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Rebekah Iiyambo - CEO


As well as being CEO of Eko Trust, Rebekah is a National Leader of Education, providing high quality school improvement work.

Previously Rebekah has been a Headteacher, Co-headteacher, Deputy Headteacher, an advisor for Science, Early Years and English as an additional language in two Local Authorities before becoming a senior advisor for continuing professional development (CPD). This role included specific responsibility for developing leadership capacity across primary, secondary and special schools.  She has taught in schools in Britain and Namibia.      

Laura Hewer - Trust Leader of Education

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Laura has worked in East London for almost 30 years, and taught right across the primary age range prior to taking up her previous role of Headteacher of Earlham Primary School. She introduced synthetic phonics to her previous school when it was completely out of fashion, and has many years experience of implementing different versions of phonics programmes to achieve the best outcomes for pupils.

She is now a Trust Leader of Education.

Laura is an active member of several boards in the local education community covering a range of areas, including children’s mental health, behaviour and initial teacher education, and liaises with the LA on behalf of Newham heads.

Kai Muxlow - Chief Operating Officer


Working in Newham schools since 2014, following a senior management career in the media, Kai was involved in setting up the Eko Trust and utilises his 20 plus years of executive management experience to ensure that the Trust delivers highly efficient business and operations to support the teaching and learning within the schools.


Deborah Strain - Trust Leader of Education


Deborah is a Trust Leader of Education whose specialist interest is supporting teachers so all children have access to high quality learning experiences with excellent outcomes.

She has been a teacher since 1994, teaching in London and Cambridgeshire – with a claim to fame being the first Primary AST in Cambridgeshire back in 2001.

She has an absolute commitment to inclusion and leadership development.

Prior to her Deputy and Head posts she ran her own Primary Learning Support Unit for pupils with SEBD (as it was then).

Deborah facilitates on the NPQ courses with UCL/IoE.

Mehreen Ara - Director


Mehreen is a clinical hospital pharmacist and Master of Pharmacy.

She has represented pharmacy services to local college students interested in pursuing a degree in pharmacy, and undertaken undergraduate interview and examinations at the UCL School of Pharmacy.

Susan Hellman - Director


Director of UK Consultancy and Knowledge Transfer at the UCL Institute of Education. A wealth of experience within the education sector, supporting schools and developing CPD practice for teaching.

Philippa King - Chair of Directors


A Newham resident with 25 years' experience in voluntary sector fundraising and communications, with national, local and international charities.  Currently works as a freelance fundraiser and project manager on local projects, and studies part time.

Skills: Premises & Capital projects, Strategic planning, Data analysis, Communications, Community engagement, Fundraising, Marketing.

Carmen Rodney - Director


Worked as one of Her Majesty’s Inspectors (HMI) between 2004 and 2017. She is a qualified teacher.

Vast experience of inspecting mainstream schools, independent schools, including unregistered schools, Initial Teacher Education, special educational needs provision, children’s centres and local authority inspections. Led the annual performance management review of local authorities. The link HMI for several local authorities in London.

Extensive experience of working in the School Improvement Division (SID). Held regional responsibility for schools that were judged satisfactory. This included research, writing papers and leading seminars, ‘Getting to Good’.

Kishor Parulekar - Director


Kishor has 20 years of banking experience spanning Treasury, corporate banking, Financial control, Trade finance, Debt capital management and Balance sheet management. His roles involved risk management, regulatory project management and Controls.

He has worked extensively as project lead on regulatory projects working closely with FCA and PRA on key areas of treasury risk management.

Julian Robinson - Director


Previously the Chair of Governors at Earlham Primary School, with 27 years experience of governance in Newham.  Julian is Head of Estates at the London School of Economics.

Daulat Sen - Director

Daulat studied Aeronautical Engineering and became a software engineer in the Aerospace Industry. He has worked with technology and operating model design and management for a number of major organisations across energy, engineering, public sector and financial services for fifteen years. Currently, Daulat is with KPMG consulting where he is leading a large banking operating model transformation.

Christopher Owens - Member

Following a career in teaching, Father Owens served for 37 years as a Parish Priest in the Church of England and is a member of SEA.  He has 11 years  of school governance experience.

Natalie Gross - Member

Natalie is Managing Partner of one of the UK’s most respected digital agencies. Natalie is an industry spokesperson and mentor, with a specific focus on Digital Talent & Skills and Women in leadership.

She has extensive experience working on Mergers and Acquisitions, and  with start-ups.  She is a Fellow of the CIM and an advisor and Fellow of the WWF-UK.

Tony Oteh - Chair of Members

A long-standing member of both Kaizen and Eleanor Smith schools governing bodies; a member of the safeguarding panel for Newham; an advocate supporting families in need in Newham.

Alex Oma Pius - Member

Founder of IROKO Theatre-in-Education Company; 20 years’ experience providing practical creative arts activities in schools and higher institutions all over England;  Worked and continue to work as a Consultant for renowned British institutions like the BBC, the Royal Shakespeare Company, The Victoria & Albert Museum, Horniman Museum & Gardens, The British Museum and the Museum of London; Member of the Steering Committee of The British Museum Supplementary School Programme; Member of The British Museum’s Community Steering Group for Object Journeys.