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Governor Profiles

Governor Profiles

Sue Jeffrey (Chair)

Sue is a housing and regeneration professional with over 25 years’ experience working in the public, private and third sectors at senior level.

In 2009 Sue was elected for Labour to Redcar and Cleveland Council.  She represents the South Bank Ward where she has lived for 35 years.  She became Leader of the Council following the May 2015 elections, where one of her biggest challenges has been to respond to the closure of the SSI steelworks.  As Chair of the Tees Valley Combined Authority, she took a leading role negotiating the Tees Valley devolution deal.  She is the Vice Chair of the newly established South Tees Development Corporation, having been Chair on the Shadow Board, leading early work to regenerate the site.

Sue believes strongly in the benefits of partnership and is committed to working collaboratively with the people, businesses, and organisations that make up the Borough of Redcar & Cleveland to secure a better future for us all.

John Lowther (Vice Chair)

John is a Chartered Town Planner. Until his retirement in 2012, he was a chief officer in local government in London, North Lincolnshire and Teesside, responsible for planning and economic development for over 25 years.

From 1996 to 2010, John led the Tees Valley Joint Strategy Unit, which was responsible for strategic planning, transport planning, economic development and the management of European programmes in the Tees Valley. He went on to hold the position of Chief Executive of the Tees Valley Partnership and its successor Tees Valley Unlimited, which became one of the first approved Local Enterprise Partnerships in the country.

Angela Foster

Angela is a Chartered accountant who has gained more than ten years’ experience within general practice since graduating from University with a BA in Accounting and Finance.

Angela has been a partner at Tindles LLP since 2007 where she is also a Chartered Tax Advisor and a member of The Chartered Institute of Taxation overseeing all accounts, audit, company secretarial, payroll, and compliance work, in addition to undertaking tax planning and general business advice.

Rob Mitchell

Rob is Head of Policy & Performance at Redcar & Cleveland Council. He has worked in a corporate policy/strategy /partnership/community setting since joining local government in 1989, having worked at Rochdale, Blackburn, Middlesbrough, York, and Redcar & Cleveland Councils, and a position with the Association of North East Councils in Newcastle. This has always been within a political setting, working closely with elected Members, Chief Executives, Directors and others, partner organisations, communities and the voluntary and community sector, with the desire to improve the quality of life and well-being of communities, especially those facing most disadvantage, at the forefront.

Rob’s achievements include helping Blackburn Council secure unitary status, leading one of the first Local Strategic Partnerships to national recognition, and working across the Tees Valley Councils to support the creation of the new Tees Valley Combined Authority, which commenced life in April 2016. Rob has a BA (Hons) Economics, and MA in Public Policy.

Outside of work, Rob’s passion is leading groups of people safely up and down the UK’s hills and mountains, helping people to overcome barriers, and experience the joy of personal achievement beyond what they thought possible.

Stephen Pearson (SWT Foundation Governor)

Stephen obtained a mathematics degree at the University of Durham, and was a Chartered Public Finance Accountant for most of his career.

After ten years’ experience with Cleveland County Treasurer’s Department, he worked for almost thirty years in senior management roles at Teesside University. Initially, in charge of the Finance Department, he moved into general management, in a series of roles including Director of Corporate Planning and, finally, Deputy University Secretary.

Outside of work, he has been a school governor and is currently a trustee of three other charities, including the Sir William Turner Foundation.

He is also a keen railway enthusiast and enjoys rail-based holidays in the UK and Europe.

Pat Rutherford

Pat, now retired, was previously Headteacher at Ryehills School. Pat was the first Head Teacher at the school which opened its doors to its first cohort of the comprehensive system in 1975 following a merger of two neighbouring schools, Redcar Lane Secondary Modern and Cleveland Grammar School for Girls.

Pat is the Lay Chair of the Deanery of Guisborough in the Diocese of York and is a member of the College Chaplaincy.

Dorothy Smith

Dot brings to the corporation over thirty years’ experience in the further education sector.  Her teaching career began in the 1980s and, over a period of sixteen years, she delivered Business Studies and Teacher Education courses in colleges in the North East and North Yorkshire. As Director of Curriculum and Assistant Principal Curriculum, she further pursued her commitment to supporting the development of skills training for young people and adults and for bringing together education and business in local and regional economies.

When the Learning and Skills Council was established in 2001 as a non-departmental public body responsible for the planning and funding of post-sixteen education and training Dot took on the role of Director of Learning, Planning & Performance in the LSC North East. She contributed to curriculum policy development nationally and was subsequently seconded to the Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF) to prepare for the transfer of LSC responsibilities to the Young People’s Learning Agency (YPLA) and the Skills Funding Agency (SFA).  She was Director of the YPLA in the North East and Director of its successor, the Education Funding Agency (EFA), in the north of England.

Dot left the EFA in 2013 to combine her twin passions of grandparent and education consultant.

Kath Taylor

Kath brings to the College a wealth of experience.  She was born in the South East, but over a number of years her family all migrated back to Teesside, her mother’s home. She returned over 30 years ago and her four children and six grandchildren aged 2 – 19 all regard Redcar as home.  Education is clearly a priority for her family.

