Biographies

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Chair: The Rt. Hon. Baroness Elizabeth Butler-Sloss GBE

elizabethbutlerslossBaroness Elizabeth Butler-Sloss GBE was appointed to the House of Lords in 2006. She was president of the Family Division from 1 October 1999 – 6 April 2005, and prior to that date registrar at the Principal Registry of Probate, later Family Division, then a Judge of the High Court Family Division and first lady Lord Justice of Appeal in 1988-99. She was chairman of the Cleveland Child Abuse Inquiry 1987-8.

Called to the Bar by Inner Temple, 1955; Bencher 1979. The Treasurer of the Inner Temple in 1998. In practice at the Bar 1955 – 1970. She is a former Chairman of the St.Paul’s Cathedral Advisory Committee, a former Chancellor of the University of the West of England , a former governor of Merchant Taylors’ School, a governor of Coram and a patron of the Grandparents Association. She is visitor to St Hilda’s College Oxford and Hon Fellow and Visitor of St Hilda’s and Hon Fellow of Peterhouse and Corpus Christi Colleges, Cambridge and King’s College London and of several medical colleges. She is currently chairing a Commission on forced marriage and another on Multi Faith Britain.

She is co-chairman of a parliamentary group on human trafficking/modern slavery and a trustee of the Human Trafficking foundation. She is a member of a panel chaired by Frank Field MP hearing evidence on modern day slavery at the request of the Home Secretary. This is intended to assist the Home Office in drafting a Modern Slavery Bill which will be introduced next year. [top]

 

Vice Chair: Nasreen Rehman

Nasreen Rehman was born in Rawalpindi, Pakistan and has been living in the UK, since 1975. The National Commission was convened by Nasreen Rehman as a member of My Britain. As an economist, she has worked in the private sector and in development. From 1998-2001, she was Director of the Mahbubul Haq Human Development Centre, a UNDP funded economic research think tank in Pakistan; and continues to serve on its Board. She was on the Pakistan Power 100 list of most influential women.

Nasreen has worked in the performing arts for the past three decades, as a facilitator and practitioner. She is on the Board of Akademi, a leading South Asian dance provider in the UK, and is Artistic Director of the Grand Trunk Road Company, a forum that uses ‘the road’ as a metaphor for bringing communities together.

Nasreen is an award winning screenplay writer who has worked with directors such as Bollywood’s Yash Chopra, Canada’s Deepa Mehta and Mehreen Jabbar from Pakistan.

In the 1990s, as a Trustee of the Runnymede Trust she served on the Commissions on Anti-Semitism and Islamophobia.

In 2009 she co-founded British Muslims for Secular Democracy (BMSD) with the journalist Yasmin Alibhai-Brown.

Kaifi and I her translation from Urdu into English of the memoir of the actor Shaukat Kaifi was number one on the Times of India bestseller list in 2010.

In 2015, Nasreen completed her PhD on ‘A History of the Cinema in Lahore c.1919-1947’, at the University of Cambridge. [top]

 

Anne-Marie Hutchinson OBE

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Anne-Marie Hutchinson OBE was admitted as a solicitor in 1985; she joined Dawson Cornwell in 1998 as head of the Children Department. She is now a Partner at the family law firm.

Anne-Marie specialises in all aspects of domestic and international family law and the international movement of children. She has a recognised expertise in international divorce forum and jurisdictional disputes on divorce, with particular expertise in international custody disputes, child abduction (Hague and non-Hague); the EU Regulation on jurisdiction in family matters, relocations and children’s law private and public. She acts for the victims of forced marriage, abandoned spouses and Honour Based Violence and has assisted in the protection of 150 plus Forced Marriage victims. She has acted in the leading Forced Marriage and Stranded Spouse cases. Anne-Marie has acted for victims and threatened victims of Female Genital Mutilation.

Anne-Marie is also a specialist in surrogacy arrangements and surrogacy with an international element and co-parenting agreements. Anne-Marie is accredited by Resolution as a specialist family lawyer with specialisms in forced marriage and honour based violence, child abduction and children law. She was awarded the inaugural UNICEF Child Rights Lawyer award in 1999. She received an OBE for her services to international child abduction and adoption in the 2002 Queen’s

New Year’s Honours List. In 2004 she was selected as Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year for her work with the victims of forced marriage. In 2010, she received the International Bar Association’s Outstanding International Woman Lawyer Award. In 2011 she received a True Honour Award from IKWRO. In 2011 she was awarded an “Albert” by the Albert Kennedy Trust in recognition of her work on an international level in defending the human rights of young lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and trans people. In 2012 she was named International Family Lawyer of the Year in the Jordans Family Law Awards.

