Farewell to ‘inspiring’ Dame Maura Regan DBE OBE DL

21st July 2022

Last week, Heads, teachers, governors, school staff, and students from across the North East gathered to give thanks to Trust CEO and Schools North East Trustee Dame Maura Regan DBE as she celebrated her upcoming retirement after an incredible 43 years in education.

Dame Maura Regan

Maura became a Dame Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (DBE) in 2021 as part of the Queen’s Birthday Honours to recognise her outstanding leadership and service to education. Previously, Maura received an OBE in 2015 for services to education. Maura began her career teaching, before taking on pastoral roles and later becoming Deputy Head and then Principal of Carmel College. She is also a Deputy Lieutenant for County Durham.

Maura is the founding CEO of Carmel Education Trust, taking Carmel College from a single school to the lead school in their MAT. Her trust later amalgamated with two others to form Bishop Hogarth Catholic Education Trust, comprising 35 schools from across the region, making it a leading organisation recognised nationally.

Maura is passionate about making a difference and believes that ‘every child should be given every opportunity to succeed’. Mike Shorten, Deputy CEO of Bishop Hogarth Catholic Education Trust commented:

‘Children, teachers and school leaders, too many to count, have been inspired and challenged by Maura to go on to do great things. She has been integral to the DNA of Carmel College and the Bishop Hogarth Catholic Education Trust, her 43 years in education has seen many changes but she has always kept the children at the heart of everything she has done. Maura’s wit, humour and tenacity will be sorely missed. We wish her every joy and happiness in her retirement.’

43 years

The farewell event last week saw a celebration of Maura and all that she has contributed to the education sector locally, regionally and nationally. The main celebrant was the Bishop of Hexham and Newcastle the Rt. Rev. Robert Byrne CO, at St Mary’s Cathedral in Newcastle. Students from the trust were present to give Maura a warm send off. Chris Zarraga, Director of Schools North East, commented:

‘It was a pleasure to be present for Maura’s celebration. We witnessed the positive impact she has had on the people of the North East through the outpouring of love present at her retirement event. Maura has an amazing career in education and has been committed in her service to the region’s schools. We are lucky to have Maura as one of our Trustees and to have always had her as a champion of Schools North East and education in the North East. The team at Schools North East would all like to again thank Maura for her  amazing 43 years of service and dedication to the young people of our region.’

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