Go to main content

Who We Are

The British Psychological Society is a registered charity responsible for the development, promotion and application of psychology for the public good.

Through our Royal Charter we are charged with overseeing psychology and psychologists in the UK, and we are governed by a number of democratically-elected boards and committees.

The Board of Trustees

This is the society’s primary governing body, with responsibility for the management and control of the society's affairs and transactions, which ensures that we conform to the terms of our charter and that we observe our legal obligations as a charitable body.

The Board of Trustees is made up of:

  • The Presidential Team
  • Honorary Officers
  • The Chairs of our four main boards
  • Council Representatives

To contact the Board of Trustees please email [email protected]

Meetings and Minutes

The Board of Trustees and The Representative Council (which consists of representatives from all of the society's current Member Networks, in addition to our regular trustees) meets every three months to discuss current and future issues affecting the running of the BPS.

Minutes from these meetings are available below (please note: you must be logged-in to access these documents):

President (2019 - 2020)

Portrait of David MurphyDavid Murphy FBPsS, FRSA is a registered Clinical Psychologist, Health Psychologist and member of the Specialist Register of Clinical Neuropsychologists, and has worked in the NHS for over 30 years, mainly helping patients and their families to cope with serious injury and chronic medical conditions.

David was Head of Psychology Services at Imperial College Healthcare in London for many years and concurrently Honorary Senior Lecturer and lead for psychology teaching at Imperial College Medical School.

In 2001, he was seconded to the Commission for Health Improvement to help develop the national programme of governance inspections.

In 2013, David became Joint Director of the Oxford Institute of Clinical Psychology Training and fellow of Harris Manchester College, University of Oxford. Since leaving Oxford in mid-2018, David has been focussing primarily on leadership research based at the University of Edinburgh Centre for Strategic Leadership, where he is leading a large-scale longitudinal research study into leadership development in NHS clinicians.

David has previously served as Chair of the Professional Practice Board, Director of the DCP Professional Standards Unit and Chair of the Board of Examiners in Clinical Psychology, and has represented the BPS on numerous national and international bodies, including the National Collaborating Centre in Mental Health, the DH Ministerial Advisory Group on Mental Health Strategy, and the International Project on Competence in Psychology.

President-Elect (2019 - 2020)

Dr Hazel McLaughlin C.Psychol, CSci, AFBPsS is an HCPC registered Chartered Psychologist, a Chartered Scientist, Practitioner Occupational Psychologist, and a member of the BPS coaching psychology group.

She is an associate fellow of the BPS and co-founder of the Board Effectiveness Group, and has previously served as Deputy Chair of the Professional Practice Board, Deputy Chair for the Publications and Communications Board, and Chair of the Division of Occupational Psychology.

She is also a chartership supervisor, as well as a partner in a psychology consultancy where she heads up the talent management practice and specialises in leadership, change and business transformation. and co-developed and designed the BPS Leadership Programme for Psychologists to enhance leadership capability within the profession.

Hazel has held both Executive and Non-Executive Board positions including Managing Director for Europe for a psychology business. She regularly mentors and develops leaders and psychologists and has over 30 years’ experience as a consultant to many organisations, including the NHS, as well as corporate clients and entrepreneurs.

She is a graduate of the Henley Business School’s Senior Executive Programme and a member of the Institute of Directors.  She is a regular guest lecturer and currently contributes on the Organisational Psychiatry and Psychology Masters programme at the Institute of Psychiatry, Kings College, London. She regularly presents at international conferences and provides comment for the media on topics such as leadership, diversity and the psychology of work.


Honorary General Secretary (2015-2020)

Image of Dr Carole Allan CPsychol Csci FBPsSDr Carole Allan CPsychol Csci FBPsS is an independent practitioner whose career has spanned a variety of clinical, organisational, and academic roles, including Professional Lead for Psychology in NHS Glasgow and Clyde, and Clinical Director for the Doctorate Programme in Clinical Psychology at the University of Glasgow. 

Dr Allan has aso held a variety of roles within the society, including Chair of the new Special Group of Independent Practitioners, Chair of the Professional Practice Board, and BPS President (2011-12).

She is currently a member of the Division of Clinical Psychology, the Crisis, Disaster and Trauma Section, and the Special Group of Independent Practitioners.

