Our Team

Our Team

Staff Team

Akbar Sikder
Pauline Gregson
Yasin Ahmed
Andrew Stanley

Teaching Team

Alan Murray
Rachael Parker
Cathy Nassimi-Green
Tessa Padden
Daniel Langholtz
Adrian Bailey
Marie Webb-Stevens
Gail Dixon
Paul Michaels
Chance Walton-Ashmore
Akbar Sikder BA (Hons), MA, RSLI, RSLT, A1
Hearing Interpreter, Translator and Assessor
Course Convenor: Interpreter Development Programme for Heritage Signers, Level 6 Diploma in Sign Language Interpreting
Languages: British Sign Language, English, French, French Sign Language
Qualifications:
BA (Honours) French and Linguistics, University of Manchester
MA Translation and Interpreting, University of Manchester
Registered Sign Language Interpreter
Registered Sign Language Translator
Level 5 Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults
Level 3 Award in Education and Training
A1 Assessor
Member of the Association of Sign Language Interpreters (MASLI)
Bio:
Akbar is a hearing child of two deaf parents, growing up bilingual in English and BSL. He holds a BA (Honours) in French and Linguistics and an MA (Merit) in Translation and Interpreting from the University of Manchester. He is a Registered Sign Language Interpreter (RSLI) and Registered Sign Language Translator (RSLT) with the NRCPD. He is fluent in English, BSL, French, and French Sign Language (LSF).

He is qualified in both spoken language and signed language interpreting and translation and has been working as a professional signed language interpreter since 2009 (qualified 2018). He is experienced in a wide range of domains, specialising in education, legal, Islamic settings and broadcast media, including BBC News and Parliament TV.

He has authored a number of publications on interpreting and translation, including his groundbreaking article 'Power Down' – examining the lack of ethnic diversity in the signed language interpreting profession – published in Newsli and VIEWS in 2020. He is a founding member of the Interpreters of Colour Network (IOCN) and served on the Board from 2020-2022. In 2022, he was awarded the IOCN Evolution Award in recognition of his 'outstanding contribution to the network and the signed language interpreting profession'.

Akbar is a qualified teacher and A1 assessor for the BSL, interpreting and translation qualifications. This includes working closely with awarding bodies on the development and assessment of BSL, interpreting and translation qualifications, and with the NRCPD as a Professional Standards Advisor. He was the course convenor for 2 modules on the MA Translation programme at University College London.
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Pauline Gregson BA (Hons)
Operations Manager
Yasin Ahmed
Digital Media Officer
Andrew Stanley BSc, PGCE, A1, V1
Deaf Interpreter, Teacher, Assessor and Verifier
Course Convenor: British Sign Language courses, Interpreting Foundations
Languages: British Sign Language, Irish Sign Language, English
Qualifications:
BSc (Honours) Product Design
Post Graduate Certificate in Education, University of Huddersfield
A1 Assessor
Internal Quality Assurer
Bio:
Andrew is a highly experienced British Sign Language and Irish Sign Language teacher with over 20 years of experience teaching both face-to-face and online courses. He has taught all levels of BSL and ISL and is a Signature external examiner for both BSL and ISL qualifications. He holds a Post Graduate Certificate in Education from the University of Huddersfield, A1 Assessor and IQA qualifications. He is fluent in BSL, ISL and ASL. Andrew is also training to become a qualified deaf relay interpreter.
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Alan Murray MBE, BA, CertEd, RSLT, MVLP, A1, V1, V2
Deaf Interpreter, Teacher, Assessor and Verifier
Course Teacher: Deaf Interpreter Development Programme
Languages: British Sign Language, English
Qualifications:
BA (Honours) Education and Training, University of Greenwich
Certificate in Education, University of Greenwich
Registered Sign Language Translator
A1 Assessor
Internal Quality Assurer
External Quality Assurer
Bio:
Alan was born deaf and is a BSL user. He started his career in law at Gray’s Inn, later becoming a management accountant before embarking on a new career in further education as the manager of a BSL unit, later becoming Head of Additional Learning Support and later the lead disability coordinator for four campuses in west London. His last employment before retirement was CEO of a user-led disability organisation.

