CamRuSS Trustees


Ksenia Afonina

Ksenia Afonina

Ksenia holds an MSc and PhD in Economics (St Petersburg University of Economics & Finance), CIM Post-Graduate Diploma in Marketing, MBA (Georg-Ohm University), Diploma in Digital Marketing (IDM) and MA in Arts Policy & Management (Birkbeck College). She accumulated over 20 years of experience while working in marketing and business development and most recently has been actively involved in delivering services to the creative industries. For the last 7 years as an independent scholar and curator, Ksenia researched unofficial art of the Second World War and worked on cross-cultural exhibitions of art and memories conceived by the active participants and witnesses of wartime. In addition to her research interests she shares belief that artworks, conceived by unofficial artists during the war have a strong potential to serve as a vehicle of both individual and cultural memories, promoting empathy and better understanding between people and nations in our fractious time.

Ksenia took on the role of CamRuSS President in 2011 following in the steps of Tanya Yurasova (8 years) and previous President Marina Burrell (3 years).

Ksenia would like to continue applying her experience and knowledge of the field to further develop the Society into a successful and financially viable CIO and deliver support in the following areas:

  • External communications;
  • Attracting external funding;
  • Building new partnerships;
  • Generating new ideas and attracting contributors for cross-cultural events and projects;
  • Further increasing awareness about CamRuSS and strengthening its image in Cambridge, the UK and Russia.

YELENA KARL – Vice-Chair and Secretary

Yelena Karl

Yelena Karl

Yelena currently works as a freelance translator, Russian Language tutor and exam invigilator. She holds an MSc degree in Mechanical Engineering from Moscow Power Engineering Institute and has many years of administrative work experience. Yelena was a trustee of the Cambridge Russian school from 2009 till 2012 and has been an active volunteer for CamRuSS since 2007.

She is keen to apply her knowledge, professional qualifications and experience to fulfil her role as a Trustee and Event Coordinator of CamRuSS with the following responsibilities:

  • Searching, coordinating & communicating ideas for future events;
  • Overseeing execution of the plan of events;
  • Convening meetings;
  • Dealing with correspondence;
  • Preparing agendas for meetings in consultation with other trustees.


Janar Davletov

Janar Davletov

Janar is a Chartered Management Accountant (CGMA/CIMA) and holds a BA degree in Economics and an AAT accounting professional qualification. She has been volunteering for CamRuSS in the capacity of a Treasurer for the past 5 years. Janar has been applying her professional qualifications and expertise of working in the charitable sector to fulfil her role as a Trustee and Treasurer of CamRuss and take a lead on:

  • Making sure the charity keeps accurate accounts;
  • Reviewing the charity’s financial performance;
  • Ensuring that the charity has effective financial controls in place;
  • Liaising with independent examiners for an audit on a regular basis;
  • Reporting on financial matters to the members, in a membership charity;
  • Making sure the charity’s assets are only used to support or carry out its purposes;
  • Protecting the Society from exposure to any inappropriate risks with the charity’s assets or reputation;
  • Taking special care when investing or borrowing;
  • Complying with any restrictions on spending funds.


Jelena Carter

Jelena Carter

Jelena holds a degree in Engineering and an MBA in Marketing. She has many years of business and teaching experience. Jelena started teaching English in Estonia, her home country. Since moving to the UK and working predominantly in business management, Jelena took the position of a teacher of Russian language and literature at the Cambridge Russian School (CRS) which led her to the further position of a Trustee and since 2017 has been acting as the Head of CRS. In 2019 she decided to quit her business career to dedicate her time to further developing the school, as well as dedicating more efforts supporting the Society. Jelena works as an English language teacher (CELTA qualified) at Falcon language school in Harlow. She is also the head of Wimbledon branch of London School of Maths and Programming and provides private tutoring in English and Russian.

Jelena was the key organiser of a number of large scale public events for CamRuSS – the Old New Year Celebration and Cambridge CamRuSS Summer Fair and has been taking an active part in the life of the Society.

She can contribute to CamRuSS in the following capacity:

  • Organising events;
  • Liaising with various institutions and organisations;
  • Generating new ideas on different activities organised by the Society;

Maintaining and growing the database of local traders, performers and other useful contacts.


Ekaterina Onatskaia

Ekaterina Onatskaia

Ekaterina graduated from Moscow State Pedagogical University and also holds a degree from Teachers College, Columbia University, NY. While teaching at a number of primary and secondary schools, she also worked in Russian schools, first in New York City, and more recently in Cambridge. Ekaterina currently works at Newnham Croft Primary School during the week and at the Cambridge Russian Academy (CRA) on Saturdays.

She is keen to assist with strengthening relations between CRA and CamRuSS by promoting CamRuSS events in the academy, helping in organising joint events and concerts that are catered to families.

Ekaterina will assist in promoting public interests and strengthening the profile of CamRuSS within the wider community – both in the UK and overseas; searching for new partnerships and joint projects which help to fulfil its charitable objectives.


Elena Richer

Elena Richer

Elena holds a BA in teaching English as a foreign language and an Advanced Diploma in Business and Financial Management (CIPFA).

Her professional career spans over 30 years, both in Russia and the UK, covering the areas of business consulting, training and project management. For the last fifteen years Elena has been facilitating and supporting collaboration between industrial partners and the researchers in the Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge.

Elena first joined CamRuSS in 2000 and for most of these years was actively involved in organising events and promoting activities of the society in Cambridge and beyond. As a member of the Russian theatre group ‘Vot Takoy Teatr’ she has been contributing to further interest in Russian language and culture among the wider community.

Elena is keen to continue delivering her support to the Society as a member of the Board of Trustees. She sees it as a great honour and responsibility and will use her knowledge and experience to help CamRuSS in achieving their mission and objectives.

Initially, she will provide overall support in the areas where it is most required, including:

  • Financial management and reporting;
  • Event organisation and promotion;
  • Planning of CamRuSS future activities;
  • Providing coordination of events with the Russian theatre group ‘Vot Takoy Teatr’.

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