Liberty Central Team
Click into each of our department's drop-down tabs to learn more about the Central Team
Sara Newman - Executive Assistant to Directors
Sara has worked in the Education sector as an Assistant for over 12 years, working across Primary, Secondary and Specialist provision as well as the Local Authority.
Sara’s role is to support the Director of Safeguarding, Director of Education and the Director of Finance and Operations. Sara brings a significant understanding of the running of Trusts and Schools and is passionate about ensuring all young people have a fair and equal opportunity to achieve their best possible outcomes.
Data Systems and Analytics
Lisa Thompson - Head of Digital, Data & Technology
Lisa has over 20 years' experience working with data and systems across the commercial, policing and education sectors. Her experience spans, Secondary, Primary and Specialist provision with roles both in School as a Data Manager and working for 2 large Multi Academy Trusts.
She has exceptional insight into the challenges facing Trusts in developing the use of data to support the strategic management of the Trust and has proven experience of using data and systems to drive school improvement at scale. In her last Trust Lisa was responsible for the successful procurement, migration and implementation of a new Management Information System across 27 schools.
Lisa is well known across the sector with peers in other Trusts and the Ed tech Sector and is a member of the CST Data Network. Lisa is also Chair of Governors for a Primary School in another Academy trust working with the school to bring about rapid improvement from requires improvement through to a successful OFSTED achieving good within a year.
Dave Wilson - IT Manager
Please check back soon to read more about Dave.
Finance and Accounting
Sarah Burton - Fees Management Officer
Sarah is a highly experienced school business professional with over 20 years experience working in educational business support teams. Sarah was instrumental in the pre-opening of one of our schools and has been working as School Business Leader at Church Lawton School since it opened in 2015. Sarah has now joined our central team as Fees Management Officer whilst also continuing in her school-based role.
Sarah has a wealth of experience in all areas of School Business Leadership and has a proven track record in leading school operations including Administration, HR and Financial management.
She is passionate about securing the very best educational outcomes for our pupils through the delivery of efficient and effective support services and works closely with educational teams to support continued school improvement and development.
Alan Johnson - Accounts Receivable
Alan has experience working across a variety of fields including customer service, administration and finance. He has various qualifications and his specialism is in finance and accounting and is currently working towards being fully AAT qualified.
Alan joined our trust in 2022 and is currently based at one of our schools, the Vanguard School.
With his combined passion for education and finance, Alan is a unique but great asset to our trust
Lisa Challiner - Accounts Payment Supervisor
Lisa has worked in the Finance Sector for over 20 years and has a sound understanding of Finance Systems. She has progressed in her career, starting by raising purchase orders in procurement, obtaining the best price for the product, through to GRN’ing and Purchase Ledger.
Lisa has previously carried many different roles in her career including Accounts Payable Manager and Business Analyst.
Lisa is currently the Accounts Payment Supervisor at Liberty Trust and has brought a wealth of knowledge to the Trust due to her previous roles.
Jane Read - Trust Accountant
Jane is an experienced management accountant with over 20 years’ experience.
Jane is responsible for managing the financial operations of the Trust, ensuring accurate and efficient financial reporting.
Jane has a degree in Business Economics and is member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA).
People and Human Resources
Andy Richardson - Head of HR
Andy’s role is to work in collaboration with local teams in support of our HR services across our academies, as well as leading on trust-wide HR developments to ensure we have the systems and processes in place to be effective. This is all aimed at making Liberty Academy Trust a great organisation to work for, which in turn enables us to provide excellent education opportunities for our children and young people.
A chartered member of the CIPD, Andy has spent 25 years providing comprehensive HR services in a range of organisations, particularly in the public and charity sectors; with lots of experience of helping those organisations meet various challenges and develop positive cultures. He is also Chair of Governors at a large local secondary school.
Lisa Saunders - Operations and Finance Manager
Lisa has worked in the education sector for 19 years and has solely focused on the successful management of the financial and operational side of schools & Trusts.
Lisa is AAT level 4 qualified with an MBA in Education Leadership, a member of the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), Qualified Prince 2 Project Manager and certified in all aspects of Health & Safety.