Her primary interests are in the fields of mental health, addiction, trauma, and occupational health, along with the importance of education and training in ethical and professional approaches to practice.

Honorary Treasurer (2019 - 2020)

Dr. Roxane L. Gervais CPsychol AFBPsS is an independent practitioner and consultant. She has worked for many years in diverse teams, in both the public and private sectors, as well as in different countries and has led projects across Europe and internationally.

Her professional and research interests focus on the well-being of individuals within the work environment, inclusive of job stress and strain, mental health, job satisfaction, work-life balance, and diversity within the workplace, inclusive of gender and generational issues.

Roxane’s work and research experience covers also leadership, communication, behaviour change, organisational change, as well as using occupational safety and health policies and practices to promote safe and healthy work conditions.

Roxane has previously served as the Chair of the Division of Occupational Psychology, and as the Chair and Honorary Treasurer of the North East of England Branch. She serves currently as the Division’s Honorary Treasurer.

She is the editor for the Division’s Work-Life Balance working group’s bulletin and was a co-facilitator of the Division’s Leadership Development Programme, which developed volunteers to lead within the Division.

Chair of the Research Board (2015-2020)

Image of Professor Daryl O'Connor CPsychol AFBPsS

Professor Daryl O'Connor CPsychol AFBPsS is a Professor of Psychology  at the School of Psychology, University of Leeds, where he heads the Health and Social Psychology Research Group.

A registered health psychologist with a strong interest in psychobiology research, Professor O'Connor is currently head of the Laboratory for Stress and Health Research (STARlab) and has long been involved in promoting open science and psychology both nationally and across Europe.

Daryl is also the joint Editor-in-Chief of the journal Psychology & Health, and has been actively involved in the business of the society for well over fifteen years.

During this time he has served as Chair-elect, Chair, and Deputy Chair of the Division of Health Psychology Committee, as well as a member of the BPS Psychobiology Section Committee (serving as Chair from 2004-2006), and has been an elected member of the Research Board since 2004 (including two terms as Deputy Chair).

He is currently serving his second term as Chair of the Research Board and is also Convenor of the Board of Scientific Affairs for the European Federation of Psychology Associations (EFPA).

Daryl has also acted as an Expert Advisor to the WHO's Department of Reproductive Health & Research and has been asked to advise upon research strategy at the National Institute of Aging and National Institutes of Health in the United States. In 2011 he was elected a Fellow by the Academy of Social Sciences (FAcSS), and in 2014 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA).

In 2015, he was elected a Distinguished International Affiliate of the American Psychological Association's Division 38 (Health Psychology), in 2017 he was elected Fellow to the Academy of Behavioral Medicine Research, and in 2019 he was elected Fellow of the European Health Psychology Society.

Chair of the Practice Board (2017-2020)

Alison Clarke MBPsS is a Coaching Psychologist working in a busy private practice, where she supports a wide range of clients in achieving transformational outcomes.

For over twenty years Alison has pursued a career in training, development, and management consultancy in Britain, Ireland and Europe, helping to implement organisational, procedural, and service-level changes in both corporate entities and in the NHS and Irish health services.

While working in Brussels she created a number of ground breaking career development programmes for students from British, Irish and European universities and colleges and, in 2012, was elected to serve as the media and communications spokesperson for the Northern Ireland Branch of the BPS.

Chair of the Education and Training Board (2019-2020)

Dr Juliet Foster is Deputy Dean of Education at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience (IoPPN) at King’s College London, and a social psychologist, with an MA and PhD from the University of Cambridge and an MSc from the London School of Economics

Before moving to the IoPPN she spent several years as a Senior Lecturer in Social Psychology at the University of Cambridge and was Senior Tutor of Murray Edwards College.

Dr Foster is Academic Lead for King’s College London on student mental health, and her research has focused in particular on understandings of mental health problems. 

She was appointed Chair of the BPS Education and Training Board in May 2019 and has a particular interest in promoting excellence at all stages of education and training in psychology, and in reflecting the diversity of approaches within the discipline.

Chair of the Representative Council (Observer on the Board of Trustees) (2018-2021)

Image of Dr Peter Branney CPsychol AFBPsSDr Peter Branney CPsychol AFBPsS is a Chartered Psychologist and Senior Lecturer at Leeds Beckett University, specialising in Social Psychology and Qualitative Research Methods.

