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Governors' Biographies

Governors’ Biographies

Paul Burger (Chair of Governors)

Paul was appointed a Governor of the School in 2011 and was elected Chair of the Governing Body in 2012.  He is currently Chair of the Personnel Committee and is a member of the Finance & Audit and PR/Marketing Committees and the Fundraising Steering Group.

Paul's career spans more than 35 years working with music artists of very diverse backgrounds in a variety of locations.  Prior to founding his own company Paul spent 27 years in senior management positions with Sony Music International including serving as President, Europe, Middle East, and Africa (2000-03), as Chairman & CEO of Sony Music UK & Ireland (1993-2000); President Sony Music Canada (1989-1993); VP Marketing Sony Music Europe (1986-89). SohoArtists, founded in 2003, is a boutique artist management company focused largely on new and developing talent.  He works with one of the most important World Music artists of today, Yasmin Levy (Adama Music) and has done so since the launch of her international career.  Yasmin is a winner of the Anna Lindh Foundation Award for Cross-Cultural collaboration and has also won the USA Songwriting Competition for Best Song in the World Music category.

SohoArtists has recently begun working with Mercury Music Prize nominated (2012) folk artist Sam Lee.  Sam is a pioneer in the world of folk music, re-defining the sound and texture of songs he and his Nest Collective have researched over many years.  His band carve a new acoustic with their homemade and mongrelized instrumentation using unconventional and contemporary arrangements that challenge perceptions of how “traditional folk” should sound.

SohoArtists also works with singer-songwriter Karen Bishko and together they developed the concept of putting Karen’s enchanting pop tunes into the context of musical theater and film, projects she pursues from her New York City base.  Other clients include Ilham al-Madfai (EMI Arabia) who has headlined a BBC Late Night Proms at London’s Royal Albert Hall. In addition to artist management, SohoArtists runs a consultancy arm for artists, labels, retailers and others interested in engaging with the music industry.

Paul is also a Board Member of the Music Managers Forum (UK); was a long-time Director of The Brit Trust Ltd; and continues to serve as a Trustee of the University of Pennsylvania Foundation (UK) Ltd.  At the University of Pennsylvania, as well as in the UK for New York’s Metropolitan University, Paul gives occasional guest lectures on arts management.  

Chris Ancliff

Chris was appointed a Governor of the School in 2017.  He is also a member of the Governance and Finance & Audit Committees.

Chris qualified as a solicitor with Linklaters in 1991, and joined the record industry in 1993, where he has held a number of legal and business affairs positions in PolyGram, EMI and Warner Music.  He is currently Executive Vice-President – Eastern Europe, Middle East & Africa/General Counsel, International at Warner Music.

Chris is also a board director and member of the legal committee of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, a member of the Intellectual Property Committee of the CBI, a trustee of the EMI Archive Trust and a trustee director of the Warner Music UK Pension Scheme.    In addition Chris is a member of the advisory board of Revelator, an Israeli digital music analytics company.

Theresa Baker

Theresa was elected as a staff governor in 2014.  She is a member of the Finance & Audit Committee.

Theresa has been in teaching for 9 years, and has been Deputy Head of Maths at the School since August 2013.  Having studied Maths at Essex in the early 80s, Theresa entered the Actuarial profession in the Insurance Industry, before retraining as an accountant at Black and Decker.  Most of her career as an accountant took place in the Music Industry, working under the umbrella of Telstar Records. There she took on the responsibility for the Management Accounts for several of the Southern based subsidiaries such as Telstar Music Publishing, Full Force Promotions, Star Direct (telemarketing company) and Telstar Video and Interactive Entertainment.

Theresa has seen both of her children train at the BRIT School: her son Steve studied Theatre here and her daughter studied Technical Theatre in the sixth form.

David Carter

David was appointed a Governor of the School in 2010. He currently chairs the Finance & Audit Committee.

A Chartered Accountant by profession, David worked for ICI PLC for almost 30 years, latterly as global head of its Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A) team.  He has a rare talent for clear, illuminating communication, often distilled from the essence of dry and complex issues.  David was an Executive Director and Chief Financial Officer of ICI’s public company in India, and his non‐executive duties included acting as non-executive director of ICI’s three public companies in Pakistan and India, Chairmanship of the Audit Committees and membership of the Remuneration Committees.

David currently provides Strategy and M&A deal-specific consulting and advisory services to companies on either a project or retained basis.  Clients include a North American animal health technology company.  He is a shareholder in and an advisor to a London-based Life Sciences consulting company.

