Central London Forward (CLF) is the strategic sub-regional partnership for Central London covering 12 local authorities.
Established in 2007, CLF exists to advocate and support the collective interests of its membership through the provision of strategic policy advice, research, advocacy and programme management.
Our goal is to improve the lives of our residents by working together to drive inclusive growth within the Central London area, to ensure our resident’s access the skills, jobs, homes, and support required to benefit from Central London’s dynamic economy.
Our membership is made up of ten member boroughs (Camden, the City of London, Hackney, Islington, Kensington and Chelsea, Lambeth, Southwark, Tower Hamlets, Wandsworth and Westminster) joined by two associate member boroughs (Haringey & Lewisham) for our work on employment and skills.
Cllr Elizabeth Campbell was elected Leader of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in July 2017 in the aftermath of the Grenfell Tragedy.
Elizabeth has been a Councillor in Chelsea since 2016 and was Cabinet member for Family and Children’s Services 2012-2017. She served as Chair of Chelsea Academy, an outstanding Church of England School, 2013-2017.
Elizabeth is the current portfolio holder on London Councils for Business, Economy and Culture.
Cllr Kieron Williams was elected Leader of Southwark Council on 16th September 2020.
Cllr Williams was elected as a Labour councillor in Camberwell Green ward in 2014. He has spent his career fighting for a better future, as a Labour activist, public health director and advisor to councils across Britain. He joined Southwark’s Cabinet in 2018, taking on the jobs, skills and innovation portfolio, and has served as Cabinet Member for Housing and Modernisation since 2019.
Cllr Claire Holland was confirmed as Leader of Lambeth Council on the 2nd June 2021.
Cllr Holland has represented Oval ward since 2014, and has been a legal aid children’s lawyer for more than 20 years. She was appointed as the Deputy Leader of Lambeth Council in May, 2018 and has also served as the council’s Cabinet lead for Sustainable Transport, Environment and Clean Air since that time.
Cllr Kaya Comer-Schwartz is the Leader of Islington Council.
Prior to becoming the Leader, Kaya was Executive Member for Children, Young People and Families. During her tenure as Executive Member, Islington Children's services department received an 'Outstanding' rating from Ofsted and the Council’s leadership was praised for its ‘unwavering commitment to improving and enriching the lives of children and their families’.
Kaya previously served as Executive Member for Community Development for three years and as Chair of Islington’s Children Services Scrutiny Committee. Kaya’s professional background is in the charitable sector.
Cllr Georgia Gould was appointed Leader of Camden Council in May 2017 and has served as a Councillor for Kentish Town Ward since 2010.
Georgia studied Politics and History at Oxford, and then graduated with a master's degree in global politics from the London School of Economics.
Georgia has a particular interest in youth politics and published a book called Wasted: How Misunderstanding Young Britain Threatens Our Future. Georgia also helped found Camden’s STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) Commission, designed to understand the future skills market and link them strongly with schools and Further Education, guaranteeing opportunities for young people.
Chris Hayward is the Chairman of the Policy and Resources Committee at the City of London Corporation.
Previously Deputy Chairman, Chris will now lead the City Corporation’s work on policy issues affecting the UK’s financial and related professional services sector as well as the Square Mile’s ongoing recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. Chris's role will also cover the City Corporation’s responsibilities as a local authority, overseeing the governing body’s open spaces, educational commitments and cultural institutions.
Prior to becoming Policy Chairman, Chris had a career as managing director of companies in the construction, aviation, infrastructure and global events management sectors.
Mayor Damien Egan was elected as a councillor for Lewisham Central ward in 2010 and became Lewisham’s Cabinet Member for Housing in 2014.
Before becoming Mayor, Damien worked for the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI). The ETI is an NGO that protects workers in sweatshops around the world and fights modern slavery.
Damien was elected as Mayor in May 2018. He is passionate about improving the lives of Lewisham’s residents. As Mayor of Lewisham he has committed to build a further 1,000 council homes, make Lewisham a borough of sanctuary for refugees and double the number of Living Wage employers in the borough.
Mayor Philip Glanville was elected Mayor of Hackney in September 2016 and re-elected in May 2018.
Philip was previously a councillor in Hoxton for ten years, and spent three years as Cabinet Member for Housing before becoming Deputy Mayor in 2016.
As Mayor, Philip has committed the Council to doubling the number of council homes built from 2018, and for Hackney to become the first borough in London to build 500 Living Rent homes - where no-one pays more than a third of their income in rent.
Employment, skills and education are also a key priority for the Mayor.
Cllr Peray Ahmet was officially appointed Leader of Haringey Council in May 2021.
Cllr Ahmet became a Councillor in 2014 and has held cabinet positions in two different administrations covering Environment and Adults and Health and wants to continue making a real change for local people living in the borough.
Lutfur Rahman became the Executive Mayor of Tower Hamlets in May 2022.
