Chairperson and Board Members appointed to the Northern Ireland Police Fund

Date published: 30 April 2020

The Department of Justice has reappointed Michael Wardlow as the Chairperson of the Northern Ireland Police Fund. Colin Caughey, Jonathan Craig, Alice O’Kane and Brenda Plummer have been appointed as new Board Members

justice minister naomi long

The appointments have been made following an open competition regulated by the Commissioner for Public Appointments Northern Ireland.  The appointees took up office on 1 April 2020. 

Naomi Long, Justice Minister said: “I would like to congratulate Michael on his reappointment and Colin, Jonathan, Alice and Brenda on their appointment to the Fund.  This is worthwhile and important work and I wish them every success for their term of office.

The Minister added: “I would like to place on record my thanks to the former Board Members Deirdre Kenny, Kelly Robinson and Brian McCargo for their personal commitment and contribution to the work of the Fund over the last four years.”

The Fund is an Executive Non-Departmental Public Body (NDPB) of the Department of Justice.  The Fund provides financial assistance, advice, support and care to members and former members of the Royal Ulster Constabulary GC, the Royal Ulster Constabulary GC Reserve, the Police Service of Northern Ireland, the Police Service of Northern Ireland Reserve and their families and dependents, who have been killed or injured by terrorism.

Notes to editors: 

Notes to Editors

  1. The Northern Ireland Police Fund (NIPF) comprises a Chairperson and six Board Members.  One of the Board members is nominated by the Chief Constable of the Police Service of Northern Ireland and one is nominated by the Police Federation for Northern Ireland, subject to the approval of the Department.
  2. The procedure for the appointment of Board members is compliant with the Commissioner for Public Appointments Northern Ireland (CPANI) Code of Practice. The appointments are made by the Department of Justice taking account of its statutory duty under The Northern Ireland Police Fund Regulations 2016.
  3. Remuneration for the Chairperson is £6,000 per annum.  Board Members are unremunerated. 
  4. 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.  Details of the declaration in relation to political activity are included below.
  5. All media enquiries should be directed to the Department of Justice Press Office 028 9052 6444.  Out of office hours please contact the duty press officer via pager number 028 90378110 and your call will be returned.

Pen Pictures

Dr Michael Wardlow

Dr Michael Wardlow was most recently the Chief Commissioner for the Equality Commission for N Ireland, a public appointment he held from March 2012 to February 2020. Before joining the Commission he was the Chief Executive Officer of the Northern Ireland Council for Integrated Education a post he held from 1995. 

Prior to this, following 7 years in commerce, the majority of his work experience, both paid and in a voluntary capacity, was in the area of peace building and reconciliation, interests which have presented opportunities for him to work in almost 40 countries.

In addition to being a graduate of Queen’s University Belfast, Michael is a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and a Fellow of the Chartered Insurance Institute.  Michael is also a Visiting Research Fellow George Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security and Justice. He is married with two children and two grandchildren and lives in Belfast.

Political Activity: None

Mr Colin Caughey

Colin is an experienced researcher and public policy consultant who is currently completing a PhD on how government and civil society can collaborate effectively in delivering policies relating to the rights of persons with disabilities.

Prior to commencing his PhD Colin was Director for Legal, Research, Investigations and Advice to Government with the NI Human Rights Commission. At the Commission Colin engaged with a number of UN Treaty Bodies and represented the Commission before the UN Human Rights Council. Colin co-ordinated the Commission’s input to the negotiations on the UK exit from the European Union. Colin was a member of the European Network of National Human Rights Institutions Working Group on the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and represented the Working Group in engagements with the CRPD Committee. Colin also served as Vice Chair of the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Working Group on Aging. Colin has worked internationally with a number of governments and organisations on a range of human rights issues. 

Political Activity:  None 

Mr Jonathan Craig

Jonathan Craig, formally Senior Engineer at Bombardier for 20 years.  Married with two children, educated at Dromore High School, Friends School and the University of Ulster.

A Councillor in Lisburn City Council form 2001 to 2011, Mayor in 2005/2006. Councillor in Lisburn Castlereagh City Council 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 and presently is a Board Member of the Education Authority.

Jonathan is a life time Honouree member of Autism NI, an Autism champion having helped steer the Autism Bill through Stormont.

Political Activity:  Active member of the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) and former DUP MLA.

Mrs Alice O’Kane

Having worked and volunteered in the third sector for over 25 years Alice is currently Chief Finance Officer of a large regional charity Stepping Stones NI that supports adults with a learning disability/difficulty. During her career she spent over ten years as a Director of an organisation administering public money to support peace and reconciliation in the local community. Alice is also a part-time lecturer in Accountancy and a retained Finance Associate for NICVA developing and delivering training to the local community on how to manage and be accountable for public money.

Her skill set focuses on probity and transparency of public money with an emphasis on providing support wherever possible for the disadvantaged.

Political Activity:  None

Mrs Brenda Plummer

Brenda has a Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) and a BSc (Hons) in Business and Marketing, she also holds an advanced level Institute Leadership Management (ILM) qualification and is a member of the ILM.

Brenda is employed by the Ulster University as an Administrative and Finance

Manager, where she has responsibility for the management of financial accounting and administrative policies at a senior management level.

Brenda is currently a member of both the Board and the Audit Committee at The Playhouse Theatre Company. She is an active committee member for the Women In

Enterprise Networking group and has recently been appointed School Governor for a local college.

Political Activity:  None


Share this page

Back to top