David is also on the Boards of the Almeida Theatre and Kingston University, part of a portfolio of non-executive roles.

Sarah Castle

Sarah was elected as a parent governor in 2015.  She is a member of the Finance & Audit Committee.

Sarah consults on public health and educational issues for organisations such as Save the Children and UNICEF and has worked in many different counties around the world on projects, including those funded by the UK Government’s Department for International Development. She is also an Honorary Board Member (Parent Representative) of “Dyslexia International”.

She is particularly keen to use her skills to help the School actively capitalise upon students’ creativity and rich background experiences to make individual as well as collective hopes and aspirations become a reality and to ensure ongoing accountably and equity of opportunity in the daily aspects of school life.  

Jo Charrington

Jo was appointed a Governor of the School on 1 January 2016 as a member of the Personnel Committee and the Marketing/PR Committee.

Currently Executive Vice President of A&R at Capitol Records, Jo started her career in music in 1992 as a marketing assistant at London Records and moved into A&R following five years of managing RnB boyband Another Level. The artists Jo has signed and A&R’d include: Big Brovaz, Charlotte Church, Imogen Heap, Lemar, Mylo, The Priests, Scouting for Girls, JLS, Aloe Blacc, Olly Murs, Paloma Faith and most recently, 5 Seconds of Summer and GRAMMY® winner, Sam Smith.   

Jo was recently invited to take part in a mentoring scheme set up by Marie Claire magazine to inspire and educate the future generation of the music industry. She was also named as 2015’s Business Woman of the Year by industry magazine Music Week.

Madelaine Cooper

Madelaine was appointed a Governor of the School on 8 December 2015 having previously been elected a Parent Governor of the School in 2013.  She is a member of the PR/Marketing and Governance Committees. 

Madelaine is a talent broker specialising in the creative industries sector.  Clients include many large and small branding and communications agencies in the UK and beyond as well as commercial companies such as University of the South Bank, Capita, Citibank, Balfour Beatty, Waitrose, Philips, Sainsburys, ITV and Dyson with whom she has worked on the development and growth of their own internal creative and innovation teams. 

Madelaine is often asked to participate in Career Forums and to provide coaching to individuals as well as to companies.  She specialises in working with creative people to help them present themselves in an effective and relevant way.

Seeing changing business needs, Madelaine has now created Strategic Design Resourcing with two partners to respond to the need for service designers who can deliver effective responses in the overlap between technology, creativity and end user needs. 

Prior to creating MCV Recruitment in 1995, she worked in various sectors of the branding, communications and creative industries in the UK and New York.

She is married with one son who attended The BRIT School until recently. 

Maggie Crowe OBE

Maggie was appointed a Governor of the School in 2007 and has served as a Governor since that time.  She is a member of the PR/Marketing, Curriculum & Student Welfare and Personnel Committees and leads on safeguarding issues on the Governing Body.

Growing up and then marrying locally, Maggie is at home around Selhurst and Croydon.

Maggie’s role as Director of Events and Charities for The BPI (the trade association for the British record industry) is crucial for the School as any funds raised for their annual BRIT Awards show, BRITs Classics and BRITs Icons are donated to the BRIT Trust. The BRIT Trust is the major co-sponsor along with the DfE that built and conceived The BRIT School.

From her first job in the music industry working in Croydon for Steve Mason (Windsong Record Exports) to now - her passion for music and more importantly for The BRIT School is extraordinary.

Marianne Cwynarski

Marianne was elected a Parent Governor in 2017 and is a member of the Curriculum & Student Welfare Committee.

She is an experienced parent governor and has served as a school governor at a primary school and a secondary school, for nearly seven years, prior to becoming a Parent Governor at the Brit School.  Her particular areas of interest are special education needs, diversity and inclusion activities and proactive communications to parents.

Career-wise Marianne worked in the field of communications for over 25 years, leading on internal communications in a number of organisations. She started working at the House of Commons 15 years ago and led their internal communications function for the best part of that time.  However, in the last couple of years she has changed direction and is now the Head of the Governance Office.  A few years ago she established a Parliamentary network to provide a platform for under-represented ethnic minority staff to find support and where wider equality objectives could be progressed.  She was the first minority ethnic woman to be appointed to the House of Commons Management Board. 

Outside work Marianne volunteers at her local branch of Save the Children every Sunday. 

