Executive Director, CamFed International
Entrepreneur in Residence, Centre for Entrepreneurial Learning, University of Cambridge
Ann Cotton is the founder and Executive Director of CamFed International, a campaign dedicated to providing education for girls in sub-Saharan Africa. She is also currently the Entrepreneur in Residence at the Centre for Entrepreneurial Learning in the University of Cambridge.
Ann was born and brought up in Wales where the passion for education made a lasting impression on her life. Most of her career has been spent working with children excluded from mainstream education. Her early work involved setting up a centre for girls with behavioural difficulties in London.
Her decision to set up CAMFED followed a study of the constraints on the education of girls in rural areas of Zimbabwe as part of an MA in Human Rights Education
CAMFED is award-winning with International Charity of the Year 2003 under its belt. Ann is the 2004 Social Entrepreneur of the Year for the UK, Honorary Fellow of the Open University and a 2005 Beacon Prize winner. In 2005, Ann was awarded the prestigious Skoll Award for Entrepreneurship and in 2006 honoured in the Queen's New Year List with an OBE. In June 2007 Ann received an honorary doctorate in law from the University of Cambridge. During 2006, 300,900 children benefited from CAMFED's education programme.