Haberdashers’ Boys’ School is one of the 18 schools of the Worshipful Company of Haberdashers. It is a source of great pride that students at our school number among over 10,000 pupils at Haberdashers’ Schools, in the maintained and independent sectors.

The Company provides funding, guidance and the in-depth experience of governors, who sit on the boards of its schools and colleges around the country. They take part in social and official events, with a great interest in the wellbeing of all students under their care.

The Haberdashers’ Elstree Schools Board of Governors is supported by a number of committees which operate across the two schools. A number of governors also serve on the Board of The Haberdashers’ Aske’s Elstree Schools’ Foundation.

The Board of Governors and its committees are supported by the Clerk to the Governors, Tim Monod: tmonod@habselstree.org.uk

Acroynms

  • EI&SC Estates, Infrastructure and Sustainability Committee
  • FC Finance Committee
  • IC Innovation Committee
  • PC People Committee
  • R&NC Remuneration and Nominations Committee
  • RC&SC Risk, Compliance and Safeguarding Committee
  • T&LC Teaching and Learning Committee

Governors’ biographies below record their membership of any relevant committees and other responsibilities held.

Simon Cartmell OBE

Chair Board of Governors, R&NC, Foundation Board Member
Simon Cartmell OBE Chair Board of Governors, R&NC, Foundation Board Member

Simon attended Haberdashers’ Monmouth School before doing a BSc in Medical Microbiology at Manchester University followed ten years later by an MSc in Management and Economics at the University of London.

The first third of his career was spent in the commercial, operational and strategic development aspects of a leading UK pharmaceutical company and executive director roles at two quoted UK biotech firms. Then he developed a UK medical technology start-up into a world-leading orthobiologics company based in Elstree, resulting in a successful exit to a US acquirer. The most recent third has been a VC operating partner and serial healthcare company non-executive director / chairman and investor.

Simon recognises the impact of the financial support that allowed him to benefit from an education at Habs Monmouth, and wants to repay that through guiding the continued development of our two great schools. He is a member of the Livery of the Haberdashers’ Company, serves on the Court of Assistants, the Finance, Education and Wine Committees.

For 25 years, he has been Youth Chairman, coach and referee at Teddington RFC. With a Welsh wife, the Six Nations is always an interesting time of year. He also enjoys travel, skiing, rugby, wine and mentoring young people and executives.

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Henrietta Afolami

PC, NOMINATED SAFEGUARDING GOVERNOR GIRLS' SCHOOL
Henrietta Afolami PC, NOMINATED SAFEGUARDING GOVERNOR GIRLS' SCHOOL

After attending St Mary’s School, Calne, Henrietta studied History & Politics at Durham University..

Her career began as a lawyer in litigation and international arbitration at Allen & Overy. After gaining an LLM in Public International Law from King’s College, London, she continued her career at the Government Legal Department, advising the Home Office on matters of public law and judicial review. She then qualified as a commercial mediator and now works as a full-time mediator alongside running IPOS Mediation, a leading provider. She is currently working on an online dispute resolution platform which will leverage technology to help resolve disputes without having to go to court

Henrietta was a governor of a CofE state primary school in inner-city London for eight years. When she relocated, she wanted to continue contributing to the education of the next generation and is now helping to ensure that Habs students benefit from the best possible education.

Besides her interests in dispute resolution and negotiation, Henrietta is collecting a growing menagerie of pets and raising three sons. She is a Liveryman of the Haberdashers’ Company.

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Shruti Ajitsaria

T&LC, Chair IC
Shruti Ajitsaria T&LC, Chair IC

Shruti was a student at Habs Girls herself before heading off to Downing College, Cambridge to study law. She started out at Allen & Overy more than 20 years ago, initially specialising in credit derivatives and drafting almost all of the standard documentation in this area over that decade. She is now a Partner at Allen & Overy and Head of Fuse there – a tech innovation space, opened in 2017 to identify and collaborate with legaltech and fintech companies relevant to A&O lawyers and their clients. Today, Fuse is the sole entry in the Global-Wide LawTech Incubators & Accelerators category in the Chambers and Partners Guide.

