OKMT is governed by a Board of Trustees and is run by our Director, Clare Lawrence, with a small staff team. Our part-time qualified Music Therapists have all completed a Masters Degree in Music Therapy. They are registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and uphold its Standards of Conduct, Performance and Ethics supported by the Guide to Professional Practice which is produced by the British Association of Music Therapists (BAMT). We have 3 part-time administrative and fundraising staff members. All of our therapists and staff have DBS checks and receive regular Safeguarding Training. We are also assisted by around 15 volunteers who help with marketing, social media, IT and at our various concerts and events.
Ron is currently the COO for Hadrian’s Wall Capital, a new financial services company in the process of raising capital to invest in UK SMEs. He began his financial services career with Morgan Stanley New York in 1991 in the Fixed Income Department. In 2000 Ron joined Lehman Brothers International in London. In 2004 Ron was recruited by Citi Global Markets International to run ABS trading. Prior to working in the financial services industry, Mr. Miao worked as an electrical engineer for Sikorsky Aircraft in Connecticut. He was responsible for designing aircraft avionics test systems and writing avionics computer programs. Ron earned a B.S. in Bioengineering from the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business.
ACMA CGMA – Treasurer
Ray currently is a Director of his own consultancy company, working with large global corporates on senior assignments covering Business Transformation, Commercial and System projects. These have included SONY Plc, BAE Systems, SC Johnson and currently Reed Business Information – part of the RELX US Group. Ray has been involved in community projects throughout his life; examples being helping set up the local sports council, the local town twinning committee and active involvement with his family ownership and running of a non-league football club for over twenty years. He has two grown-up daughters who have started their post-grad careers and keeps active as a member of the Royal Canoe Club, sailing and is a member of the Nuffield Gym. Ray is a life-long supporter of Tottenham Hotspur FC and thus is one of life’s great optimists!
Jill worked for IBM Europe at La Défense in Paris for 5 years, before returning to their UK office in Chiswick. She now lives in Twickenham with her husband and 3 children aged 23, 20 and 16. Her 16-year-old son is diagnosed with autism and attends OKMT for piano lessons. Her 20-year-old daughter is also on the autistic spectrum and attends the OK Music School for singing. Jill first heard about OKMT 12 years ago and has seen it grow to work with disabled children, the elderly, young people with mental health problems, parents and the community. Jill felt so inspired by all the work that Margaret Lobo did that she agreed to join the Trustees in 2014.
Edward was born in Ghana and came to the UK in 1998. Edward has a degree in Music and is a seasoned pianist and an accompanist, who used to volunteer to play in therapy sessions with OKMT. He has undertaken a music therapy course in Roehampton University. He currently works at Richmond Adult Community College where he is actively involved in a course called Music and Communication, which targets those with various disabilities with the aim of using music as a therapy tool, to build their confidence and improve their speech. He also teaches Piano and serves as the official accompanist of the College.
Laura (Plail) Clayton
Laura has 15 years experience of working in the cultural/creative industries world; working as a consultant offering strategic advice and latterly in Government, employed at Historic England in the new Government Advice Team and most recently at the Department of Culture Media and Sport. Laura has extensive experience of applying and evaluating grant applications and evaluating success and operational change.
Kamna moved to Richmond with a young family and joined OKMT with the desire to give back to the community she feels lucky to call home. Her work experience ranges from the voluntary sector to co-founding a mobile app. She currently works in grant making with a keen interest in supporting community organisations to adopt user led design thinking in order to thrive. For pleasure, she sings with a local community choir.
Peter Hadfield is a Music Publisher who lives in Richmond. Until spring 2019 he was also manager of a Creative Industries Institute at a London University. Peter started his career in Music by founding a company dedicated to ‘house’ and ‘dance’ music which was purchased in 2004 by BMG Music. Subsequently Peter worked for both major music corporations and founded and has lots of experience working in film production, management and music television and worked for the company Carnaby Films International. He continues to act as a consultant to those industries and is currently working with SMEs looking to engage with immersive technologies. Peter is a passionate supporter of Music Therapy and music charities generally. He is very much hoping to make a positive contribution to the work of the Otakar Kraus Music Trust over the coming years.
Clare joined OKMT in September 2015 to be its first General Manager to help it extend its reach and services within the local community and was appointed Director in December 2017. She comes from a background in music tourism. Clare is a keen amateur violinist and plays in a quartet. She specialised in organising tours for amateur choirs and orchestras, particularly those from the US and UK, to go to destinations across Europe. She performed all the operational roles required to make a tour successful and gained the greatest pleasure from when she was organising venues and promoting concerts in France and Spain. Clare lives locally in the borough of Richmond. Her son, who has additional needs, has been benefiting from music therapy from the OKMT since the age of four. He now enjoys being part of the trust’s Music School and participating in their performances. Clare is passionate about helping more children and young people have fun and achieve their potential through music therapy.
Cheryl has been an Administrator with the Trust since 2010. Following 20 years of experience in the publishing and the printing industry, and having travelled widely and lived abroad for nearly 20 years, she felt it was time to come home and give back to the community. After winning a World of Difference grant from Vodafone to work for a charity of her choice, the Otakar Kraus Music Trust became a part of her life.
Valerie has worked for the Trust since 2008. Following many years in the export business, working for companies including Courtaulds and Colefax & Fowler, Valerie volunteered at Wandsworth Carers Centre, before becoming a Project Worker for a Richmond based charity helping families with a child with additional needs. She subsequently became a founding Trustee of local charity, Me too & Co, and was Secretary for 8 years, responsible for the administration of the charity, assisting with Governance and fundraising. Having witnessed the wonderful work OKMT was carrying out with children with additional needs for several years, Valerie started working with Margaret Lobo on the international side in 2008, and now raises funds for OKMT to ensure their valuable work can continue.
