The Charity CEO Podcast


Leonor Stjepic

CEO Montessori Group: A values-based approach to education, life and leadership

“To be able to say, in a small way, I moved the needle to make (someone else’s) life better, is actually something that money can't buy...”

Leonor Stjepic is Chief Executive of the Montessori Group, as well as an award-winning social entrepreneur.

The first part of Leonor’s career was spent in the private sector in several senior roles and then running her own consultancy. In 1994 Leonor decided to volunteer to work with children and women who were victims of the war in the Balkans. Upon returning to London, she then transitioned into the charity sector.

Leonor has served as CEO of the Galapagos Conservation Trust and CEO of the medical research institute, RAFT. During her time at RAFT, Leonor created a life sciences company, Smart Matrix Ltd, and was at its helm for five years, whilst concurrently serving as CEO of RAFT.

Leonor sits on the Advisory Board of Global Thinkers Forum and the Steering Committee of Karanga.


Ep 23. Leonor Stjepic, CEO Montessori Group:

A values-based approach to education, life and leadership.

Leonor Stjepic is Chief Executive of the Montessori Group.

Montessori education was created by Dr Maria Montessori over 100 years ago. Leonor talks about Montessori education being an approach rather than a curriculum, providing the framework and structure, within which the child has the freedom to learn. The aim is to prepare children for the current realities of the world they are growing up, whilst instilling them with core values such as curiosity, kindness and collaboration.

We talk about leadership and Leonor shares the 3 qualities she thinks are most important in a leader: being authentic, having empathy and being ready with a Plan A, B, C & Z! We also talk about the new Montessori Leadership Programme that overlays Montessori values on to a leadership development framework for Board and Executive level leaders.

Leonor shares personal stories from her vast leadership experience and we discuss the #KindnessMatters campaign: the organisation’s quest to share One Million Stories of Kindness.

Recorded July 2021.

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Chartable 2021: #1 in Non-profit Podcast Charts GB, Ireland, Belgium, NZ & Bahrain.

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