President, Trustees, Governors, and Coram Senior Management Team

President

Sir David Bell

Sir David Bell

Appointed president: September 2015

Knighted for his longstanding services to industry, the arts and charity, Sir David is a non-executive director of The Economist, former director of Pearson plc and former Chair and Chief Executive of the Financial Times. Sir David’s involvement in public life and service spans many years. For ten years he was Chair of homelessness charity, Crisis, and continues to chair a number of organisations, including Sadler’s Wells and Cambridge University Press. He is also an active trustee of several organisations and is a member of the Honorary Council of the Royal National Theatre.

Sir David succeeds Alderman Sir Michael Bear as Coram President.

Trustees

Mr Paul Curran (Vice Chairman)

Paul Curran

Appointed Trustee: January 2006

Paul is Vice Chairman for Coram's Board of Trustees, as well as a member of the Children's Services Committee and of the Finance Committee. He has also advised on developing Coram's relationships with the public sector. Paul was Director of Children's Services in Islington until 2009, since then he has led the implementation of the national safeguarding peer review programme on behalf of the Children's Improvement Board and the LGA. He is the independent chair of Herefordshire Children's Improvement Board. Paul has had an extensive career in social work as practitioner and manager.

Mr Geoff Berridge (Treasurer)

Geoff Berridge

Appointed Trustee: March 2012

Geoff was introduced to Coram during discussions with the Advisory Centre for Education.  He is currently the Treasurer of Coram, a member of the Nominations and Governance Committee and the Investment Committee, and Chair of the Finance Committee. Geoff worked as a senior manager at IBM for a number of years, leading IBM financial services and IBM Business School. Subsequently, he set up his own consultancy business helping  create education strategies for a range of both private and public sector clients. Geoff is the Chair of Trustees of Hampstead Wells and Campden Trust and former Chair of Governors of Hampstead School. He was also a director and trustee of the Camden Arts Centre, and of the Advisory Centre for Education.

Mr Ade Adetosoye OBE

Appointed Trustee: September 2012

Ade is a Trustee of Coram, Coram Voice and a member of the Children Services Committee. Ade is an experienced Social Work Director with vast expertise in the delivery of services to vulnerable children, adoption, looked after children, child protection, advocacy and children in need. Ade has a wealth of experience in multi-agency service delivery and service management. In addition, Ade is also a qualified business manager and has expertise in project management. Ade has worked in various senior management roles within a number of local authorities, health, private and statutory organisations. He previously worked as the director of Community and Children’s Services at the City of London Corporation, and is currently Deputy Chief Executive of the London Borough of Bromley.

Mr Robert Aitken

Robert AitkenAppointed Trustee: November 2011

Robert is a trustee of both Coram Children’s Legal Centre and Coram. Robert spent 31 years working for the Government, latterly as Director of Employment, Commercial and Companies and on major inquiries at the Treasury Solicitors. While a senior lawyer at the Department of Health he played a key role in the preparation for and implementation of the Children Act 1989. He spent seven years as a non-exective director and latterly Deputy Chair of an acute NHS hospital. He chairs occasional inspections, mainly of acute trusts, for the Care Quality Commission.

Judge Celia Dawson

Appointed Trustee: June 2017

Celia is a District Judge sitting in Adult, Youth and Family Courts in Suffolk and Essex. She is also a Recorder dealing with complex children’s cases in the County Court. She previously worked as a District Judge in Stratford and Wells Street FPC, where she also served as a Community Judge for north-east London in a pilot Community Court project between 2007 and 2010. She also worked as a solicitor and senior legal advisor. She is a Judicial College tutor.  

Mr Anthony Gamble

Tony Gamble

Appointed Governor: September 2009

Tony works with Life Education Nottinghamshire, where he has been a Trustee since 1998, and with Coram Life Education, where he became a Trustee in 2002. Today, he is a trustee both of Coram Life Education and of Coram. Tony is married with one daughter living near the Lincolnshire /Nottinghamshire border and is now retired following a career holding various management posts within British Gas based in the East Midlands and London, initially in sales and marketing but latterly in general and change management. He has been Chair of Governors of a large comprehensive school in Lincoln for the past ten years. Tony’s other interests include extensive use of his narrow boat in the summer months, offshore sailing, golf and walking (often with his Boxer dog!).

