Meet Katie Booth, Managing Director

Katie leads AccessEd and has been with the organisation since 2018.Katie was the former Head of Strategy and Planning at The Challenge, the UK's largest social integration and social mobility charity. Before that, Katie worked as a senior management consultant at PwC specialising in International Development, working on former global DFID and FCO programmes specialising in education and climate change. Katie has experience working as a teacher in Colombia, India, and China, and as a Manager at a fast-growing technology start-up. Katie is a secondary school designated SEND governor at Kingsley Academy, Hounslow, and is a Non-Executive Director overseeing strategy and business development on the Board of healthandwork.org.

Dr Nicola Vermooten, Programmes Lead

Nicola is a registered Industrial Psychologist, who completed her PhD in Industrial Psychology at Stellenbosch University in 2018. Her doctoral study was focussed on investigating variance in employee engagement among Teachers in South Africa. While completing her PhD, Nicola worked as a Tutor of the AccessEd ZA programme. In 2020, she volunteered as the In-Country Support Lead of the AccessEd ZA programme. She is currently working as a Project Officer. Prior to her involvement with AccessEd, she gained experience in the education sector in South Africa and in South Korea.

Meet our team

Learn more about our wonderful global staff, board of trustees and network members!

Katie Booth
Katie Booth
Managing Director
-
London

Katie leads AccessEd. Katie worked as Head of Strategy and Planning at The Challenge, the UK's largest social integration charity. Katie also worked as a senior management consultant at PwC specialising in FCDO International Development programmes. Katie has worked as a teacher in Colombia, India, and China, and as a Manager at a fast-growing technology start-up. Katie is a secondary school designated SEND governor at Kingsley Academy, Hounslow.

Nicola Vermooten
Nicola Vermooten
Programmes Lead
-
South Africa

Nicola is a registered Industrial Psychologist, who completed her PhD in Industrial Psychology at Stellenbosch University in 2018. Her doctoral study was focussed on investigating variance in employee engagement among Teachers in South Africa. While completing her PhD, Nicola worked as a Tutor of the AccessEd ZA programme. Prior to her involvement with AccessEd, she gained experience in the education sector in South Africa and in South Korea.

Anuj Dhanak
Anuj Dhanak
Partnerships & Innovation Manager
-
London

Anuj has extensive experience in raising funds through forming long term partnerships. Anuj was previously a Senior Partnerships Manager at Future Frontiers, a successful UK education charity specialising in supporting young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to enter high quality Post-16 destinations. Anuj has a small social enterprise himself called Booni Box and works with Business in the Community, Ealing Council and the Business Improvement Districts (BID).

Nataliia Zablotska
Nataliia Zablotska
Team Coordinator
-
London

Nataliia has 5 years of administrative and project management experience assisting international organisations in dealing with a variety of issues. Prior to joining AccessEd NGO, Nataliia worked at the International Committee of the Red Cross and CRDF Global, where she implemented technical and educational projects. Nataliia holds a master’s degree in Business Economics and Analytics.

Oviemuno Okie
Oviemuno Okie
Administrator
-
London

Ovie is an expert Salesforce Administrator and Business Analyst with a successful history in Banking, Financial Services, Education, Health, and not-for-profit sectors delivering software and non-software applications. He has worked at Democracy Lab, Helpful Engineering, Alexandra Maclean and Access Bank Plc. He has worked as a Customer Success Manager and Business Advisor.

Swathi Kumar
Swathi Kumar
Projects Consultant
-
London

Swathi is a PhD candidate at Birkbeck, investigating the pathogenesis of the Kaposi Sarcoma-associated Herpes Virus. She has an MRes in Cancer Biology from Imperial College. Swathi has experience teaching and tutoring, and she is a science writer for the Science Entrepreneur Club. Prior to her role at AccessEd, Swathi has worked with other education charities in the UK and India.

Philippa Machin
Philippa Machin
Governance Manager
-
UK

Philippa works as our Governance Manager part-time, supporting governance, Board and operational work at AccessEd and ensuring compliance. Philippa has a PhD at the Department of Global Health & Social Medicine. Prior, Philippa completed a MSc in Global Health and Social Justice (with distinction) from King's. She also holds a BA in Politics from the University of Sheffield.

Dr Richard Branch
Dr Richard Branch
Curriculum Advisor
-
UK

Richard joined AccessEd in 2018 as Curriculum Manager and now advises on curriculum programming for maximum student subject impact. Before joining the organisation he was a physics teacher on the Researchers in Schools programme at Lampton School in west London, where he continues teaching three days a week. Prior to training on the programme, he was a postdoctoral research fellow in biophysics at Harvard University.

Dr Chi Chi Huang
Dr Chi Chi Huang
Hong Kong Scholars Founder
-
Hong Kong

Chi Chi joined Hong Kong Scholars in 2018 as Programme Manager now undertaking a research fellowship at the University of Strathclyde. She led on the delivery and growth of a new university access programme in Hong Kong. Chi Chi completed her BA at the University of Sydney, her MPhil at the University of Cambridge and her PhD in History at the University of Hong Kong. She has led Hong Kong Scholars since 2017 and now advises their delivery team.

