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The Board

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 Susie Gregson MBE founded Proms in 1993 and is its Chief Executive. Under her leadership, Proms has raised over £1m for good causes. Susie has lived in Hampstead Garden Suburb nearly all her life, is an active member of Hampstead Golf Club and is Chair of Alumnae at The Henrietta Barnett School. 

Kate Webster is Chair of Proms at St Jude's. She has a background in secondary education. Initially a Geography teacher, she held senior leadership posts including Deputy Head at The Henrietta Barnett School, and 15 years as Head at Queen Elizabeth’s Girls’ School, Barnet. Now retired, she is Chair of Governors in a primary school and a Trustee of HGS Heritage Virtual Museum.

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Gerard Cohen is a chartered accountant. He was a partner in BDO, the international accounting firm, followed by 20 years working in real estate. He was treasurer of a local sports association for 7 years and is currently trustee of a charitable foundation which supports education and the arts.

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Rosemary Cohen has a background in dentistry and medical education. In 2021 she coordinated a local vaccination hub where she met Niamh O’Donnell Keenan and Susie Gregson.  Reciprocal volunteering at Proms since 2021 resulted in her joining the Board as Friends Coordinator in 2023. 

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Ron Finlay runs a communications consultancy specialising in the public and charity sectors. He is also a trustee of charities involved with education and healthcare. A resident of Hampstead Garden Suburb since 1995, he is a member of the HGS Trust Amenities & Grants Committee. 

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Ali Ghaffari is a Chartered Accountant, with 40 years experience in Financial Services specialising in Risk, Regulation and governance, including as a senior advisor at the Bank of England Banking Supervision. He then ran his own management consultancy business in the City. Ali is currently on the board of two other local charities, including a Citizen Advice and a local community charity in NW London.

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Michelle Groves is CEO of the DaCapo Music Foundation, which delivers and influences music teaching in many different settings, including a Saturday music school, primary schools and teacher training programmes. She works with the education committee, developing and delivering a variety of workshops and concerts for children at Proms.

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Tina Isaacs has worked in education for over 40 years – doing policy research, working for government education bodies (NCVQ, QCA, Ofqual) and currently is an honorary associate professor at UCL’s Institute of Education.  Her volunteer work includes being a school governor and a board member of Fashion Retail Academy Enterprises.

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Anne Kollar worked as a music educator and choral conductor in New York, where she was Adjunct Professor of Music at Hofstra, Adelphi, and Long Island Universities, and Adjunct Professor of Educational Technology at N.Y.I.T.  She was Musical Director of The Babylon Chorale and SōLI, and has sung in, directed and chaired choirs in the US and UK.

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 Jo Lewis has over 30 years’ experience in communications and public affairs, including senior roles in Lloyds Banking Group and Equitable Life. Her background is in corporate responsibility, media relations, reputational management and public affairs in the UK and EU. She joined Proms at St Jude’s in 2016. 

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Niamh O’Donnell-Keenan is a Chartered Accountant and former Vice-Chair of Chartered Accountants Ireland (London). She is a former Group Finance Director of the Telegraph Group. She is a member of the Emigrant Services Advisory Committee which advises the Irish Government on its Emigrant Support Programme in the UK. Niamh is a former Chair of Proms.

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Hella Schrader has a background in international publishing. After working in her native Germany for a European media consultancy, she moved to IT and Operations management for the International Herald Tribune in France and The Independent and Financial Times in London, developing expertise in compliance and regulation. She has lived in Hampstead Garden Suburb since 1986.

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Simon Tesh qualified as a chartered accountant and has been responsible for Proms’ finances ever since its creation. He now splits his time between Ireland and London.

Committees

The Board is supported by several committees.

Catering: Susie Gregson, Tina Isaacs, Judy Knox

Education: Joan Arnold, Jane Cutler, Susie Gregson, Michelle Groves, Tina Isaacs, Niamh O'Donnell-Keenan, Kate Webster*

Fundraising: Peter Blausten, Susie Gregson*, Michelle Groves, Ruth Jacobs, John Wheeler, 

IT Development and Box Office: Hetty Colchester, Stephan Conaway*, Ron Finlay, David Gregson, Susie Gregson, Cheryl Kuczynski, Hella Schrader

LitFest: Sharon Barron, Ron Finlay, Susie Gregson, Vivien Hilson, Niamh O’Donnell-Keenan*, Sonia Porter, Shelley-Anne Salisbury, Lisa Woolfson

Logistics: Steve Conaway, Susie Gregson, Tamsyn Hamilton, Tina Isaacs, Jo Lewis*, Hella Schrader

Marketing & Communications: Hetty Colchester, Ron Finlay*, Ali Ghaffari, Susie Gregson, Tina Isaacs, Catrin Jackson, Cheryl Kuczynski, Jo Lewis, Hella Schrader, Kate Webster

Music Planning: Yvonne Baker, Leo Charlton, Stewart Collins, Janet Fisher, Susie Gregson, Anne Kollar*, Seán Purtell, Thomas Radice, Helen Roose

*Chair of committee

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