Following the 2023 AGM of Humanist Society Scotland the charity welcomed two new members as trustees to the board who oversee the governance of the charity.
Tony Khan and Joanne Streeter were elected by members to serve on the board for the next three years. Joanne has a career background in the civil service and has worked on equalities, human rights and refugee resettlement. Tony has recently received the right to remain as a refugee in the UK and has volunteered with numerous causes in his hometown of Glasgow.
Members also re-elected Patrick McGlinchey for a further term having originally been appointed in 2020. Patrick works as an executive director for a third sector organisation and has career experience in policy development and public affairs.
Thanks to retiring trustees
2023 also saw the retirement of two long serving trustees – Maggie Kinloch and Ian Rodger. Both had served as Chair of the organisation over the past five years and the organisations is indebted to their involvement in development of our current strategic plan, the appointment of our current CEO, our first ever hosting of an international humanist gathering, and seeing the organisation through the Covid pandemic. All of the trustees and staff wish Maggie and Ian all the best for their future and thank them for the long hours and support they have given to the organisation.
New Chair and Vice-Chair
At the subsequent board meeting, trustees appointed members Jennifer Buchan as our new Chair and Clare Hayward as our new Vice Chair. Jennifer is a registered celebrant with the Society and is a chaplain at Strathclyde University. Clare works in teacher training. Gordon Agnew was re-appointed as the organisation’s treasurer.
Commenting on her appointment as Chair, Jennifer Buchan said:
I am pleased to take on the responsibility that the role of Chair brings, and I look forward to the work ahead. Humanist Society Scotland is a human rights charity and a force for good, both within our own country and for those individuals and groups we help overseas. As Chair, I will be working alongside our team to help expand our charity’s influence, and extend the work we already do.Jennifer Buchan, Chair
Clare Hayward, taking on the role as Vice Chair, added:
I am delighted to become Vice Chair and I look forward to working with the team on a number of aspects. This role enables me to support others who share humanist values and build on the organisation’s direction both here and abroad. My particular interest is within education where I will draw on my experience while developing my involvement. I am looking forward to the next steps.Clare Hayward, Vice Chair
Welcoming the new trustees and leadership, Chief Executive Fraser Sutherland said:
I am delighted the organisation continues to have such valuable support from our members in the important role of governance of our charity. All of the trustees I have been lucky to work with have shown a great commitment to the work of Humanist Society Scotland and seeking to make the Society as successful as it can be. I know both Clare and Jennifer are passionate about expanding the knowledge of humanism across the country and they have strong ambitions for how we achieve that. I want to pay personal thanks to Ian and Maggie who have supported myself, the staff team, and the charity as a whole through some challenges over the past few years – not least the impact of the Covid pandemic and the resultant need to change how we deliver certain parts of our work. They have always done so with great enthusiasm and empathy and I know they will remain committed members to the work of the charity.Fraser Sutherland, Chief Executive
Current board of trustees
Trustees are members elected at each AGM to serve for a period of three years – each member can be re-appointed to serve a second term, giving a maximum term of six years. Additionally, trustees can co-opt non-members bringing particular expert experience. Humanist Society Scotland has one current non-member trustee, Fraser Ross, who brings expert experience on IT, digital and web development.
Trustees oversee the governance of the organisation, set the strategic direction of the charity, and manage risk. They also have legal obligations under charity and company law regarding finance, fundraising and reporting.
The current trustees of Humanist Society Scotland are:
- Jennifer Buchan (2021 – 2024 1st term) Chair from 2023
- Clare Hayward (2022 – 2025 1st term) Vice-Chair from 2023
- Gordon Agnew (2019 – 2025 2nd term) Treasurer since 2022
- James Chalmers (2019 – 2025 2nd term)
- Tony Khan (2023 – 2026 1st term)
- Patrick McGlinchey (2020 – 2026 2nd term)
- Gary Smith (2021 – 2024 1st term)
- Joanne Streeter (2023 – 2026 1st term)
- Chelsea Szczypior (2022 – 2025 1st term)
- Fraser Ross (Since 2020) Co-opted external non-member trustee
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