16th July 2009

New BCT Chief Executive announced

We are delighted to announce the appointment of Julia Hanmer to the role of Chief Executive. She will take up the post on September 1st 2009.

Julia will be responsible for leading BCT and ensuring its activities successfully deliver the strategic plan to secure the future of bats in a changing world.

With more than 15 years' experience of developing projects and fundraising for wildlife and conservation charities, Julia has previously worked at the Mammal Society and the Campaign to Protect Rural England. She has an MSc in Conservation from University College London and a Zoology degree from Oxford University.

Julia has a lifelong interest in wildlife and nearly two decades of experience of working with bats. She first encountered bats as a zoology student when one flew through her window. She went on to become a volunteer bat warden with Cheshire Bat Group, which inspired her to study for an MSc in Conservation.

Julia joined BCT as the London Bat Project Officer in 1998, then went on to become BCT's first Chief Executive and Joint Chief Executive with Amy Coyte, who she will be replacing. She is currently Deputy Chief Executive at BCT, following a career break when she spent time with her two children whilst they were young.

She said: "Bats are amazing animals and offer unique opportunities to connect people to their local green spaces through exciting night time encounters. Because the pressures bats face are relevant to so many other wildlife species, in 2008 they were established as one of the UK's Biodiversity Indicators. I am looking forward to leading the Bat Conservation Trust's plans to secure the future of bats in a changing world."

Ian Dunbar, Chairman of BCT added: "What stood Julia apart from a strong field of candidates for the post of Chief Executive was her deep passion for the conservation of bats and unquestionable commitment to furthering the success of BCT. We are extremely fortunate to have such a worthy successor to our current Chief Executive, and all who work tirelessly for the conservation of this fascinating group of animals can feel confident that under Julia's leadership, the future of the Bat Conservation Trust is in good hands."

Julia has been a member of BCT since 1990 and is a member of London Bat Group and a past member of Cheshire Bat Group.