Shruti has been included in the Top 100 Asian Stars in UK Tech in 2020, 2021 and 2023. In 2019, she won the Asian Women of Achievement Award (Professionals category), and was included in the HERoes Role Model List and the Financial Times list of the Top 10 Legal Intrapreneurs. In 2018, she was awarded a TechWomen 50 Award and a Fastcase 50 Award, and was named in the following lists: Lawyer’s Hot100; Brummell Magazine’s 30 Inspirational Women; Management Today’s Power Part Timers; the Inclusive Boards 100 Most Influential BAME leaders in UK; and Innovate Finance’s Standout 35 Women in FinTech.

Her mother was a teacher and governor at Habs, so Shruti has always had a keen interest in education – she is also on the University of Oxford’s advisory board for the MSc in Law and Finance. She was previously a governor at a primary school in East London, and was unable to resist the opportunity to contribute to her alma mater as a governor – with its very different set of opportunities and challenges. Shruti has completed the FT Diploma in Non-Executive Directorships and is on the board of the Zoological Society of London. She completed a course for entrepreneurs at Google Campus; manages a sector-agnostic portfolio of private investments; and appeared on both series of BBC 2’s Million Pound Menu as a restaurant investor. She spends her spare time being a taxi service for her three children, but does find time for travel, cooking and seeing friends… ideally all at once.

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Delyth Chambers

TL&C
Delyth Chambers TL&C

After completing her A levels at Haberdashers’ Monmouth School for Girls, Delyth went to Aston University to study for a BSc (Hons) in Geological Sciences. She then achieved an MBA from the University of Warwick.

Her career has mostly been in higher education management at several universities, specialising in student recruitment, admissions, marketing and widening participation. She has advised the Duke of Edinburgh and undertaken consultancy and advisory work for schools and universities. Delyth has been a governor at several schools and particularly enjoys working with those which span reception to sixth form. She was delighted to have the opportunity to take up a governor role at Habs, which she describes as ‘exceptional schools’.

Thanks to her choral singing, Delyth has worked with world-renowned conductors and orchestras and has toured in the US and Europe. One of the recordings in which she participated was awarded Gramophone Record of the Year, and she says it’s very exciting when she hears the recordings on the radio. She also enjoys watercolour painting, food and wine.

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Cllr Caroline Clapper

EI&SC
Cllr Caroline Clapper EI&SC

Caroline attended South Hampstead High School GDST and her early career was in media and advertising.

She has served as an elected Local Councillor at both County and Borough for the past 17 years, and was recently appointed the Cabinet Member for Education, Lifelong Learning and Libraries at Hertfordshire County.

She has served as a school governor for two decades because she is deeply committed to the education and the betterment of young people. Her husband is an Old Haberdasher and they have three children at Habs.

Caroline is also a board director of Elstree Studios and a keen tennis player.

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Tim Dolan

VICE CHAIR GIRLS' SCHOOL, FC, EI&SC, R&NC, CHAIR RC&SC, FOUNDATION BOARD MEMBER
Tim Dolan VICE CHAIR GIRLS' SCHOOL, FC, EI&SC, R&NC, CHAIR RC&SC, FOUNDATION BOARD MEMBER

Tim went to school at Christ’s College in Christchurch, New Zealand. He gained a BA in History and Classics from the University of Canterbury and also holds a bachelor’s degree in Law.

While at university, Tim developed a fascination for the regulation of financial services, so after leaving university he worked for the New Zealand financial regulator for several years. Since moving to the UK twenty years ago, he has worked for the UK’s financial services regulator and has been a partner at a couple of global law firms during the last 16 years.

Tim is a member of the Court of Assistants at the Haberdashers’ Company. He feels that being a governor here enables him to give something back and to support our pupils and staff at a couple of ‘fantastic schools’. Tim is married with three young children. As well as spending time with friends and family Tim enjoys skiing, watching rugby and running.

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Jeremy Gladwin

T&LC, RC&SC, Nominated Safeguarding Governor Boys' School
Jeremy Gladwin T&LC, RC&SC, Nominated Safeguarding Governor Boys' School

Educated at King’s School Worcester (choral scholar) and Whitgift, then Durham and Cambridge Universities. BSc in Geography, MEd in Educational Leadership. Taught for 15 years at Shrewsbury school before Deputy Headship at Royal Hospital School (six years) and Headships at St Edmund’s School Canterbury and Bishops Stortford College (six and nine years). Inspector for CSCI, Ofsted and ISI. HMC Professional Development Committee (15 years). Now retired but continuing to work with HMC, and in consultancy. Lover of music (pianist) and was a keen tennis player, enjoying many sports.

