Secularist of the Year 2014 - Tickets now on sale
Posted: Fri, 22 Nov 2013
The search has begun to find the next recipient of the Irwin Prize for Secularist of the Year. The award is presented annually in recognition of an individual or an organisation considered to have made an outstanding contribution to the secular cause.
This year's prize will be presented by Kerry McCarthy MP on Saturday 29 March at a lunch event in central London.
Previous winners have included Southall Black Sisters, Peter Tatchell, Sophie in 't Veld MEP, former MP Evan Harris and Lord Avebury.
In 2013, the prize fund of £7,000 was awarded to Plan UK in honour of Malala Yousafzai. The money has been used to support Plan's 'Because I am a Girl' campaign, which aims to ensure equal access to education for girls worldwide.
Nominations for next year's prize can be made via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Emails should be titled 'Secularist of the Year' and include the name of the individual or organisation you would like to nominate with a brief description of why you think they deserve the award. Nominations close on Wednesday 15 January.
Tickets for the event are on sale now at £45, which includes a three course lunch with a welcome cocktail on arrival. Tickets can also be purchased by sending a cheque payable to National Secular Society to 25 Red Lion Square, London, WC1R 4RL.
Previous years' events have all sold out, so please don't delay if you want to join us for what promises to be another memorable occasion.
Previous winners of Secularist of the Year
2013 In honour of young human rights activist Malala Yousafzai, the prize was donated to Plan UK, represented by Debbie Langdon-Davies – presented by Michael Cashman MEP.
2012 Peter Tatchell, for his lifelong commitment to the defence of human rights against religious fundamentalism – presented by Nick Cohen.
2011 Sophie in 't Veld MEP, for her work as chair of the European Parliamentary Platform for Secularism in Politics – presented by A. C. Grayling.
2010 The Southall Black Sisters group, for their support of black and Asian women's human rights, accepted by Pragna Patel – presented by Michael Irwin.
2009 Evan Harris MP and Lord Avebury, joint award for their work in the abolition of blasphemy law – presented by Richard Dawkins.
2007 Mina Ahadi, founder of the German Central Council of Ex-Muslims – presented by Joan Smith.
2006 Prof. Steve Jones, biologist at University College London and author of a number of books on evolution – presented by Dick Taverne.
2005 Maryam Namazie, for her work in defence of women's rights and the right to freedom of expression – presented by Polly Toynbee.