He previously served as the Borough’s first directly elected Mayor from 2010-2015. He served as a councillor for Spitalfields and Banglatown ward from 2002-2010, becoming council leader in 2008. During his first period as Mayor, Lutfur introduced many pioneering policies, such as providing universal free school meals for primary school children, building more council homes than anywhere in the country, and granting education bursaries to students attending university.
In his role as Mayor, Lutfur is working to support residents through the cost of living crisis, build 1,000 social homes a year, make Tower Hamlets a greener and cleaner Borough, and protect vital front line services.
Joe Dromey is the CLF Director and joined the team in April 2021.
Joe has worked on employment and skills policy for over a decade, including as an employment advisor in Southwark, a council officer in Newham, and at think tanks and research institutes. Joe was also a Councillor and Cabinet Member in the London Borough of Lewisham.
Joe is passionate about inclusive growth, London, and local government.
Fela is the Finance Manager for the Central London Works programme. She is a Chartered Accountant with considerable post qualification experience.
Fela has worked in both the public and private sectors in a range of financial management and audit roles. Before joining CLF in March 2018 she was the Finance and Corporate Services Manager for Central London Connexions (Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea).
Alison is the CLF Business Manager and is responsible for supporting the CLF Director and Leadership team to effectively manage the varied work of CLF and deliver the objectives of the CLF Board.
Before joining CLF, Alison worked for Clarins UK Ltd where she gained a number of years’ experience of providing support with staff training, supporting projects and events. Prior to this, Alison worked at Central London Connexions (Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea) as Office Manager for 7 years, where she gained experience of Business Management, partnership working and funded programmes.
Nicolina is the Compliance & Risk Manager.
Prior to joining CLF in August 2018, Nicolina held the post as ESF Product Specialist for a leading training provider.
Nicolina managed and monitored the compliance and regulatory risks of multiple ESF contracts, ensuring that the quality standards of the delivery process were met.
Nicolina played an important role in managing and implementing MI systems, supporting management of projects and creating policies for the smooth operations of the programmes.
Nicolina holds a Degree in Law and a MSc in Finance & Risk management.
Nadine is the Contract Manager for JETS.
Prior to joining CLF, Nadine worked mainly within the Welfare to Work sector.
Nadine delivered on a variety of contracts including ESF, SSU, Work Programme and AEB over the last 7 years and managed teams that supported numerous participants in to sustainable employment.
During the 4 years that she worked on the Work Programme, she quickly progressed through the ranks from an Advisor to a Centre Manager which enabled her to attain a vast skill set. Nadine has consistently implemented delivery strategies and processes to ensure she exceeds the expectations of both clients and stakeholders.
Jenny leads the work of the policy team in lobbying on behalf of and supporting the collective interests of CLF’s member boroughs.
Jenny has over eight years’ experience in the charity and public sectors, working in a range of policy and research related roles at organisations including London Councils, Scope and the Work Foundation, developing specialisms in labour market disadvantage and creating inclusive economies.
Jenny joined CLF in July 2019 from London Councils where she led the organisation’s policy activity on employment and economic growth and supported the devolution of the Work and Health Programme in London.
Nanita is the Contract Manager for the Central London Works programme.
With over 11 years’ experience, Nanita has worked across public, private and the third sector when supporting disadvantaged groups into employment.
Before joining CLF in July 2018, Nanita worked as a Contracts & Relationship Manager for BIG Lottery funded projects in Birmingham, improving services for people with multiple and complex needs.
Nanita holds a degree in Psychology, and qualifications in Counselling and Information, Advice and Guidance.
Efa leads on policy initiatives and project development with a focus on welfare, the labour market, and employment.
Efa has over four years' experience in policy and research, working across local government, further education and health and social care. Prior to joining CLF in May 2020, Efa worked at the General Pharmaceutical Council, developing policy initiatives to ensure patient safety and guidance for pharmacy professionals across Great Britain.
Efa holds a Law LLB degree from the University of Nottingham.
Tim joined CLF in November 2020.
Tim has over 20 years’ experience of delivering welfare to work and skills programmes across the North East, North West, South East and Greater London.
Tim has direct delivery experience of many programmes including the Work Programme, Flexible New Deal, New Deal, New Deal for Self Employment, Action Teams and Employment Zones.
Jon has been a senior leader within employability, skills, health and justice for almost 20 years, working across the private, public and third sectors. In his role as Senior Contracts Manager at CLF, Jon is responsible for of all of the employment and skills programmes which we both commission and deliver.
Prior to this role, Jon worked for the national charity Shaw Trust for seven years, where he held several Head of Operations posts, on which he had overall responsibility for all internal and supply chain delivery.
Jon has been a Chartered Manager and Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute for over 5 years and a Board Director and Fellow of the Institute of Employability Professionals since 2018.
Georgina joined CLF’s policy team in November 2020 and leads on policy initiatives and research related to place-making, regeneration and infrastructure.
Georgina has over five years experience working in local government, primarily within planning policy but also economic development and corporate policy teams. Prior to joining CLF, Georgina worked in the Spatial Planning team at the London Borough of Croydon developing policy on Housing and Climate Change to support the review of the Local Plan.
