Gay rights charity hires journalist to be chief executive

Stonewall, the charity that campaigns for gay and lesbian rights, has appointed Ben Summerskill to succeed Angela Mason as chief executive.

Summerskill joins from The Observer, where he is assistant editor. He is expected to take up the post in the early summer.

"Summerskill has a very strong background in social affairs in the widest context, which will be crucial for taking Stonewall's work forward," said Sacha Deshmukh, director of parliamentary affairs.

"We are in a new environment. We have got rid of some of the older laws that made it illegal to be gay, and now we are looking at equality not just in the legal sense but also in terms of wider social attitudes and prejudice."

Mason, the previous chief executive, left at the end of last year to become director of the Government's Women and Equality Unit. Since her departure, Stonewall's senior management team has been responsible for overseeing the charity's operations.

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