Empower Trust, Inspire to Achieve

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Empower Trust

Inspire to Achieve

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Ann Fisher is a Partner at the Shrewsbury-based legal firm Hatchers Solicitors LLP.


Ann has a particular interest in advising owner managed businesses on a wide range of matters including business sales and acquisitions, start-ups, shareholder agreements, articles of association, share options, joint ventures, intellectual property, agency and distribution, manufacturing and supply agreements, e-commerce, website terms and conditions and general commercial contracts.


Ann works with a number of partnerships, including medical practices and farming partnerships, advising on issues such as succession planning, retirement and admission of new partners. She acts for a wide range of not for profit organisations, including charities, schools and societies, advising on matters such as constitution, company secretarial and commercial contracts. She is Company Secretary of Shropshire Chamber of Commerce.


Ann is married with four (grown up) children. She lives near Market Drayton, on the borders of Shropshire and Staffordshire and she is a Deputy Lieutenant of Staffordshire. Ann is also a member of Council at Lichfield Cathedral and for several years served as Deputy Pro-Chancellor at Keele University. Ann is passionate about education and has been a school governor for many years, as well as a trustee at the Willoughbridge Garden Trust.


Originally from the West Midlands, Ann studied at Oxford University where she gained a Master’s degree in biochemistry. She subsequently studied law at Staffordshire University and the College of Law in Chester. Whilst at Oxford she was a keen oarswoman, earning her ‘Blue’ as captain of the university women’s boat race crew.

Andrew Connell is Associate Professor and Head of Group (Education) and CPD at the University Centre, Shrewsbury (UCS).  Andrew leads on the growing number of education-based courses at UCS and has recently taken on Shropshire County Councils provision for CPD for teachers.


Until January 2019 he was Head of Initial Teacher Education at the University of Chester.  In that role, Andrew led on the development, quality assurance and enhancement of teacher training and other education courses at the University of Chester.  Andrew is part of a very strong Partnership of school, colleges, nurseries and Teaching Alliances across the region.  In the last Ofsted inspection, the Partnership gained ‘outstanding’ for its primary and secondary provision and ‘good’ for post 16 and EYTS, remaining the only Partnership in the North-West to have Grade 1 for both primary and secondary. Thich reflects the excellent training out students receive from the whole Partnership.

Andrew is the Chair of the Council for Subject Associations, Treasurer for the Technology and Pedagogy and Education Association (TPEA) and a long-standing executive committee member of the Association for Information Technology in Teacher Education (ITTE).  He has been on several national subject expert groups for Computing and ICT, including groups drafting the Computing curriculum, Subject Knowledge Enhancement content and ITE content and on several advisory groups on Teacher Standards.  Andrew was previously at Keele University and Liverpool Hope University.  Prior to moving into Higher Education, he was a teacher and Head of Computing and Business in secondary schools and taught in primary schools.  


Andrew has jointly edited and written several chapters in the latest edition of ‘A Practical Guide to Teaching Computing and IT in Secondary Schools’.  He has contributed to other books on teaching Computing and ICT and written guides to support teachers and teacher trainers of computing on behalf of Government Agencies.  He is regularly present at conferences on the Pedagogy of Computing and on Managing Teacher Training.

Andrew is passionate about educating beginning and experienced teachers to help them provide the best possible learning experience for young people. When he has the time, he likes walking the hills and long-distance trails, real ale and live music.

Allan works as leadership education consultant with the Cheshire-based company Wickland Westcott. Allan has previously held senior management positions in three Universities and has extensive experience of school governance. He served as a Community Governors at Market Drayton Infants School for approximately 12 years, including a period as Chair. He was also a Trustee and Governor at Sir John Talbot Secondary School and Six-Form College for 2 ½ years. has been a Member, Trustee and Chair of a Multi-Academy Trust for 22 months.


Appointed to the MAT (3 schools) when it was less than 4 months old he oversaw the recruitment of a high quality CEO (a National Leader of Education) and worked with them to establish and implement an effective governance and management framework which supported a growth and school improvement strategy.


Allan offers a wide range of skills and experience. He has managed corporate governance at two universities, developed risk and performance management and reporting, and has inducted and trained governors. He has also managed HR, and Marketing & PR and communications teams, so has a strong understanding of activities within these spheres, sufficient to be able to plan, support and challenge and the leadership within the MAT, particularly whilst the MAT establishes itself. He has experience of developing and managing significant budgets (seven figure) and has delivered transformational projects across organisations, including those where there has been the need to realign resources. He has led and managed teams across multi-sites (campuses).


Allan is great believer that education is a “key” to unlock potential within and provide opportunities to transform and improve quality of life. He advocates that everyone has a responsibility to use their skills and experience to give something back to society by making a contribution to their local communities. In his spare time he fund-raises for the Junior Royal Northern College of Music to support the musical education of talented youngsters, he enjoys the occasional game of golf, and retains his keen interest in human spacefllight.


Allan is currently the Chair of Trustees and a Member at Empower MAT.

Claire has twenty years teaching experience. This includes two headships and twelve years’ experience as SENCO.


She has worked in both inner city and rural schools. Claire was a Consultant Leader for Bristol City Council and has extensive experience of coaching in a range of school settings.


Claire is completing her training as a SIAMS inspector this year and is the SIAMS manager and critical reader for the diocese.


Diocese of Lichfield Central Education Academy Trust, Education focus.


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