Who’s who in education

A look at the key players in the education sector.

Education Minister: Peter Weir, MLA

Education Minister: Peter Weir, MLA
A barrister by profession Peter Weir was originally elected as an Ulster Unionist back in 1998. Following a spell as an Independent, he joined the DUP and was
re-elected as an MLA for North Down in 2003. Previously he chaired the Audit Committee and last year he chaired the Committee for Education.

Education Permanent Secretary: Paul Sweeney

Education Permanent Secretary:
Paul Sweeney
Permanent Secretary at the Department of Education since 2010, Paul Sweeney has previously held the same post at the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure.  He also held the post of deputy secretary in OFMDFM and prior to that was deputy secretary of Department for Regional Development (DRD), where he was responsible for spatial planning and transport. Sweeney will retire at the end of 2016.

Chairman, Education Committee: Barry McElduff, MLA

Chairman, Education Committee:
Barry McElduff, MLA
First elected in 1998, Barry McElduff has been
re-elected for West Tyrone ever since. He has previously chaired the Culture, Arts and Leisure Committee and served as Assembly Private Secretary to the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure. He first sat on the Education Committee as a member in 1999.

Interim Chief Executive, Education Authority: Gavin Boyd

Interim Chief Executive, Education Authority: Gavin Boyd
Appointed in December 2014 by then Education Minister John O’Dowd to oversee the change programme to establish the Education Authority. Gavin Boyd was previously Chief Executive (Designate) of the Education and Skills Authority (ESA). Alongside this role, he led the Council for the Curriculum, Examinations & Assessment (CCEA), the Belfast Education and Library Board (BELB) and the Southern Education and Library Board (SELB) at various times as Chief Executive.

Chief Executive, Integrated Education Fund: Tina Merron

Chief Executive, Integrated Education Fund: Tina Merron
Tina Merron, Chief Executive of the Integrated Education Fund since 1998, previously worked at Short Bros plc, Pasolds (Northern Ireland) Ltd and Queen’s University Belfast. An accountant by background, she is responsible for implementing the independent trust’s strategic plan, raising funds and overseeing the IEF’s grant-making programmes.

Chief Executive, CCMS: Jim Clarke

Chief Executive, CCMS: Jim Clarke
Jim Clarke is the Chief Executive of the Council for Catholic Maintained Schools (CCMS). He is a former teacher and principal, a former member of the Belfast Education and Library Board and a member of the
Post-Primary Review Group (Costello). He is currently a member of the Council for the Curriculum, Examinations & Assessment (CCEA) and the Children’s and Young People’s Strategic Partnership.

Interim Chief Executive, Comhairle na Gaelscolaíochta: Liam Ó Flannagáin

Interim Chief Executive, Comhairle na Gaelscolaíochta: Liam Ó Flannagáin
Recently appointed Interim Chief Executive, Liam Ó Flannagáin previously served 2015 as Chief Executive of Limavady Borough Council / Comhairle Burgh Léim an Mhadaidh from 2005/2015, leading the council through the change process of the Review of Public Administration in local Government. Previous to local government his career had been in social housing and he served as Director of Housing services for Fold Housing Association for over 10 years.

Chief Executive, CCEA: Justin Edwards

Chief Executive, CCEA: Justin Edwards
Appointed as Chief Executive of CCEA in December 2014, Justin Edwards is responsible for the operational delivery of examinations and assessments to thousands of pupils across Northern Ireland, the monitoring of standards in qualifications, and the forming of relevant policy advice to the Department of Education. His previous roles include Assistant Chief Executive and Director of Curriculum at Belfast Metropolitan College.

President and Vice-Chancellor, University of Ulster: Paddy Nixon

President and Vice-Chancellor, University of Ulster: Paddy Nixon
Paddy Nixon joined Ulster University from the University of Tasmania where he was Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research). He was previously Science Foundation Ireland Research Professor in Distributed Systems at University College Dublin (UCD), where he was Vice Principal (Deputy Dean) of the Faculty of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences.  In addition to his time at UCD he has held academic positions at the University of Strathclyde , Trinity College Dublin and at Manchester Metropolitan University. 

