Biography 2007 Wilberforce Lecturer Rowan Williams - Archbishop of Canterbury

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Dr Rowan Williams was elected as Archbishop of Canterbury on 23 July 2002 and was confirmed as 104th Archbishop of Canterbury on 2 December 2002 in St Paul’s Cathedral, London.

Rowan Douglas Williams was born in Swansea were he was educated at Dynevor Secondary School, then at Christ’s College Cambridge, where he read Theology.

Dr WIlliams spent nine years in academic and parochial work in Cambridge and from 1986-1992, Dr Williams was Professor of Theology at Oxford.

He was enthroned as Bishop of Monmouth in 1992 and Archbishop of Wales in 2000.

His attempts at reconciliation have extended to inter-faith matters. He was in New York at the time of 9/11 only yards from Ground Zero delivering a lecture.

He has subsequently worked closely with Muslim leaders in England, and on the third anniversary of 9/11 spoke, by invitation, at the al-Azhar al-Sharif Institute in Cairo, on, of all subjects, the Trinity. His carefully courteous attempt to build bridges between the two monotheisms, was well received.

In 2003 Dr Williams received the honorary freedom of Freetown in Sierra Leone, Hulls twin city. Whilst visiting the former centre of the West African slave trade, Dr Williams spoke of the continuing challenge of “overcoming slavery in old and new forms”.

He contributed to the debate prior to the 2005 General Election criticising assertions that immigration was a cause of crime.