Mr Bill Gore 

Bill GoreAppointed Trustee: April 2012

Bill played a key role in the integration of The Children’s Legal Centre with Coram.  He is a Trustee of both CCLC and Coram and a member of the Audit Committee, and recently became interim Chair of the Foundling Museum. Bill is an international entrepreneur who has invested to turn around many underperforming businesses for the last 20 years.  Bill has worked with many international banks and venture capital houses. He has recently founded Manfield Partners which is a specialist turnaround operator and offers investment when needed. Bill was a founding director of the Institute for Turnaround and also has recently received an Honorary Doctorate in recognition of his four years as Chairman and Pro Chancellor of the University of Essex. 

Dr Pui-Ling Li

Dr Pui Ling Li

Appointed Trustee: November 2011

Dr Li is a Trustee of Coram and a member of the Children’s Services Committee, and has recently been appointed Chair of the External Affairs Group. Dr Li has spent many years working as a public health physician in the NHS.  Also qualified as a GP, her roles have included the regional Consultant in Public Health Medicine for the NHS in  London from 1997 to 2000. She was also the Head of the Chief Medical Officer’s Corporate Development Unit for the Department of Health from 2000 to 2002; and from 2003 to 2009 she was the Director of Public Health in Waltham Forest, a deprived London borough. More recently Dr Li has taken on the position of Deputy Regional Director - System Delivery in Public Health England (London). She is also the founder and Chair of the Chinese National Healthy Living Centre in the UK.

Ms Alison Lowton

Alison Lowton Appointed Trustee: June 2008

Alison’s experience has meant she has been an invaluable sounding board for Coram in critical areas of our work.  She was a Foundling Museum Trustee, and is now chair of Trustees at Coram Children’s Legal Centre. Alison is a qualified solicitor who has mostly worked in local government.  Her most recent position was with the General Social Care Council as Head of Governance and Legal.  Amongst her extensive experience Alison spent time working as a child care lawyer meaning she had a high exposure to children's services including Adoption and Foster Panels. She also worked for several years for the London Borough of Camden as Director of Law.

Mr Jonathan Portes

Appointed Trustee: March 2011

In 2010 Jonathan introduced a key volunteer, Almudena Lara, who has helped Coram’s Research and Policy team develop its social finance capacity. He has advised Coram on a number of matters of policy. Jonathan is a member of the Children's Services Committee, and a donor to Coram. Jonathan is a Professor of Economics at King’s College London. Previously, he held the roles of Director of the National Institute of Economic and Social Research and Chief Economist at the Cabinet Office, where he advised the Cabinet Secretary, Gus O’Donnell, and Number 10 Downing Street on economic and financial issues.  Before that he held a number of other senior economic policy posts in UK government, including as Director for Children and Poverty at the Department for Work and Pensions. His particular interests include immigration, labour markets, poverty and social mobility.  He writes regularly for the national and international press, is on Twitter at @jdportes and blogs at notthetreasuryview.blogspot.com.

Lord Simon Russell of Liverpool

Chair of the Campaign Group
Appointed Trustee: June 2009

Lord Russell has been involved with Life Education since 1988, became its chairman in 1993 and helped steer its amalgamation with Coram upon which he became a Coram Trustee. In 2011 he helped organise a reception with the Duke of Westminster that resulted in income for the Lord Mayor’s Appeal. Lord Russell is currently both Chair of Trustees for CLE and a Trustee of Coram. Lord Russell is a Partner at Spencer Stuart, one of the world’s leading executive search consulting firms, which he joined in 1994. He was a crossbench peer in the House of Lords between 1986 and 1999, and was an active member of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Drug Misuse.

