Our People

Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Nobel Laureate and campaigner for peace, justice and human rights

Bynum Tudor Fellow 

Desmond Tutu is a former Bishop of Johannesburg. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1984. In making the award, the Nobel Committee cited his “role as a unifying leader figure in the campaign to resolve the problem of apartheid in South Africa”. In 1986 he became Archbishop of Cape Town and then president of the All Africa Conference of Churches. After the 1994 general election in South Africa Nelson Mandela appointed him to chair the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to investigate past human rights abuses committed by both pro and anti-apartheid groups.

Archbishop Tutu continues to influence world affairs as a member of The Elders, an independent group of global leaders working together for peace, justice and human rights.

He delivered the 2010 Bynum Tudor lecture in which he drew from the experience of overcoming apartheid to point the way to justice and reconciliation in the Middle East entitled Lessons from the truth and reconciliation process for 21st century challenges.

He encouraged those who were there, especially the young, to take an interest and be involved in these issues. The Chancellor of the University of Oxford, Lord Patten, hailed the Archbishop’s contribution to truth, justice and reconciliation as one of the historic moments of our time.