Kath has had a varied career, from establishing a car hire outlet at Gatwick Airport to managing the office and life of a senior politician, the Late Member of Parliament for Redcar, Mo Mowlam. Her career started in Health both at “The Ministry” as it was back then and as an Institute of Medical Laboratory Technician in a large hospital. She has a particular interest in how people and organisations work together – or not – and how sometimes differing perspectives can influence relationships. Kath has an in-depth knowledge of the area, its problems and advantages – economic and demographic – and a valuable network of contacts, many established as the Director of Common Purpose, a Senior Leadership Programme working across the Northern Region. Kath has served on the Board of a Health Authority where she Chaired Audit and on the Board of a Primary Care Trust in Stockton. Kath was also a founding member of the Cleveland Community Foundation which was established by Enron Power when they first developed their power station on Teesside. Before joining the Board of Redcar and Cleveland College she was a member of the Cleveland College of Art Board. She was a founder Trustee of a social enterprise in the Esk Valley providing physical and social activities, domiciliary care and extra care flats in an isolated rural area.  For the last 16 years, she has been a partner in Shepherd Taylor Partnership, supporting change in complex organisations with particular expertise in the Health sector.

Dr Deborah Trebilco

After completing her Ph.D. in Chemistry, Debbie joined ICI at Wilton. Over the next 20 years she gained experience in research, energy purchasing, petrochemical marketing and site management. She spent several years in business development in Europe and Africa. Following a period on the Board of ICI Petrochemicals and as a non-executive director of Northumbrian Water, she moved to the USA. As President of an International Specialty Adhesives Company, Debbie traveled widely in America, Europe and Asia, especially China and Japan.  She was awarded Fellowship of the Royal Society of Chemistry for service to the Chemical Industry, and Fellowship of the Royal Society of Arts.  On the sale of the business, Debbie returned to the UK and, together with her husband, has dedicated her skills to developing community renewable energy projects and business mentoring, she is a Director of Community Energy England.

Alys Tregear (Support Staff Governor)

Alys is a BA (Hons) graduate in Media and Cultural Studies with Theatre Studies. She has experience of roles in curriculum and business support, including work within additional need and skills for life, student enrichment and learner voice, Student Services and most recently as Operations Director for Student Support at the College. She has responsibility for all support functions in the college such as learning support, learner progress, reception, marketing & recruitment, Student Services and the Learning Resource Centre. Alys is one of the deputy designated safeguarding officers at the college and has continued her studies achieving a PGCE in Post Compulsory Education, Qualified Careers Advisor and ILM Level 5 Diploma in Management.

Andrew Twineham

Andrew originates from North Yorkshire. His experience of Further Education began at a young age when he often accompanied his father during school holidays to Leeds College of Building where he (father not son) was a lecturer.

After a short spell as a medical student, Andrew transferred to law.  For nearly 25 years he practiced in the North East and nationally.  He represented and advised employers in the public and private sector on all aspects of employment law.

Colin Willis (Teaching Staff Governor)

Originally from Redcar, Colin attended the Sir William Turners Grammar School for Boys before joining the Royal Air Force. Colin was an Aircraft Engineering Technician with the RAF for 25 years before joining the College and gained vast experience of working around the world sometimes in perilous but always demanding conditions. During this time he rose to management positions and this culminated in the position of Engineering Operations Controller at RAF Leeming. Colin has been a member of staff at Redcar and Cleveland College since 2005 specialising in the delivery of Health and Safety programmes. These range from bespoke half-day courses to part-time degree level courses.  His qualifications include BA (Hons) in Education Studies; NEBOSH NATIONAL DIPLOMA (Level 6) in Occupational Health & Safety Practice; UCPDD Level 7 Assessing in Higher Education TAQA; Level 4 Internal Quality Assurance and City and Guilds A 1 NVQ Assessors.

In 2010 Colin was voted onto the Board of Trustees at National Examining Board in Occupational Safety and Health and was subsequently voted by the board to become Vice­ chair of the NEBOSH Qualifications and Technical Council (QTC). As a trustee, he provides the NEBOSH senior management with advice on what matters most to course providers. On the QTC he is involved in ensuring that all NEBOSH current qualifications and the development of new qualifications are fit for purpose.

John D Banks (Clerk to the Corporation)

John became Clerk for Redcar & Cleveland College at the end of January 2017.  He previously studied at Teesside University, qualified to teach and taught at Oaklands School in Middlesbrough but left teaching to join ICI as a Trainer Supervisor.

Following this, he worked in management of youth training at Middlesbrough Borough Council and for a Community Enterprise in East Cleveland.  He was awarded a Postgraduate Diploma in Management Studies from Teesside University and worked variously in management roles in funding programme delivery and economic policy at Redcar & Cleveland Council, Durham County Council and North Yorkshire County Council.

Outside of work he rides a vintage motorcycle around Europe and plays as much sport as possible. He is also Clerk to the Corporation at Bishop Auckland College in County Durham.

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