Her son studies dance at The BRIT School and is in year 10.


John Deacon CBE

John chaired the Supervisory Committee of the School during the planning period, and has been a Director of the company which runs the School since 1989 and a Governor since the School opened in September 1991.  His determination and wise guidance were crucial in the development and establishment of the School.  In 1991 he was appointed Vice-Chair of Governors, taking over as Chair of Governors in 2001, a post he held until he retired in 2012.  John continues to serve on the Principal’s Performance Management Committee.

John brings a huge wealth of experience and knowledge of the music industry. He joined Philips Records UK as a Management Trainee in 1960 and went on to become Commercial Planning Manager in 1965. Four years later he joined the fledgling A&M Records as General Manager, opening their London operation in April 1969. John stayed with them for ten years during which time the company grew from a staff of four to over 70 and he became Commercial Director in 1974. Elected as a founder member of the Council of the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) in 1971, John served as a Director until 1979. He was then appointed Director General, a position which he held until retiring in 2000.

John has also served as a board member for numerous organisations including Phonographic Performance Limited (PPL), the Advisory Committee of the National Sound Archive; the BRIT Trust (where he served as chairman and is still a Trustee); and the City Technology Colleges Trust (later to become the Specialist Schools and Academies Trust).

In recognition of his innumerable talents, John became the first recipient of the British Record Industry Award in 1992. He later received the ‘Music Week’ Award for Outstanding Contribution to British Music in 1999 and a CBE in 1999 for Services to the British Music Industry.

John is married with a daughter and a son.

Angela Ferreira

Angela was appointed a Governor of the School on 8 December 2015.  She is a member of the Governance and Principal’s Performance Management Committees, and she is affiliated to the Film & Media Production department in the School.

Angela is an experienced television producer and commissioner who has worked across the entire spectrum of television production: as a researcher, BBC Drama script editor, single and live multi-camera director, producer and executive producer. She has worked on entertainment and educational programmes; with celebrities and the public; with children, animals and puppets; on location, in the studio and at big live events. She also works with corporate clients on events, promotional films and consultation.

Angela teaches at the National Film and Television School where she also sits on the TV Advisory Panel.  She is also on the Executive Committee of The Children’s Media Foundation (CMF), on the Diversity Committee of the Royal Television Society (RTS), is a youth mentor and media trainer. She also produces events and sessions for the RTS and CMF and Children’s Media Conference in a voluntary capacity.

Martin Locket

Martin was appointed a Governor of the School on 1 January 2016.  He is a member of the Finance & Audit and Governance Committees, and he is affiliated to the Technical Arts department in the School.

Martin is an experienced company director and businessman, having made his career within businesses supplying equipment and technical services to the entertainment industry.  He is currently a director of TSL Lighting Ltd (which supplies lighting and rigging equipment to the concert touring, corporate production, theatre and special events markets) and Visible Spectrum Europe Ltd (a consultancy to the technical production industry).  Between 2008 and 2013 he was CEO of Production Resource Group (UK) Ltd, the world’s leading supplier of entertainment and event technology.

Martin also undertakes regular tutoring and mentoring roles at a number of universities and colleges focussed on the technical production industry, offering support to both the courses and individual students requiring relevant coaching and assistance. His focus is on introducing the concept of commercial thinking to students who are primarily practical or creative. 

Amanda Luis

Amanda was elected as a staff governor in September 2016.  She is a member of the Governance and PR/Marketing Committees.  She is also on the Fundraising Steering Group in the course of her job at the School.

Prior to achieving a BA in Dance Practice, MA in Arts Administration & Cultural Policy and working as an Events Manager for a corporate company in the City, Amanda was a dance student at the School for both Key Stage 4 and Post-16. Since returning to the School, Amanda administers the BRIT Silver Campaign, the School’s first fundraising initiative. 

Amanda mentors Key Stage 4 students, liaises with current parents on the BRIT Silver Campaign and is an enthusiastic member of the staff running club.

Prof Sally Mackey

Sally was appointed a Governor of the School in 2007.  She is currently a member of the Curriculum & Student Welfare Committee.

Sally is Professor in Applied Theatre and Performance at Central School of Speech & Drama, having started teaching at Central in 1992 as a drama education specialist.  She introduced ‘applied theatre’ to Central and still teaches predominantly in that field.  As Pro Dean (Programmes), Sally assists in managing staff and the programmes of Central, from admissions to completion.