Ms Judith Trowell

Judith TrowellAppointed Trustee: October 2013

Judith is a trustee of CoramBAAF and Coram Voice. Judith is a Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist formerly working  at the Tavistock Clinic. Judith is also a professor of child mental health in the West Midlands, based at Worcester University. In addition she is a psychotherapist and has undertaken clinical outcome studies to explore the better outcomes for abused girls and depressed young people amongst other studies. More recently, Judith has consulted to organisations for troubled and abused children and is conducting research on what helps to produce the best outcomes. Judith is a trustee and founder of Young Minds.

Ms Jenny Coles

Jenny Coles

Appointed Trustee: September 2016

Jenny qualified as a social worker in 1986 and has been a senior manager in Local Authority Children’s Services since 1997.  She has worked extensively in children’s safeguarding, looked after children and quality assurance, and has also managed integrated youth and youth justice services.  Jenny moved from Luton Borough Council to take up the post of Director of Children’s Services for Hertfordshire County Council in 2010.  She is the lead DCS for Sector Led Improvement in the Eastern Region and is the chair of the ADCS Families, Communities & Young People Policy Group.

Mr Yogesh Chauhan

Yogesh Chauhan

Appointed Trustee: June 2016

Yogesh is currently Director Corporate Sustainability at Tata Consultancy Services, a global technology, consulting and business solutions company. Yogesh previously worked as the BBC’s Chief Adviser on Corporate Responsibility and Environment. He is also chairman of the Corporate Responsibility Group (CRG), the UK’s practitioner network and emerging professional body for those working in the field of corporate responsibility and sustainability.

Governors

Ms Maureen Sutherland Smith (Life Governor)

Maureen Sutherland Smith

Campaign Group
Appointed Governor: June 2002

Maureen has played a vital role in Coram fundraising for many years.  She chaired the Grosvenor House Arts and Antiques Fair event which raised over £400,000, and organised City Rocks, the first rock concert held in the City of London, which raised £200,000 for the Lord Mayor’s Appeal.  She has played a key role in developing the Coram brand and has introduced numerous contacts and businesses to Coram. Today, Maureen is a member of the Campaign Committee and is involved in extending Coram’s reach and connections. Maureen is founder and Chairman of The Communication Group plc, one of the UK’s leading independent PR consultancies.  She was previously MD at BBDO Public Relations and CEO at the Good Relations Group plc, the first PR company to be quoted on the London Stock Exchange.

Mr Peter Brown FRSA FCA

Life Governor: Appointed: 1959

Peter is a former Chairman of Coram (1975 – 1990) and has been a Governor since 1959. Peter is a life governor, Charter Patron and donor to Coram.  He has introduced a range of contacts and has pledged a legacy to Coram in his will.  Peter is the Chairman of Synergy Holdings Ltd and has previously been Chairman of Dawson Holdings Plc, the Goldshield Group Plc, Top Pay Research Group Ltd, Associates British Industries, Riverside Press Ltd. Wace Group Plc, and IP Plus Plc. Peter pioneered the idea of a recruitment agency dedicated to the voluntary sector in 1984 and remains Chairman of Charity and Fundraising Recruitment. Peter is a member of the Worshipful Company of Skinners and a trustee of Tomorrow’s Achievers, Young Enterprise, the Politics and the Economics Research Trust.  He is the former Chairman of the Fountain Society, the Public Monuments and Sculpture Association and the Hyde Park Estate Association.

Mr Guy de Froment

Appointed Governor: June 2013

Guy sits on the Appeal Board and is chairman of the Investment Committee. Guy has spent most of his working life in the City. After graduating from H.E.C in Paris  (Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales), he held senior positions in London and in Paris with Indosuez, Barclays, and BNP Paribas where he was vice-chairman of Asset Management until he retired in 2010. He is a committee member of The Wine Society and a non-executive director of Impax Asset Management.

Ms Philippa Dodds John

Campaign Group
Appointed Governor: October 2002
Appointed Life Governor: June 2012

Philippa has been central to the development of Coram's events for more than a decade. She has raised over £500,000 through her leadership at the Handel birthday concert. She has championed the development of the Hogarth Dinner and has introduced a range of contacts. She is a member of the Campaign Committee and remains actively involved in Coram events. She and her husband are donors to Coram. Philippa initially trained as a teacher with a parallel life singing choral music. After raising a family of five children, she returned to work as a freelance consultant focusing on education, the arts and charitable projects. Philippa managed a fund for Education in Tower Hamlets on behalf of Canary Wharf Limited for 20 years sponsoring research and implementation into early language and literacy, sport and arts development.  Philippa is also a trustee of a composer trust, the Edgar Bainton (UK) Society, and a trustee of The Levantine Foundation, a conservation charity working to preserve the paper based cultural heritage of the Near East.

