The John Byrne Award is a project of The Iris Initiative, registered Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation, SC 043568.

Emma Currie

Chair of The Iris Initiative Board of Trustees

Emma is an actress, director and writer. Her theatre company, Acting Up, engages industrial clients in a 7 step health and safety behavioural change process which begins with unexpected live theatre, progresses to story-generation within the workforce and ends with the production of a short film. Emma’s unusual stories reveal the hidden consequences of complacency and encourage culture change from a place of enlightenment and shared values.

Andrew Paterson

Trustee of The Iris Initiative

Andrew is the founder of The Iris Initiative and architect of The John Byrne Award. He was educated at Currie Hugh School and Strathclyde University, where he studied Naval Architecture. He entered the Oil and Gas industry working for operating oil companies for whom he focussed upon well construction. In 1996 he founded Peak Well Management, which duly became The Peak Group, with offices in Aberdeen, London, Dubai, Houston and Perth. The company was sold in 2006 and Andrew retired from executive work. He has since held non-executive positions at Fairfield Energy (retired 2011) and Peak Well Systems. Andrew has a passionate belief in the benefits of understanding one’s own personal and communal values. He does not however wish to promote any particular values through The Iris Initiative. Rather, he sees merit in The Iris Initiative because it is a resolutely non-partisan facilitator of values debate and consideration.

Andrew recently stepped down as Chair of the Iris Initiative after years of expertly steering the organisation.

Tom Halpin

Vice-Chairman of The Iris Initiative Board of Trustees

Tom Halpin has a prominent career in Scotland’s Justice system, latterly as Chief Executive at Sacro from 2009 to 2020. Prior to this, he was Deputy Chief Constable of Lothian & Borders Police and is currently a Board Member of the Scottish Police Authority. A Chartered Director (C.Dir FIOD) he sits on the Institute of Directors Scotland Committee. Tom also chaired the Criminal Justice Voluntary Sector Forum that brings together Voluntary Sector leaders working in Justice and is a Council Member of the Scottish Association for Studying Offending, which is an influential ‘think-tank’ on such matters.

Alongside Tom’s career in Justice, he has a strong interest in the arts, supporting local artists through building his own personal collection of contemporary Scottish art. Tom was awarded the Queen’s Police Medal in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for 2008.

Gordon Angus

Trustee of The Iris Initiative

Gordon is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland.  He went to Aberdeen Grammar School and progressed to the University of Aberdeen where he studied Economics with Accountancy.  After qualifying as a CA Gordon was fortunate to work with fellow Trustee Andrew Paterson in developing and building two successful oil service companies.  Gordon has also acted in an advisory capacity to various companies which have been subject to mergers and acquisitions. A strong believer in the development of organisations on an ethical and value appropriate basis Gordon is pleased to be part of charity exploring values on a society wide basis.

Alex Renton

Trustee of The Iris Initiative

Alex is a journalist and author. His work as a columnist, foreign correspondent, arts writer and food policy journalist has appeared in all Britain’s major newspapers, on television, radio and in Newsweek magazine. Blood Legacy: reckoning with a family’s story of slavery, his most recent book, was published in 2021. Alex lives in Leith with his family. www.alexrenton.com @axrenton