Probation Board NI Appointments and Re-appointments announced…

  • Justice Minister David Ford has announced the appointment of six new Board Members of the Probation Board for Northern Ireland.

    They are:

    Judith Gillespie
    Ian Jeffers
    Angela Matthews
    Gearoid OhEara
    Barbara Stuart
    Dave Wall

    The new members have been appointed following an open competition regulated by the Commissioner for Public Appointments Northern Ireland and will take up office on 1 December 2015.

    The Minister also announced the reappointment of the Chair and six serving members for a second term. 

    David Ford said: “I welcome the appointment of the new members to the Probation Board for Northern Ireland. The Probation Board for Northern Ireland plays a key role in reducing crime and preventing re-offending through the effective supervision of offenders.

    “I also welcome back Vilma Patterson as Chair and also those members of the current board who are being re-appointed for a further term and thank them for their continued support. I should also like to record my sincere thanks to those members of the Board who are standing down, having completed their term of office and wish them well for the future.

    “Probation is about reducing the risk of people becoming victims of crime, addressing offender behaviour and rehabilitating and resettling offenders to reduce reoffending and I look forward to working with the incoming chair Vilma Patterson and the Board members to advance that agenda in the coming months.”

    Notes to editors:

    1. The Probation Board for Northern Ireland (PBNI) is an executive non-departmental public body (NDPB) established by the Probation Board (NI) Order 1982. The Board is tasked with providing an adequate and efficient probation service and is responsible for determining its policy within the broad parameters set by Government and for monitoring the service’s performance against objectives.

    2. The main activities of the Probation Board are: the supply of information to the courts through pre-sentence reports; the supervision of offenders made subject to community disposals; and the provision of social welfare services in prisons. The Board also funds community initiatives aimed at supporting the statutory supervision of offenders in the community.

    3 .Appointments to the Board are made by the Minister of Justice in accordance with Schedule 1 to the 1982 Order. Statutorily, the Board must consist of a Chair, Deputy Chair and not less than 10 nor more than 18 other members. This appointment is envisaged to be for period of three years and takes effect from 1 December 2015. The remuneration for the post of Chair is £33,010 per annum and for Board Member is £5,050 per annum.

    4. This appointment has been made in accordance with the Commissioner for Public Appointments Northern Ireland Code of Practice. All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, the Commissioner for Public Appointments for Northern Ireland requires the political activity of appointees to be published.

    5. The details of the Probation Board membership, with effect from 1 December 2015 are:

    New Members:

    Judith Gillespie retired as Deputy Chief Constable of the Police Service of Northern Ireland in 2014. She is currently a Commissioner with the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland for which she receives remuneration of £5,000 per annum. Mrs Gillespie brings to the role a wealth of experience in leading and setting the strategic direction of a large organisation.

    Political Activity: None

    Ian Jeffers has held leadership roles in the private and community and voluntary sector for over 20 years including the Prince’s Trust. He brings to the Board a strong non-public sector perspective and detailed knowledge of working with young people and supporting them to achieve their full potential.

    Political Activity: None

    Angela Matthews is a practising Barrister and a member of the Northern Ireland Bar. She is currently a Board Member and Chair of Business Support Committee of Libraries NI for which she received remuneration of £3,000 per annum and also a member of the Valuation Tribunal Northern Ireland for which she receives £160 per day. Ms Matthews brings to the role a good experience of monitoring performance and developing and influencing organisational strategy and a sound knowledge of dealing with young people

    Political Activity: None

    Gearoid OhEara has served on the Board of Directors of public bodies for over 30 years and is currently the Director of a number of organisations. He was a Member of the Northern Ireland Policing Board for which he received remuneration of £19,000 per annum. Mr OhEara brings to the Board a wide breath of experience of leading and shaping the strategic direction of a range of organisations.

    Political Activity: Sinn Fein

    Barbara Stuart was a Lay Magistrate and in a voluntary capacity is vice chairperson of Extern. She was a Non-Executive Director of the Western Health and Social Care Trust for which she received remuneration of £7,950 per annum. Barbara brings to the role a strong knowledge of corporate governance, personal effectiveness and strategy.

