Finance Committee

Jonathan Brake
Finance Committee from July 2017 to present

Jonathan is a Principal Rolling Stock Consultant at Birmingham’s Mott MacDonald Ltd. – global management, engineering and development consultants. He is also the former Chair of Governors for the ATLP’s Hill West Primary School. He was also a Governor (2005-9) and then Chair of Governors (2009-2013) at the ATLP’s Hill West Primary School.

His projects have included: reviewing the ability of East African railways to be upgraded to handle a potential significant oil traffic; undertaking a study of the ability of Ghana Railways to carry gold ore for a prospective mine; independent checking engineer for monorail trains in Kuala Lumpur; rolling stock and operations lead for the development work for a new heavy haul coal railway in Mozambique; studying a failed introduction of a new train in the Netherlands; engineering manager for the development of a heavy haul freight railway in West Africa.

Richard Gill
Finance Committee from July 2017 to present

Qualifications: BMus, University of Huddersfield; Degree (APEL) University of Roehampton; CfBT, Graduate Teacher Programme; NPQH, National College of School Leadership

A National Leader of Education, Richard is the Teaching Schools Council member for the West Midlands. He also represents Sutton Coldfield on the management board of the Birmingham Education Partnership (BEP).

Richard joined the outstanding Arthur Terry School in 2010 as deputy headteacher, before being appointed joint headteacher in the same year. In 2011 Richard led on the successful application to become one of the first 100 teaching schools in the country.

Before joining Arthur Terry, Richard helped to shape young lives across Staffordshire.
After spending a year at Sir Blessed William Howard School, Richard joined the Friary School, Lichfield, as a teacher of Performing Arts, progressing to head of year and head of alternative curriculum, before devising, coordinating and leading a vocational programme for excluded, disadvantaged and disapplied students.

As assistant headteacher at Chase Terrace Technology College, Richard played a major role in the 14-19 agenda across Staffordshire,

After graduating, Richard worked as a peripatetic music teacher and as a freelance musician, performing in a number of nationally acclaimed brass ensembles, orchestras and professional theatre.
He then became a full time teacher for Staffordshire Music Service, eventually becoming an area manager.

Tim Sewell
Finance Committee from March 2018 to present

Qualifications: BA (Hons) Public Administration, Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Housing

Tim is a Managing Consultant at Sewell & Wood Recruitment & Consultancy. He has extensive experience in governance in the semi-public sector and of operating in the private sector, with a longstanding track record of running multi-million pound turnover and investment organisations. Tim has held many board positions, including Chair of the Birmingham Social Housing Partnership. His professional positions in social housing organisations include 11 years as Chief Executive of the Family Housing Association (Birmingham) and Group Corporate Services Director of the Anglia Housing Group, Norwich. He brings more than 10 years of School Governor experience.

Brian Cookson
Finance Committee from July 2018 to present

Brian has continuously taught in secondary schools since qualifying in 1973. Although qualifying in Humanities, he developed and taught pre-vocational programmes and was a vocational programme assessor. Together with a colleague, he developed, promoted, taught and became Director of what became a nationally acclaimed 16-19 programme known as TOPS for students who otherwise may have left education with few qualifications.

Brian undertook work in research into the development of pre-vocational education at Warwick and Keele Universities. He has maintained this firm interest and recently completed a 6 year period working with the European Commission ET 2020 Group in Brussels with specific remits in Entrepreneurship Education and Transversal Skills.

Brian has a strong trade union background. Following on from local union roles, he has been a member of the NASUWT National Executive for 20 years.
Brian is still a member of the TUC General Council. He was also Lay Auditor, responsible for auditing the work commissioned by the European Commission, for 8 years for the ETUCE representing education trade union members across Europe and based in Brussels.

Brian has been a member of the England and Wales Teachers’ Pension Advisory Board and the Scottish equivalent. He remains a member of the Scottish Teachers’ Pension Board. He has also been Chair of Trustees of a private pension scheme since 2009.
He is passionate about education, teaching and working with young people.