President and Vice-Chancellor, Queen’s University Belfast: Patrick Johnston

President and Vice-Chancellor, Queen’s University Belfast: Patrick Johnston
Until taking up the post of President and Vice-Chancellor of Queen’s in March 2014, Patrick Johnston was Dean of the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences where he led the foundation of a new international Medical School and Institute of Health Sciences. He is the first person to be appointed President and Vice-Chancellor from within the staff of Queen’s since the appointment of Sir Peter Froggatt in 1976.

Chief Executive, Colleges Northern Ireland: Gerard Campbell

Chief Executive, Colleges Northern Ireland: Gerard Campbell
Gerard Campbell was appointed as Chief Executive of Colleges Northern Ireland, the representative body for the six regional colleges, in July 2011. He was previously Chief Executive of the office of the Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People, Director of Corporate Services with the Northern Ireland Social Care Council and a regional training manager with the British Red Cross and Joblink.

Chief Executive, Northern Ireland Council for Integrated Education: Roisin Marshall

Chief Executive, Northern Ireland Council for Integrated Education: Roisin Marshall
Active as CEO of the Northern Ireland Council for Integrated Education (NICIE) since January 2016, Roisin Marshall has over 24 years’ experience in education and teaching, including working in primary, post primary and special education.  She previously worked at NICIE in the Senior Management Team, and has worked as a Project Manager in an Education Board (on secondment).  She has recently been a professional associate for NICIE and CCEA.

Principal and Chief Executive, Belfast Metropolitan College: Marie-Thérèse McGivern

Principal and Chief Executive, Belfast Metropolitan College: Marie-Thérèse McGivern
Marie-Thérèse McGivern was appointed Principal and Chief Executive of Belfast Metropolitan College in November 2009. Immediately prior to that she spent 10 years as Director of Development at Belfast City Council. Marie-Thérèse is a Visiting Professor at the University of Ulster and an Honorary Member of the Royal Society of Ulster Architects. She is a member of various bodies including the CBI Council for Northern Ireland, the Titanic Foundation and a non-executive director of both the Strategic Investment Board and of Bombardier NI.

Principal and Chief Executive of the North West Regional College: Leo Murphy

Principal and Chief Executive of the North West Regional College: Leo Murphy
Appointed in 2014, Leo Murphy has over 25 years’ experience in the further education sector. He was Vice-Principal in Omagh College from 2000 and in 2008 he took over the role of Deputy Director at South West College based at the Fermanagh campus. He has served on a number of public bodies and forums relevant to education, enterprise and innovation.  He introduced a range of new portfolios in his previous College such as international work, entrepreneurship and supporting economic development.

Principal and Chief Executive, Southern Regional College: Brian Doran

Principal and Chief Executive, Southern Regional College: Brian Doran
Brian Doran took up his position as Chief Executive on 1 January 2008. He was previously Deputy Director for Teaching and Learning at Newry and Kilkeel Institute, and has taught in both the school and further education sectors. In total, he had 19 years of experience working in that institute, including holding the posts of Assistant Director for Student Services and Head of School of Computing.

Principal and Chief Executive, South Eastern Regional College: Ken Webb

Principal and Chief Executive, South Eastern Regional College: Ken Webb
Ken Webb joined the college in August 2008 having held the position of Director of Corporate Services at North Down Borough Council for eight years. He has a varied professional background, including previously working in central government on a number of PPP/PFI projects, in the advertising industry and in the agri-food industry. Ken was a teacher early in his career and is a graduate of Queen’s University Belfast.

Director and Chief Executive, South West College: Malachy McAleer

Director and Chief Executive, South West College: Malachy McAleer
Malachy McAleer has been the Director and Chief Executive of South West College since August 2009. An Engineering graduate, he worked as a Civil Engineer in the private sector before joining the education sector in 1982. He lectured in the Institute of Technology, Sligo prior to joining Omagh College in 1992 and the merged South West College in 2007.

Principal and Chief Executive, Northern Regional College: Terri Scott

Principal and Chief Executive, Northern Regional College: Terri Scott
Terri Scott has held a number of significant leadership roles in education and the public sector for over 18 years. Prior to becoming President of IT Sligo, she held senior positions at Dublin City University and the University of Ulster, and Visiting Appointments at Carnegie Mellon University and MIT (Massachusettes Institute of Technology). From 2002 to 2006 she was Managing Director at Invest Northern Ireland responsible for entrepreneurship and regional development.

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