Georgina holds a Masters degree in Urban Regeneration from The Bartlett School of Planning, UCL.
Nicola joined CLF in June 2021.
Nicola will be working with our member boroughs, GLA and other stakeholders focused on improving digital connectivity in central London.
Nicola has previously worked for Haringey, Southwark and Islington as part of her extensive experience of working in local government, which includes a broadband rollout.
Exavia is the Project Officer for the Connecting Communities programme.
Exavia has worked across both Public and Private sectors, helping to deliver projects and services with high importance to health and safety and safeguarding.
Prior to joining CLF, Exavia worked in a Local Authority funded Pupil Referral Unit. Exavia supported with business operations and reintegration, which helped to improve education for teenagers affected by violence, crime or statistics of ‘NEET’ (Not in Education, Employment or Training).
Exavia holds a degree in International Business Management, a qualification in Finance and a MSc PG Dip in Real Estate Surveying.
Rose is the Project Officer for the Digital Connectivity programme, supporting the Digital Champion to improve digital connectivity in central London.
Rose has experience working in project management, project administration and research, having previously worked in both the private and charity sectors. Prior to joining CLF in August 2021, Rose worked in operations, supporting on the delivery of the Central London Works, employability programme.
Rose holds a BA degree in Anthropology and an MSc in Global Migration.
Jayne joined CLF in November 2021 following a 10 year career in Senior Management within PbR employability contracts.
Jayne has vast experience of managing quality, compliance and the performance of internal and supply chain delivery. Ensuring that remote, geographically spread teams both in custody and the community facilitate a progressive journey supporting participants to break down barriers and moving into the labour market.
Jayne has a BSc in Social Policy and Criminology and a level 5 Operations Management with ILM.
Liz is the Contract Manager for the Connecting Communities programme and has worked in the Employability sector for over 10 years.
With extensive experience of both operational and supply chain management, Liz has managed teams across London and the South East on Work Programmes, Work and Health Programme and Restart as well as GLA/ESF contracts in the past. She has a wealth of experience in delivering results on fast paced and demanding employability and skills programmes.
Prior to joining the sector Liz worked in Further Education as a Community Development Manager, taking skills and learning out to disadvantaged and marginalised groups in the local communities.
Michael is the Finance Assistant on the CLF Connecting Communities programme and joined CLF in December 2021.
Michael has over 15 years’ experience in finance and accountancy industries both in the public, private and non-profit sector. Michael is also the Vice President of Operations, for the charity The 100 Black Men of London, moving on from the Vice President of finance in January 2021.
Michael also mentors under 18’s from the community, supporting with school and career progression.
Julie is the Compliance & Risk Officer on the CLF Connecting Communities programme.
Prior to working with CLF, Julie worked for a national training provider who delivered high tech apprenticeships as well as GLA & response to redundancy contracts.
Julie has worked in the FE sector for more than 30 years. Throughout her career she has had varied roles which have equipped her with an enhanced knowledge base in both operational and supply management as well as establishing quality improvement and compliance within her remit.
Julie has completed a CertEd and level 5 in Quality Management.
Aleyna joined CLF’s Policy Team in January 2022 and leads on policy initiatives and research focused on skills and Net Zero.
Aleyna has worked with councils across London and England to support the development of strategies and visions, including on health inequalities, childhood obesity and climate action.
Prior to joining CLF, Aleyna worked as a policy consultant undertaking research across different strands of social policy and public service delivery. During this time, she was involved in helping local authorities progress and deliver on the green skills and green jobs agenda.
Aleyna holds a BA degree in Sociology and MA in Social and Political Thought from the University of Leeds.
Shirah is the Compliance & Risk Officer for the CLW programme.
Shirah has experience in project management and project administration. Prior to joining CLF, Shirah worked as a Learning Programme Manager with clients based in the public and private sector and has also worked for the London borough of Ealing where she provided financial, administrative, and operational support for a variety of training programmes.
Shirah holds a BA (Hons) degree in Business Management and a Prince2 Foundation and Practitioner certificate.
Anu is the Integration Hub Manager, supporting the integration of employment and skills services in central London as part of the No Wrong Door agenda.
Anu is an experienced performance manager from the employment and skills sector. Prior to joining CLF in July 2022, Anu managed ESF and DWP funded projects supporting Londoners with multiple barriers to employment, including SEND NEET young people and Londoners with disabilities or health conditions.
Anu holds a doctorate in Political Science and Master’s degree in International Relations. Anu is a qualified Change Management Practitioner and has completed a university certificate in Careers Education and Guidance.
Andrea is the Integration Hub Officer, supporting the Integration of employment and skills services in Central London as part of the No Wrong Door agenda.
Andrea has worked in a range of education settings for over ten years so has a good understanding of the processes and procedures. She also has excellent knowledge of Welfare to Work sector and keeps up to date with new government work initiatives for the unemployed and how it affects priority groups.
Andrea holds a Cert Ed, Level 6 Diploma in CIAG (Careers, Information, Advice and Guidance) and IQA (Internal Quality Assurance) level 4.