A highly experienced BSL teacher, assessor and verifier, with over 35 years in the field, Alan holds the OCR External Quality Assurer Award, City & Guilds D34 Internal Verifier and D32/D33 Assessor qualifications, and a Certificate in Education. Alan is also a Fellow of Chartered Management Institute and Institute of Financial Accountants.

Alan led the development of the BDA Sign Language Policy 1999-2001 and was a part of the team that raised the profile of BSL, leading to 18 March 2003 acceptance of BSL. He is a Registered Sign Language Translator with the NRCPD, Member of Visual Language Professionals and a Deaf Relay Interpreter in the legal domains.

Outside of the world of teaching, Alan has served on the Boards of several influential deaf organisations and received the British Deaf Association Medal of Honour.

Alan is also a BSL Guide at the British Museum, Foundling Museum, Museum of London, National Gallery, National Portrait Gallery, Old Royal Naval College, Tate Britain and Wallace Collection.
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Rachael Parker BA, CertEd, RSLT, A1, V1, V2
Deaf Translator, Teacher, Assessor and Verifier
Course Teacher: Deaf Interpreter Development Programme
Languages: British Sign Language, English
Qualifications:
BA (Honours) Art with Education
Certificate in Education, University of Southampton
Registered Sign Language Translator
A1 Assessor
Internal Quality Assurer
External Quality Assurer
Bio:
Rachael holds a Certificate in Education from the University of Southampton, A1 assessor and internal and external verifier qualifications. She is a Registered Sign Language Translator with the NRCPD. She has been teaching and assessing all levels of BSL for 15 years and currently runs BSLCourses.co.uk, delivering online BSL courses from levels 1 to 6. She is a highly experienced assessor and verifier for BSL qualifications, and has taught on interpreter development programmes. She has been a qualified sign language translator since 2017 and has experience working as both a BSL/English translator and a deaf relay interpreter.
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Cathy Nassimi-Green CTLLS, A1
Deaf Teacher and Assessor
Course Teacher: Interpreter Development Programme for Heritage Signers, British Sign Language courses
Languages: British Sign Language, English
Qualifications:
Level 4 Certificate in Teaching in the Lifelong Learning Sector
A1 Assessor
Bio:
Cathy is a deaf child of deaf parents and comes from a large deaf family. She has been teaching BSL for over 10 years and has experience in teaching all levels of BSL. She holds the Level 4 Certificate in Teaching in the Lifelong Learning Sector (CTLLS) and the A1 Assessor qualifications. She also has skills and experience in International Sign interpreting and deaf-blind interpreting.
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Tessa Padden MA, RSLI, RSLT, MASLI
Deaf Interpreter and Translator
Course Teacher: Interpreter Development Programme for Heritage Signers, Deaf Interpreter Development Programme
Languages: British Sign Language, Irish Sign Language, American Sign Language, English

Qualifications:
MA Management, University of Newcastle
Registered Sign Language Interpreter
Registered Sign Language Translator
Member of Association of Sign Language Interpreters
Bio:
Tessa is the deaf child of deaf Irish parents who lived in England for over 50 years. She is trilingual in British Sign Language (BSL), Irish Sign Language (ISL) and English. She is a Registered Sign Language Interpreter (RSLI) and Registered Sign Language Translator (RSLT) with the NRCPD, working between ISL, BSL and International Sign. She is an experienced BSL teacher, teacher trainer, translator, television presenter and interpreter. She has taught and trained BSL teachers and sign language interpreters all over the world and for institutions including Durham University, Bristol University, Wolverhampton University, City University London, Queen’s University Belfast, The British Deaf Association, The Royal National Institute for Deaf People, The National Deaf Children’s Society, The Irish Deaf Society and Deaf Action (Scotland).

