Reappointment of two Non-Executive Directors to the Public Health Agency

Date published: 09 July 2019

The Department of Health today announced a reappointment to the terms of a Finance Non-Executive Director and a Lay Non-Executive Director to the Public Health Agency (PHA).

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Mr Leslie Drew’s reappointment as Finance Non-Executive Director commenced on 1 July 2019 and will run to a date not later than 30 June 2023. Ms Deepa Mann-Kler will be reappointed as a Lay Non-Executive Director from 1 March 2020 to a date not later than 29 February 2024.  These appointments both carry a time commitment of 5 days per month and attracts an annual remuneration of £9,278. 

The PHA is a multi-disciplinary, multi-professional body, with a strong regional and local presence. The Agency was established to provide a renewed and enhanced focus on public health and wellbeing by bringing together a wide range of public health functions under one organisation. It is required to create better inter-sectoral working, including enhanced partnership with local government, to tackle the underlying causes of poor health and reduce health inequalities.

The PHA is managed directly by a board of directors which has corporate responsibility for its operation. The board of the PHA is made up of four Executive Directors including the Chief Executive, a Non-Executive Chair and seven Non-Executive Directors. The Non-Executive Directors include a Trade Union Representative Member, two Local Government Representative Members, one Financial Member and two Lay Members.

This appointment is made in accordance with the Code of Practice issued by the Commissioner for Public Appointments for NI.

Notes to editors: 

  1. Leslie Drew is a self-employed business consultant providing strategic advice regarding business improvement and change management. Les was previously employed by Northern Ireland Electricity Networks as Head of Procurement. He also held a number of other senior management posts during his 39-years career in the electricity industry including: Group Financial Controller, Governance & Risk Manager, Regulation Officer and Information Technology Contract Manager.  He was a Non-Executive Director of the former South & East Belfast HSS Trust for 2-years before he served as a Non-Executive Director on the Board of the Belfast HSC Trust for 8-years.  Leslie has served as a Non-Executive Director on the Board of the PHA since 2015 where he was Chair of the Governance and Audit Committee.
  1. Deepa Mann-Kler brings 13 years’ experience as a Non-Executive Director. Her corporate areas of expertise include governance; risk management; communications; stakeholder engagement; strategic planning & awareness; strong customer focus; use of new technologies, digitisation, data, machine learning to implement innovation; ability to apply critical thinking & identify issues; able to assimilate, assess and analyse information. Deepa’s career has ranged from equality, anti-discrimination and inclusion to visual arts to being the CEO of Neon an ‘immersive health technology’ company. She is Visiting Professor in Immersive Futures with Ulster University. Deepa is a non-executive director with the Registers of Scotland and a lay member of the Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland Disciplinary Committee Panel. Her former roles include being an Independent Assessor with the Commissioner for Public Appointments NI; Chair of the Crescent Arts Centre in Belfast; member of Council for Ulster University and a Non-Executive Director with the South Eastern Health & Social Care Trust.
  1. These reappointments have been made with the approval of the Permanent Secretary of the Department of Health. There are no specific qualifications for appointment.
  1. This appointment is 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. Mr Drew declared that he had not engaged in any political activity in the last 5 years.  In 2016 Ms Mann-Kler briefly held office as Chair with the Alliance party.  She is no longer a member of the party.
  2. For media enquiries please contact the DoH Press Office 028 9052 0575 or email Out-of-hours please contact the Duty Press Officer on 028 9037 8110.
  3. Follow us on twitter @healthdpt

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