Leadership 2025

What is it?

Leadership 2025 is an intensive 9-month leadership development programme, in partnership with Roffey Park, available exclusively to senior leaders from BME backgrounds working in the housing sector. At its heart, Leadership 2025 aims to support and empower BME senior professionals to become sector leaders of the future. However, more than just leadership programme, Leadership 2025 seeks to positively disrupt the housing sector by challenging current perceptions and promoting the fact that diversity is not just something that ticks boxes but is actually good for business.

Leadership 2025 has a long-term ambition of supporting the creation of a housing sector that is vibrant and diverse at all levels, with better representation of BME individuals at leadership levels.

The programme is aimed at senior leaders in the housing sector. The senior leaders can include:

  • Second tier Executive members
  • CEOs of small HAs
  • Exec and CEO ready individuals

This programme will create leaders which will subsequently create gaps for junior members to progress upwards to fill these positions. The aim of the programme will be to attract and retain smart individuals.

For those who are not quite ready for this programme but would like to develop their leadership experience, either the Future of London Leaders’ or Future of London Leaders’ Plus programmes may be the one for you.

Why was it set up?

In many areas, the housing sector is ahead of the curve on diversity and inclusion in employment.

Research from the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) shows that the housing sector is:

  • More diverse than other sectors
  • Employing a higher proportion of women
  • Employing more people from BME communities
  • Employing more people with disabilities

But where the sector falls short is in the proportion of BME people in key leadership roles. It is disproportionately small with just 4% of senior leadership roles held by individuals from BME backgrounds, compared to a 14% BME make-up of the total population. Whilst there are a number of BME CEOs in BME HAs, these organisations tend to be between 50 – 5,000 units. The representation of BME individuals in larger HAs drops significantly.

There is talent in the sector, but it is not coming through. In response to this challenge, L&Q, Optivo and the BME London Group, in partnership with Roffey Park, have joined forces to develop a leadership programme – Leadership 2025. This programme will help guide senior BME leaders in housing to navigate the glass maze of executive leadership and become the sector influencers of the future.

“The CIH Presidential Commission on Leadership and Diversity identified some big sector challenges to facilitate inclusion at the top. Leadership 2025 is one powerful solution. I’m delighted to see the sector is ready to take action.”
Terrie Alafat (CIH Chief Executive), 2017

Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London, shows his support as he congratulates the second cohort and emphasises the importance of diversity in the housing sector.

The Trustees

The Leadership 2025 Trustees, that looks after the day-to-day operations of the programme, comprises:

Olu Olanrewaju


Gina Amoh

CEO, Inquilab HA

Kate Dodsworth

CEO, Gateway HA

Funders Group

The Leadership 2025 Funders Group, that has oversight of the overall programme and provides guidance and advice to the Shadow Trustees, comprises:

Supported by Altair, the specialist housing and regeneration consultancy

Fiona Underwood

Chief Executive, Altair

Mihir Shah

Consultant, Altair

The Shadow Trustees are supported by:

Altair the specialist housing and regeneration consultancy

We are specialist housing consultants working across the UK and Ireland with a focus on adding value for our clients – whether they are a local authority, housing association, ALMO or private sector developer. Our team is second to none, offering real world expertise, thought leadership and insight. That’s why working with Altair helps organisations achieve their objectives, driven by our unique perspective into the rapidly changing market and political landscape.

Roffey Park

Founded in 1946, Roffey Park is a charitable trust which is internationally recognised for developing innovative learning approaches that enable individuals to achieve their full potential both at work and in their wider lives.

Roffey Park’s charitable objectives are:

  • To conduct promote and support for the benefit of the public research into questions affecting the health and welfare of all those engaged in industry, commerce and the public services and particularly into questions concerning the relations between management and employees and into the application of the Social Sciences to such questions and to publish the results of such research.
  • To advance education by providing training and discussion courses in all or any aspects of the science of personnel management for managers, administrators and supervisors and others having similar responsibilities.

Leadership 2025 is sponsored by