Dr Martin Warren - 23 years of saving butterflies and moths


Dr Martin Warren has announced that he plans to stand down as Chief Executive of Butterfly Conservation (BC) at the end of 2016.

Martin has worked for BC for more than 22 years and took over as Chief Executive in 2003. He intends to continue working part time for BC Europe, which he helped found in 2004, as well as having more time to pursue his own research on butterflies both in the UK and Europe.

Martin's impact on the growth and reputation of BC is huge and we owe him a great deal for what he has achieved during his work with us and we will be sad to see him leave.

The post of Chief Executive is currently being advertised widely with the aim of having a successor in place by December. The Trustees are seeking candidates with the right combination of skills, experience and personal qualities to ensure continuity of this important position.

Dr Martin Warren is to stand down as Chief Executive of Butterfly Conservation in December (Photo: BC)

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Dr Warren commented on the Butterfly Conservation blog: "After much deliberation and with a heavy heart, I have decided to stand down as Chief Executive of Butterfly Conservation at the end of the year. It has been a very hard decision to make as I have had almost 23 wonderful and productive years with BC, 13 of them as Chief Executive. However, now seems the right time to move on and give me time to pursue my other interests.

"I first started working for BC in 1993, when I was appointed its first Conservation Officer on a three year contract. I thought I would just give it those three years, so it is astonishing to look back after another twenty! At that time, BC had a membership of around 10,000 and three admin staff based at its Head Office in Essex. I was originally based at home in my living room, where I had a very basic Amstrad computer linked to a daisy wheel typewriter that chugged out a whole page in a minute. Life was so much simpler then with no email and no mobile phones — oh how things have changed.

"Fast forward to the present day and we now have 28,000 members and more than 70 staff based in offices around the UK. It has been a hectic 23 years and a huge team effort by everyone concerned. I owe a huge debt of gratitude to my colleagues, who have worked tirelessly to develop the organisation and make some seriously important gains in conserving our wonderful butterflies and moths.

"Among the many fantastic achievements in this time has been the development of world-leading recording and monitoring schemes on butterflies and moths which have together gathered more than 23 million records. It is wonderful that so many people now want to record these important insects and share their data for conservation and research."

Read more from Martin in his post on the Butterfly Conservation blog.

Written by: Butterfly Conservation