Following the completion of his PhD Peter joined the Centre for Men’s Health at Leeds Metropolitan University, and in 2009 he was promoted to the position of Senior Research Fellow. In 2012 he transferred to the School of Social, Psychological and Communication Studies as a Senior Lecturer in Social Psychology.

Peter is currently a member of both the Qualitative Methods in Psychology section and the Standing Conference Committee of the British Psychological Society, and also acts as an External Examiner for the psychology degree programmes at Cardiff Metropolitan University and Edinburgh Napier University.

Co-Opted Trustee (2019-2020)

Dr Adam Jowett CPsychol AFBPsS is a Chartered Psychologist and an academic within the School of Psychological, Social Sciences at Coventry University. He is also an Associate Editor of the journal Psychology & Sexuality.

Following completion of his PhD, Adam was a Research Fellow at Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Leeds, and since 2012 he has been at Coventry University as a Lecturer, Senior Lecturer and Associate Head of School.

Adam has also been Course Director of a BPS accredited MSc Health Psychology programme and has served on the committees of several BPS Sections, including as Chair of the Psychology of Sexualities Section. He is also a member of the Division of Health Psychology and the Qualitative Methods in Psychology Section.

Co-Opted Trustee (2019-2020)

Christina Buxton CPsychol AFBPsS is a Chartered Psychologist and Associate Fellow of the BPS, a Chartered Scientist, and a member of the Division of Teachers and Researchers in Psychology, the Division of Occupational Psychology, and the Division of Counselling Psychology.

Christina is also senior practitioner member of the BPS Register of Psychologists Specialising in Psychotherapy, and on the BPS Register of Applied Psychology Practice Supervisors. In addition she is a registered psychotherapist with the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), a member of EMDR UK and Ireland, and an accredited member of Emotional Freedom Technique international (EFTi).  

Christina works both academically and clinically with those affected by, or in contact with those suffering from, psychological trauma and, in her current academic post as a senior lecturer at the University of Chester, she has responsibility for two MSc programmes in psychological trauma. Christina also provides training and consultancy to organisations who specialise in this area of work and is currently working on a project in collaboration with Combat Stress on veterans narratives of PTSD.

Christina is the current chair of the BPS Crisis, Disaster and Trauma Section, a member of the BPS Research Board and the Representative Council. Christina a member of the BPS Psychological Testing Centre (PTC) and is on the Register of Qualifications in Test Use (RQTU). She is a member of the PTC Committee on Test Standards (CTS) and a member of the CTS Health and Social Care Contexts Working Group.

Her previous roles at the BPS include serving as a committee member of the Crisis, Disaster and Trauma Section specifically with a responsibility for CPD events, and subsequently as chair elect. She was a member of the BPS North West Branch Committee where she additionally served as chair from 2008-2010.

Co-Opted Trustee (2019-2020)

Professor Clifford Stott is Professor of Social Psychology at Keele University in Staffordshire, where he is also Dean for Research for the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Director of the Keele Policing Academic Collaboration (KPAC).

Professor Stott is an academic Social Psychologist who specialises in understanding the nature and role of social identity processes and intergroup relationships in the psychology and dynamics of crowd behaviour, riots, and policing, and between 2017 and 2019 he served as Chair of the Social Psychology Section.

He has sat on the Editorial Boards of the British and European Journals of Social Psychology and of Criminology and Criminal Justice, and works regularly with police forces, governments and football authorities across the world.

He was awarded the 2014 First Prize for ‘Outstanding Impact on Public Policy’ by the ESRC, and in 2015 the ESRC also acknowledged his work as one of its top 50 ‘Landmark Research’ achievements of its 50-year history.

Co-Opted Trustee (2019-2020)

Dr Esther Cohen-Tovee CPsychol AFBPsS is a registered Clinical Psychologist and is the Director of Allied Health Professions and Psychological Services at Northumberland, Tyne & Wear (NTW) NHS Foundation Trust. Her previous role was Clinical Director for Psychological Services in NTW FT (2010 - 2017).

Esther has worked in the NHS for the past 30 years, combining clinical work with leadership and management responsibilities since taking on her first professional management role in 1996. 

