Conference Speakers

Professor David Olusoga OBE

David Olusoga is a British-Nigerian historian, broadcaster and film-maker. His most recent TV series include Empire (BBC 2), Black and British: A Forgotten History (BBC 2), The World’s War (BBC 2), 3 seasons of A House Through Time (BBC 2) and the BAFTA winning Britain’s Forgotten Slave Owners (BBC 2). David is also the author of Black & British: A Forgotten History which was awarded both the Longman-History Today Trustees Award and the PEN Hessell-Tiltman Prize. His other books include The World’s War, which won First World War Book of the Year in 2015, The Kaiser’s Holocaust: Germany’s Forgotten Genocide and the Colonial Roots of Nazism and Civilizations: Encounters and the Cult of Progress. David was also a contributor to the Oxford Companion to Black British History and writes for The Guardian and is a columnist for The Observer and BBC History Magazine. He is also one of the three presenters on the BBC’s landmark Arts series Civilizations. Last year he held an exclusive interview with former President of the United States, Barack Obama and his recent book Black and British: A Short, essential history won the Children’s Illustrated & Non-Fiction book of the year at the 2021 British Book Awards.

Lord Simon Woolley 

Lord Simon Woolley is a political and equalities activist. He is the founder and director of Operation Black Vote and Trustee of the charity Police Now. Woolley has been a crossbench member of the House of Lords since October 2019. He was Chair of the Government of the United Kingdom Race Disparity Unit Advisory Group until July 2020. In March 2021, his appointment as Principal of Homerton College, Cambridge was announced.

Dr Joseph Spence

Dr Joe Spence has been Master of Dulwich College since 2009. He was Headmaster of Oakham School from 2002, having taught history and politics at Eton College, where he was Master in College (housemaster to the King’s Scholars) from 1992-2002. He jointly leads Southwark Schools Learning Partnership (SSLP), a collaboration of the senior maintained and independent schools in the borough. A trustee of the Mark Evison Foundation, Art History Link Up and the Dulwich Picture Gallery, Joe is also a playwright and librettist and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

Allana Gay

Allana Gay is a teacher, education advisor, and speaker. She started teaching and leading within innercity London secondary schools and is currently the Headmistress of Vita et Pax Preparatory School.

Allana cofounded BAMEed Network in 2017 with the aim of bringing attention and action to the issue of ethnic diversity throughout the education sector. As a recognisable figure for BAMEed, Allana works on the overarching strategy of normalising full ethnic presence through all areas and institutions of education.

Allana maintains keen interest and activity in the teaching profession. From deepening primary secondary partnership to improving recruitment to diversifying currcula, she has written for various publications, regularly presents these ideas at conferences and in the media. Allana has sat on Advisory panels as an educational professional who advocates for change within the education sector.

Dr Malcolm Cocks

Dr Malcolm Cocks is an English teacher with 13 years’ experience in the education sector. He is the inaugural Director of Diversity and Inclusion at Dulwich College, where he has taught since 2016.  Malcolm has also taught at Merchant Taylors’ and Highgate School and lectured in Literature and Visual culture in the University of London. Educated in Zimbabwe and the United Kingdom, he studied for his BA in English at Trinity College, Oxford, his PhD at King’s College, London and a Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at Shakespeare’s Globe. His intellectual specialisms and publications include work on intercultural Shakespeare performance, Global Shakespeares, and Race and Social Justice on the early modern stage. He is also interested in the cultural histories of sugar and has run workshops in London schools on behalf of ‘Poetry versus Colonialism’ which invites students to confront the shared legacy of the colonial past through the circulation of global commodities such as sugar.

Nick Dennis

Nick Dennis is currently the Director of Studies and Head of Politics at St. Francis College, Letchworth. He is an Honorary Fellow of the Schools History Project and a co-presenter of a series of documentary films for the World History Project. Nick has also authored a number of articles/resources on history education, diversity and leadership. His blog can be found at

Claire Harvey MBE

Claire Harvey is an experienced senior leader, inclusion expert and Paralympian. Currently working as Global
Inclusion Lead for Vodafone, and previously working as Head of inclusive leadership at KPMG, Claire is
recognised as a world leader in diversity, inclusion and culture, incorporating change management and
leadership behaviours into impactful change.

Wanting to give back to the community, Claire took on the CEO role for 18 months for a small charity Diversity
Role Models and within that period, turned it around to a growing, award-winning position with increased
impact, profile and reach. She then was working as an independent consultant and has supported global large
organisations, government agencies, NGOs, charities, universities and schools.

