Our Team

The team behind Cancer Focus NI are passionate about what they do and the difference they make to the lives of local people.  Find out more about our team here:

  • Board of Trustees
    Professor Roy Spence OBE, JP, MD, MA, LLD (Hon), FRCS
    Chairman

    Professor Spence is a Consultant Surgeon specialising in breast cancer at Belfast City Hospital.  He is a Professor of Surgery at Queen’s University Belfast, an Honorary Professor and Member of the Council at the University of Ulster and he has been awarded Honorary Fellowships from the Royal Colleges of England and Glasgow.  Professor Spence was appointed an OBE in the New Year’s Honours List in 2001.  With a wide range of professional and academic accolades and years of dedicated public service, Professor Spence brings a wealth of knowledge and strategic leadership to Cancer Focus Northern Ireland.

    Mr Boyd Carson FCA
    Honorary Treasurer

    Boyd has a wide range of finance and investment experience.  He is currently a partner in Sapphire Capital Partners LLP which focuses on real estate financing and investment advice and he also serves on the Board of numerous companies.  Previously he was a Director of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP in New York where he worked in the Corporate Finance Group.  Boyd is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants.

    Dr Trevor Morrow

    Trevor is the Course Director of the MSc International Business and the Human Resource Management (HRM) subject co-ordinator at the University of Ulster’s Department of International Business.  Trevor brings expertise in management, particularly business strategy and human resource management.  He is also a Board member of the Labour Relations Agency.

    Ms Julieann Tsang

    Julieann is a graduate in marketing and business. Her career experience includes managing the marketing function of Property News and as Digital Product Marketer at The Irish News.  She brings particular skills in brand development and management, website design and management, and digital marketing together with experience of managing a team in a highly competitive market.

    Jimmy Carrigan

    Jimmy is a retired Nurse Education Consultant. He spent most of his working career in nurse education and training. In later years he was involved in in-service education and training for health service staff.

     

    Following the death of his wife Gina from cancer in 2006, he became involved in fundraising for Cancer Focus Northern Ireland. He is also involved in suicide prevention and supporting those bereaved by suicide in his local community.

    Professor Mark Lawler

    Mark is a member of the Steering Committee of the European Cancer Concord and holds an Associate Director position at the Centre for Cancer Research and Cell Biology at Queen’s University Belfast. Mark has a keen interest in both research and cancer policy, and has been at the forefront of a number of patient focused cancer healthcare initiatives aiming to remove inequalities and improve cancer care for the citizens of Europe.

    Violet Spence

    Violet has had a long career in financial management, having worked in the Northern Ireland Civil Service and Danske Bank.  She has a strong background in corporate governance, financial reporting, collation and analysis of management information and systems implementation.  Violet has been a Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants since 1998 and a member of the Cancer Focus NI Finance and Policy Committee since 2009.  She retired from her post as Senior Audit Manager with Danske Bank in 2014. Since then she has developed a strong interest in the social enterprise and small business sector, and advises on set up and operational issues.

     

    Dr Gerry Hanna

    Gerry is a Consultant Clinical Oncologist at the Cancer Centre, Belfast City Hospital, where his areas of expertise are the treatment of lung and breast cancer with both systemic and radiation therapy. He is a Senior Lecturer at Queen’s University Belfast, carrying out a range of research projects related to improving the effectiveness of radiotherapy in breast and lung cancer.

    Gerry is the Chief Investigator for the International Atomic Agency funded PERTAIN study into the use of PET/CT scanning in aiding lung cancer radiotherapy in low and middle income countries, and he is Co-Chief Investigator of the UK’s CONCORDE study of novel anti-cancer drugs with radiotherapy in the treatment of lung cancer.

    He is also Chief Investigator of the SINCERE study into skin care for patients receiving radiotherapy.