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Helen Gough

Chair EI&SC
Helen Gough Chair EI&SC

Helen attended school here at Habs Girls before studying for a BSc (Hons) in Building Surveying at De Montfort University. She has participated in the Strategic Leadership Programme at the Said Business School, Oxford and attended the Institute of Sustainable Leadership at the University of Cambridge.

She has built a career in property consultancy at Hillier Parker, King Sturge and JLL (where she was Head of Project & Development Service, a member of their UK executive board, EMEA Corporate Solutions Leadership Team, and Global Project and Development Services Board). She founded and chaired the JLL Gender Balance Network. Helen joined the John Whitgift Foundation as Director of Property in 2021. The charity runs three independent schools and its property portfolios play a significant role in funding bursaries for young people’s education. In a non-executive capacity, she is a member of the Estates Strategy Committee at King’s College London, which manages the university’s property assets.

She has been appointed a Freeman of the City of London and Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Chartered Surveyors. She is a non-executive director and Member of the Aquinas Academy Trust (MAT). She is a Freeman of the Haberdashers’ Company, appointed to the Property Committee, and has been elected to the Court of Assistants. At Habs, she leads the E&I Committee and is delighted to give back to the school which has shaped her life.

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Julian Gregory

Vice Chair Boys' School, FC, EI&SC, R&NC,
Julian Gregory Vice Chair Boys' School, FC, EI&SC, R&NC,

After going to Sevenoaks School, Julian attended Thames Polytechnic (now the University of Greenwich) where he did a degree in Business Studies. He ran the commercial activities of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) before joining a fast-growing media business. He worked for Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC (now Delinian) before starting his own business, Panacea Media, and leading a management buyout of the company he was running in 2005. Since then he has grown that business, launching new titles and then selling them on. He is also the director of a property investment company.

He is a Liveryman of the Haberdashers’ Company and has been elected to the Court of Assistants. He is also a member of the Wine Committee. As a former Haberdasher, he always expected to become a governor at some point. He says he is always inspired by the young people he meets when he visits Habs.

He was in the TA (Army Reserve) for over 20 years, mainly in special communications. He almost died in a diving accident when he surfaced with two other divers and the boat was not there. They floated at sea for over five hours until being picked up by a fishing boat. He has four daughters aged between 12 and 20, and when he finds the time he enjoys walking, cooking, travel and – perhaps surprisingly – still goes scuba diving.

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Pooja Jain

Pooja Jain

Pooja was educated here at Habs Girls, and after studying English at Trinity College, Cambridge, she qualified as a teacher and taught English at a secondary school in Kilburn, London.

She later trained as a solicitor; having started out at city law firms Allen & Overy and Macfarlanes, she moved in-house as a corporate finance lawyer. Following a few years at a government agency, Pooja now works for an international bank.

As soon as she left school, Pooja joined the Haberdashers’ Company as an apprentice and is currently a Liveryman. She appreciated all the opportunities she was afforded at Habs and the doors it opened later in life. Her own teaching career made her aware of the privileged education she had, and wants to ensure that the Habs schools continue to deliver the very best they can for their students.

Teaching, education and volunteering are at the heart of Pooja’s interests.

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Nish Kukadia

EDI & SEND Lead Governor, T&LC, IC
Nish Kukadia EDI & SEND Lead Governor, T&LC, IC

Nishil went to school here at Habs Boys before studying for a degree in Management & Marketing at the University of Manchester. He began his career at advertising group WPP before founding SecretSales.com, which became the UK’s largest designer flash-sales website. He was Britain’s Fashion Entrepreneur of the Year in 2014, named as one of Britain’s top retailers in RetailWeek, and listed in the top 10 of Britain’s Most Influential Entrepreneurs by Debretts & The Sunday Times.

