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Our Members

Dr Ranjit Arora FRSA

Ranjit has lived and worked in Bradford for over 40 years, and has a strong background in education and research. She is an experienced teacher and a teacher trainer. Prior to coming to Bradford, she started her career as a teacher in London, progressing to teacher training and middle management in a Further and Higher Education College. During her career she also worked as an Assistant Education Officer for the BBC on a national project called Parosi. Once retired from her full time job she built up a portfolio of consultancy work and public appointments, which have been wide-ranging and an interesting mix of paid and voluntary work. She has been a magistrate, worked as a non-executive director of NHS Community Health Trust; served on the Equal Treatment Advisory Committee of the Judicial Studies Board; been a governor of Leeds College of Music and worked as an Equalities Adviser with the Universities UK.

Ranjit has worked both strategically and operationally to ensure that issues of quality and equality are kept firmly on the agenda in public services. Equally she has a special interest in, knowledge of and commitment to promoting issues of equality, diversity and human rights, including design and delivery of equal opportunities’ training. Her national and international consultancy work has included bespoke training for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion.

Dr Ruby Bhatti OBE DL

Ruby is a highly successful Solicitor with over 30 years' experience in the legal field. She sits on various panels at National, Regional and local level for health and research! She is also chair of the Wolfson Centre for Applied Research and board member For the Yorkshire & Humber ARC board. She is a board member for the Bradford Care Alliance (BCA) which supports GP's in Bradford District, the EALC (Education Alliance For Life Chances) Board and the DfE’s Priority Area Partnership Board. Ruby sits as a Trustee on a number of Multi -Academy Trust Boards within Yorkshire and a Non Executive Director of IGS an Independent governance support charity. She also supports the Bradford Local Authority as a member of the education admission and appeals panel.

Ruby has a portfolio of over 27 years as a Non Executive Director supporting charities, local community centres and social enterprise organisations. Her most recent appointment is on the Active Bradford Board. Ruby is also an Associate Lecturer at the University of Bradford.

Ruby was awarded an OBE by the Queen in the New Year’s Honours list 2019 in housing and young people and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Bradford in 2020. She was recently appointed a Deputy Lieutenant for West Yorkshire and stands in nomination as a prospective High Sheriff for 2026.

Brent Fitzpatrick MBE (Chair of Members)

Brent has been a school governor in a wide range of schools, including secondary, primary, special, and academy schools as well as pupil referral units, and he sits on his local schools’ forum. He has developed his skills with a diploma in school governance from Bradford University. With a particular interest in finance and experience being a member of the Audit Committee Institute, Brent sits on the finance committee at each of his schools. In the 2012 Queen’s Birthday Honours, Brent was awarded an MBE for services to education.

James Hyde

James is a solicitor and Partner at international law firm Eversheds Sutherland.  He leads the commercial disputes team in their Leeds office and the firm’s technology, media and telecoms disputes practice internationally.  He advises local, national and international organisations on risk management issues and resolution of their complex, sensitive and high-value disputes.  He regularly advises legal officers, senior executives and Boards.  As part of this, James works with many academies, further education and higher education institutions. 

James was educated at a comprehensive school in Nottingham and the first in his family to go to University.  Because of this, James is a keen advocate for social mobility, diversity and inclusion, and maximising opportunities for young people to fulfil their potential. In addition, James is the Graduate Recruitment Partner for Eversheds Sutherland’s Leeds office, a position he has held since 2017.  James has lived in the Bradford area since 2005.

Louise Ingham (Chair of Risk & Audit Committee)

Born and raised in Bradford, Louise has worked as a finance professional for 20 years.  She has a wealth of commercial knowledge and proven experience in working with numerous stakeholders to deliver innovative solutions.