Executive leadership team

On a daily basis the College is led by the Principal, Verity Hancock, and the executive leadership team.

Verity Hancock, PrincipalVerity Hancock, Principal and CEO

Verity became Principal of Leicester College in January 2013.

Prior to joining the College, she was Executive Director of Capacity and Infrastructure at the Skills Funding Agency.

Since gaining a law degree from New College, Oxford in 1988, Verity has pursued a career in education and previously held positions with the City and Guilds of London Institute, Training and Enterprise Councils and the Learning and Skills Council (LSC). She held a number of senior positions within the LSC, including Regional Director, East Midlands and National Director of Funding, Planning and Performance.


Shabir IsmailShabir Ismail, Deputy Principal/CEO

Shabir joined Leicester College in October 2010. He has been working in the education sector since 1996 when he joined the Further Education Funding Council. He has also previously held posts as a Consultant with Bentley Jennison assisting colleges in financial difficulties, financial controller for Becta and eventually moving to North Warwickshire and Hinckley College as Assistant Principal, Finance and Risk Management where he worked for eight years.

Shabir also served as Non-Executive Director with George Eliot NHS Trust for four years. As a Board Member he assisted the Trust in considerably improving both the financial and clinical performance over a short period of time.

Shabir is a Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants and holds a BSc honours degree in Mathematics.


Kully SandhuKully Sandhu, Vice Principal – Adult and Higher Education

Kully was appointed to Leicester College as Assistant Principal for Skills for Life and Functional Skills in August 2007. He previously held the positions of Lecturer, Head of School for Automotive Engineering, Quality Manager and Assistant Director for Widening Participation at the College. His curriculum specialism is motor vehicle engineering, which he taught for 11 years.

Prior to working in Further Education in 1993, Kully was employed in the motor industry. After completing his apprenticeship he held the posts of Technician specialising in automotive electronics, Workshop Supervisor and Trainer. In 1990 he became a partner in an independent garage business. Kully holds an MSc in Educational Leadership.


Deborah Donnarumma, Vice Principal – Curriculum, study programme and apprenticeship

Debi Donnarumma joined the college in May 2021 as Vice Principal, Study Programmes and Apprenticeships. She has previously worked as a Vice Principal in colleges across the East and West Midlands for the last 10 year. She started her FE career 22 years ago, as a teacher at Leicester College. She has previously worked within several industries including fitness, insurance, and hospitality, both in the UK and abroad. She has also held governor posts in local schools.


Della, Director of Human ResourcesDella Sewell, Director of Human Resources

Della joined the College in July 2020 as Director of Human Resources. Previously Della was Head of HR at Nottingham College and prior to that worked in HR at Nottingham City Council for nearly 30 years. She began her career working in Personnel at Queens Medical Centre, Nottingham.

Della has experience as a Chair of Governors for a primary school in Nottingham as well as being a governor for both her daughters school for 8 years.

Della has a degree in History from Sheffield University and is  a member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.


Louise HazelLouise Hazel, Director of Governance and Policy

Louise was appointed as Director of Governance and Policy in 2016 having previously held a policy and planning role at the College. Before joining Leicester College she worked for the Further Education Funding Council.

Louise has several years’ experience as a school governor in both primary and secondary schools as well as experience as Company Secretary for a City school. She is currently a governor at a Leicestershire secondary academy.