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Central Team

Chief Executive Officer 

Des Callaghan

Des has over 20 years’ experience of senior leadership in Catholic secondary schools including 13 years as headteacher. He has also been an executive headteacher supporting another high school and has previously played a key role in establishing a local multi academy trust where he was chair of the board of directors.

He has experience as chair of the governing body for several schools including a mainstream 11-16 academy, two alternative provision academies and a special school for pupils with social, emotional and mental health needs. 

Des became the CEO of Romero in 2018, taking on the role permanently in 2021. He oversaw the formal establishment of the Trust and welcomed in the first schools in 2019.


Chief Financial Officer (currently on maternity leave)

Liz Fleming

Liz is a CIPFA qualified accountant with over 10 years experience of working in the public sector, 3 of these years were spent working in education in a large secondary school within the Trust. Liz was appointed full time CFO in June 2021. Liz is passionate about the development and growth of the Trust, having been involved with its formation Liz wants to continue to drive forward the ethos of the Trust whilst ensuring that sound financial management is in place within all the academies in the Trust.

Interim CFO

Mandy McFadden

Mandy is a CIMA qualified accountant who joined the Trust in May 2022. Mandy has worked in the Education sector for the past 19 years in a sixth form college and is excited to now further her experience in primary and secondary schools

Finance Managers

Andy Cain

Christine West

Lisa Cheung

Estates and Compliance

Estates and Compliance Manager


James Bolton

James is an accredited Estates, Compliance and Project Manager with over 15 years’ experience leading Estate services at a large social enterprise apprenticeship, skills and training provider in the North West.

James joined the Central Team in October 2023 and is passionate to develop the service to help schools harness the opportunities the Trust brings to work together, benefit from shared knowledge and get value through economies of scale.

James will also drive forward measures across the Trust to reduce energy consumption and environmental impact.


Human Resources

Head of HR

Kelly Forrest

Kelly is a Chartered member of CIPD and has worked in Human Resources for over 23 years, 18 of these years working within the Education sector. Kelly is committed to leading on the provision of a forward thinking, responsive and professional HR service by recruiting, developing and retaining the highest quality of professionals in all of our teams across the Trust and in each school and being an employer of choice.

HR Advisors

Helen Swinson

Kathy Foster


Trust Governance Professional

Helen Whitaker

Helen has over 20 years' experience of working in education and training and has 10 years' experience of Clerking/Governance. Helen previously worked as a Headteacher’s PA/Operations Manager for a Trust school for 6 years before joining the Trust, gaining knowledge of Governance, GDPR, policy and website compliance.  Helen joined the Central Team in September 2022. Helen’s role as Governance Professional includes Trust Governance, GDPR, complaints, website compliance and policy compliance. Helen is also a Foundation Governor at a Church of England Primary School.

Business Support Officer/Trust Clerk

Lauren Lang

School Improvement


Director of Education -Primary


Sarah Price

In September 2023, Sarah took up the role of Director of Primary Education.  She has 20 years primary teaching experience, including 7 years as a headteacher.  Since September 2021, she also works as an Ofsted Schools Inspector. 

Director of Education - Secondary


Mike Wright

Mike took up the role of Director of Secondary Education in September 2023. He has worked for over 30 years in secondary education with 15 years’ experience of headship at two Lancashire high schools. Mike delivers on the NPQ suite of qualifications through the Heart Alliance as part of Salford Diocese’s professional development programme for school leaders and is a trained CSI inspector and Ofsted inspector.