Staff team

The John Schofield Trust is a small charity made up of a board of trustees, advisers and two members of staff.

David Stenhouse, CEO, John Schofield Trust

David Stenhouse

CEO

David is CEO of the John Schofield Trust. He joined the Trust in early 2021 from the BBC, where he was Editor of the Generation 2014, 2015 and Referendum Generation youth engagement and democracy projects. He has also worked in the United States as a Senior Producer in the BBC’s Washington DC Bureau, and has been a Visiting Professor of Journalism at the University of Strathclyde.

David is delighted to be joining the Trust at a time when increasing diversity in the media has never been more important. He is excited to help the Trust’s vital role in helping shape the diverse newsrooms of the future.

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Howard Littler

Fellowship Manager

Howard is the Fellowship Manager of the John Schofield Trust, as of November 2021. He has previously worked in higher education, where for ten years he oversaw campaigns and projects focused on empowering young people to be powerful advocates. He was a senior manager at Goldsmiths, University of London, where he was responsible for management of the membership-facing teams in the Students’ Union, notably including projects focused on underrepresented students.

He has been both a mentor and mentee throughout his career, and has witnessed the transformative effect it can have on individual development. This along with the compelling mission of the John Schofield Trust attracted him to join at a time of great momentum for the organisation.

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Our trustees

Sunita Bhatti

Sunita is the Senior News Editor of the Learning and Identity team at BBC News. She leads 22 staff who focus on education and family, LGBT and Identity issues, Community Affairs and Disability stories.

The team has recently been formed as part of the BBC News restructure, and is one of several national news teams now based out of London.

Previously, Sunita led the Northern Bureau news operation which covered all the main national news in the North of England. She has worked on stories ranging from the Manchester Bomb to the Hillsborough fight for justice.

She started her BBC career at BBC Radio Lincolnshire in 2007, and has worked across regional TV and Online, as well as Newsround.

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Jenny Clark

Jenny Clark

Jenny is treasurer for the John Schofield Trust. She is a Finance Business Partner in the BBC for News and Current Affairs. She has worked in news for a number of years looking after many of the departments  Newsgathering, International Offices, Current Affairs, Central Areas. She also worked in television and was the Finance Director for the Digital Switchover. Originally from New Zealand she has an audit background and has lived in London for many years. She has two daughters in senior school and was the treasurer for 10 years of a very successful after-school provision. Jenny is currently a school governor at an Acton primary school with finance responsibility.

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Alison Comyn

Alison is an IFTA-winning journalist, news anchor and broadcaster who, throughout her three-decade career, has worked for BBC, Sky News, Channel 4, RTÉ and UTV Ireland, as well as being a print journalist and columnist with Mediahuis.

She is also a communications consultant with international expertise, training groups and individuals from a wide range of organisations. She is an experienced MC and moderator, and has chaired the World Employment Conference, National Recruitment Federation annual conference and Davy Stockbrokers Conference to name a few.

Alison has also been a reporter with BBC Newsline and Sky News Ireland, is a regular contributor on Newstalk’s ‘The Hard Shoulder’ and ‘Down to Business’, and ‘Today’ on RTE 1, as well as covering for Joe Duffy on RTE’s Liveline. She was shortlisted for Regional Journalist of the Year at the NNI Awards on two occasions, and lectures part time in Investigative Journalism for the University of Wolverhampton.

Alison is also mum to two phenomenal teenagers, who so far have escaped the journalism gene!

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Louise Hastings

Louise Hastings

Louise is managing editor and part of the senior leadership team at Sky News.

She’s previously been a senior news editor and a senior programme producer overseeing some of the biggest news stories. She has also been head of audience for 6 live televised debates which included two general elections, the referendum and the labour leadership contest, plus the special 100 Women live show marking 100 years since the first women were given the vote.

Louise began her career in commercial radio, and was editor of IRN which serves around 300 UK commercial radio stations.