Mr John Illsley

Appointed Governor: 2009

John is a former trustee of Coram Life Education and bought the first mobile CLE classroom in the UK over 25 years ago.He was instrumental in funding the introduction of CLE in the UK and he has introduced numerous contacts to the charity. John donated a major auction prize to the first Love Tokens event helping make it a success. John was the former bass player for the band Dire Straits, who over a 20-year period sold over 120 million records.He is now a solo artist and last year released his fourth solo album. John also owns The George Hotel on the Isle of Wight and a New Forest pub – the East End Arms.

Mr Asif Rangoonwala (Vice President)

Asif RangoonwalaAppointed Governor: June 2008

The Rangoonwala Foundation has supported the Handel Birthday Concert, and is currently a major sponsor of Coram’s Art Therapy in schools project. Asif is an entrepreneur who founded and eventually sold Eurobuns which supplies baked goods to fast food chains, restaurants and supermarkets. Asif has gone on to start a company called South Street Asset Management providing essential accommodation for students and key workers.  He is Chairman of Powerboat P1 and has Directorships in other companies. Asif is the Chairman of the Rangoonwala Foundation which supports marginalised societies worldwide. He is also the Chairman of The British Pakistan Foundation and Chairman of the World Memon Foundation. He is a Trustee of the British Asian Trust and a World Fellow of The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award.

Professor Sir Michael Rutter

Appointed Governor: June 2010

Sir Michael spoke at the Threads of Feeling Event on Separation and Loss, and advises on children’s services and fundraising. Sir Michael became the first Professor of Child Psychiatry in the UK in 1972 and founded the Medical Research Council (UK) Child Psychiatry Research Unit in 1984.  He then went on to set up the Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry Centre, and was an honorary Director of both until 1998. He was Deputy Chairman of the Wellcome Trust from 1999 to 2004 and Trustee of the Nuffield Foundation from 1992 to 2008. Currently, Sir Michael is Professor of Developmental Psychopathology at the Institute of Psychiatry Kings College London and has been a consultant psychiatrist at the Maudsley Hospital since 1966. Sir Michael has published over 500 papers and 50 books on families and children and their mental problems. He was elected to Fellowship of the Royal Society in 1987, of the British Academy in 2002, and was a founding Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences, and clinical vice president from 2004-09.  He has a special interest in adoption, initiating a follow-up study of Romanian adoptees in the mid 1990s, advising on a study of Greek adoptees in 2010-12, and more recently working as a  consultant on Julia Feast’s 2012 study of Chinese adoptees.

Mr Steve Whyman

Campaign Group
Appointed Governor: June 2013

Steve has been heavily involved with Coram’s Cycle To...events both corporately and personally since 2010, and Broadgate Estates will again be the lead sponsor of Cycle to MIPIM in 2014. In 2013 the Broadgate Estates team alone raised £32,000 of the £218,000 total from the event. Steve was appointed Managing Director of Broadgate Estates in April 2010. He has worked with multi-national service businesses in diverse sectors including retail, consumer electronics, automotive and apparel in a variety of commercial and operational management roles. His career to date includes management consultancy with Coopers & Lybrand; operations director of an apparel business; ten years in operational and commercial roles with DHL; and five years on the executive board of the retailer Halfords.Steve is a Fellow of the Institute of Directors and a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT).

Mr James McCallum 

Appointed Governor: July 2016

James is an external (non-trustee) member of Coram Group’s Finance and Audit Committees. James trained as a Chartered Accountant with Price Waterhouse, and has over 30 years’ experience in corporate finance and financial management with Coopers & Lybrand, BT plc and OyezStraker.  Since 2013 he has been running his own business, Caremark (Wandsworth), providing social care to people in Wandsworth who need assistance to live independently and safely at home. James is a Trustee of Work Stress Solutions, a mental health charity in Surrey, and was a member of Girls’ Day School Trust’s Audit Committee.

