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Our Board

Andrew Cassells (Chair)

Andrew has held the position of Director of Environment & Property with Mid Ulster District Council since its inception in April 2015 following local government reorganisation in Northern Ireland.

His public sector career spans some 25 years which has included senior management positions at Belfast City Council, Stirling Council and the former Magherafelt District Council. Whilst Andrew’s council career has predominately focused on the provision of technical services such as Waste Management, Street Cleansing, Grounds, Building and Vehicle Maintenance he has also managed Cemeteries, Roads and Procurement.  Andrew has also worked as an environmental consultant for Jacobs. 

Andrew holds an honours degree in Mining Engineering from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne and spent fourteen years with British Coal prior to entering local government in 1993. In 2008 Andrew graduated with a master’s degree in Sustainable Development from the University of Stirling. Andrew is a Chartered Environmentalist and a corporate member of the Chartered Institute of Waste Management.

Patricia Mackey

Patricia is an accomplished sustainability specialist with over 15 years’ experience, primarily within the local government sector. She was responsible for the development of the Sustainability Audit Matrix and was a key contributor to the creation of the Sustainability Assessment Tool, both of which have been vital aids to councils in demonstrating their compliance with the Duty for Sustainable Development.

Patricia is a former Executive Director of Sustainable NI before moving to North Down Borough Council in 2013 where she became responsible for sustainability, environmental management and biodiversity. In 2015 she was appointed Community Planning Manager for Ards and North Down Borough Council where she is working hard to integrate the principles of sustainable development throughout the process of community engagement and in the development of the Community Plan.

Leo Strawbridge

Leo started his career working in the public sector, leading teams in maintenance and energy related projects in a nuclear reprocessing facility. Returning to NI, Leo joined Seagate Technology, during its initial start-up in Derry. He later moved to Derry City and Strabane District Council where he has worked for over ten years, leading teams on council and wider district projects. Leo is the current Chair of the NI Energy Managers’ Forum which develops creative and innovative thinking on energy consumption reduction in the eleven district councils. Leo is also Chair of the Local Government Sustainable Development Forum with a remit to promote and drive the sustainability agenda with local government.

He continues to play a pivotal role within the council, leading teams in energy management, Energy Performance of Buildings Regulations and the annual electricity and gas tender processes for the majority of local councils. Leo is actively involved in the Community Planning process, developing a strategy for the Council area to achieve its goal of a low carbon economy by engaging with the wider community, industry and the public sector.

Leo is a Chartered Mechanical Engineer, a Chartered Environmentalist and a Member of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.

Dr Nuala Flood

Dr. Nuala Flood joined Queens University Belfast as a Lecturer in Architecture in 2014. Prior to this, she was a post-doctoral researcher in the telecommunications department, Trinity College Dublin. In 2014, she completed her PhD in participatory design for sustainable urban development at Trinity College Dublin and in 2004 she received her BArch from University College Dublin. From 2004-2010, she worked in a number of award winning architectural practices, as a registered architect. Her research interests include design and co-design methods, participatory design and participatory urbanism, ecotopian visions, architectural pedagogy, live projects and self-build methods.

Dr Ian Garner

Ian has worked professionally in the field of environmental management for most of his career.  After 20 years working in the chemical industry, based in Cambridge, he moved to Northern Ireland in 2001. He joined WRAP in 2003 to head WRAP’s Northern Ireland delivery for its funders and partners and has established WRAP Northern Ireland as a key resource efficiency delivery body. WRAP (the Waste and Resources Action Programme) works with governments, businesses and communities to deliver practical solutions to improve resource efficiency and Ian is WRAP’s main point of contact for the Northern Ireland Government and Northern Ireland Stakeholders.

He has worked in the fields of materials resource management, industrial waste management, environmental management system development, wastewater treatment, contaminated land regeneration, chemical manufacturing and production process research and development.

He has a PhD in Applied Microbiology from the University of Strathclyde and is a Chartered Environmentalist, a Chartered Water and Environmental Manager and a Chartered Biologist.

