Workshop Leads

Find out who attended #MITEY18

Dr Finn Mackay

Dr Finn Mackay is a Senior Lecturer in Sociology at the University of the West of England, Bristol, UK. After a varied career in youth work with boys and young men and then education policy on domestic abuse prevention and anti-bullying, Finn returned to academia and completed her PhD in the Centre for Gender & Violence Research at the University of Bristol.


Founding the London Feminist Network in 2004 and being part of reviving the London Reclaim the Night march, Finn has long been involved in feminist activism in the UK and is a regular writer and media commentator on women’s rights. She is the author of ‘Radical Feminism: Activism in Movement’ published by Palgrave. Finn lives in Bristol with her wife and young son and one middle aged cat”

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Dr. Deborah Price

Deborah Price works as a lecturer and trainer for The Open University and Working with Others. During her career she has worked as a lecturer in early years in higher and further education, an Ofsted inspector, playworker, primary teacher and youth worker.

She has co written four books: on leadership, LGBT awareness, gender awareness and assertion techniques – all based in early years practice and published by Routledge. Most recently she has written ‘A Practical Guide to Gender Diversity and Sexuality in the Early Years’ published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

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David Wright

David Wright is the owner of Paint Pots Nurseries, at Southampton based group of Early Years settings. Alongside this, he is an advocate for Men in Early Years. In this capacity, he is active in the promotion of and support for a more balanced-gender Early Years workforce. David is one of the founders of the local support group Southampton Area Men in Early Years (SAMEY) who organised the first ever UK national Men in Early Years conference in 2016.


He has contributed to British Government advisory groups on gender-balance in the Early Years workforce. David is an international speaker on Men in Early Years, a regular contributor to Early Years publications and online media, and the UK representative to the leadership team of the World Forum working group on Men in Early Childhood Education.

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Olivia Dickinson

Let Toys Be Toys: Let Toys Be Toys was set up in 2012 by a group of parents concerned about gender stereotypes in marketing to children. Initially they targeted retailers of toys, and 14 retailers now no longer have 'girls' and 'boys' signs in their shops. In 2014 the campaign expanded to include books, and 11 publishers are now on board with the #letbooksbebooks pledge, no longer publishing books whose titles say they are only for boys or for girls. Since 2014, Let Toys Be Toys has also offered resources for schools and early years - lesson plans for teachers from Reception to Y9, advice and guidance for early years settings and primary schools on how to challenge gender stereotypes, as well as support for parents.

Olivia has volunteered for the campaign since 2014, initially leading on the schools resources but gradually getting involved with social media, conferences and speaking publicly on behalf of the campaign. Her background is in digital media for kids, and she has one son.

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Interview coming soon!

Dr. Jo Warin

Dr Jo Warin is a senior lecturer in Educational Research at Lancaster University and Co- Director of the Centre for Social Justice and Wellbeing in Education. Jo’s research is currently focused on Men in the Early Years, in the UK and overseas, with several relevant journal articles, a co-authored book ‘Men, masculinities and teaching in early childhood education’ and a forthcoming book (Jan 2018) Men in Early Childhood Education and Care -Gender Balance and Flexibility.


Her broader research interests are in gender, education and identity. She teaches on the online Doctoral Programme in Education and Social Justice and supervises many PhD students.

Dr. Simon Brownhill

Dr. Simon Brownhill is a Senior Teaching Associate in the Faculty of Education at the University of Cambridge. He currently serves as the Lead for the China Early Years Project in collaboration with Peking University.


His research and writing interests include children's writing, their physical development, managing children's behaviour and the male role model in the Early Years (the focus of his doctoral work). He has been invited to present his research at international conferences including Ireland, Portugal and Indonesia (all as a Keynote speaker). He is the co-author of Becoming a Brilliant Trainer: A Teacher’s Guide to Running Sessions and Engaging Adult Learners which was published by Routledge in 2018.