    Political Activity: None

    Dave Wall is currently a Director in the Department of Social Development and has previously held a number of public and voluntary appointments. He brings to the Board a detailed knowledge of the public sector and has extensive experience in dealing with the dynamics of local neighbourhoods and socially deprived areas.

    Political Activity: None

    Re-appointed members:

    Vilma Patterson is self-employed having previously managed her own company and prior to that been a Director in the family business in sportsground construction. She was a member of the Independent Monitoring Board for Maghaberry Prison 1996 – 2008 (Chair between 1998-2001) and Chair of the Northern Ireland Association of Members of Independent Monitoring Boards 2003-2008. She was also formerly a member of the Parades Commission from 2006-2010. Mrs Patterson brings to the post a wealth of experience working within the public, private, voluntary and community sectors. Vilma Patterson was a Board Member with PBNI 2009-2012 and has been Chairman since 2012, for which she receives remuneration of £33,010 per annum. She was a Civil Service Commissioner for Northern Ireland 2009-2015 and was previously a Non-Executive Member of the Audit Committee with the Office of Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland from 2010-2015. Mrs Patterson is currently a member of the Armed Forces Pay Review Body since 2014, for which she receives remuneration of £300 per day.

    Political Activity: None

    David Brown is currently an Independent Board Member at the Youth Justice Agency NI and a Co-founder and Trustee of Simply Serving Ministries. Prior to that he was Commercial & Services Director for Translink from 2009-2012. Mr Brown brings to the post a range of experience having worked across the public, private and voluntary sectors. He has declared no political activity.

    Political Activity: None

    Julie Erskine worked in the healthcare service industry for over 25 years before retiring as Operations Director in 2007. She brings to the role a wealth of experience across the public, private and voluntary sectors and has extensive experience in chairing audit and risk committees. Mrs Erskine is an Audit Committee member with the Commissioner for Older People and Commissioner for Younger People for which she receives fees of £286 per meeting and £285 per meeting respectively. She is a member of the Northern Ireland Social Care Council for which she receives £6,250 per annum, the Northern Ireland Local Government Officers’ Superannuation Committee for which she receives £113 per meeting and a Non-Executive member of the Public Health Agency for which she receives £8,250 per annum.

    Political Activity: None

    Edgar Jardine retired as interim Chief Executive of the Northern Ireland Policing Board in July 2012. Prior to joining the Policing Board he had worked as Deputy Secretary in the Office of the First and Deputy First Minister and in the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure. He is currently Chair of NIPB’s Policy and Practice Committee and a member of the Audit Committee. Mr Jardine has extensive knowledge of corporate governance issues, particularly within the public sector.

    Political Activity: None

    Robin Mullan is currently Chief Executive of Peamount Healthcare which provides rehabilitation, residential and community services. Mr Mullan was previously Northern Ireland Director of the National Lottery Charities Board and has extensive experience of working in the voluntary and community sector including Disability Action and Extern. Mr Mullan brings his knowledge of criminal justice issues together with his considerable experience of corporate governance, strategic and financial planning having worked across the voluntary, public and private sectors. Mr Mullan is a Non-Executive Director of the Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority for which he receives £5,961 per annum and the Equality Commission NI where he receives £5,000 per annum.

    Political Activity: None

    Thomas O’Hanlon is currently a Parliamentary Assistant and Press Officer. He is a Councillor on Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough. Mr O’Hanlon brings to the Board a breadth of experience from across both the voluntary and local government sectors and a clear understanding of the key challenges in reducing offending.

    Political Activity: SDLP

    Pauline Shepherd is CEO at the Independent Health and Care Providers which is a membership organisation representing care homes and domiciliary care providers in the independent sector across NI. Her career includes working at Chief Executive, Executive Director and Non-Executive Director level across a range of complex organisations in the Public and Voluntary sectors. These include NI Court Service, NI Prison Service, NI Water and the all-Ireland charity Extern which works with children, families and adults with particularly challenging needs. She is also a Board Member for the Labour Relations Agency for which she receives £5,050 per annum.