Governing Board

Our Governors support our continued development, and are passionate about helping us to achieve our vision of an outstanding education to young people. They provide a wealth of skills to help us develop and growth To read more about each of our Governors and their backgrounds, please see the information below. Please click here for a list of our committee’s. Our Chair of Governors is Mr John Hanson and Vice Chair of Governors is Reverend Tim Stevens. To download information regarding Governor Declaration of Interests and attendance at meetings, please click here

John A. Hanson  JP, MEd., MSB, CBiol. (Chair of Governors)

Having worked as a teacher in a number of schools and as an Advisory Teacher for Wakefield authority, I have first-hand experience of the difference positive and challenging learning opportunities can make to young people. I retired from full-time teaching in 2004 and since that time I have worked in teacher training and have become a national leader in governance. I retired as a magistrate and family court judge in 2018 and since then I have expanded my work in school governance. I passionately believe that access to the right education sets a young person on the correct path for life. With experience of training teachers, I am particularly interested in how Cathedral Academy can attract the very best staff in order to ensure the best possible education for learners. I am the PCC secretary of a local Church, lay chair of the Wakefield Deanery and a member of the Diocesan Synod. As a committed Christian I also enjoy seeing how the values of the academy are supporting young people in developing the right outlook and attitude for life.

My interest and passion for education is reflected in my role as a national leader in governance and I am also Chair of Governors for three Church schools and two local authority schools in the Wakefield district.

Shabana Ali

Coming soon

Lou O’Brien (Parent Governor)

As parent and education professional, I bring the views of both parties to the group. I have been in teaching since 1979, and my roles have included senior leadership, headteacher, Local Authority mathematics consultant adviser and school improvement adviser.  I now run my own education consultancy business.

Although all my experience has been in primary education, I have two older step-children and a teenage son so know some of the challenges that secondary education faces for both staff and youngsters alike! I am determined to offer my experiences as a parent and from the education sector to ensure that Cathedral Academy can provide the very best experience for all students.

richard-foxRichard Fox

With a military background, I developed a passion for teaching and supporting troops ready for operations overseas.  When my full time military career came to an end, I decided to look into working in the civilian education and training sector. Where I’ve had both delivery and managerial roles, working mostly with children and young people but also adults.

Having specialist responsibilities on the Governing board for Safeguarding, I take this very seriously and firmly believe everyone should work hard to ensure children and young people are kept safe from any form of harm.

Being a qualified and current Designated Safeguarding Leader and also the Safeguarding Governor for a number of years now. This has helped me gain a very firm grasp of the safeguarding requirements needed at Cathedral Academy at both a ground and also strategic level.

As well as being the Safeguarding Governor, I’m also involved in other important matters with regards to the development and success of the school. I have thoroughly enjoyed this role over the last few years and there’s a fantastic team of professionals working at Cathedral Academy who have done wonders for the school.

shelagh-wingShelagh Wing

My background is in Education, Art and Enterprise in particular, having taught Art in the South Yorkshire area for many years. Currently I am a senior GCSE examiner for one of the examination boards, training teachers how to mark their students work, overseeing a team of moderators and visiting a number of schools of my own each June to moderate their GCSE Art work all helping to keep me up to date with secondary education. I am also an active member of the congregation at Wakefield Cathedral, and have been part of this for over 20 years. I am currently a member of the Cathedral Chapter, a role I find especially rewarding during our exciting times of change in the cathedral as we undertake Project 2015 having recently completed Project 2013. Outside of work and other interests, I am a ‘paper sculptor’, creating figures from white cartridge paper in sizes ranging from 30cms up to life size. I also lead workshops.

Sarah Trout (Staff Governor)

I am the Transition Mentor at Cathedral Academy and I have been involved with the governing body for six years.  I decided to become a staff governor because I wanted to become actively involved in improving the academy l and helping with its development. I ran my own business before I came to work at the school and I am actively involved with the running of a local rugby club.

Rev’d Tim Stevens

I am a Curate at Wakefield Cathedral, continuing a life of training as a Church of England Priest. My past life has been one of retail experience, working as a Store Manager for two major Supermarket chains, and in later days as a Project Manager in the Head Office of Asda.  I have experience of financial control, personnel management and business change, both in management and in planning and execution. My family and I moved to Wakefield from Leeds in the Summer of 2016 to take up my position at the Cathedral, and are keen that we are integrated into the life of the city.  My son attends Wakefield Methodist School, one of Cathedral Academy’s feeder schools, which gives me another interest in the future of Cathedral Academy. I also work with the Chaplain at Cathedral Academy, supporting the well-being and pastoral care of the students and staff.

My working life has been within the electronics assembly industry in European sales and marketing management. 

After serious illness in 2009 I completed an MBA at Sheffield Business School and decided to offer myself as a volunteer in areas that I felt passionate about and where I could make a positive impact.  

My daughter is a pupil in CAPA Juniors and I want to ensure that she and all of our children are taught in a safe and happy school that challenges them to exceed their potential. It is essential that the Cathedral Academy board of governors have a clear understanding of what it is like to be a parent or guardian at our school and I am delighted to do this as your parent governor. 

Heather David

My involvement as a Governor came about as a result of an appeal for interested parties after a service I attended at Wakefield Cathedral and I thought about what I could offer the Board by way of expertise.  My husband and I owned and ran a well respected domiciliary care business in Wakefield until we sold it in 2015, so I have experience in many fields to do with business, including finance, budgets, HR and, because of the nature of our business, safeguarding the vulnerable.  I sat on the Wakefield and District Safeguarding Adults Board from 2007 to 2016 as the independent sector representative which kindled in me a desire to protect the vulnerable, no matter what age.   I became a Governor in 2015 and was a member of the Finance and Personnel Committee and  was also the Governor with responsibility for safeguarding. I stepped down for eighteen months to enable me to move to York to care for my mother in the last months of her life.  I was invited to re-join the Board in January 2018 on my return to the Wakefield area and am really looking forward to doing my bit to help Cathedral Academy continue to move forward into a bright and stable future.