Her current long-term projects include co-founding the Schools Inclusion Alliance (a not for profit supporting
schools to be more inclusive), supporting raising inclusion and attainment across Schools in Latin America and
supporting the Houses of Parliament as a NED advisor in relation to inclusion and culture.

As Global Inclusion Lead at Vodafone, Claire is working to embed inclusion across their global footprint and bring
to life their Inclusion for All agenda of leaving no one behind

Judy Clements OBE

Judy has over 30 years’ experience in the public and third sectors, primarily in Central Government at Senior Civil Service level. She operated at national level in Chief Executive and Independent Adjudicator roles in the areas of criminal justice, taxation, and higher education. She is the elected Executive Director for Children’s Ministries for the South England SDA Conference. Her areas of expertise include corporate governance, complaints handling and policy for organisations, safeguarding and equality and diversity. She served as Ombudsman for Students in Higher Education until 2017.  Prior to that she held the role of The Independent Adjudicator for Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs, served as a Director for the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC). Prior to that Judy worked for the Home Office in HM Prison Service as Head of Diversity and Equality. Judy was a Member of the Home Secretary’s Stephen Lawrence Steering Group, and chaired the Trust and Confidence Working Group. She also worked with the Judicial Studies Board where she facilitated equality training for newly appointed members of the Judiciary. She received the Order of the British Empire from Queen Elizabeth II in the 2000 New Year’s Honours.

Her current non-executive roles include: Trustee for Together for Mental Wellbeing Charity; Governor for three independent faith schools; Member of British Board for Film Classification Video Appeals Panel.

Her previous non-executive roles include: Governor Newbold College of Higher Education; independent adviser to Victim Support’s Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee; trustee and deputy Chair (for five years) of Barnardo’s the UK’s second largest children’s charity. Chair of The Diana Princess of Wales NHS Children’s Hospital Trust in Birmingham.

Lavinya Stennett 

Lavinya is a writer, activist, and Founder and CEO of The Black Curriculum. Graduating with a first class from SOAS in 2019, she has most recently authored a paper exploring Maroon ecology in Jamaica and Brazil.

Lavinya was recently named as one of the Sunday Times 50 Women of the Year and was awarded Trailblazer of The Year by Hello Magazine, as well as featuring in Vogue, and GQ for her activism.

The Black Curriculum is a social enterprise founded in 2019, working to teach and support the teaching of Black history all year round, aiming to empower all students with a sense of identity and belonging.

Ben Mearheart

Benjamin is the Head of Delivery at The Black Curriculum.  Ben has an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership and in his 10 years as a senior leader developed practices and curricula which progressed teaching, learning, outcomes and personal development to ‘Outstanding’ levels. A keen student of racial, social and emotional literacy, Ben has taught children across EYFS and Key Stages 1-4, including as a class teacher and English, Drama and Dance specialist.  At The Black Curriculum Ben oversees the delivery of in-school consultancy, Teacher Training, Curriculum Consultations and student workshops.

Sue Mulholland

Sue Mulholland is teacher with over 20 years’ experience across a broad spectrum of schools, secondary, primary, maintained, and independent. Currently, she is Director of Art and DT, Director of Free Learning and Acting Director of Diversity and Inclusion at Dulwich College. Further to this Sue has been worked in education in Kakuma refugee camp, Kenya for 7 years.

“My philosophy includes witness that the arts are essential to our lives, they sharpen our awareness, enrich our understanding of the world and hold up a mirror to our past and current experiences. A core aim is developing independent and creative thinkers and learners who are active, empathetic and in turn make better citizens, co-workers, partners and community members and leaders. To become an independent resilient learner mental health and self-management to ‘be well’ is crucial.

From very early in my teaching career whilst encountering pupils coming from the most challenging backgrounds, including asylum seekers fleeing conflict zones, I recognised the role creativity has, and in turn the importance of diversity and inclusion as an embedded continual process, not just a passing trend in the curriculum and wider learning.

‘Creative wellbeing’ has been a constant thread of active research. A defining moment came in 2013 when I took up the role of Director of Art and Design Technology at Dulwich College and in tandem made my inaugural visit to Kakuma refugee camp, NW Kenya. Since 2015 I have been back to Kakuma twice a year in the capacity of volunteer, teacher, mentor, consultant and teacher trainer. I am an advocate and catalyst for developing creative learning in the camp and a conduit for partnerships with schools and educational NGO’s. Currently whilst continuing to work with My Start, I am an advisor with Aegis Trust and the Chairperson on the board for Gua Africa a foundation set up by former child soldier Emmanuel Jal.

