Appointment of Chairperson to the Board of the Education Authority

DE Release:

The Department of Education has announced the appointment of Mr Barry Mulholland to the post of Chairperson of the Board of the Education Authority with effect from 1 January 2021.

Mr Mulholland is currently the Chief Executive of the Controlled Schools’ Support Council (CSSC), the advocacy body set up in 2016 to provide comprehensive support to the controlled sector and its schools. He has successfully led the organisation during its formative years, developing its capacity and cultivating collaborative partnerships to help raise standards and enhance the quality of education provision in controlled schools. Mr Mulholland will be resigning from this position before taking up the post of Chairperson.

Schools are not closing early for Christmas holidays – Peter WeirA highly experienced educationalist, Mr Mulholland previously served in the Belfast Education and Library Board as Head of Youth Services from 1995-1999 and then as Chief Administrative Officer from 1999-2004. He joined the Western Education and Library Board as Chief Executive in 2004 before assuming the role of Regional Managing Director of the Education Authority on its coming into operation in 2015. In this capacity he acted as Accounting Officer for both the former Western and North Eastern Education and Library Board areas, with a budgetary responsibility in excess of £700m.

Mr Mulholland has also served in a voluntary capacity on a wide range of public and community based committees, including BBC Children in Need (NI), BBC Appeals Committee (NI), the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme, Lurgan Credit Union and the Chief Executives’ Forum (NI).

Mr Mulholland has declared that he has not undertaken any political activity during the last five years and does not hold any other public appointments.

Speaking today, Education Minister, Peter Weir said “I am very pleased to appoint Mr Mulholland as Chairperson of the Education Authority. He brings to the Board a wealth of experience in governance, finance, strategic leadership and transformational change management and is a proven communicator. He has a sound understanding of the education landscape and an appreciation of the values that underpin the work of the Authority.

“I would also like to thank the outgoing Chairperson, Sharon O’Connor, for her dedication and service. I am grateful to her for providing direction and leadership in the years following the Authority’s establishment, and in meeting the challenges posed by the restructuring of our education system.”