About Us

The Assistants is owned by Mary Lenehan and Joanne Martin who between them have over 50 years’ experience. The Assistants can help you save time, money and provide the expertise to support growth.

If you need someone to book your travel, develop your marketing strategy, run your operations function or anything else in-between then contact us.

Mary Lenehan

Mary has worked for companies both domestic and international from a wide variety of industries. Mary is currently working on behalf of a client as Director of Operations on a multi-million-dollar project in Egypt, working with the Ministry of Education to engage over 30,000 teachers and affecting the lives of over 1,000,000 children.  The operations function is responsible for procurement, finance, HR, IT, office management and marketing.  Using her marketing expertise Mary helped to start the charity Education Fast Forward which delivers global education debates with one debate reaching over 23,000,000 people on Twitter.

Joanne Martin

Joanne has held a variety of roles, working for anything from small start-ups to large multinationals.  Starting off as a PA she built up a range of skills which has allowed her to provide a wide range of services throughout her career. Joanne is an excellent multi-tasker, picks up software packages with ease and has strong project management skills. Joanne is currently the project manager for a client supporting a worldwide, 3-year, training initiative involving 50 countries and over 400 trainers.  As part of this role she is responsible for the delivery of management reporting, providing technical support and development for the online training platform and coordination for the development team activities to ensure deadlines are met.


I worked with Mary at the education technology company, Promethean, where Mary led the co-ordination of the Education Fast Forward debates. The debates were hosted on a global scale, and were logistically complex, but Mary took them in her stride, coordinating them enthusiasm and creativity. Mary was always clear on her requirements and kept open communication to follow up progress and ensure deadlines were met. She is comfortable working with people across all levels of business, including world-renowned figures in education, and treats everyone with respect and professionalism. Dedicated and hard-working, I have every faith that Mary will become a highly regarded member of any team that she joins.

David Mantovani, Publishing and Editorial Consultant

I have actually known Mary and worked with her for many years. If you want something conceived properly, managed well and delivered effectively and on time, Mary is your person. I have seen Mary run a number of projects, always with the same enthusiasm, tenacity and attention to detail. Mary is a great communicator, with the knack of getting people to see things from her perspective. Mary is also a great character and a pleasure to work with.

Dominic Savage, Forum Director, Education World Forum

Extensive organisational skills, a laser-like focus, determination and persistence are more than any employer can expect from a project leader, but Mary Lenehan is also personable, easy to work with and shows a level of commitment that makes her a passionate advocate for any cause she represents. I know this well from years of working with her in Education Fast Forward.

Merlin John, Journalist

I have worked with Mary, mostly on the Education Fast Forward events. Mary is a formidable organiser and always a joy to work with. Co-ordinating senior people in many different locations globally to participate in a simultaneous video conferencing webinar is no mean feat! Mary pulled it all off with aplomb.


Lord Knight, Chief Education Advisor, TES


I’ve worked with Mary for several years as consultant on the Education Fast Forward project. This programme involves her in co-ordinating people all around the world into a real-time online conference via videoconferencing, teleconferencing and social media. Herding cats would be easier. Mary’s ability to make the logistics work, assembling and then holding together a team of guests, technicians and support staff is totally impressive. Assertiveness matched with good humour ensures that all the plates keep spinning, and few attendees will realise just how challenging it all was – the mark of a true professional.

Tony Parkin, Independent Education Consultant

Education Fast Forward has been organised and debates delivered by Mary and Jo for over 5 years. Their planning is meticulous and no stone is left unturned.  We run complex global on-line debates with hundreds of participants in many different countries and they always run without a hitch. The best thing is that we are always delighted by some new aspect that they are always able to squeeze in which adds an extra dimension to our debates.  They also handle to social media coverage and we have had over 20 million timeline deliveries on twitter for a number of the 2-hour debates, simply incredible.

Jim Wynn, Founder and CEO, Education Fast Forward