Trust Board Biographies

Mr Will Hermon CEO

Will Hermon has been an education sector leader for the last twenty-five years, having qualified as a teacher in 1994. His career to date has included a number of successful Head and Executive Head positions in a wide range of primary settings across Devon and Cornwall, primarily these schools have had very high levels of PPG and SEND pupils. Whilst a Head teacher he led three very different schools to OFSTED judgements of outstanding or good with outstanding, the last being St Stephens Community School which received a grade of outstanding in all areas. During his ten years as founding CEO of An Daras, three schools who entered the Trust as requires improvement schools have successfully moved to secure OFSTED judgements of good. Mr Hermon leads the Trust School Improvement Team and is currently involved alongside the wider team in supporting improvement at Trusts and schools external to An Daras.

Mr Graeme Barriball

Graeme Barriball lives and works in the community, and has previous experience as a governor.

Mrs Claire Paul

I have been involved with governance at St Stephens since 2003 when my daughter joined the reception class. I was a parent governor for a number of years and remained a staff governor until 2013 when the An Daras Academy Trust was created. I was Chair of the Personnel committee at St Stephens for a number of years which allowed me to draw successfully on my previous experience as a senior manager in the pharmaceutical industry. I have worked at St Stephens as a volunteer and teaching assistant before being appointed in February 2012 as a dedicated Child Protection and Safeguarding Manager, a new role for the school and one that I have thoroughly enjoyed developing. It is a role I will be extending across the An Daras Trust this year. I was invited to become a staff director earlier in 2014 and I believe my previous management experience and commitment to supporting the needs of the whole child will help me to support and challenge the MAT as it works hard to achieve its shared vision.

Mr Peter Hague

I was employed by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) for thirty six and a half years.
For the first dozen or so years I had several posts; including central finance and central traffic prosecutions. In 1989 I was the first Administration Manager to work at Uxbridge division and when the division merged with the south of the borough to form a borough unit in 1992, I took up the role of Finance and Resources Manager for the borough. In 2009 the MPS started a process of centralisation and downsizing, and I moved to a central location as a Finance Manager, latterly having responsibility for the Royal Borough of Westminster and Royal Parks Police. I left on retirement in June 2013. I have experience in budgeting, forecasting and providing detailed management information, using MS Excel, Word and SAP (Business Intelligence) packages. In January 2015 I moved with my wife to Cornwall and we love the area. I joined Rotary last year and also work once a week in the Rotary shop in Launceston where a significant amount is raised for charity each year.

Mrs Gillian Shipsides

Foundation Director. My early career was as a teacher specialising in French and Art and Junior school teaching in Liverpool, Manchester, Oxfordshire and Worcestershire across a wide range of age groups, abilities and subjects. I also worked with children with Special Educational Needs and later studied dyslexia. After having a family, I returned to part-time teaching and later went into a Training role in business and then into IT Recruitment. I started my own headhunting business in 1990 working with major Blue Chip companies and qualified with an MA in European Human Resource Management and Development at Brunel University. In 2006 we moved to Cornwall.

My interests led me to work with the Hospices and Stratton Hospital as a ward volunteer and I have been Chair of Bude Fund Raising Group for Cornwall Hospice Care since 2008. I am also our church PCC secretary and in 2014, I founded Friends of St Gennys Church. I am also an AONB volunteer. My interests after family and friends are creative design, renovation projects, art, music, architecture, interiors, DIY and Gardening. I am also a beekeeper.

Mrs Margaret Savage

I began my teaching career in 1979. I have taught French and German to A Level in five 11-18 schools, including schools in Plymouth, Plympton and Tavistock, holding leadership positions in most of them. In 2001, I accepted a post as a school improvement adviser with Durham Local Education Authority which held Beacon Status for School Improvement. Whilst in this role, I trained as an Ofsted Inspector. In June 2011, I set up my own school improvement business. I relocated with my husband to Anglesey, North Wales in 2013. In 2016, we converted a stable into a farm shop and café. I retired in 2020 and relocated to Cornwall in 2022. I enjoy spending my leisure time with my husband and our two rescue dogs. From time to time, I carry out voluntary work for animal charities.

Mr Stephen Tavener (Chair)

Having originally trained as an Electrical Engineer, I have been in Project management roles throughout my career. I have been lucky enough to have worked for and been involved in many exciting projects. I worked for British Caledonian Airways and managed their property portfolio throughout their network. More recently I have been the Project Director on major projects in London, the East Midlands and a spell in the Middle East. All of which puts me in a good position to bring to the AnDaras MAT a wealth of senior management experience. I have recently moved to North Devon with my wife and we are thoroughly enjoying West Country life. Our children are all married and live in different parts of the country. I was involved with the primary school my boys attended and am very much looking forward to renewing my connection with the education sector and working with you all.

Mr Jonathan Sharpe

I started my career in banking and then moved into the education sector 20 years ago. Initially, a Business & Facilities Manager in a Secondary School, I then became a School Business Manager and, later, a Performance Manager at Devon local authority focussing on school places expansion and major improvements. More recently, I was involved in the setting up of a local SEN School. I have an in-depth knowledge of school finances, premises and management and have been a member of School Senior Leadership Teams. I have also run my own bookkeeping business for many years.

Mr Ian Wilkinson

As Chief Operating Officer (COO) for the FUJIFILM Ink Solutions Group, I lead an international team of 600 across multiple manufacturing sites in the USA, UK and India. I believe the real power of what we can achieve when people are supported to perform at their best and work in active collaboration with all stakeholders. A central part of this is investing in our people. I believe, as a father of five and an avid runner myself, that self-care is one of the absolute cornerstones of success both in our private and professional lives. My family and I have recently moved from Buckinghamshire to Cornwall (Bray Shop) and we are now undertaking a farmhouse renovation project. I am married to Jackie (a geography teacher) and in my spare time (aside from running) I’m a keen golfer and a ECB qualified cricket umpire.