Kemi J Williams

Kemi J Williams has been a Teacher of English for 16 years now, after escaping a so called promising law career. She has since taught at some of the country’s leading independent schools, including Alleyn’s and JAGS and is now based in both the English and Learning Support Departments at Dulwich College.

Kemi has managed Debating and Creative Writing events to great success throughout her time in education and is currently undertaking new initiatives at Dulwich to teach and promote neurodiversity within mainstream English. Alongside this, Kemi is leading a newly formed weekly Book Club for both JAGS and DC students, which she has strategically named ‘Read, Debate, Cake!’

Kemi also enjoys her role as a Film Critic for Stylist Magazine and thrives on analysing all things literary and on screen – from cult classics to daring dystopias.

Ardent about empowering a truly representative cross-section of young people for life’s challenges and joys, present and future, Kemi is an enthusiastic member of the Dulwich College Diversity & Inclusion Alliance.

Nathalie Whittington

Nathalie Whittington is Head of Wellbeing at Dulwich College and a teacher of English with 18 years of teaching experience in State, International, and Independent schools. She has combined academic and pastoral management experience across her career. Her professional and personal experiences have also informed continued reflections on how emotional learning and development must work alongside academic learning and pursuit. She established the Dulwich College Identity Awareness Month (DC IAM) to develop a whole-school approach and culture to fostering an awareness of the intricacies, multiplicities and intersectional aspects of both individual, community and institutional identity. Nathalie has an MA in Education: Culture, Language and Identity and her thesis explored the multiplicity of masculine identity, learning profiles, attainment and barriers to aspiration in our era’s changing and evolving understanding of gender. She is also a member of Dulwich College’s Diversity and Inclusion Alliance informing policies; curriculum reflection and reform; recruitment of staff; and mentoring and counselling. Nathalie is currently studying towards the BACP Level 2 Counselling Skills course.

Jo Ray

Jo is an integrative Arts Psychotherapist and Counsellor (HCPC and UKCP registered; registered member MBACP; professional member of BAAT and IATE). As a creative, she brings over 30 years of experience working within creative environments, and over 10 years experience of working psychotherapeutically using the creative process to facilitate change and help re-establish psychological growth.  She has a special interest in the neurobiology of trauma, dysregulation and neurodevelopmental difficulties. She has worked therapeutically with: young people and children as part of the Kids Company schools programme; adult survivors of sexual abuse in an NHS clinical placement: adults (inpatients/outpatients and relatives) in an NHS clinical placement as part of the psych-oncology team at Guy’s Hospital. She currently works with adults, children and young people in private practice, with adolescents in a secondary school in Dulwich and as a member of teaching staff at The Institute for Arts in Therapy and Education (IATE).

Justice Aina

Justice is an ESRC (Economic and Social Research Council) studentship awarded PhD candidate studying at the University of Durham. Her research investigates the experience of Black students at private schools and focuses on identity development and positionality within these spaces. Previous to this, Justice attended Alleyn’s school in Dulwich and went on to study at the LSE where she was a governor and council member.

Justice has a professional background in tech, particularly education technology, as well as having provided consultation services to a variety of clients. She has been very active in discussions around race and schooling, especially concerning private schools, and was a founder of the ‘Black Girls’ Private School Community’.

Damilola Adebayo

Damilola was a scholarship/bursary student at Dulwich College from 2006 to 2013, from year 7 through to year 13. During his time at the College, Damilola was keen on sciences and languages, studying Chemistry, French and Mathematics through to A Level. He also enjoyed the sporting and arts opportunities at the College, representing the 1st XV rugby and 1st XI football teams respectively, and taking part in a number of Drama Society productions. Damilola went on to study Chemistry at Manchester Metropolitan University, before joining Scott Bader as a Research and Development Chemist in 2018. To date, he has worked on developing the Composites, Adhesives and Tooling ranges of the company’s product portfolio, supplying into the marine, automotive, construction, and wind energy sectors. Damilola is also the chair of the Diversity and Inclusion committee at the company, championing diversity in the workplace and inclusive behaviours with regards to internal development and progression for colleagues. Damilola’s efforts are in line with Scott Bader’s aspirations to be a proactive leader for sustainable diversity and inclusion in the chemical industry.”

Solomon Rose

Representing the Amos Bursary, Solomon is the Finance Officer at Jacaranda Books and a trustee of Class 13, an organisation working to tackle inequalities faced by Children and Young People. He previously led the ‘Improving Outcomes for Young Black Men programme’ at the London Borough of Hackney, a strategic initiative aimed at tackling disproportionalities across local public services and was a Business Manager at Wayra UK. Solomon graduated with a BA in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from the University of Manchester in 2017. Solomon is also a member of the Social Finance Race Equity Advisory Group.