Tessa was the founding Chair of IBSL and Chair of the BDA’s BSL Academy in 2006-2015. In 2011, she founded Signworld, an online learning resource to support sign language learners and teachers. She became one of the first deaf people in the UK to qualify as both a sign language translator (English/BSL) and a sign language interpreter (BSL/ASL).
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Daniel Langholtz MA, CDI
Deaf Interpreter and ASL Teacher
Course Teacher: American Sign Language, Deaf Interpreter Development Programme
Languages: American Sign Language, British Sign Language, English
Qualifications:
MA Social Work
Certified Deaf Interpreter (CDI)
Bio:
Born in New York USA.  Deaf at birth and raised by hearing family.  Attended Lexington School for the Deaf in New York City, obtained Bachelor’s degree at NTID/RIT in Rochester, NY and Master Social Work Degree at NYU.

Employed as a clinical social worker, first job was in Cincinnati, Ohio for 5 years, then switched to an outpatient mental health facility then became a Director in University of California San Francisco during the last 2 years of his service. Retired in 2012.  Dan was also contracted to provide counselling and mentoring services to Deaf & Hard of Hearing school youngsters across several schools in the Central Valley.  Taught ASL classes to adults and families in San Francisco  Bay Area.  

Worked as a freelance Certified Deaf Interpreter (CDI) in various legal, social and health services settings.  A long time member of Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) and actively served on multiple committees such as assisting in rewriting Code of Ethics, ensuring Ethical Practices compliance and revamping certificate testing materials.  Dan provided CDI/RID workshops, covering Mental Health issues, HIV/AIDS, Vicarious Trauma, Deaf/Hearing Interactions. Coauthored Anna Mindess’ “Reading Between the Signs” - available in English, Chinese, Swedish and recently French.

After 19 years of bi-coastal commuting between San Francisco and London, Dan is now a full time British resident, living with his husband.  He continues to provide online counseling services to American deaf persons. Has taught ASL classes in London to deaf people and interpreters as well as currently teaching on one to one basis with individuals including Stanley Tucci, famous film actor in preparation for one of his films!

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Adrian Bailey BSc (Hons), PGCE, RSLI, MASLI
Hearing Interpreter, Teacher and Assessor
Course Teacher: Interpreter Development Programme for Heritage Signers
Languages: British Sign Language, English

Qualifications:
BSc (Honours) Deaf Studies, University of Bristol
Post Graduate Certificate of Education, Edge Hill University
Registered Sign Language Interpreter
Member of the Association of Sign Language Interpreters
Bio:
Adrian is a hearing child of two deaf parents, growing up bilingual in English and BSL. He holds a BSc (Honours) in Deaf Studies from the University of Bristol and a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) from Edge Hill University. He is a Registered Sign Language Interpreter (RSLI) with the NRCPD, a Member of the Association of Sign Language Interpreters (MASLI) and he holds Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). He has been working as a BSL/English interpreter since 2014 and has experience in a wide range of domains, including extensive work within the film and television industry. He previously worked as a drama teacher. Adrian is also proficient in ASL and International Sign, and has worked as an interpreter at the European Parliament in Brussels. Adrian is currently studying on the prestigious European Masters in Sign Language Interpreting programme.
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Marie Webb-Stevens BSc, RSLI, A1
Hearing Interpreter and Assessor
Course Teacher: Diploma in Sign Language Interpreting
Languages: British Sign Language, English

Qualifications:
BSc Psychology (hons)
Registered Sign Language Interpreter
A1 Assessor
Qualified Mentor
VLP Member
Bio:
Marie is a Registered Sign Language Interpreter (RSLI) with the NRCPD, a member with Visual Language Professionals (VLP) and holds a Certificate in Assessing Vocational Achievement (CAVA). 

