Board Structure

The Board is constituted as follows:

Board Chair:

Mr Dale Ashford QFSM

Dale Ashford served the public of Northern Ireland for 30 years in various roles within the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue service before retiring, in 2017, having been Interim Chief Fire Officer/Chief Executive, and serving in operational roles at every level. During his time in NIFRS he served as head of training and development and was responsible for regulatory enforcement as well as leading on the Services approach to prevention and community engagement. He has served as an independent Member of the NI Prison Service Management Board and a Non-executive Director of the NI ambulance Service Health and Social Care Trust Board. He was awarded the Queen’s Fire Service Medal in 2015 in recognition of his services

Deputy Chair: 

This post is vacant at present


Board Members:

Mr Neil Bodger

Neil Bodger has been involved in managerial and company finance at Senior Manager or Director Level for over 30 years. He was a Senior Management Consultant in corporate financial reconstruction for 8 years, 1986-94; and board Director of a German manufacturing company from 1994-2000. Mr Bodger has been the Panel Chair of the Education Authority Appeals Tribunals for 19 years, 1998 to date. He has worked as a Chair of Audit and Risk Management Committees for 22 years. He is currently a board Member on the Northern Ireland Social Care Council (£6,000p.a.), and Governor and Audit and Risk Management Committee Chair for South Eastern Regional College (£3,500 p.a.).

Dr Jonny Byrne

Dr Byrne is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Applied Social and Policy Studies at Ulster University. He is also a member of the Northern Ireland Policing Board’s young people’s reference group, and is an independent member of the PSNI culture, Ethics and Diversity Board. He has a wealth of experience of engaging with a diverse range of audiences in the public and private sector.

Dr Kelly Clark

Dr Clark is Managing Director at Orryx where she works alongside organisations to help them innovate and transform for the future. Kelly was Head of Public Sector Reform Division in the Northern Ireland Civil Service (DoF) where she led a range of significant Executive reform programmes. She previously worked for KPMG and led internal consultancy services for the Northern Ireland Civil Service (DoF).

Mrs Judith Gillespie CBE

Judith Gillespie left the Police Service of Northern Ireland as Deputy Chief Constable in March 2014. She is currently a Commissioner with the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland for which she receives remuneration of £5,000 per annum and a serving Probation Board Member remunerated at £5,050 per annum. Mrs Gillespie brings to the role a wealth of experience in leading and setting the strategic direction of a large organisation.

Mr Dave Wall

David Wall worked in the voluntary sector for twenty years followed by 15 years in the civil service as a Director in the Department of Social Development; he has also held a number of public and voluntary appointments. He is currently on the Board of Governors at Braidside Integrated Primary School, and is a serving Probation Board Member remunerated at £5,050 per annum. 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. He is currently carrying out research as part of a part time PhD at Ulster University investigating methods of evaluation for community development in disadvantaged neighbourhoods.

Mr Kieran Donaghy

Kieran Donaghy retired as Director of Human Resources & Organisational Development from the Southern Health & Social Care Trust in August 2016. He currently sits on the Audit Committee of the Charity Commission as independent member. He has held this voluntary role since 2015. Mr Donaghy brings to the role a wealth of experience in change management, and has extensive knowledge of corporate governance issues, particularly within the public sector.

Dr Theresa Donaldson

Dr. Theresa Donaldson achieved Chartered Director status with the Institute of Directors in 2018.She was Chief Executive of Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council (June 2014-September 2018) and Chief Executive Craigavon Borough Council (2010-2014). Prior to this Theresa held several senior management positions in health and social care and legal services in NI including as Director of Policy and Civil Service Delivery in the Northern Ireland Legal Services Commission. Theresa is currently Vice Chair of Eirgrid remunerated at £8700 p/a. Theresa held a public appointment as Chair of a Health and Social Services Research Ethics Committee for 6 years (2004-2010) and a Judicial Appointment as Lay Member Charity Tribunal (2012-2014).

Mr Paul Douglas

Paul Douglas was District Manager and then District Commander in the PSNI, where he worked closely with the District Policing Partnerships. He was previously a Non-Executive Director in the Safeguarding Board for Northern Ireland; a member of the NI Audit Committee and a Lay Representative in the Pharmaceutical Society; and is currently a Lay Commissioner for the Northern Judicial Appointments Commission (£294 per day). He also currently holds a non-executive role within the Environment Agency (£500 per day)

Mr Gearoid OhEara

Gearoid OhEara has served on the Board of Directors of public bodies for over 30 years including Foras na Gaeilge, Arts Council NI, WELB the Northern Ireland Policing board, and is currently a member of the Probation Board remunerated at £5,050 per annum. He was an elected member of Derry City council and was Mayor in 2004-05.

Ms Patricia Keenan

Patricia Keenan is a consultant and has worked with a diverse range of groups. From 2010 to 2014 she was a Board member for the Local Action Group in the Armagh and Newry council areas, which delivered rural development funding to the local voluntary and business community.

Mr Max Murray

Max Murray worked for the Northern Ireland Prison Service for 37 years, and was both a Governor and a Director, before retiring. During his time in the Prison service he was Governor of Magilligan Prison, Director of Offender Services, Director of Operations and Director of Estates. He is currently a consultant for the Council of Europe.