Nish has since been entrepreneur-in-residence for a private investment office; launched two non-alcoholic drinks brands; and helped scale a group of residential care homes for 11-18 year old children with social, emotional, and mental health challenges (SEMH), rated Outstanding by Ofsted. He is now Venture Director at Holland & Barrett.

His experiences with children with SEMH challenges sharpened Nish’s resolve for high-quality education and outstanding pastoral care. He is keen to prioritise digital career opportunities for our students. He is qualified to handle highly toxic snakes including mambas, cobras, and a variety of vipers, and also likes to keep fit and experiment with bio-hacking to optimise his performance. He is an avid cook and tries to ski at least once a year.

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Claire Martinsen

Health & Safety Lead Governor, EI&SC, RC&SC
Claire Martinsen Health & Safety Lead Governor, EI&SC, RC&SC

Claire was educated at Haberdashers’ Monmouth School for Girls and was one of the inaugural pupils of the Prep department at Monmouth. She then studied Marketing and German at Strathclyde University.

After 4 years at Coats Viyella where she was Sales Director of a hosiery division, she joined Mars Inc. Claire spent 11 years at Mars in a number of commercial roles, and across three Mars division [pet food, food and confectionery].

In 2009 she set up her own soft drinks company – Breckland Orchard, based just outside Cambridge. Breckland Orchard drinks are sold in cafes, delis and restaurants right across the UK, as well as being exported to 10 overseas markets.

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Tony Mather

EI&SC, IC
Tony Mather EI&SC, IC

Tony was born in the north of England and now lives in Blewbury, near Oxford. He studied Engineering at Surrey University, followed by an MBA at Kingston Business School and an MSc in Digital Innovation at Henley Business School.

Tony has spent over 30 years working in technology and digital transformation for a number of companies and organisations, ranging from being a member of the Board of the Foreign & Commonwealth Office through to International Chief Information Officer for Clear Channel, a large media company.

Tony is currently responsible for the sizeable information and technology change portfolio that is focused on modernising and bringing new capability to AWE, ensuring the changes that are necessary to create a digitally transformed working environment. He is also responsible for all aspects of security, including cyber and information security.

In his spare time Tony is a skydiving coach and also enjoys spending time with his family, beekeeping, and running ultra-marathons.

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Jonny Myers

PC, Chair of Foundation Board
Jonny Myers PC, Chair of Foundation Board

Jonny went to Bradford Grammar School before studying Engineering & Law at the University of Cambridge. He later completed the Advanced Management Programme at Wharton.

He moved to London to train as a lawyer, as a stepping-stone to working in business – and has since spent his entire professional career at two law firms. He did secondments at 3i and with the investment banking team at Citi (then Schroders), and spent some time working in the Middle East. He is now the Global Head of Private Equity at Clifford Chance.

All four of his children have attended Habs, and so he has welcomed the opportunity to support us in developing our strategy. He is also keen to be supporting the Foundation in funding bursaries for students who would not otherwise have the opportunity of a Habs education. Jonny in earlier life has done a range of jobs including being a water-ski instructor, tour guide and potato seller

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Robert Ohrenstein

Chair FC, R&NC
Robert Ohrenstein Chair FC, R&NC

After attending school here at Habs Boys, Robert went on to study at the London School of Economics. He also has an MBA from Warwick Business School.

Robert started work at Arthur Andersen, qualifying as a Chartered Accountant and becoming a partner in the Audit practice. However, for most of his professional career, Robert has been a transaction adviser to private equity, pension and sovereign wealth funds. He moved to Deloitte and subsequently KPMG, where he became UK and Global Head of KPMG’s Private Equity practice until 2020, and is now a Vice Chair at the firm.

As a former pupil and more recently parent at the school, Robert was delighted to have been recommended as a governor, offering him the ideal opportunity to use his professional experience for the benefit of his former school. He is a Freeman of the City of London and Liveryman of the Haberdashers’ Company, and aside from prioritising quality family time, he enjoys cycling – both for exercise and to explore off the beaten track, music and theatre.

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Helen Rosethorn

Chair PC, Chair R&NC
Helen Rosethorn Chair PC, Chair R&NC

Helen was a scholarship pupil at Leeds Girls’ High School (now The Grammar School at Leeds). Her first degree was a BA Hons in Geography from Durham University and then a few years later she gained an MBA from Bradford Management School, studying part time whilst pursuing her career.