Esther has been a member of the BPS since 1988, and has fulfilled a number of roles for the BPS and Division of Clinical Psychology including representing the BPS on national committees and working groups.

She is currently serving for the second time as Chair of the Division of Clinical Psychology, is a member of the BPS Practice Board and is BPS Co-Chair of the Accreditation Programme for Psychological Therapy Services (APPTS), a joint initiative between the BPS and the Royal Collage of Psychiatrists.

Esther also represents the BPS on the Independent Advisory & Oversight Group for the Five Year Forward View for Mental Health & NHS Long Term Plan.


Co-Opted Trustee (2018-2021)

Image of Chris D Lynch MBPsSChris D Lynch MBPsS is a founding Member of the Section of Community Psychology, with a degree in Psychology from the University of Chester, as well as a long-standing member of the North West Branch of the society.

Chris is a Service User Governor for Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Trust, where he also chairs the Membership and Development subcommittee, and also helps to run Chester PLUS, a local Mental Health charity in Chester which specialises in Peer Support. 

He has helped to found a number of Rethink Mental Illness support groups in the local Cheshire area, while also helping to run the West Cheshire Mental Health Forum, and is currently Co-Chair of the newly formed West Cheshire Mental Health Partnership Board.

In addition, Chris is also a member of Time to Change's Senior Management Group, a Trustee of Rethink Mental Illness, and an Expert Advisor for the Royal college of Psychiatrists.

Our Senior Management Team is made up of a number of directors whose responsibility it is to oversee the smooth and efficient running of the society's internal workings:

Chief Executive Officer - Sarb Bajwa

Image of BPS CEO, Sarb BajwaOur CEO, Sarb Bajwa, joined the society in April 2018.

Over the years, Sarb has worked in the aid sector, in legal and financial services, and the energy industry, where he has continually sought to contribute to the overarching goals of each organisation while also leading these various professional membership bodies through challenging national and international political environments.

Driven to promote and support positive growth and development in all aspects of the society's work, his goal is to ensure that the BPS continues to make a meaningful and positive contribution to the world.

To contact the CEO please email [email protected]

Director of Policy - Kathryn Scott

Image of Kathryn Scott, Director of Policy & CommunicationsKathryn Scott joined the BPS in March 2016 and leads the society’s work to raise public awareness and maximise the impact of psychology on key areas of public policy.

She also oversees implementation of the work of the Education and Training Board, the Practice Board, the Policy Board, and the Research Board.

Much of Kathryn’s policy experience was gained during her time at Save the Children UK, where she led several high-profile international health campaigns to influence policy decisions in the UK, EU, UN and developing countries.

Prior to joining the BPS Kathryn also worked in local government as a Public Health Strategist, designing, commissioning and delivering public services and behavior change communications. 

To contact the Director of Policy please email [email protected]

Director of IT - Mike Laffan

Image of Mike Laffan, Director of Corporate ServicesMike Laffan joined the society in July 2006.

Prior to joining the society, he worked in operations, IT, and auditing in a number of commercial, retail, and entertainment organisations, including Bupa, Eurostar, Granada, and Mecca Leisure.

Mike leads the underlying operational services of the society, including Customer Support (which provides first line support for members, staff and the public), IT Services, preparation for publication (including graphic design, print and reproduction), mass mailing management, buildings management, security, data protection, and health and safety.

To contact the Director of IT please email [email protected]

Director of Finance and Resources - Harnish Hadani

Harnish Hadani joined the BPS in January 2019 and leads the finance team’s work in supporting the society’s activities.

Prior to this he spent eight years working as a Director of Finance for various businesses, and qualified as a chartered accountant with Deloitte.

His primary focus is on ensuring that our finance function is able to support both the society’s day-to-day work and long term objectives, but he also works to support our member networks with their accounts, and provides additional financial accountability to members of the BPS.

To contact the Director of Finance and Resources please email [email protected]

The society has four main boards which report to the Board of Trustees, each with a specific area of responsibility.

These boards are made up of society members, and their chairs serve on the Board of Trustees.

Each board also contains a number of sub-committees and working parties.

Please click the appropriate link below for more information on the remit and responsibilities of each individual board:

A number of other bodies also advise the Board of Trustees:

Two standing committees:

And three sub-committees:

  • The Finance Commitee

  • The Risk and Assurance Committee

  • The HR Committee

Top of page