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Zaiba Malik

Zaiba Malik

Zaiba is the founder of Coppergate Communications, a consultancy that specialises in reputation, issues and crisis management and media coaching at both national and global levels. She has advised on many high-profile, complex and sensitive issues.

Zaiba is a former award-winning journalist with over 20 years’ experience in news and current affairs. She has been a reporter and producer for outlets in television, radio, print and online including BBC News, Newsnight, Panorama, Radio 4, Dispatches, Unreported World and the Guardian.

Her reporting has been nominated for the Royal Television Society and BAFTA awards and she has received the Women in Film and Television Award. She regularly chairs events and conferences and is also a best-selling author.

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Susie Schofield

Susannah Schofield MBE

Susie met John in 1986 when they were both studying at the University of Sussex and they married in 1993. With the support of family and friends, Susie set up the John Schofield Trust after John’s death. In 2012, she was given the RTS Judges’ Award for setting up the Trust’s mentoring scheme. In 2021, Susie was named as one of ’50 Leading Lights’ in the Kind Leadership Revolution. From 2019-21, she served as a judge on the RTS panel for Young Talent of the Year.

By day, Susie works at the University of Surrey creating and editing content.

Susie was awarded an MBE in the King’s Birthday Honours List  in 2023 for services to journalism and to diversity in the journalism industry.

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Dhruti Shah

Dhruti Shah

Dhruti is an award-winning freelance journalist and author. She was also one of the first young reporters chosen to be a John Schofield Trust mentee back in 2012. She started her career in local newspapers and at Insight News Television before making the move to BBC News. She has worked for Panorama, Newsbeat, the BBC News website, the User Generated Content Hub, the Natural History Unit, the Business Unit, the Washington bureau, and the World Service in a variety of roles. Beyond journalism these include digital strategist, writer, trainer, producer, presenter, and social expert.

She is an Honorary Fellow at the Centre for Journalism at the University of Kent, a Rotary International Peace Fellow and an Ochberg Fellow at the Dart Centre for Journalism and Trauma. She is a member of the Clore Cultural Leaders Network and the Women of the Future network.

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Julie Randles

Julie Randles

Julie is a an experienced senior leader in the charity sector. She is CEO at Power2, an education and social mobility charity for children and young people.

Julie began her career in children’s book publishing and has worked for the Sutton Trust and Save The Children.

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Advisory panel

John Battle

John Battle

John Battle is a lawyer and is the Head of Compliance at ITN. He advises editors and journalists from ITN’s editorial services on legal and regulatory issues, both prior to and following publication / broadcast. He has worked as a lawyer in the news media industry for over 20 years , including two major newspaper groups.

John is Chair of the Media Lawyers Association and is on the Parliamentary and Legal Committee of the Society of Editors. He has a particular interest in open justice issues and court reporting. He wrote the ITN Compliance Manual which is the guide for journalistic standards at ITN. He is an employed barrister and prior to working in the media industry worked as a barrister in the courts.

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Toby Castle

Toby Castle

Toby Castle is Deputy News Editor at the BBC. Previously Toby was Head of Home News at ITV News. He joined ITN in 1999 where he edited across the home and foreign desks.

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Muhammad Darwish

Muhammad Darwish

Muhammad is an experienced producer with a demonstrated history of working in broadcast and digital media. Skilled in field production, storytelling, digital video, news writing and breaking news. Strong media and communication professional with a MA in International Broadcast Journalism from London City University.  Muhammad was a mentee on our 2015 scheme and an online mentor in 2018.

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Alan Grady

Alan Grady

Alan Grady began his career at ITN twenty years ago as one of the company’s first video-journalists. As a senior producer for BBC News, he led teams on numerous foreign assignments, including covering the 9/11 attacks and the subsequent wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

As an Executive Producer with Sky News, Alan programme edited some of the biggest stories of the past few years, including the Charlie Hebdo shootings, the Tunisia beach attacks, and the Boston bombing.

