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Campaigner, Writer, Trainer, Management, Consultant & Director - Working for Equality

About Jim Thakoordin

From: Professor Fred Walemba PhD, Professor of Strategy. Ex – Principal of London College of Professional Studies

Jim Thakoordin was born on a sugar plantation in Guyana, South America, and began full-time work at the age of 12. After arriving in England in 1961, he worked as a busman and postman before winning a scholarship to Ruskin College, Oxford, in 1974. By this time, he and his wife, Doreen, a schoolteacher, had a son and a daughter aged 10 and 7. From Ruskin College, Jim progressed to the Universities of Essex, Warwick and London before becoming a full-time Trades Union Regional Education Officer. In 1981, Jim became a Bedfordshire County Councillor and two years later stood as the Labour Parliamentary Candidate for Milton Keynes.

Between 1963 and 1981, Jim was heavily involved in Community Relations issues, Trades Unions and politics. He was a founder member of Luton Community Relations Council and has played a hugely effective role in promoting good community and race relations in Bedfordshire and nationally ever since. From 1983 to the present, Jim has served on the Boards of Governors of 3 Colleges and 2 Universities, and also on a wide range of Trusts, Governing Councils, Public Bodies and local and national Community Organisations. Jim Thakoordin was deeply influential in raising the profile of Equality Issues, having published several National Training Manuals for addressing equalities issues at strategic, practical and policy implementation levels. He has had a tremendous influence on the Local Government Management Board, Local Authorities, the Police Service, Fire & Rescue Service, the Health Service and other statutory and voluntary Bodies and Agencies since 1981. Jim's has made outstanding and exceptional contributions through his written work and campaigning activities towards ensuring that equality and quality issues were linked and that it was good business sense for employers to support equality strategies.

Jim is a deep thinker and has been a prolific writer, debater and campaigner for equal rights, opportunities, good community relations and racial harmony. He has published over a dozen Training Manuals, Books and Reports on the above issues. He has been a major influence on a wide range of public bodies in the provision of employment opportunities and services for disadvantaged groups through his writing, discussion and active involvement in institutions and organisations. Jims' approach is extremely articulate, committed and often challenging. He works tremendously hard and makes himself accessible to institutions and the community every day of the week and at all hours of the day to resolve conflicts, promotes equality of opportunity and campaign tirelessly against inequality and injustice.

Jim has been extremely pro-active and determined, as a public person and as a private individual. He is passionately committed to working for fairness, justice, equality, equal rights and opportunities and empowering the disadvantaged regardless of age, nationality, ethnicity, gender, age sexual orientation, lifestyle or status. James is an eminently professional person with a long list of academic qualifications including MBA, BA Hons., PGCE and Dip. Oxon. In addition, he has gained Certificates in Counselling, Leadership, Management, Training and Development.

Jim has been employed as a Trainer and Management Consultant since 1994, having previously held senior management positions in Local Government, Trades Unions and in education. His contributions to education and learning have been extraordinary. He chaired the Governing Bodies of 2 High Schools for many years and has been the chairman of the Board of Governors of the London College of Professional Studies since 2007.

Jim is a dedicated family person with 2 grown-up children and 4 grandchildren. He is a keen gardener, cricket fan and a regular contributor to local radio, newspapers and community activities.

He has been, and remains, a role model of major significance locally and nationally for over 40 years.

From: Enrico Stennett, Author and Historian

I have known Jim Thakoordin for over 40 years. He has an extensive track record in championing equality, diversity, justice and fairness for all regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, age, ability, disability, religion, belief, culture, sexual orientation, or social status. He is passionate about equal access to resources and opportunities for everyone and a strong campaigner for civil and human rights worldwide. He is opposed to all aspects of prejudice, discrimination, stereotyping, injustice and exploitation.

Jim was amongst the first black activists to promote a successful campaign within the Labour and Trades Union Movement for black and ethnic minorities, and women to have the right to organise internally, through the establishment of self-organised groups, in order to promote equality and combat discrimination. He has been in the forefront of trades union, political and community based struggles to challenge racism, sexism and inequality. His work as a trade union education officer, community champion, trainer, councillor, writer and campaigner has inspired others and has empowered many people.

Jim has often provides leadership in difficult situations and has always championed the cause of the disadvantaged and oppressed. He is pro-active, challenging and takes a strategic view when approaching difficult situations. His knowledge of public bodies and institutions is vast having served on Health Trusts, Employment Tribunals, Government Agencies, Governing Bodies of Schools, Colleges and Universities, senior Councillor in local government, and Adviser to statutory and voluntary institutions and agencies.

Jim has never denied, or forgotten his past as a child worker on a sugar plantation in Guyana owned by a British companies. His experience of injustice, poverty, exploitation and colonialism helped to shape his views and work in Britain. Jim has excellent academic qualification having secured qualifications from three Universities in England. He is involved in various further and higher educational and academic institutions and provides valuable work as a Reader, Reporter, Consultant Trainer, and Assessor for courses and projects. Jim is very much a family person having children and grandchildren. He is a keen gardener and enjoys his hobby as a writer and cricket follower. It has been a privilege to have known Jim and to work with him on community, trades union and political work over the years.