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Our Team

We have an excellent team of deaf trainers and role models are the heart of our organisation.  Deafax has a small dynamic team of staff and volunteers all of whom work to ensure we deliver a big impact!

Helen Lansdown - Chief Executive

Helen read for an English Literature degree at the University of Reading before establishing her own business in educational interpreting and the provision of literacy support for deaf students throughout England. She is a qualified British Sign Language user. She originally joined Deafax as the Programmes Director and has travelled extensively throughout the world (New Zealand, America, France, West Indies, Europe to name but a few) carrying out research into the needs of d/Deaf children and working with professionals in education. These initiatives led to the setting up of a Deafchild UK Consortium of which she was Director, obtaining recognition as a Government approved ICT Training Provider for Teachers of the Deaf. She has been Chief Executive since 2006.

She has been responsible for pioneering a wide and innovative range of programmes in health and education notably collaborating more recently as Co-founder of Signly, an award-winning app which displays pre-recorded sign language videos on a user's mobile, enabling better access to written content for d/Deaf sign language users. Signly's audio layer also benefits people with sight loss. 

See also:

Further information

British Sign Language welcome

Ken Carter - Founder

Ken Carter is the Founder of Deafax and is now the Director of the Deafax Research and Development Unit which is based at the University of Reading. He attended Millfield School and has studied at Loughborough, Surrey and London Universities. In his early years he excelled at sport and undertook duties as a Royal Marine Commando. When he became a parent of a deaf daughter he trained as a teacher of the deaf and went on to work as an advisory lecturer in special needs. He has been responsible for helping to set up 10 charities/companies limited by guarantee operating as charitable/social entrepreneur and Advisor. For his contribution to preventative medicine and healthcare, he was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine in 2007. In 2009 he was awarded an Honorary Degree from Loughborough University as part of their Centenary Celebrations and recently recognized as a Distinguished Old Millfieldian.

Debbie Flory - Administrator and Events Coordinator

Debbie joined Deafax in 2004 and is key in managing the day-to-day administration and co-ordinating the fundraising and pubilicity events. Prior to this, Debbie worked for many years in the Financial Services Sector starting as a member of the New Business Team and ending her career as Executive Assistant to the CEO and Sales Director. 

Rubbena Aurangzeb-Tariq -Lead Trainer

Rubbena Aurangzeb-Tariq, who is profoundly deaf, has over 15 years of experience of management and training in the voluntary and statutory sectors. She has expertise in an extensive range of fields including deafness, education, mental health, BME and currently works as a consultant and trainer on health education and the pioneering Signly app ( programme. In addition she is Chair of the Deaf Ethnic Women’s Association, and works as a Clinical Specialist for the NHS and as an art psychotherapist with a special interest in deaf children and young people with severe emotional and behavioural problems. As a graduate from St Martins College studying Fine Art and Goldsmiths University in London, she is a renowned artist and has been exhibiting her work since 1992 both nationally and internationally, winning the prestigious Deaf Explorers Arts Award.

Andrianos Papaioannou - Finance Manager

Andrianos (going by the name of Drico), runs his own Accounting and Business company. He has consulted for Deafax as Finance Manager since 2014 advising on the financial health of the charity, along with overseeing the income and expenditure and compiling the annual accounts. 

Philip Boyle - Advisor (Signly Product Champion)

Phil Boyle has a distinguished record of accomplishment involving him in assignments and projects supporting the work of d/Deaf, Deafblind and Disability social enterprises with over 20 years senior level experience in the public, charitable and private sectors. He is a specialist in inclusion and equality, especially leveraging educational ICT. He took a lead role in developing the Signly App with Deafax and continues to advise on its implementation.

Ovais Khan -  Freelance Graphic Designer

Ovais Khan, who is profoundly deaf, has over 15 years’ experience of creating and designing specialist resources, primarily for educational purposes. He has a wealth of creative ideas and solutions and is renowned for the quality of his people skills

William Sidebottom - Web Designer and Music Advisor

William Sidebottom designed and currently manages the Deafax website. He has extensive experience of social media and advises on leveraging this to enhance the marketing and publicity of the work of Deafax. He is also a talented musician and songwriter graduating from the University of Westminster in Commercial Music. He was a key in developing Deafax’s music programme.

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