    Dr Jim Birnie

    Jim is a chartered Quantity Surveyor and a retired University Lecturer.  He has published numerous academic papers in construction economics and cognitive psychology.  Jim has been involved in Cancer Focus NI for 40 years.  He is a member and secretary of our Ballymena Cancer Support Group since 1973 and a Board Member since 1985.

    Lady Christine Eames LLB., M Phil

    Lady Eames offers extensive experience in governance of charities and in leading voluntary organisations through change.  Her academic background is in medical law and ethics and she has worked with a number of charities providing strategic guidance.

    Professor Paul Jeffcutt

    Paul is Emeritus Professor of Management at Queen’s University Belfast and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

    He is an international expert on organisational and sectoral capacity building. Paul has been a strategic advisor to Government Departments, Public Bodies and major businesses across Europe. He has considerable senior management and governance experience, including as a Non-Executive Director and Trustee of Concern Worldwide since 2005.

    Paul is also an award-winning writer. He has won poetry prizes in Ireland, England, Scotland and the USA. In 2011 he began a weekly blog about living with cancer called ‘Writing to Survive’. Paul’s blog has garnered many plaudits and has hundreds of regular readers.

    Mrs Breda Teahan

    Breda holds an MSc in Health Promotion and was Commissioner for Health Promotion in the Southern Trust until taking early retirement in 2009.  She brings skills and experience in the broad area of health promotion and cancer prevention combined with practical experience of managing projects and departments in the statutory sector.

    Mrs Pat McClelland 

    Pat has been a registered General Nurse since October 1982 and currently holds the position of General Manager of Cancer Services in the Northern Trust. She has led on several nursing initiatives and nurse development programmes within the acute hospital setting and she manages a team of health professionals, nurses and admin staff.  Pat has recently secured funding for a further 6 cancer nurse specialists to improve provision of support within the Trust and she works closely with voluntary groups – including Cancer Focus NI and Macmillan to secure improved support for cancer patients.

    Mr Ivan McMinn

    Ivan offers extensive experience in business and finance having worked at Danske Bank, formally the Northern Bank, for almost 35 years, currently as their Head of Business Acquisition.  He has an extensive track record in raising funds for charity and also brings personal experience of living with a cancer diagnosis.  Ivan received a pancreatic cancer diagnosis in 2011 and nine months after having his chemotherapy treatment, he completed the London Marathon, and again in 2014. Together both marathons raised some £202,000 for cancer charities and other deserving causes.

    Ivan is a Director and the Company Secretary of Stranwood Estates Ltd and is also Director of Visit Belfast.  He has many more voluntary and community interests.

  • Chief Executive and Senior Management team
    Roisin Foster
    Chief Executive

    roisinfoster@cancerfocusni.org

    Roisin has been Chief Executive since 2010.  She has worked in the voluntary sector since 1985, primarily in the disability sector.  Sponsored by NICVA, Roisin completed an MSc in voluntary sector management in 2006.

    Patricia Barrett
    Head of Administration

    patriciabarrett@cancerfocusni.org

    Patricia worked in the private and public sector before being appointed Head of Administration in 1999.  Her role incorporates human resources, finance, I.T. and facilities management.

    Gerry McElwee
    Head of Cancer Prevention

    gerrymcelwee@cancerfocusni.org

    Gerry has trained professionals in and campaigned for healthier policy for over 20 years. He is central to local tobacco control efforts, including the campaign for a smoke free Northern Ireland. A qualified teacher, Gerry has been Head of Cancer Prevention since 1999.

    Liz Atkinson
    Head of Care Services

    lizatkinson@cancerfocusni.org

    Liz began a nursing career before moving into senior management roles in the voluntary sector.  She became Head of Care Services in 2005 and brings vast experience and knowledge of patient care, specialist service provision and policy on cancer related issues.

    Angela McGrath
    Head of Retail

    angelamcgrath@cancerfocusni.org
    028 9205 7002

    Angela was previously Retail Manager for Cancer Focus NI and in 2017 was appointed Head of Retail.