Dr Goitseone Lucy Hopkins
Dr Goitseone Lucy Hopkins
Founder and Head of Botswana Scholars
-
Botswana

Lucy completed her PhD at the School of Medicine, Cardiff University, after completing her BSc, MSc and PGC-THE in the UK. She also studied at the University of Botswana where she won a scholarship to study abroad. She was an Associate tutor at Cardiff Metropolitan University. In 2016, Lucy became one of The Brilliant Club’s first PhD tutors to work in Wales. She has led Botswana Scholars since 2018.

Meet our trustees

Learn more about our wonderful global trustees.

Dr Rajbir Hazelwood
Dr Rajbir Hazelwood
Co-Founder and Co-Chair of the Board of Trustees
-

Rajbir completed her PhD on decolonization at Washington University in St. Louis and was Assistant Professor of Modern British History at Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville. After 10 years in academia, Rajbir joined The Brilliant Club as Regional Manager. She then joined AccessEd as a co-founder in 2016. Rajbir is currently Head of Student Outcomes in the Social Mobility and Student Success at King’s College London.

Anna Machin
Anna Machin
Co-Chair of the Board of Trustees
-
London

Anna is a chartered secretary and for the past six years worked as Deputy Company Secretary & Governance Manager at international education charity Ark. Anna now delivers advisory support to a range of charities and academy trusts and performs the role of governance professional for several public sector organisations. Anna is Co-Founder of Trust Governance Professionals and a Governor of Ark Globe Academy in Elephant and Castle.

John Schless
John Schless
Trustee
-
London

John is the Head of Student Experience at the Royal College of Art. Formerly, John was the Chief Executive of Greenwich Students’ Union (GSU). John led the organisation through a transformation over the past 7 years, with extensive experience across the university and partnerships sector winning multiple awards. Prior joining GSU, John was Director of Fundraising and Marketing at Get Connected (now The Mix) and led the organisation through a merger with YouthNet to form a new organisation. John was awarded the ACEVO Fellowship in 2017, which recognises the achievements and hard work of civil society leaders.

Louise Banahene
Louise Banahene
Trustee
-
London

Louise Banahene is the Director of Educational Engagement at the University of Leeds. She is also the strategic lead for the Go Higher West Yorkshire partnership – a collaboration between thirteen higher education providers across the region working together to develop higher level skills provision, outreach to widen access/target under-represented groups and new programme development. She has served as elected Chair of the Russell Group Widening Participation association. Louise also held a senior role at the University of Salford. In 2017 she was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for services to higher education.

Nicole Kearse
Nicole Kearse
Trustee
-
London

Nicole is Senior Legal Counsel at the African Legal Support Facility (ALSF). Nicole co-founded and managed Krescent Consulting. Nicole also acted as the Director of Learning and Strategic Development for ILFA (International Lawyers for Africa). Before founding Krescent, Nicole was the deputy managing director of DaMina Advisors, an Africa-focused frontier consulting firm. Nicole has worked with top global law firms including Shearman & Sterling and Baker & McKenzie, and at Citibank in its Latin America and Caribbean Division. Nicole earned her Juris Doctor from the Georgetown University Law Center and master`s degrees from Columbia University.

Sharmila Metcalf
Sharmila Metcalf
Trustee
-
London

Sharmila is responsible for the leadership and management of STEM Learning's new and priority national student programmes that will reach pre- and post-16 students from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds across the UK. She led the STEM capacity building programmes (Nuffield Research Placements and Undergraduate Research Bursaries) at the Nuffield Foundation. She has recently undergone a secondment to the Department for Education. She has been a member of the Practical Science Executive Consortium. Previously, Sharmila worked at the British Science Association and as a secondary science teacher for six years in the UK and USA.

Tim Weiss
Tim Weiss
Trustee
-
Oxford

Tim has worked for 25 years in education, training and qualifications. He is Director of Vocational Skills at ScreenSkills, where he works with universities and colleges to help young people get the best quality education to make a positive start to their career. Prior to this he worked at the Education and Training Foundation supporting FE teachers, and at Pearson on BTEC qualifications, educational textbooks and eLearning. He is also trustee for an educational foundation in Cape Town giving financial support to disadvantaged young people to help them progress into higher education and work.

Anthony Hamilton
Anthony Hamilton
Trustee
-
London

Anthony has over 20 years’ experience working for leading global companies in investor relations, communications, economic advisory, and strategy roles. Anthony is currently a Communications Consultant at WPP. Previously, he was Head of Investor Relations at Vodafone. His expertise is in planning and executing effective communication activities, creating a credible investment story, and building key stakeholder relationships. He is an active mentor, providing guidance and counsel for those who either are or feel disadvantaged.