Meet the Board
Ruth Breddal, Chair
An Amnesty member for nearly 30 years, Ruth was elected to the Board in 2013 and elected Vice Chair in 2015. The Board elected her to be Chair in May 2016. Ruth is also Chair of her Amnesty local group, and has been for over 15 years. She is committed to promoting human rights through local activism. Ruth works as a Company Secretary and Director of a private company and has a background of volunteering in the health sector.
Eilidh Douglas, Vice Chair
Elected to the Board in May 2014, Eilidh is Chair of the Activism Subcommittee. She is also a School Speaker, and previously served on the Student Action Network Committee. Eilidh is a lawyer at international law firm CMS, specialising in dispute resolution in the energy sector. She also volunteers at the Edinburgh Free Legal Advice Centre, and is Vice Chair of Equality Network, Scotland's national LGBTI equality and human rights charity.
Meredith Coombs, Treasurer
A supporter of Amnesty International since his student days. Meredith has extensive experience of finance and accounting in both the commercial and charity sectors. He was latterly Director of Finance and Shared Services at St. John Ambulance for eight years before retiring in June 2015. He was appointed Treasurer in 2016.
Lucy was co-opted to the board in September 2016 to provide expertise in the governance of organisations and human rights law. She is a Managing Associate in the Dispute Resolution team at Linklaters LLP, with a specialism in anti-bribery and corruption work. Her experience in human rights includes working in Texas on death row appeals and at Liberty, as well as acting on numerous pro bono human rights interventions and other appeals. Lucy is also the co-founder of a grassroots refugee crisis fundraising initiative and has spent time volunteering in refugee camps in Greece and Serbia.
Tom was elected to the Board in 2017 and is a member of the Activism Sub Committee. He has been a member of Amnesty since 2006 and has been actively involved as a fundraiser in London, student group member at Cambridge University and local group member in Leeds. Tom is a Community Organiser with Citizens UK, a national charity uniting over 300 faith, education and civil society organisations for social justice. He joined the Board to help Amnesty strengthen our local campaigning and support local groups to build more active participation from members.
Abby joined her Local group at the age of 13 before starting and chairing a youth group at her school for 4 years. She has attended the last 5 AGM's including being the first youth group to put a resolution to the AGM in 2016. Abby was also on the Youth Advisory Group from 2013/14. She is currently a member of the Kingston University Student group. Abby is currently studying for a degree in Politics and Applied Economics at Kingston University, with a keen interest in International Human Rights Law. Abby had also worked with time2change, YoungKent's Me2 as well as giving talks about social services and the foster care system.
Tom joined the Board in June 2018 having stood for one of the two Networks reserved seats. Tom has been a family/individual member for 20+ years, and a member of the Trade Union Network Committee (TUNC) since 2011. He was elected Joint Vice Chair of the TUNC in March 2018. Tom has worked in banking for 35 years. He is currently a Project Manager. For the last 30 years he has been involved in the lay representation structures within his trade union. Tom has been a local rep looking after members throughout this time, and for the last 25 years an elected member of the union’s Executive Committee, responsible for good governance of the union. He is currently President of his union having been elected by members on four occasions the most recent being March 2018. Through his union, the TUNC and the Trades Union Congress (TUC) Tom has been able to support Amnesty campaigns and help to engage the wider trade union movement over many years. This ongoing engagement and co-operation helped to secure the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that was signed by both AIUK and the TUC in February 2009. To date this remains the only MoU signed between the TUC and any NGO/Charity.
Sue is a Director at Grant Thornton where she leads the people and culture risk practice, assisting firms from FTSE 100 to start ups with people and culture issues. Prior to this Sue worked in Senior roles at HSBC for many years including as Group Head of Employee Relations, Group Head if Diversity and Head of Customer Service for the U.K. Bank. She is a qualified accountant and a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. She is also a trustee of the refugee charity Care4calais. She is passionate about humanitarian issues and the fair treatment of all in society.
