Neil Mortensen is a Professor of Colorectal Surgery at the University of Oxford Medical School and has been on the staff of the Oxford University Hospitals since 1987. He is a Fellow of Green Templeton College. He trained in Birmingham, Bristol, and St Mark’s Hospital and has clinical and research interests in a wide range of colorectal diseases. He has published over 300 original papers, 30 book chapters and has edited 8 books. He is the Past Chair of the British Journal of Surgery Society, the President of the Ileostomy Association, and has been Past President of the Association of Coloproctology GBI and the Coloproctology Section of the Royal Society of Medicine. He is editor-in-chief of the journal Colorectal Disease. He has given a number of named lectures including Arris and Gale, Goligher, Sir Alan Parks, Honeyman-Gillespie and Bryan Brooke (UK); Duran Smith, Harry Bacon, Charles Buie, Greenstein and Frykman-Goldberg (USA); Edward Wilson Memorial and CSSANZ Oration (Australia), Gimbernat prize (Spain); Fritz de Quervain (Swiss), Gerhard Buess Memorial Lecture (Norway). Since his appointment in Oxford, he campaigned for the recognition of colorectal surgery as a specialty and created the present department. He founded the first patient association for those with ileoanal pouches the Kangaroo Club and in 2004 the charity OCTOPUS – Oxford Colon Cancer Trust which supports education, research, and new technology in colorectal diseases. He became a member of the Council of the Royal College of Surgeons of England in 2013.