We make a positive difference to the retail industry and the customers it serves.
Helen Dickinson OBEChief Executive
Helen leads the team and sets the strategic direction of the BRC. She joined in January 2013 and has been working with retailers for over 25 years. In 2016 she was awarded an OBE for Services to Retail.
Helen is passionate about diversity and inclusion in retail, acting as the BRC’s Social Mobility Commission ambassador; participating in the Timewise Innovation Unit, looking to support more flexibility in jobs, particularly at senior levels; supporting the Everywoman Retail Ambassadors Programme; and having previously been the Chair of Working Chance, a charity helping women offenders find employment.
Helen believes retail can make a strong contribution to communities, and is also on the advisory board for Pennies, a charity which offers digital charity boxes to businesses. Helen was previously UK Head of Retail at KPMG, driving and developing the retail practice and leading relationships and audits for many clients.
Stephen BethelCorporate Affairs Director
Stephen leads the BRC’s communications and political engagement team, working across the organisation’s priority campaigns. He is an experienced corporate affairs professional with a background in media relations, public affairs and employee engagement.
Stephen spent his early career at the Department for Transport and Ministry of Defence, and has since held senior positions with BAE Systems, Bombardier and Bupa.
Andrew OpieDirector of Food and Sustainability
Andrew heads up the team focusing on the production, labelling and sale of food alongside the responsible sourcing and production of all retail products. Covering a complex legislative agenda, he and his team work closely with key officials in all UK Governments and Brussels. They are also working closely with key NGOs and partners in the supply chain to improve the way products are made and sold.
Andrew has huge experience in food production from his time with the NFU and before that as Chartered Surveyor managing a dairy estate.
Tom IronsideDirector of Business & Regulation
Tom leads the Business & Regulation team covering a broad range of business cost and reputational issues including property, planning, regeneration, taxation, crime, employment, diversity and risk and safety.
He joined us in 2008 bringing previous experience in a range of public sector policy roles and began his career at the Local Government Commission leading reviews of local authorities' structure and electoral arrangements.
Ian PercivalFinance Director
Ian joined us in 2017 and oversees our finance team. He has a wealth of experience gained from a career spent in the home shopping retail sector in Finance Director and Chief Executive roles.
While working as Finance Director at Freemans PLC, he participated in the activities of the Mail Order Traders Association. Subsequently he joined an e-commerce start-up, Sit-up Limited, which grew rapidly and was successfully sold to Virgin Media.
Carolyn HawleyHR Director
Carolyn, who joined us in 2015, is a senior and highly qualified HR professional, coach and coach supervisor with over 25 years of varied experience. She has a proven track record across a broad diversity of organisations including those from the oil and gas, engineering and FMCG sectors, as well as a wealth of international exposure.
Additionally, Carolyn has experience of the public sector, having worked for the police service, social services and the NHS in her earlier career.
Fraser TantMembership Director
Fraser joined BRC in March 2018 and leads our membership, marketing and events team. His remit is to create and deliver membership propositions, products and services that add value to BRC’s Retailer and Associate Members.
He has over 20 years’ experience in trade associations and business-to-business sectors, 13 of which were spent leading marketing at IGD, the UK’s food and grocery trade body. He is also a founder and marketing director of innovative start-up tea brand Twist.