Rev. Dr. Gary Mason is a Methodist minister and directs a conflict transformation organization based in Belfast called "Rethinking Conflict." Prior to this he spent 27 years as a Methodist clergy person in parish ministry in Belfast and has played an integral role in the Northern Irish peace process. Mason is a close advisor to Protestant ex-combatants on the civilianization efforts of paramilitaries. He was instrumental in facilitating negotiations with paramilitaries and government officials, and in 2007 his contribution was formally recognized by the Queen. In 2009, Mason’s church was the stage from which Loyalist paramilitaries announced their weapons decommissioning.