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How we work

Our Leadership & Service areas

We have in place a very stable, highly experienced and committed senior leadership team committed to achieving high standards of practice. This has brought new energy to positively take forward a long-term strong and aspirational vision to improve outcomes for children.

Nick Ireland was appointed permanent Strategic Director of People in September 2019, having previously been Acting Strategic Director of the council’s People Directorate since January 2018. Supported by Jonathan Williams, Assistant Director, the service has 4 permanent Heads of Service who oversee the various teams in the service. 

Averil Kathan oversees the front door to Sutton Children’s Services. With responsibility for our Children’s First Contact Service, Early Help Service, Referral and Assessment Service and Children's Emergency Duty Team (across Sutton, Merton, Kingston and Richmond), the Referral, Assessment and Interventions Service ensures that Sutton children and families receive the safeguarding advice and support they require in a timely manner. See our Referral, Assessment and Interventions Service page for further details of the teams and roles within this service. 

Jackie McCarthy has responsibility for the teams delivering early help, child in need and child protection intervention in Sutton. The Family Support and Care Planning service delivers locality-based support to our most in need families. The service also contains our Integrated Youth Service, which offers support to our most at-risk adolescents, including those at the edge of care and known to the youth justice system. For more information on these teams, see our Family, Support and Care Planning page.

Michael Taylor is the service leader for our Corporate Parenting teams, who offer support to children in our care, care leavers, Foster Carers and Special Guardians. With responsibility for ensuring that our Corporate Parenting Strategy is implemented, Michael’s service aims to be “less corporate and more parent” by supporting children in care in the same way we would our own children. If you want to know more on the work of the teams in Michael's service area, please see our Corporate Parenting page.

Debbie Owen is the interim Head of Service for the Quality and Practice Service. Debbie is leading on the development of Quality Assurance, Practice and Performance frameworks in relation to Children and Adult Social Work and SEND. If you want to learn more about the teams and roles within this area, see the Quality & Practice page.

Angela Killalea is the Head of Practice & Principal Social Worker (Children's Services). Angela is responsible for leading practice and aspects of workforce development across Children’s Services. This entails overseeing the embedding and delivery of Sutton’s model of practice (restorative practice, trauma-informed and contextual safeguarding). Linked to this has been developing the current Supervision Policy and other practice guidance to help staff feel supported in their practice. Angela is also involved in regular quality assurance activity and the practice development work which might arise from this. Angela has key responsibility for activity within the Workforce Strategy Delivery Plan (as it relates to Children’s Services) and as part of her role, Angela also supervises the Specialist Safeguarding Leads and Contextual Safeguarding Lead. For more information on the service that Angela oversees see the Complex Safeguarding & Practice Support page.

Photo of Jonathan Williams, Assistant Director of Children's Services 

Jonathan Williams, Assistant Director of Children's Services