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Celebrating our 140th Anniversary



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Introducing our new Brigade President

Monday 6th September 2021

The Boys’ Brigade is delighted to announce that Rev Dez Johnston has been elected to the role of President.

Dez, an ordained Baptist Minister, is the Director of Alpha Scotland and was recently appointed as Europe, Middle East and North Africa Youth Director for Alpha. Before becoming a Christian, he worked as a nightclub bouncer in Glasgow – the city where The Boys’ Brigade began in 1883.

Dez experienced drug and alcohol problems, before meeting his future wife Fiona, who challenged his ideas of faith. This in turn led to him reading the Bible and going along to Church. He was invited on an Alpha Course, which turned the questions he had about whether God exists into a belief that God loves him.

After becoming an ordained Baptist Minister, Dez went on to join Alpha Scotland as their youth co-ordinator, before becoming Director in 2018 where today he serves and supports Churches across the country.

Dez, who succeeds Lord Leslie Griffiths who stood down from the role in 2020, commented:

“It’s amazing to be joining the BB family as President. I’ve been working together with the BB over the last three years and have loved being involved and seeing for myself the work that is going on. I know I might not look like a President, but then again what does a President look like? More importantly I’m excited about being part of the BB’s work to advance Christ’s kingdom and of supporting their vision of young people experiencing life to the full.”

Jonathan Eales, Chief Executive, commented:

“I am delighted to welcome Dez as our new President. As a Christian youth organisation we are determined to build and to strengthen our partnerships both locally and nationally with the Church. We believe that Dez will be able to support this work and that we will be able to learn from his experiences of working inter-denominationally. Dez has an incredible passion for the love of Jesus which is at the centre of our work.”

The Boys’ Brigade provides opportunities for children and young people to learn, grow and discover in a safe, fun and caring environment which is rooted in the Christian faith. Find out more about our Vision, Mission and Values at boys-brigade.org.uk/ourvision

After a challenging last 18 months, BB groups across the UK and RoI are now restarting their face-to-face activities for the new school year and are open to new children and young people joining the BB family. You can find your nearest BB group at boys-brigade.org.uk/join

Check out a video message from Dez to BB leaders below . . .



  1. Roberta scott says:

    Thank you for your introduction video. Great listen All the very best in moving forward in your position as president. You sound so positive and energetic. God bless for the future as head of Boys Brigade