    Maeve Colgan
    Head of Income Generation

    maevecolgan@cancerfocusni.org

    Maeve was appointed as Head of Income Generation in 2014 and has worked in the voluntary sector since 2004.  Maeve is responsible for fundraising and building relationships with corporate and community groups throughout Northern Ireland.

  • Care Services team

    Our team in Care Services is made up of specialist nurses, therapists and counsellors. We provide a range of services to help support you and your family when you’re dealing with cancer.

    Free Information and Support Helpline

    helpline@cancerfocusni.org

    0800 783 3339

  • Cancer Prevention team

    Our Cancer Prevention team help people reduce their risk of cancer and raise awareness of early signs and symptoms. Team members are all highly qualified experts in health promotion and offer a wide range of programmes from nursery level to old age.

     

    Stop Smoking services & Professional Training
    Naomi Thompson, Senior Cancer Prevention Officer

    naomithompson@cancerfocusni.org

    028 9066 3281

     

    Keeping Well vans
    Sandra Gordon, Keeping Well Van Coordinator

    sandragordon@cancerfocusni.org

    07977 501908

     

    Schools programme
    Eileen Donnelly, Programme Co-ordinator Schools & Young People

    eileendonnelly@cancerfocusni.org

    028 9066 3281

     

    Well Aware programme
    Dervilia Kernaghan, Project Coordinator

    derviliakernaghan@cancerfocusni.org

    028 8676 6866
    07810 371 118

  • Income Generation team

    Every year we depend on the generosity and goodwill of our supporters to raise 90% of the money we invest in our services, programmes and research.  Our fundraising team is enthusiastic, dedicated and always ready to go the extra mile!  Contact us to see how you can get involved or find out how to give a cash gift, either regular, one-off or through your payroll.

     

    Community Events
    Suzie Colledge, Community Fundraising Officer

    suziecolledge@cancerfocusni.org

    028 9066 3281

     

    Challenge Events
    Kathryn Holland, Challenge Events Manager

    kathrynholland@cancerfocusni.org

    028 9068 0771

     

    Direct Marketing
    Ollie Govett, Direct Marketing Manager

    olliegovett@cancerfocusni.org

    028 9068 0740

  • Retail team

    There are 12 of our shops in towns located across Northern Ireland, so wherever you live there’ll be one close by. Why not pay us a visit or donate some items.

     

    Angela McGrath,  Head of Retail

    angelamcgrath@cancerfocusni.org

    028 9205 7002

    Michelle Fordyce, Retail Support Manager

    028 9042 4364

     

    You can find contact details for each of our stores here.

  • Communications and Marketing team

    Talking to you is important to us; hearing what you think about our work and understanding how we can help. See our latest news and blog articles or sign up to our e-newsletter

    Louise Carey, Communications Manager

    louisecarey@cancerfocusni.org

    028 9066 3281
    07884 362749

     

    Marie Foy, Communications Officer

    mariefoy@cancerfocusni.org

    028 9066 3281

  • Administration and Finance team

    If you have any queries in regards to jobs or invoices our Administration and Finance team are always ready to help.

    Patricia Barrett, Head of Administration

    patriciabarrett@cancerfocusni.org

    028 9066 3281

     

    Dawn Dawson, Finance Manager

    dawndawson@cancerfocusni.org

    028 9066 3281

  • Volunteer team

    We have 350 amazing volunteers who give us  20,000 hours of their time  every year to help in all sorts of ways.  Our volunteer team looks after our volunteers and co-ordinates all of their work with us. If you’re interested in getting involved please get in contact.

     

    Morag Chambers, Volunteer Service Co-ordinator

    moragchambers@cancerfocusni.org

    028 9068 0773

     

    Wendy Brown, Assistant Volunteer Co-ordinator

    wendybrown@cancerfocusni.org

    028 9068 0754

     

    Ruth Davidson, Volunteer Admin Officer

    ruthdavidson@cancerfocusni.org