Appointment of Six Non-Executive Members to the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service

Date published: 12 May 2020

Health Minister Robin Swann, has announced the appointment of six Non-Executive Members to the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service (NIFRS)

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Health Minister Robin Swann, has announced the appointment of six Non-Executive Members to the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service (NIFRS). 

Ms Bonnie Anley, Mrs Hilary Singleton and Ms Lindsey Smith have been appointed as Lay Members; Mr Jim Quinn is appointed as the Trade Union Member; and Councillor Jonathan Craig and Councillor Thomas O’Hanlon appointed as District Council Members.

These appointments were made in accordance with the Code of Practice issued by the Commissioner for Public Appointments for Northern Ireland.

The six appointments commenced on 1 April 2020 and will run for a maximum period of 4 years.  The Non-Executive Member role attracts a remuneration of £6,202 per annum and carries a time commitment of 3 days per month.

The NIFRS Board comprises a Non-Executive Chairperson, the Chief Fire & Rescue Officer and 10 Non-Executive Members.  On a day-to-day basis NIFRS is managed by its Corporate Management Team (CMT).

NIFRS is divided into 4 operational Command Areas – Northern, Southern, Eastern and Western. An Area Commander, each responsible for one of the 4 Area Commands, manages operational activity on a day to day basis.  The 4 Area Commands are supported by 14 Districts, strategically placed across Northern Ireland and which create a community focus for NIFRS activities. District Command is responsible for the Fire Stations in their District. There are 68 Fire Stations throughout Northern Ireland serving their local community.

Notes to editors: 

  1. Ms Bonnie Anley holds 2 other current public appointment positions; from February 2014, Chair of Londonderry Port and Harbour Commissioners which attracts remuneration of £26,799 per annum; and Chair of the Northern Ireland Blood Transfusion Service from April 2019 which attracts £7,444 per annum.  Bonnie is Chair of Foyle Port’s Pension and Remuneration Committee. She is a Chartered Director and a Fellow of the Institute of Directors (IoD) and is a member of the IoD Northern Ireland Committee.  She is also a Director of Mourne Country Park Limited. Bonnie holds an MA from Trinity College Dublin and an MSc from Queen’s University Belfast.
  2. Mrs Hilary Singleton is a former practising solicitor who spent her professional career as a legal practitioner in private practice. Hilary currently holds 2 other current public appointments; from October 2015 as Deputy Chair of the Health and Safety Executive of Northern Ireland (HSENI), where she chairs HSENI's Audit and Risk Committee. This role attracts an annual remuneration of £3,980 per annum.  The other public appointment held by Hilary is Member of the Local Government Staff Commission from December 2014, and this position attracts a daily remuneration of £123. Hilary also serves as a Board member of the International Fund for Ireland, chairing the IFI's Audit Committee, and she is a Director of a voluntary association, the Mid-Armagh Community Network. Hilary was formerly Chair of the Southern Zone Steering Group of the Social Investment Fund where she led a multi-disciplinary team in the development of an £8.5m strategic area plan for the Zone to tackle social and economic deprivation. She previously served as a Board member of the Ulster Scots Agency, chairing both its Education Committee and Audit and Risk Committee.
  3. Ms Lindsey Smith is an Organisational Development Consultant and an associate lecturer at both Queen’s University, Belfast and the University of Ulster, lecturing in Human Resource Management. Lindsey holds two other current ministerial public appointment positions; since 2011 she has been a Non-Executive Board Member of the Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority, receiving annual remuneration of £6,202; and since 2011 Lindsey has been a Non-Executive Board Member of the Health and Safety Executive, NI and receives annual remuneration of £3,950. She is a member of the audit committee for both roles. Earlier in her career Lindsey was a senior manager in the Home Office, UK.   
  4. Mr Jim Quinn is employed by the Northern Fire & Rescue Service as a Watch Commander based at its Headquarters in Lisburn. He is also the Northern Ireland Executive Council Member and National Treasurer for the Fire Brigades Union which represents uniformed members of the Fire Service throughout the UK. Mr Quinn is an elected member of the Northern Committee of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions which is the representative body for Northern Ireland. He was previously a Non-Executive Director of Lisburn Local Strategy Partnership. Mr Quinn brings over 34 years of Fire Service experience to the Board.
  5. Councillor Jonathan Craig was formally a Senior Engineer at Bombardier for 20 years.  Married with two children, he was educated at Dromore High School, Friends School and the University of Ulster.  A Councillor in Lisburn City Council from 2001 to 2011, Mayor in 2005/2006. Councillor in Lisburn Castlereagh City Council from 2016 to present serving on the Leisure and Community Development Committee, Environmental Committee and Chairs the Planning Committee.  A former MLA from 2007 to 2016, Jonathan has been the DUP lead on the Northern Ireland Policing Board serving for five years, and served on the Education Committee for six years.  Jonathan is chair of the Board of Governors of Laurelhill Community College and also serves on the Board of Governors of Seymour Hill Primary school.  Jonathan holds 2 other current public appointments; since June 2018 he has been a Board Member of the Education Authority receiving an annual remuneration of £8,000; and in April 2020 he became a Board Member of the Northern Ireland Police Fund, a non-remunerated position. Jonathan is a life time Honouree member of Autism N.I. an Autism champion having helped steer the Autism Bill through Stormont.
  6. Councillor Thomas O’Hanlon is an SDLP Councillor on Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council.  He was first elected to Council in 2005, served as Mayor of Armagh during 2009/2010 and is currently the SDLP Group Leader Council.  Previously he served on the Probation Board for Northern Ireland.  He works as Parliamentary Assistant to Justin McNulty MLA.  He is Chairman of the Appleby Trust, which works across Armagh, Banbridge and Lurgan.  The Appleby Trust is a Social Enterprise working with young people with Autism and Learning Disabilities and operates a number of supported employment programmes. Thomas is married to Andrea and they have two girls, Annie (4) and Lucy (2). 
  7. Appointments to NIFRS are made with the approval of the Health Minister.
  8. 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.  Ms Anley, Mrs Singleton, Ms Smith and Mr Quinn have declared that they have not engaged in any political activity in the last five years.  Councillor Craig has declared that he has undertaken political activity on behalf of the Democratic Unionist Party. Councillor O’Hanlon has declared that he has undertaken political activity on behalf of the Social Democratic & Labour Party.
  9. For media enquiries please contact DoH Press Office by email: Out of hours please contact the Duty Press Officer on 028 9037 8110. 
  10. Follow us on Twitter @healthdpt

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