was promoted to Finance Officer.
From 2010 – 2018 Becky worked in retail banking with 5 of those years spent as Counter Manager in various different branches.
Becky works closely with the Headteachers, Business Managers and Admin teams and visits each School on a monthly basis to review school income and expenditure and is responsible for maintaining accurate financial records across the Trust.
Senior Finance Assistant
Sian joined the Trust in March 2022 as a Senior Finance Officer
Before joining Empower Trust Sian has worked as a Senior Finance Officer at another Multi Academy Trust for over 3 years. She was responsible for providing financial and system support to academies and to the Finance Manager. Prior to this Sian worked in accounts for 5 years in the renewable energy sector at an anaerobic digestion plant.
Sian works closely within the finance team and provide support to schools across the Trust.
Anne joined the trust as Finance Manager in 2021 having worked in the education sector for 15 years.
Prior to joining the trust she worked as Finance Systems Manager for a Multi Academy Trust over a period of 5 years. During this time the trust grew from 5 academies to 25 academies plus a specialist post-16 institution. In this position Anne played a key role in developing robust financial systems and processes.
Anne is a part qualified CIMA accountant, studying towards becoming a fully qualified member of CIMA. She has also completed her ILM Level 4 Diploma in School Business Management and has a BSc in Economics from the University of York.
Lucy joined the Trust in October 2021 as the Trust Administrator
From 2013-2021 Lucy worked as an administrator for a care company for Adults with learning disabilities. Prior to this, Lucy spent 11 years working for the Royal Bank of Scotland.
Lucy provides support to the Senior Trust staff and the Finance team.