Chris Hemmings

Chris Hemmings is a freelance journalist and author of ‘Be A Man – How macho culture damages us and how to escape it’.

The book is part-autobiographical, tracking his own journey from sweet young boy to belligerent rugby lad. It analyses how he got so caught up in macho and lad culture that it culminated in him feeling pride at the fact he didn’t cry at his own dad’s funeral. It also researches the myriad of ways in which the way we promote an unhealthy version of masculinity – and how that doesn’t just damage women and girls, but also damages men and boys, too.


Chris speaks at universities, schools and places of work trying to convince men and boys to drop their machismo and to engage in healthy discussions about the toxic aspects of masculinity. He now makes films for the BBC including the recent one for BBC2 about Men in Early Years.

Michael Conroy

Michael has worked in Secondary Education in England for 14 years. During the course of this work he came across the organisation A CALL TO MEN UK which seeks to engage boys and young men in ending male violence against women and girls by critically reflecting on how boys and men are ‘collectively socialised’ by society to think, act and view themselves and, by extension, to view and treat women and girls.

Michael spent several years as Development Coordinator for ACTM UK, work which took him to many UK Universities, high schools and primaries, as well as Youth Justice, Early Help and Family Support settings, working both directly with boys and young men and the teaching and support staff who work with them. He has recorded a TEDx Youth Talk (Birmingham, Oct ’17) and spoke as an expert guest on the Parliamentary Women & Equalities Select Committee session on Sexual Harassment and its causes.

Michael is the founder of Men At Work Org - dedicated to supporting educators of all kinds in engaging boys & young men in constructive dialogues around cultural messages around 'how to be a man.

Dr. Ben Hine

After completing a BSc in Psychology at Royal Holloway, University of London in 2010, Ben went on to complete his PhD at the same institution between 2010 and 2013. His PhD thesis examined the gender-typing of prosocial behaviour across childhood and adolescence, in an attempt to challenge the assumption within the literature that girls were 'more' prosocial than boys. In fact, the body of work produced from his thesis suggested that, when given a greater variety of prosocial actions to judge, children and adolescents actually gender-type some prosocial behaviours as masculine (i.e., providing physical assistance) and that boys may only display prosociality in a way that still allows them to maintain a masculine identity. He mainly teaches Developmental and Gender Psychology at Undergraduate and Postgraduate level.

He is also a co-founder of the Men and Boys coalition, a network of organisations, academics, journalists, professionals and leaders committed to highlighting and taking action on the gender-specific issues that affect men and boys such as the high male suicide rate, the boys education crisis, getting men into traditional 'feminine' occupations, and fatherhood.

Nicky Oram

Nicky is the Programme Leader for Early Years Initial Teacher Training at Best Practice Network in partnership with eQualitas. Nicky has also led a number of other early years programmes during her time at Best Practice Network including EYITT’s predecessor Early Years Professional Status. Nicky manages a large team of tutors and mentors who work in a wide range of settings all over the country.

Natalie Bennett

Natalie is one of the original founding members of TIGER way back in October 2012. Natalie believes that TIGER highlights the true potential of young people by empowering and uniting them to become their authentic and ever- changing self, without fear of judgment, so that they can just finally focus on the stuff that matters.

Her experiences include working as a tutor at Lancaster University working with media and culture undergraduate students, a researcher and workshop facilitator with the charity EACH (Educational Action Challenging Homophobia), a project coordinator for the charity Envision and a team leader working with ICS (a government funded initiative) supporting young people in Malawi on a social action project empowering women living with HIV and Aids.

Natalie is also passionate about coffee, Frida Khalo, The Spice Girls (who isn’t?!?) and her little human Ruben.

TIGER is a Bristol-based, not-for-profit workers’ co-operative that run unique participant- led workshop programmes, exhibitions and resources aiming to provide a supportive platform for young people to critically understand their identity, gender-based barriers, and how gender inequality can be challenged in their own lives and beyond, leaving a lasting legacy for the next generation.

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