We’re a small team with a big vision. As lawyers, church leaders, religious freedom advocacy experts, and a talented and creative communications team, we come from many different backgrounds and church traditions. But we work together to achieve incredible results: setting prisoners free, speaking truth to power, and changing the laws that deny millions of people their religious freedom.
Meet a few of our team:
Mervyn Thomas, Chief Executive
A passionate advocate for the right to religious freedom, Mervyn speaks at conferences and churches both in the UK and internationally. He is a member of the World Assemblies of God Religious Freedom Commission, Chairman of the Religious Liberty Partnership (an international network of organisations focused on religious liberty,) and is is a member of the Foreign Office Advisory Group on freedom of religion or belief. Mervyn has been Chief Executive since 1999, and was one of the founding members of CSW over thirty years ago. He is married to Wendy, and they have two children.
Scot Bower, chief operating officer
Scot Bower is CSW's Chief Operating Officer. With fifteen years experience of leading charity communications he is passionate about seeing innovative digital tools used to engage new audiences.
Scot is married to Misty and, together with their two children, they spent 5 years living and working in Eastern Europe before returning to the UK in 2010.
A rather slow, but enthusiastic, long distance runner you can find Scot running the Surrey hills in his spare time. Scot and Misty are part of the leadership of Emmaus Rd, a growing church in the heart of Guildford. Scot is also the author of ‘Saints’ published by Lion Hudson.
Rev Joel Edwards, advocacy director
Reverend Joel Edwards is CSW’s Advocacy Director, and is undertaking a doctorate exploring the place of religious freedom and human rights as part of the Church's mission. Joel is a freelance broadcaster with the BBC, and a writer and international speaker on a wide range of areas including Bible teaching, justice, leadership, faith response to human rights, religious freedom and current affairs.
adesina adesanya, finance director
Sina Adesanya is a chartered accountant and joined CSW in October 2005 as Finance Director after two decades of experience in Nigeria and Tanzania. He holds a first degree in Chemistry and an MBA.
He and his wife, Moji, spent some time as a missionaries in Tanzania between 2000 and 2002 before moving to South London where he pastors the Redeemed Christian Church of God. They have four daughters.
Kiri Kankhwende, Press Officer
Kiri issues press releases, liaises with journalists and monitors CSW’s coverage in the media. She also researches CSW’s show ‘Voice for the Voiceless’ on Premier Radio on Saturday mornings at 11.30am. A fan of lemon drizzle cake, she also enjoys cycling and gardening.
Strategic Leadership Team
Mervyn Thomas, Chief Executive
Scot Bower, Chief Operating Officer
Adesina Adesanya, Finance Director
Bill Lowe, Head of Fundraising
Emma Howlett, Head of Communications
Dr Khataza Gondwe, Team Leader Africa and the Middle East
Rev Joel Edwards, Advocacy Director
Board of Trustees
David Taylor (Chair)
Sarah Snyder (Deputy Chair)
Dr Peter Bibawy
Dr David Landrum
Board of Reference
President: Jonathan Aitken
Patron: The Baroness Cox of Queensbury
Sir David Amess MP
Lord Anderson of Swansea
His Grace Bishop Angaelos
Lord Bates of Langbaurgh
The Rev Preb Richard Bewes
The Rev Lyndon Bowring
Alistair Burt MP
Lord Clarke of Hampstead
The Right Revd Chris Cocksworth
The Revd David Coffey
The Revd John Coles (New Wine)
The Right Revd Chris Edmondson
Lord Hastings of Scarisbrick CBE
The Right Revd and Right Hon David Hope (KCVO)
Simon Hughes MP
Canon J John
The Right Revd Thomas McMahon (RC Bishop of Brentwood)
The Revd Mark Melluish (New Wine)
The Right Revd Dr Michael Nazir-Ali
The Right Revd Patrick O’Donoghue
The Earl of Powis
The Rev David Shosanya
The Revd Martin Smyth
The Most Revd Dr John Sentamu (Archbishop of York)
Sir Peter Vardy DL
Dom Timothy Wright OSB