James joined the Board in December 2016 to fill the Country Coordinator reserved seat. He has been a Country Coordinator since 2013 campaigning in issues in Myanmar and China primarily. With a non-profit background which includes working in South East Asia on Human Rights, James now works for Acorns Children’s Hospice specialising in digital marketing and campaigning. He has also been a volunteer for Rotary International since 2010, including chairing it’s young adult programme Rotaract in Great Britain & Ireland, and has been politically involved in the Birmingham area standing twice as a Parliamentary Candidate.
Sharon has been an Amnesty member for over 20 years since undertaking a degree in youth and community studies at Birmingham University.
She is currently a Director of one of the leading national advocacy charities that provides information, legal and advocacy representation to ensure some of the most vulnerable children, young people and adults have their rights upheld. She is experienced at campaigning for legislation changes to promote and protect human rights.
She is currently a member of the campaign and impact sub-committee for Amnesty International.
Sharon joined the Amnesty Board in January 2017
Elected to the Board in 2018, Daren is a member of both the Activism and Campaign Impact Sub-Committees. He is Chair of the Tower Hamlets and Newham local Amnesty group in London and has been campaigning for human rights working with local politicians, news outlets and the community. Daren is also a cyber security and privacy specialist having worked in 23 countries with KPMG, Deloitte and Verizon and now runs his own consulting company. He joined the Board to ensure Amnesty’s activists get all the support they need to defend human rights and Amnesty protects itself from cyber attacks.
2018 Election Manifesto
Our volunteer activists help make Amnesty International the world’s leading human rights organisation. I am running for the Board to ensure better support for our volunteer activists working with local politicians, local news, online campaigning as well as those without Internet access. I am a cyber security and privacy specialist, both skillsets currently lacking on the Board. Amnesty has been hacked in recent years and is planning on hybrid attendance at the AGM where members can vote from home over the Internet. Please allow me the honour to serve you on the Board and help keep Amnesty safe.
Sen was elected to the Board in June 2018. He is passionate about justice, glitter, social media, and pop culture. Sen is currently a Lecturer in Law at Keele University, where he teaches and researches human rights law. Sen has been actively involved with Amnesty International for a decade and has also served on the board of Amnesty International Australia. Sen is the Secretary of the Amnesty UK LGBTI Network and is a part of the Board’s Law and Policy sub-committee.
Hugh was elected to the Board in 2018. He has been active in Amnesty for 20 years as a member of the Kingston Group, and has been a country coordinator in AIUK’s North Africa team since 2009. In 2013-2016, he was Chair of the AIUK Country Coordinators Forum. Hugh has worked as a company director, as a corporate finance advisor, and as a foreign correspondent.
2018 Election Manifesto
I am standing for election to the Board because I want to apply my experience to maintaining the balance between the values of Amnesty as a member-driven organisation, and the demands of good governance, that characterise the Amnesty Board. I understand and identify with the values of Amnesty, and the requirements of organisational governance, based on many years of experience of both. Although the roles of activist and board member are distinct, both are essential in ensuring that Amnesty remains an exemplary civil society organisation.
Tom joined the Board in May 2014. Tom is a Senior Research Fellow in public international law at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, where he specialises in the law of statehood and self-determination. He has been actively involved with AIUK since joining his School group in 2005. During that time Tom has been President of the Durham University Amnesty Group, has sat on both the Activism Sub-Committee and the Student Action Network Committee, and has been a schools speaker. Tom now sits on the Board's Campaigns and Impact sub-committee, and is a member of AI's Law and Policy network.
Rebecca has been a member of Amnesty since 1991. She has been a member of the Finance, Audit and Risk Subcommittee (FARSC) since 2012, and was appointed to the Board in 2017. She is a member of the Mayfair and Soho local group.
Rebecca is a qualified accountant with more than 20 years’ experience in the public, voluntary and commercial sectors, currently working for London South Bank University as Head of Financial Accounting. She is a campaigner on many issues, and is Treasurer of the Campaign against Climate Change and a Trustee and Treasurer of ShareAction.