Helena Kennedy is one of Britain's most distinguished lawyers, a leading barrister and an expert in human rights law, civil liberties and constitutional issues. She has spent her professional life giving voice to those who have least power within the system, championing civil liberties and promoting human rights.

Baroness Kennedy is a member of the House of Lords and chair of Justice (the British arm of the International Commission of Jurists), and is currently the Director of the International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute. She was also previously President of the School of Oriental and African studies, University of London and Principal of Mansfield College, at the University of Oxford.

She was a seminal force in promoting equal opportunities for women at the Bar, writing and broadcasting on the discrimination experienced by women in the law, as lawyers, victims and defendants. For her work for women she received the Times Newspaper's Lifetime Achievement award in 1999. She has also written and broadcast on a wide range of issues, from medical negligence to terrorism to the rights of women and children.

She has received honours for her work on human rights from the governments of France and Italy and has been awarded more than thirty honorary doctorates