Senior Leadership Team

Our Senior Leadership Team has over 150 years of educational leadership experience, complemented by diverse multi-sector expertise from the Military, Diplomatic Service, and Formula 1 to Pharmaceuticals and FMCG in FTSE 100, private equity, and US-listed organisations.

  • Chris joined the company in 2013. Formerly CFO, he was appointed CEO of CATS Colleges (now CATS Global Schools) in 2020. Chris has extensive leadership experience in a variety of sectors, including pharmaceuticals, FMCG, and, most recently, education in both private equity and US listed settings. Chris was part of the team that led the sale of CATS Colleges from Cambridge Education Group to Bright Scholar in 2019.

    Chris Stacey

    Chief Executive Officer

  • Karin has a first-class science degree in Photographic Sciences and a Masters of Philosophy from the Royal College of Art. She has held senior management roles in highly QS ranked UK Universities including Dean at University of the Arts, London. A photographic practitioner by origin, Karin’s practice as a photographer has resulted in her work being exhibited nationally and internationally at world leading institutions such as the Tate Britain.

    Karin Askham

    Managing Director, Arts and Enterprise and Rector, Cambridge School of Visual & Performing Arts

  • Katya has extensive experience in the education industry, having represented groups of private high schools, university pathways and language centres globally. Katya has held various Sales and Marketing leadership positions within the group since 2014. In January 2022, Katya was appointed Global Sales Director to lead a team of 55+ student recruitment specialists based in 20 countries.

    Katya Burfitt

    Global Sales Director

  • Joe joined the organisation in 2014 and has held various management roles. Before becoming Finance Director in 2022, Joe led the Financial Planning and Analytics (FP&A) team. Joe studied Economics at Newcastle University and is a Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA). Throughout Joe’s career, he has been at the forefront of commercial decision making and was heavily involved in the sale of CATS Colleges to Bright Scholar in 2019.

    Joe Butterfield

    Finance Director

  • Joe joined the organisation in 2018. Joe oversees the management and operation of both CATS and CSVPA in Shanghai. Joe has 15 years' experience in international education programmes. As a pioneer of international education in China, he has extensive understanding of the Chinese market and knowledge of government policy. Joe has an MA in Education from the University of Leipzig.

    Joe Chen

    Director of Education and Operations, CATS & CSVPA China

  • Ruth graduated from the University of London and started her career as a Programme Coordinator organising programmes for thousands of children each year. Ruth then became Director of Study Tours, running courses in the UK and Ireland. In 1994, Ruth founded Stafford House Study Holidays providing courses for adults and children in 16 locations globally. In 2019, Ruth was awarded a Lifetime Achievement by Lead 5050 for Contribution to the Industry.

    Ruth Fenton

    Director, Stafford House Study Holidays

  • Tim has been leading global People Teams for over a decade within several sectors, including marketing, entertainment and retail. He now brings the experience of organisational development, talent, learning & development and organisational transformation projects to CATS Global Schools.

    Tim Gladston

    People & Engagement Director

  • Sam joined the organisation in 2018. Sam has over 13 years’ marketing and recruitment experience in international education sector. Sam leads the team responsible for recruiting students to CATS & CSVPA in Shanghai. Sam is always looking for opportunities to develop new partnerships locally and creating market-friendly products. Sam holds an MBA degree from University of South Wales.

    Sam Huang

    Director of Marketing and Business Development, CATS & CSVPA China

  • Wayne joined the organisation in 2019. Wayne has 26 years’ experience within IT. He has extensive experience in IT transformation, acquisition, improvement and implementation roles. He has a solid understanding of IT technologies including Cloud Services, Microsoft Stack including 365, HPC, LAN/WAN, Storage, Virtual Technologies. He has experience in a variety of sectors including Formula 1, Retail, Education, IT Outsourcing and Government. Wayne has also run his own IT services company providing consultancy services to SME and Enterprise level businesses.

    Wayne Ledger

    IT Director

  • Carl joined Stafford House in 2011 as Director of Studies of Stafford House London when it initially opened and subsequently held positions of Principal and Senior Principal, Director of Short Courses and now General Manager. Carl is graduate of Goldsmiths College, University of London, and holds a Cambridge Diploma in English Language Teaching to Adults.

    Carl Roberton

    General Manager, Stafford House

  • Polly has 15 years' experience in international education. She joined the organisation in 2015 to lead the Sales and Marketing team at CSVPA. In 2019, Polly was appointed VP of Business Development, leading the Group's business transformation project. In January 2022, Polly was appointed Global Marketing Director, leading Marketing, Direct Sales, Corporate Communications and Business Development. Polly holds a BA (Hons) in Psychology and Contemporary English Language Studies and an MA in Bilingual Translation and Interpreting. She is currently studying for an Executive MBA at the University of Oxford.

    Polly Tzortzi

    Global Marketing Director

  • Craig is an Oxford University graduate where he obtained a first class degree in Chemistry and a Doctorate. He joined the company in 2014 and has held senior leadership positions in, and across, several of our schools and the University Foundation Programme. Prior to this, he worked internationally in a rapidly growing school in China. Craig was part of the team leading the sale of CATS Colleges from Cambridge Education Group to Bright Scholar in 2019.

    Dr Craig Wilson

    Managing Director, Schools

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