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Roohi Hasan

Roohi Hasan

Roohi is an award-winning Senior producer at ITN, working at ITV News for more than a decade. She started her career at 5News where she soon became a News Editor. She has also worked at Channel 4 News. Her journalism has taken her around the world, from America including for the historic 2016 Election, to India to Europe. She has covered some of the biggest international stories over the years, including the Afghanistan and Iraq wars to most recently the conflict in Syria and throughout has interviewed leading global figures. Her investigations at home have included shining a light on British soldiers with PTSD and those facing discrimination in the NHS, and abroad on victims of climate change and rape in India, and those under siege of Aleppo. Her journalism has been well recognised with personal awards and had her work her shows recognised by BAFTA and the Royal Television Society. Roohi’s great passion is mentoring particularly disadvantaged youth. She does this personally, at work and through Prince Charles’ charity, Mosaic as well as with the John Schofield Trust. She has written about mentoring for the Financial Times. and has been working to improve newsroom diversity too.

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Gill Penlington

Gill Penlington

Gill Penlington is the editor of KayBurley@Breakfast on Sky News. She was Director of News and Event Programming for CNN International and was responsible for the network’s news programming and special coverage across Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and is based in London.

Gill was formerly editor of BBC Question Time, where she produced some of the show’s most highly rating editions during the MP’s expenses scandal. She also worked as a producer on BBC Newsnight. Gill has worked in the lobby of the UK Parliament with ITN, and started her career as a researcher in the House of Commons and at a think tank. Gill is also a mentor for the 2016 mentoring scheme.

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Ronke Phillips

Ronke Phillips

Ronke Phillips has been a journalist for more than 20 years and has been fortunate enough to enjoy a varied career in print, radio and television. She has worked both as a presenter and reporter – for national and regional television, both in the UK and abroad. Ronke, who is of Nigerian heritage, attended a girl’s school in Putney before gaining a BSC honours degree in Third World Economics and Social Sciences. She began her broadcast career working as a radio reporter for a host of local BBC Radio stations including BBC Radio London, Nottingham, Leicester and Derby.

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Kate Riley

A journalist for more than 30 years, Kate has worked in radio and TV for the BBC’s domestic and international services. She was a trustee for the John Schofield Trust from 2018-22.

Kate has trained journalists all over the world in multi-cultural and multi-lingual contexts – covering radio, TV and digital social media. She is a BBC-trained coach and experienced mentor both inside and outside the BBC. As Managing Editor of the BBC Newsgathering, Kate developed an interest in supporting journalists reporting in conflict and disaster zones on high risk stories, as well as those affected by working on distressing stories in newsrooms at home. Kate co-ordinated the BBC’s trauma support network for six years and provided both awareness training and debrief support for the BBC.

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Simon Vigar

Simon Vigar

Simon has been Royal correspondent for 5 News since 2008, reporting on some of the biggest celebrations, tours and controversies in recent years. The Royal beat is only part of his brief and Simon also led Channel 5’s coverage of the Paris and Brussels attacks along with many high profile court cases and London 2012. His association with 5 News goes back to the launch and he is the only remaining reporter from the original 1997 line-up.

Simon has also worked for some of the biggest players in radio including Capital and LBC and been a voiceover artist for Discovery, Sky Sports and Formula 1. He is one of the fiendish question-setters of the Ultimate News Quiz and says a career highlight was a cameo in the League of Gentlemen.

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Layla Wright

Layla is an award-winning freelance journalist and documentary presenter from Liverpool. Most recently, Layla produced and presented BBC Three documentary, False Hope? Alternative Cancer Treatments, an investigation into natural cancer therapies. Her BBC debut – an investigation for Radio 4 Today’s podcast – uncovered that gang leaders in Merseyside are offering teenagers hundreds of pounds to stab each other. Her findings were used in a parliamentary report to tackle serious crime.

She was named Young Journalist of the Year at the O2 Media Awards 2019 for her reporting for BBC Radio 4 and Radio City, which included her documentary, Gangs, Guns & Grassing. Layla was a mentee on our 2019-20 scheme.

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