An external examiner up to PhD level at several universities, Sally is a member of the Arts and Humanities Research Council’s (AHRC) college of peer reviewers and was on the AHRC Commissioning Panel for the Landscape and Environment theme, 2005-2006, and Researching Environmental Change, 2010. 

Sally is co-author of Drama and Theatre Studies and editor/author of Practical Theatre.  She is on the Editorial Board of RiDE: the Journal of Applied Theatre and Performance.

Dej Mahoney

Dej was appointed a Governor of the School in 2011. He is currently a member of the Curriculum & Student Welfare and Governance Committees.

Dej is a founding director of All Our Business Ltd (AOB), a boutique legal and business consultancy in the entertainment, sport, fashion and leisure sectors. The company offers a suite of services which include legal and commercial representation, business management and brokering. AOB is also used as a vehicle for the development of the directors’ own media-related ventures. Through AOB's activities in event production, Dej became a founding director of World Freerun Ents, the company which stages the World Freerun Championships in iconic city locations, with multimedia international distribution. His latest, major project is in the role of lead producer of the new musical drama, I DREAM, based on the life of Martin Luther King Jr., which was recognised as the “Outstanding World Premiere of a Play or a Musical” after opening in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

During his earlier, thirteen-year career at Sony Music UK, Dej was VP of Business Affairs and New Media Development, reporting to the Chairman. In addition to his primary responsibility for contractual dealings with Sony's artistes, his portfolio included strategic management and the distribution of music in TV, film and digital media. In his strategic role, he was a founding member of Sony's (Intercompany) Synergy Committee and represented Sony Music at the Music Industry Forum, chaired by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.

For several years, Dej was a visiting lecturer on the Commercial Music degree course at the University of Westminster and was Secretary of the UK Arts Council's A & C Music Circuit. He is a contributing author of Digitisation and the Music Industry (International Association of Entertainment Lawyers) and became a Member of the Mayor's Creative Commission for London in 2002. Dej is a non-executive director of Virtual Track Software (a digital rights management agency) and is also a Council Member and Trustee of the Royal Medical Foundation of Epsom College.

Dej is a graduate in law from Cambridge University and was called to the Bar of England and Wales as a Harmsworth Award winner.

Sylvia McNamara

Sylvia was appointed a Governor of the School in 2012.  She is currently a member of the Curriculum & Student Welfare Committee.

Sylvia taught in Loughborough and Leicester before becoming a lecturer and reader in special needs education with the University of Leicester and Nottingham Trent University respectively.  She then worked in Birmingham’s Advisory Support Service, where she became Head of School Effectiveness.  She was promoted to Director of Transforming Education and Director of Education for Birmingham City Council, in which capacity she was instrumental in ensuring the Birmingham BSF Programme would deliver education transformation. 

In the following two years Sylvia worked as a strategic Director with the Qualifications and Curriculum Development Agency.  She came to Croydon Council in April 2012 to take up the post of Director of Learning, School Improvement and Inclusion.  In this role she carries out the functions of Director of Education for all Croydon Local Authority schools as well as being accountable for special needs provision and schools admissions estates.

Jonathan Morrish

Jonathan was appointed a Governor of the School in 2001 and he is Chair of the PR/Marketing Committee and a member of the Fundraising Steering Group.

A long-time veteran in the music industry Jonathan consults for a number of companies on PR issues including, amongst others, PPL, the music licensing company that licenses music for broadcast, online and public performance use on behalf of record companies and performers, where he was previously Director of PR and Corporate Communications for eight years, and PRS for Music who license on behalf of songwriters, composers and music publishers.

Prior to joining PPL in 2006, Jonathan spent three years at the PR agency, The Outside Organisation, as Head of Corporate  PR working with a wide range of clients including companies, executives and entertainers. Previously he had a long career at Sony Music Entertainment, formerly known as CBS Records, in a variety of PR roles and worked closely with many of the company's artists as well as on many corporate issues.

He started in the music industry as a freelance music writer in the seventies contributing to a number of different publications. Besides being a governor of The BRIT School he is also a trustee of the BRIT Trust and also a Director at Help Musicians UK.

Simon Presswell

Simon was appointed a Governor of the School in 2014 whilst also a member of the BRIT Trust. He is currently a member of the Marketing/PR Committee and the Fundraising Steering Group.