She has spent that career building and running professional services businesses, especially in management consulting. She is currently Senior Partner at Prophet, the world’s largest independent consulting firm, leading their Organisation and Culture practice. Her particular areas of strategic expertise are talent strategy and harnessing the people power of organisations, including the intentional management of culture for organisational success.

She has two daughters who attended Habs Girls from Rainbow through to Sixth Form and served on the committee of the St Catherine’s Parents Guild throughout that time: 18 years, with four years as Chair. She was delighted to continue her association with the schools as governor, to join the Haberdashers’ Company as a Freeman and now to become a member of the Livery.

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Bernadette Stubley

Girls' Senior School Lead Governor, Chair T&LC, IC
Bernadette Stubley Girls' Senior School Lead Governor, Chair T&LC, IC

Bernadette went to school at Thornton College, Milton Keynes as well as St Peter’s Diocesan School, Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. She studied for a BA (Hons) in History and Philosophy at the University of Kent at Canterbury before achieving a PGCE (Secondary) and MA in Education (Educational Management).

She began her career in education at a London comprehensive before being appointed to the newly formed staff body at the Harris City Technology College in Croydon. While at the CTC, an innovative educational environment, Bernadette combined middle-management responsibilities with studying for a MA in Education. She held middle and senior management posts, leading on academic and curriculum matters, at Wallington High School for Girls, a grammar school in Sutton, until she was appointed Deputy Head Academic at St Helen and St Katharine (SHSK), Abingdon. She then became Deputy Head there, responsible for curriculum, assessment and provision for the most able. She is pleased to contribute her experience and expertise to supporting excellence in education at Habs.

She completed the 1990 London Marathon and has a real interest in Louis XIV of France, initially from teaching about him at A level. She enjoys reading, fitness and gardening.

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Alastair Thomas

Prep Lead Governor, T&LC, IC
Alastair Thomas Prep Lead Governor, T&LC, IC

After studying French at Kings’ College London and then a brief stint with the John Lewis Partnership, Alastair started his teaching career in 2000 at Kingshott Preparatory School in

Hertfordshire, where he taught a Year 4 class as well as French and Games. After being promoted to Head of French, he then took up position as Head of French and Latin at The Downs, Malvern. In 2008, he became Deputy Head Academic at Lambrook School, Ascot. Alastair took up his first Headship at The Elms Preparatory School, a co‐educational boarding and day school in the lea of the Malvern Hills in 2010. In 2018 he relocated to Abingdon to take up the post of Head of The Manor Preparatory School.

As well as school responsibilities Alastair is a member of the District 10 IAPS (Independent Association of Prep Schools) Committee and joined the IAPS Strategy Committee in September 2022. He is also an Inspector for the Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI).

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Neel Patani

FC
Neel Patani FC

Neel attended Berkhamsted School followed by the University of Exeter, where he completed a BA in Economics and an MSc in Finance and Investment. Since graduating in 2009, he has worked at leading investment banks including RBS and Nomura. He is currently at Barclays as a Change Programme Manager for Structured Credit Trading.

He is keen to bring strong governance to his role with the Haberdashers’ Company. He also serves as a trustee of the Clothworkers’ Foundation.

Neel enjoys playing squash, exploring Hertfordshire on his bicycle and taking his son to swimming lessons.

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Rida Rahmani

FC
Rida Rahmani FC

A former student of Karachi Grammar School in Pakistan, Rida Rahmani graduated from University College London with a first class honours degree in Mathematics with Economics.

A Chartered Accountant, she then began her career as an audit graduate at EY, in 2006. Working her way up to Partner over 16 years with the firm, Rida focused her skills in the oil and gas sector, acting as auditor and financial consultant to large and listed companies.

Going on to join BDO as an Audit Partner in 2022, she is also the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Lead in her firm. Rida now brings tremendous knowledge and experience to the board. Contributing to the future vision of Habs, she is playing an active role in helping us implement our strategy.

With three boys currently studying at Habs, the school is very close to Rida’s heart. Outside the financial world, she enjoys travelling, spending time with her family and serving the community.

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