Our people

Humanists UK is a diverse organisation with hundreds of volunteers working around the country to pursue a world where rational thinking and kindness prevail, supported by a small team of staff in London, Cardiff, and Belfast. Collectively, our leadership team is responsible for ensuring we remain a growing movement at the forefront of social change.

Our members also play a vital role in our organisation. Our AGM moves around the UK each year, and gives members the opportunity to pass democratic policy that steers the future of our movement.

Chair of the Board

Neil Hawkins is Chair of the Board of Trustees at Humanists UK, leading the group accountable for the strategic direction of Humanists UK and the fulfilment of its charitable aims. Neil is also Chair of Befrienders Worldwide, the foremost global network of suicide prevention and emotional support centres. He has long experience of leadership, change management, marketing, financial planning, the charitable sector and of governance.


Ann O’Connell is the Treasurer of the Board of Trustees at Humanists UK. Ann is a qualified treasurer and accountant with many years of experience in banking, working in audit, finance, treasury, and risk. She is currently working as a Director of Rhino Software Ltd., a company which develops innovative mobile apps for the SME market.


Dr Adam Rutherford is the President of Humanists UK, the organisation’s most high-profile ambassador. He is an acclaimed geneticist, science writer, and broadcaster. As President he is supported to raise awareness of humanism in the public at large by a team of Vice Presidents and Humanists UK patrons, who collectively represent many of the UK’s leading entertainers, thinkers, and activists.

Chief Executive

Andrew Copson is our Chief Executive, responsible for day-to-day management of the organisation as a whole, and management of the staff team. He has been Chief Executive of Humanists UK since 2010, prior to which he worked across educational and public affairs roles within the charity. He is an expert on humanism who has written widely on the subject, and is regularly invited to appear on TV and radio news programmes. As well as these roles, Andrew is a trustee of the Religious Education Council and President of Humanists International – the umbrella body bringing the global humanist movement together to pursue human rights at an international level.

See also our Trustees, our senior staff, our Honorary Members, and our Patrons.