Simon started his career in retail before finding his interest as a "corporate entrepreneur" who has led a number of businesses through significant chapters of innovation and entrepreneurship. He helped build from the retail origins of the company, before joining as Commercial Director that saw the company float of the stock market before being delisted and sold. Latterly Simon became Managing Director of Universal Studios and went on the develop the company's International TV operation before joining Livenation at the Managing Director of Ticketmaster.  

Simon has a keen international interest in business and delivers regular guest lectures at Henley Business School in both South Africa and the UK on innovation and disruption in the digital age. He also works with a number of Private Equity firms to create value across their portfolio of multinational businesses and is often a commentator on key industry developments.       

Geoff Taylor

Geoff was appointed a Governor of the School in 2007.

Geoff Taylor is the BPI’s Chief Executive. He is a Director of the Official Charts Company and BRIT Awards Limited (which stages the annual BRIT Awards show).

Before joining the BPI in February 2007, Geoff was General Counsel and Executive Vice-President at the international record industry association, IFPI. He practised EU and competition law at the US law firm Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering and has an Honours Degree in Law & French from Sussex University and a Postgraduate Diploma in EU law from the College of Europe in Bruges.

Geoff is a lifetime music fan who attended a music school from the age of 7 and ran a recording studio during University. He’s now committed to making sure that the many talented people who work in music have a chance to succeed.

Horace Trubridge

Horace was appointed a Governor of the School in 2015.  He is currently a member of the Personnel Committee.

Horace played clarinet and saxophone semi-professionally from the age of 14.  He was a founder member of the band DARTS at the age of 18 and signed an independent record contract a year later. Between 1976 and 1981 DARTS toured internationally and enjoyed considerable chart success including a number of UK top 10 singles, 3 gold albums and a platinum album. Horace wrote many songs for the band including the top ten hit “Get It”. DARTS musically directed and starred in the hit West End musical “Yakety Yak” in 1982.

During the 1980’s Horace worked extensively as a session musician performing on many major label releases. He changed tack in the late 80’s and became a band manager and promoter, promoting the ICA Rock Weeks.

Horace started work for the British Musicians’ Union (BMU)  as Music Business Advisor in 1990. He was appointed London Official for the Musicians’ Union in 1997, and Assistant General Secretary in 2003 overseeing the work of the union’s national officials in all areas of the industry.

Representing the BMU on the executive committee of the International Federation of Musicians (FIM), Horace is also a professor of the Royal Society of Musicians and has an honorary diploma in teaching from Rockschool Ltd.

Tony Wadsworth CBE

Tony was appointed a Governor of the School in 2011.  He currently chairs the Principal’s Performance Management Committee.

Tony Wadsworth CBE was Chairman and CEO of EMI Music UK & Ireland from 1998 to 2008.

In a 26 year career with the UK based company, he held many roles including Managing Director of the Parlophone label, a label which he relaunched in the 1990’s achieving sustained hits with artists such as Blur, Radiohead, Crowded House, Pet Shop Boys, Tina Turner and Queen.

His subsequent move to running all of EMI’s UK labels saw a period of global success with artists such as Robbie Williams, Coldplay, Kylie Minogue, Lily Allen, Gorillaz, the Rolling Stones and the Beatles and many others.

Prior to joining EMI, Tony gained a degree in Economics from Newcastle University and spent the following 3 years playing in a band with his college friends. He later worked for various record labels before joining EMI.

In December 2014, after seven years in post, Tony stepped down as Chairman of the BPI, the representative body of the UK recorded music industry and Chairman of BRIT Awards Ltd, but remains a Trustee of the BRIT Trust charity and Governor of the Brit School .

He is also Chairman of Julie’s Bicycle, the leading global charity bridging the gap between environmental sustainability and the creative industries.

He is a Trustee of the EMI Music Sound Foundation, a charity devoted to improving young people’s access to music education and a Trustee of the EMI Archive Trust.

He is a non-executive board director of BIMM, the market leader in popular music higher education, and has commercial interests ranging from ethical ticketing to a vinyl record store.

Tony has an Honorary Doctorate in Music from the University of Gloucestershire and holds the post of Visiting Professor in the music and business schools of the University of Newcastle-on-Tyne.

In March 2008, he was awarded the prestigious Music Week Strat award for outstanding contribution to the UK music industry and in 2009 was awarded the Scott Piering Award by the Radio Academy to recognise outstanding contribution to music radio.

In June 2011, he was awarded a CBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for his services to the UK music industry.

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