Mr Rob Watts 

Appointed Governor: July 2016

Rob began his career with Laing Management in 1986 as a graduate trainee, following completing a degree in Construction Management at Reading University in 1985. He then joined Heery International (now part of the Balfour Beatty Group) in 1988 and gained experience in all aspects of construction delivery from office and hotel conversion and refurbishments to large scale multi-phase projects. Rob joined Stanhope in 1998 and has delivered a wide range of projects as Development Director. Rob was appointed Operations Director across all Stanhope projects in 2014.

Ms Ruth Miller 

Appointed Governor: July 2016

Ruth is the Honorary Secretary of the Old Coram Association (OCA) and a Governor at Coram. To find out more about the OCA, visit: oca1947.co.uk.

 

Honorary Vice Presidents

Sir Christopher Benson JP DL

Appointed Chair: 2005
Appointed Hon VP: October 2008

Sir Christopher was appointed President and Chairman of Coram in 2005, before these roles were split, and became Honorary Vice President in 2008.  He has introduced a large number of contacts to the charity, and he is currently a donor to Coram. Sir Christopher’s career in business has spanned 50 years. His previous positions included chair of large international companies such as MEPC plc, The Boots Company plc, Royal and Sun Alliance Insurance Group, Costain plc, London Docklands Development Corporation, Cross London Rail Links (Crossrail) as well as others in the retail and construction industries. Sir Christopher is a Liveryman of the Worshipful company of Chartered Surveyors and Chair of a regeneration project in Salisbury, Salisbury Vision. Sir Christopher was the High Sheriff of Wiltshire in 2002 and was knighted in 1988. 

Mrs Carolyn Steen

Appointed Governor: 1983
Appointed Chair :1995
Appointed Honorary VP: 2001

Carolyn became a Trustee of Coram in the 1980s and was Chair of Coram from 1995 to 2001 during which time she oversaw the separation of Coram’s child care work from the historical art collection. The campus at Mecklenburgh Square was developed during her chairmanship and Coram moved to carry out its child care work there. The Foundling Museum was set up as a separate charity and The Coram Collection is housed within the Museum at Brunswick Square.  She was a Trustee of the Museum from 2001 to 2012. Carolyn is now an Honorary Vice President of Coram and Honorary Vice President of the Old Coram Association. Carolyn is a Chartered Psychologist working with Psychology4Law, a consultancy specialising in the assessment of children and families both in the public and private sector. Her previous appointments include senior educational psychology positions in various London Education and Social Services Authorities.Carolyn has devoted much of her life to working within the voluntary sector as a Trustee in many child care and arts organisations including The Rainer Foundation, Touch Down Dance The Music Therapy Charity and a housing association, The Britannia Royal Naval College Museum and a housing association. She was a  magistrate in Willesden and a District Councillor in Devon.

Mr David Goldstone CBE

Appointed Chair: 2003
Appointed Hon VP: 2006

David was Chairman of Coram between 2003-2006 and is an Honorary Vice President of Coram. He is currently a donor to Coram. David qualified as a solicitor in 1955 having studied law at London School of Economics. David is a pioneer of urban community regeneration whose career has spanned over 40 years.  He was CEO and Chairman of Regalian Properties PLC for 30 years and led developments all over London involving many thousands of residential units and including the regeneration of Battersea Village.  He was responsible for the development of the landmark MI6 building at Vauxhall Cross. David has also been Chairman of both Swansea City and Cardiff  City football clubs, Deputy Chair of London Welsh Rugby Cub and now is Special Adviser to the Welsh Rugby Union. He is also  Adviser to two Welsh Government departments and to the Wales Millennium Centre. In addition he is an alumnus and now a Fellow and Emeritus Governor of the London School of Economics.  He was recently appointed FRICS.