Isabel joined OKMT in 2021 after working as an administrator in corporate events for four years. She has a degree in music and as well as composing and producing her own music, she has played bass guitar in a number of bands and founded a music blog. Having witnessed first-hand music’s ability to heal and unite while working at the Southbank Centre, she wanted to combine her skills as a musician and administrator to contribute to a music charity and found that OKMT summed up everything she aspired to be a part of.
Music School Co-ordinator
Mercedes joined OKMT in January 2017. She helps coordinate the Music School as well as supporting the organisation with its fundraising events and concerts. Originally from Argentina, she lives in the Borough of Richmond upon Thames with her family. Mercedes came across OKMT when one of her daughters was diagnosed with ASD and Music Therapy was recommended. In the past she worked as a language teacher both in schools and privately in Buenos Aires and in London. Subsequently she worked for nearly 10 years in purchasing within the catering industry. She was Purchasing Director at Ritter Courivaud Ltd, one of the leading specialist food ingredient importers and distributors in the UK. Mercedes also sits on the committee of the local branch of the National Autistic Society. She enjoys playing tennis and reading if she can get some peace and quiet.
Edison R Carolino
Edison qualified as a Music Therapist at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama completing a Department of Health approved Diploma in Music Therapy ( SRAsT(M) and also is registered with the HCPC (Health and Care Professions Council). Edison works for the Otakar Kraus Music Trust with children and adults with a wide range of conditions. He has many years of experience as a music therapist and teacher. He devised OK Music School with our Founder, Dr Margaret Lobo and has developed the IRP technique, a unique teaching method which has achieved great success enabling children and young people with disabilities to learn to play an instrument.
Carmem Coles (SRAsT) is a full member of the BAMT and also is registered with the HCPC (Health and Care Professions Council). She originally qualified in Brazil (having taken a 4-year full-time degree in music therapy) and then gained accreditation in the UK, having completed a module at APU (Anglia Polytechnic University). She has worked with children and adults with a wide range of conditions, ranging from learning disabilities, special needs, emotional and behavioural difficulties to dementia, both in Brazil and the UK.
A classically trained bassoon player, Sophie studied at the Purcell School of Music from aged 12 before continuing her studies at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and Royal College of Music. Embarking on a successful orchestral career, she strived to musically reach out and make a difference beyond the realm of concert goers. This led her to music therapy, and she obtained her MA in Music Therapy from Roehampton University. During her training, Sophie worked with NHS CAMHS in the Learning Disability Team and in dementia care with MHA Methodist Care Homes.
Since graduating, Sophie has worked in inpatient adult acute mental health with the NHS, and now works in the community in adult mental health and with children and young people with a range of needs. She enjoys working with a wide range of music therapy clients and teaching woodwind and piano to children and adults.
Chrissy has always had a heart for children and originally trained as a primary and special needs teacher, specialising in music teaching. She has had a wide range of musical experiences from singing in a classical chamber choir, playing in a covers band, leading a Christian worship band and many other musical adventures. She is passionate about music and the difference that it can make in a person’s life. She is delighted to be part of OKMT as she had formerly gained some work experience here before embarking on her formal training at the University of South Wales, where she obtained a merit in her Music Therapy MA in 2020. She has worked as a therapist in a primary special school since qualifying but enjoyed working with a wide range of music therapy clients on her placements. She also enjoys teaching violin and piano privately. She is registered with HCPC and a member of BAMT.
Laura qualified with a Masters in Music Therapy at Roehampton University in 2013. She is registered with the HCPC (Health care professional council) and a member of BAMT. Laura works for OKMT at the music school and works for the trust in various projects in the local area. Laura has gained experience working as a developmental music class facilitator for a company called Tempo Tots. She also works for a charity called Momentum, providing music therapy for young children with cancer and or life limiting conditions. Laura also works for PACT (Parents and children together) where she provides music therapy for adopted children with behavioural and emotional difficulties and/or developmental trauma as well as providing music therapy in nursing homes for elderly people with dementia and Alzheimer’s. Laura is a keen musician and passionate singer/songwriter. She also plays the violin, piano and guitar.
Jessica has been teaching piano and music for over five years, and following her music degree from the University of Hull, she has been teaching in schools and in private settings. As an active professional musician and fully qualified Music Therapist from Anglia Ruskin University, she can provide a holistic, person centred and fun approach to learning music. She is able to take students through Trinity and ABRSM practical piano grades and theory grades, and has a high pass rate to date, but of upmost importance is the students’ enjoyment through leaning music.
Elaine qualified as a Music Therapist from Roehampton University in 2021. She has worked mainly with adolescents with social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) needs in primary and secondary schools. She has also obtained a BMus in Music from King’s College London with Piano as her first instrument and is an experienced piano accompanist. In teaching general music and piano classes in Singapore to adolescents and young adults, she enjoys and believes in teaching through active engagement. She aims to help her students enjoy learning through cooperative teacher-student activities and strongly believes in the teacher-student relationship in music making. In general, she is excited to join the team at The Otakar Kraus Music Trust where music therapy and music education meet.
Rachel is delighted to join the OKMT as a member of the Singing Team for OK Music School. She trained at the RNCM (BMus, PG Dip) and worked as a professional classical singer and vocal tutor before having her family. She now resides in Twickenham with her husband, three children and Dolly the Jack Russell and since settling down, Rachel has crossed over to a more permanent teaching role. Rachel is enthusiastic to work with people of all ages and abilities. She aims to create a compassionate and nurturing environment for her students where they can develop their self esteem and confidence through the joy of singing, an activity that has social, physical and above all mental benefits. Rachel has recently completed the Vocal Health First Aid Course with Vocal Health Education, you never stop learning!