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
    Mr Boyd Carson FCA

    Boyd has over thirty years of experience in the finance sector. He has overseen the development of Sapphire into a multi-award-winning investment firm that manages over £400 million in 40+ venture capital funds, investing in a broad range of sectors, including technology, robotics, design, health, and renewables.

    Before Sapphire, Boyd was a director of mergers and acquisitions at PwC in New York and has exited numerous start-ups in e-commerce, property and renewable sectors. He is a Harvard University alumnus and a Harvard University teaching faculty member, specialising in venture capital. Boyd is also an Honorary Professor of Practice in Venture Capital at Queen’s University Belfast. Boyd is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants.

    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.

  • Chief Executive and Senior Management team
    Profile pic of Richard Spratt
    Richard Spratt
    Chief Executive


    Richard took up the position as Chief Executive in September 2020. His career has spanned both the private and voluntary sectors. Having previously worked in the banking sector, he has held posts in the voluntary sector since 2009 within international development. He has served on other charity Boards as a Trustee and completed his Masters in Business Administration in 2015.

    Mrs Pat McClelland 
    Director of Services


    Pat has been a registered General Nurse since October 1982 held 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 managed a team of health professionals, nurses and admin staff.  Pat secured funding for a further 6 cancer nurse specialists to improve provision of support within the Trust.

    Maeve Colgan
    Director of Fundraising & Communications


    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.

    Angela McGrath
    Director of Retail


    Angela was previously Retail Manager for Cancer Focus NI and in 2017 was appointed Head of Retail. She has extensive management experience in high street retailing, including Waterstone’s and Marks & Spencer.

    Helen Byers
    Director of Finance and Corporate Affairs


    Helen, a Chartered Accountant with almost 20 years post qualified experience, has a background in not for profit and previous managerial finance positions in the Social Housing sector, Visit Belfast and Queen’s University.  Helen joined in October 2022 and is responsible for leading the Finance, HR and IT teams within CFNI.