Mr Edward Hartill OBE

Appointed Governor: January 2006
Chair: 2008 - 2014

Edward has brought enormously influential contacts to Coram over many years. He has been central to the Coram Campus redevelopment and chairs the Campus Development Committee. He is a Coram donor and attends many events. Edward, a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, had a distinguished career in the property departments of major insurance companies, and 23 years as City Surveyor to the City of London Corporation. He chaired cross-industry working parties which led to the creation of both the Property Services National Training Organisation and the Sector Skills Council which replaced it. He has been President of the former General Practice Division, Honorary Treasurer of the RICS and President of the Association of Chief Estates Surveyors in Local Government. Currently Edward is a Trustee of the University of London. He is a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Chartered Surveyors and was Master in 2003/2004 during which time he was awarded his OBE for services to the Corporation of London and surveying.

Alderman Sir Michael Bear 

President: May 2012 - July 2015
Appointed Governor: July 2008

Sir Michael chose Coram as the main beneficiary of his Lord Mayor’s Appeal in 2011, which raised substantial sums towards Coram’s work and transformed Coram's profile in the city. Sir Michael is currently President of Coram, the Chair of the Campaign Committee and a member of the Campus Development committee. He is leading on the property and construction sector for the Coram Campus Appeal and is Past Master of the Worshipful Company of Paviors who supported Coram during Sir Michael’s year as Master. Sir Michael is a non-executive director of Arup and former Managing Director of Balfour Beatty Property and Regeneration Director at Hammerson plc.  Sir Michael was Lord Mayor of the City of London 2010- 2011. He is Vice President of RedR, a Governor of Clifton College and Emeritus Trustee of Spitalfields Music Festival.  He was Chairman of the public/private City Challenge Programme in the   Borough of Tower Hamlets and a Director of its successor body Cityside Regeneration. Sir Michael was awarded Knights Bachelor in 2012 for his services to regeneration, charity and the City of London.

 

Senior Management Team

Dr Carol Homden CBE

Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Carol Homden

Carol is a member of the National Adoption Recruitment Forum & Adoption Leadership Board, CBE. Carol started her career setting up print media enterprises in East Anglia before moving to London as a freelance arts journalist and editor. She then became Director of Marketing and Development at the University of Westminster, later moving to the British Museum in 1999 as its first Director of Marketing and Public Affairs. Her affinity for improving the lives of young people motivated her to accept the position of Commercial Director for the Prince’s Trust in 2003, where she was responsible for all aspects of income generation. Carol became Chief Executive of Coram in April 2007. She is Chair of the National Autistic Society, and a member of the Department for Education’s Children’s Interagency Group (CIAG) and the Youth Justice Board for England and Wales. Carol was awarded a CBE in 2013 for her contribution to services for children and families. 

Renuka Jeyarajah-Dent

Renuka Jeyarajah-Dent

Director of Operations

Renuka is a qualified teacher and educational psychologist and was Executive Director of NCH - The Bridge (now part of Action for Children’s consultancy services) before joining Coram. Renuka has worked with the British Agencies for Adoption and Fostering as their first Black Issues Consultant and has served on the trustee boards of Fostering Network, Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations (ACEVO) and Shaftesbury Young People. Renuka has also been a school governor and a member of Local Authority Exclusion Appeal Panels. She has written several serious case reviews, which study inter-agency work in relation to safeguarding issues. She has provided consultancy to children’s services both in the United Kingdom and abroad and is a well respected conference speaker. Her current portfolio includes partnership problem-solving with local authorities to meet the challenge of improving outcomes for children in state care.

 

Velou Singara

Chief Finance Officer

Velou Singara

Velou Singara manages the Coram group’s Finance and Resources. Velou is a graduate of Mechanical Engineering and completed his Master of Business Administration on Finance & Information Systems. Velou further trained for accountancy and is an affiliate member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) UK. Velou has 20 years’ experience in the Finance sector, working in managerial positions in different sectors including commerce, industry, education and the voluntary sector. Velou has contributed to the development of financial regulations for charities under Statement of Recommended Practices (SORP) to the Charity Commission and is also a member of the HM Revenue & Customs consultation group on VAT reforms for charities.

 

 

Back to top of page