She qualified as an interpreter in 2011 and has experience working in various domains especially social work, religion, medical and education. Marie has a qualification in mentoring which is a useful asset while assessing candidates. She is also a trustee for a Deaf charity which raises awareness and funds to support the education of children and young people in the pacific.
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Gail Dixon BA, RSLI, A1
Hearing Interpreter and Assessor
Course Teacher: Diploma in Sign Language Interpreting
Languages: British Sign Language, English

Qualifications:
Postgraduate Certificate in Clinical Supervision, University of Derby
A1 Assessor
Level 3 Education and Training
Diploma in British Sign Language/English Interpreting, UCLAN
ASLI Mentor
Bio:
An experienced British Sign Language interpreter, holding a Post Graduate Diploma in British Sign Language/English Interpreting from the University of Central Lancashire. Gail has worked across multiple domains, specialising in medical, mental health and social care settings. 

She holds Level 7 Postgraduate Certificate in Clinical Supervision at the University of Derby and an ASLI trained mentor. She is a qualified assessor and a NRCPD supervisor of trainees. She provides supervision to sign language interpreters and receives supervision for both her interpreting practice and her supervisor practice.
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Paul Michaels MA, PGDip, RSLI, A1
Hearing Interpreter and Assessor
Course Teacher: Diploma in Sign Language Interpreting
Languages: British Sign Language, English

Qualifications:
Postgraduate Diploma in Interpreting with the Deaf Community, Durham University (2009 - Distinction)
Postgraduate Diploma in Interpreting and Translation, University of Central Lancashire (2011 - Merit)
Master’s Degree by Research, Durham University (2015)
Diploma in Supervision, 360 Supervision (2018)
Level 3 Certificate in Assessing Vocational Achievement (CAVA/A1) (2022)
Bio:
Paul first started to learn sign language when his niece was diagnosed as deaf in 2001. He holds two Postgraduate Diplomas in Interpreting (Durham University and University of Central Lancashire) and a Master’s Degree (Durham University) and is currently undertaking a PhD (Durham University). He is a Registered Sign Language Interpreter (RSLI) with the NRCPD and a member of the Association of Sign Language Interpreters (ASLI), Visual Language Professionals (VLP), European Forum of Sign Language Interpreters (efsli), World Association of Sign Language Interpreters (WASLI) and British Sociological Association (BSA).

He has been working as a professional signed language interpreter since 2009 (qualified 2011). He is experienced in a wide range of domains including education, medical and performance. In addition, he has presented his research at numerous conferences in both the UK and internationally. He has authored several publications and serves as an Editorial Board Advisor for Newsli (ASLI quarterly magazine).

Paul is a qualified Professional/Clinical Supervisor working with individuals and groups and more recently qualified as an assessor (CAVA). He is an approved TSLI supervisor and Complaints Case Examiner with NRCPD.
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Chance Walton-Ashmore BA (Hons), RSLI, A1
Hearing Interpreter and Assessor
Course Teacher: Interpreting Foundations, Diploma in Sign Language Interpreting
Languages: British Sign Language, English

Qualifications:
BA (Honours) British Sign Language/English Interpreting, University of Wolverhampton
Registered Sign Language Interpreter
A1 Assessor
Bio:
Chance Walton-Ashmore began learning BSL at a very young age as his mother is an interpreter. He trained at Wolverhampton University on the interpreting programme, graduating in 2015 with a first-class BA Hons degree and progressed to become RSLI in 2017. He works as a freelance interpreter mainly in the East Midlands, interpreting in medical, community and legal settings. 

He qualified as an assessor in 2019. He currently sits on the board of directors for the Visual Language professionals (VLP) organising their CPD programme and a Standard Advisor for NRCPD. He also offers training for communication professionals on Sexual Health and the LGBTQIA+ terminology and vocabulary.

Walking the dog and travelling are the things that he looks forward to.
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