Anne-Marie is a regular speaker and lecturer both within the United Kingdom and abroad and has made numerous television and press appearances. She is also a member of various committees and is the Chair of the Women Lawyers’ Interest Group of the International Bar Association. For further information on Anne-Marie please see the website: www.dawsoncornwell.com[top]

 

Clare Renton

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Clare Renton is a barrister specializing in international family law. She has appeared in numerous reported cases in family law – most recently Re RS (Forced Marriage Protection Order) [2015] EWHC 3534 (Fam) and E-R (Child Arrangements) [2016] EWHC 805 (Fam) – and lectures regularly to solicitors. She was appointed to the EU Committee of Experts (one of 35) in 2006 to consider EU Family law jurisdictional rules. She is a Fellow of the International Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers and an accredited mediator. Clare is also a MENCAP volunteer with expertise in consent issues for people with learning disabilities. She is a Bencher of Lincolns Inn. [top]

 

Diana Nammi

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Diana Nammi is a campaigner and founder of the Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Rights Organisation (IKWRO) established in 2002. IKWRO is a UK registered charity which provides advice and support to Iranian, Kurdish, Arab, Turkish and Afghan women who are at risk of ‘honour’ based violence and ‘honour’ killings, forced marriage, female genital mutilation, domestic violence and other form of gender violence. Diana had a huge stand against ‘cultural relativism’, ‘political correctness and any other form of political justifications that allow discrimination against women in particular women from BME communities. Diana has a long standing record for women’s rights, human rights and equality.

In 2003, Diana saw the need for an international organisation to fight for women’s rights and against “honour” crimes. In 2003 she founded the International Campaign against Honour Killings “stop honour killings” which successfully managed to take world attention to “honour” based violence as a form of violence against women predominantly. IKWRO has become a leading organisation for many campaigns in the UK and internationally including campaign against “honour” killings.

Diana’s work has received national and international recognition and since she had appeared in almost all main media worldwide and provided presentations nationally and internationally. Her organisation, IKWRO won the ‘Rising Star award’ by the Lilith Project (Eaves Housing) for the Best New Voluntary Sector Organisation in 2006Diana Nammi’s unremitting work was also recognized by Eve magazine who awarded her “the Eve Heroines honour” in December 2007.  In 2012 Diana Nammi has been named on a list of 150 women who shake the world  by Newsweek and The Daily Beast in “Women in the World Summit” – to honour women activists and the growing network of powerful women who support their efforts. [top]

 

Dr Ghayasuddin Sidiqui

Biography forthcoming. [top]

 

Dr Usama Hasan

Sheikh Dr. Usama Hasan is Senior Researcher at Quilliam and was a founding advisor to the organisation in 2008. He has over 10 years’ of extensive interfaith and media experience, and is regularly quoted in national and international, mainstream media. Usama has ample experience of Muslim student life, having spent 8 years studying at top UK universities and having served as President of the student Islamic Societies at Cambridge, King’s College London and Imperial College. As a lecturer for 9 years at Middlesex University, Usama also provided pastoral care to members of the student Islamic society there.

Fluent in English, Urdu and Arabic, Usama completed memorizing the entire Qur’an by the age of 11. He has served as a part-time imam since his teens and is a certified transmitter of the Qur’an and Hadith scriptures and has translated a number of Islamic texts from Arabic and Urdu into English, including the Islamic Foundation’s “Way of the Prophet” (2009). He served as Imam at Al-Tawhid Mosque in London, 1984-2011.

Before joining Quilliam, Usama was a Senior Lecturer in Engineering at Middlesex University, 2003-2012. He holds a PhD, MSc & MA in Physics and Artificial Intelligence from the Universities of Cambridge & London and is a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society. As an astronomer, he served as Planetarium Lecturer at Royal Observatory Greenwich, 2006-8. He also served as Director and Trustee of the City Circle, 2008-12, and is Visiting Lecturer at Cambridge Muslim College (2010-) where he teaches Science, Astronomy and Ethics to graduates of Islamic seminaries.

As Quilliam’s Senior Researcher, Usama engages in ongoing reform, outreach and media work. He addresses key questions on Islam and gender-equality, human rights, personal freedoms and penal codes, seeking to harmonise tradition and reason, faith and science, and developing the Sharia in keeping with the original Prophetic spirit of mercy, and away from rigid ritualism. Usama has published widely on Islamic topics and themes; he is the Visiting Lecturer in Astronomy, Science & Ethics, Cambridge Muslim College as well as Fellow, Royal Astronomical Society. [top]

 

Gita Sahgal

Biography forthcoming. [top]

 

Jasvinder Sanghera CBE

Jasvinder Sanghera CBE is a survivor, campaigner and author. The founder of awarding-winning charity Karma Nirvana, the leading national Charity for those affected by forced marriages and honour based abuse.

Karma Nirvana is now in its 21st year. Jasvinder continues to campaign and work tirelessly for the protection of victims providing support to thousands every year through the unique Honour Network Helpline. This has led to critical new legislation making forced marriage a criminal offence from 2014.

This year Jasvinder was honoured with a CBE for her services to victims of forced marriages and honour based abuse as well as being the recipient of numerous awards. [top]

 

Mona Sheaves

Born to Palestinian parents and brought up in the UK, Mona Sheaves understands and has a deep grasp of the constant issues facing ‘people of two cultures’.

Mona has spent the last 3 decades writing researching and learning about the issues that face people in political conflict. She has a particular interest in cultural conflict and particularly the dichotomy facing women brought up in the West in a culture alien to their parents concept and tradition. Author of Feminine Power with Peter Thompson, Mona has an MA in Political Conflict from the War Studies Department at Kings College London.

Mona has at various times sat on many Boards including NCF (Next Century Foundation, Jade (Jewish Arab Dialogue, FRRME (The Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East) and presently is Vice Chair for BMSD (British Muslims for Secular Democracy). Married, Mona is presently researching for her next book. [top]

 

The Rt. Hon. Sir Matthew Thorpe1440664391

The Rt. Hon. Sir Mathew Thorpe is a former Lord Justice of Appeal (England and Wales), Vice-President of the Family Division and the inaugural Head of International Family Law. He remains the leading expert in the field of the international movement of children.

Sir Mathew has been particularly active in promoting judicial activism. He proposed the creation of the International Hague Network of Judges at the de Ruwenberg Conference in 1998 and successfully campaigned for its growth and development.  He initiated the Germanophone/Anglophone Family Law Conference in 1997, Commonwealth/Common Law Family Law Conferences in and after 2000 and Francophone/Anglophone Conference in 2003. In 2010 he launched the Association of International Judges at the Brussels Conference. He chaired the Expert Group on the European Judicial Network which has drafted and published the Best Practice Guide to Proceedings under the 1980 Hague Convention and Article II of Regulation Brussels II BiS.

Sir Mathew handed down the majority of leading judgments in family appeals between 2000 and 2013, particularly those concerning international family law and matrimonial finance. In 2011, Sir Mathew won the International Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers ‘Jurist of the Year’ award. Sir Mathew won the Cornwall Award for Outstanding Contribution 2013 at the Family Law Awards 2013.

He travelled widely as the judicial representative of the UK, directing the Office of International Family Justice in London (which handles approximately 250 international family justice referrals per year). [top]

 

Mariam Faruqi

Mariam Faruqi is a Solicitor and Pakistan Country Representative with iProbono, a legal NGO.

She previously practiced immigration law in the UK and has worked at Bindmans LLP in London where she qualified and trained in Public Law & Human Rights. In 2010, Mariam went to work in at the Jinnah Institute in Pakistan as a Senior Research Analyst, where she worked on the status of religious minorities, the blasphemy law and labour rights in Pakistan. Her work on status of minorities, ‘A Question of Faith: the status of religious minorities in Pakistan’, covered the forced marriage and conversion of Christian and Hindu women in Pakistan. It is referenced by the Home Office in their country guidance.

Mariam holds an LLM from the School of Oriental and African Studies with distinction and is currently working on a book on judicial review and human rights in Pakistan. She is also the Secretary of The Grand Trunk Road Company, an initiative that seeks to build bridges across cultures. [top]