Dr Aoife Foley

Dr Aoife Foley is a Lecturer and a Principle Investigator in the School of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering in Queen's University Belfast. She is Editor in Chief of Elsevier’s Renewable & Sustainable Energy Reviews (2017) and is a member of the Editorial Panel of the Institution of Civil Engineers Proceedings in Transport. Aoife is a Chartered Engineer, Fellow of Engineers Ireland and a Fellow of the UK Higher Education Authority and a member of the IEEE Vehicular Technology Society (VTS) and Power Energy Society (PES). She has a BE(Hons) (1996) and a PhD (2011) from University College Cork and an MSc (1999) from Trinity College Dublin. Dr Foley returned to full-time academia in 2009 after 12 years in industry. During her time in industry, she worked principally on energy, transport and waste infrastructure projects. Her unique interdisciplinary background in civil, transport and energy engineering with her industry and academic experience in electrical and mechanical engineering gives her a special understanding and knowledge of the complex interactions between the technical, social and economic challenges to energy technology deployment in real world environments. She is a recognised expert in renewable energy forecasting and energy systems integration. Her multidisciplinary research activities are contained within the Intelligent Control (EPIC) research cluster in the School of Electronic, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Energy Power, the Risk and Inequality group in the School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics and in the Bryden Centre for Advanced Marine and Bio-Energy in the School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering.

Dr Elizabeth Mitchell, OBE

Elizabeth graduated in medicine with Second Class Honours from Queen's University Belfast in 1980. Following four years working in hospital medicine in Northern Ireland, she undertook higher medical training in public health medicine in England. She returned to Northern Ireland in 1990. Her career in public health spanned over 30 years and she worked at senior level in the public sector for over 26 years, including 7 years as Deputy Chief Medical Officer in the Department of Health. She also worked at the Institute of Public Health in Ireland. She retired at the end of 2016. She is a Fellow of the UK Faculty of Public Health, a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians (Edinburgh) and a Member of the Faculty of Public Health Medicine, of the Royal College of Physicians Ireland. 

She was appointed OBE in 2017 for services to public health.

Adrian Davis

Adrian runs AD Sustainability, a CSR and environmental consultancy based in Larne. 

He has over 20 years sustainability experience working in several private and public sector organisations including Seagate Technology, FG Wilson, Bombardier, AES, Queen’s University Belfast, Ulster University and the Northern Ireland Assembly.

His consultancy advises and supports private and public sector clients in areas including management systems, resource efficiency, waste management, environmental permitting compliance, policy and strategy development and implementation, energy and carbon management and sustainable procurement.

He is a full member of the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment and a Chartered Environmentalist. He is an approved NEBOSH environmental trainer and holds a BSc Hons in Environmental Technology and a MSc in Management and Corporate Governance.

Dr Susann Power

Dr Susann Power is a Lecturer in Hospitality Management at Ulster University Business School. Prior to joining the department, Susann held the following academic posts: Lecturer in Business Ethics at the University of Surrey, and Teaching Fellow in Marketing at Ulster University Business School, where she was also appointed to Course Director for the MSc Marketing programme. Susann has ample industry experience; first, as Policy Initiatives Manager at the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), and further as Operations Manager at environmental charity Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful. At WTTC, Susann was responsible for the successful execution of the coveted Tourism for Tomorrow Awards – a global, sustainable tourism award. Susann also holds a PhD in Sustainable Tourism from the University of Surrey.

Alan McVicker

Alan works for the Strategic Investment Board (SIB) as a Strategic Adviser and Head of the Council Support Unit. He joined SIB in 2008 to head up the waste Programme Delivery Support Unit (PDSU), supporting local and central government on the residual waste infrastructure programme. He has a strong background in waste/resource management and more recently in Circular Economy and Sustainability.

Between 2015 and 2019 he chaired a Circular Economy Steering Group seeking to establish Circular Economy principles on the NI Programme for Government. This work has led to SIB supporting central government since late 2019 in development of a Circular Economy Strategic Framework for Northern Ireland. As Head of the SIB Council Support Unit he leads a team supporting councils in delivery of their capital programmes, with a particular emphasis on waste, sport & leisure, asset management and regeneration.

Prior to joining SIB, Alan lived and worked in Scotland for 20 years, where he was Scottish Director with the Shanks Group plc (now Renewi plc), the largest independent waste business in the UK at that time. He also spent a short time working as a consultant and has worked for Scottish Futures Trust as an Associate Adviser on several large waste PPP projects.

Alan is a Chartered Waste Manager and was Chair of the NI Centre of CIWM from 2013 – 2015. Alan is also a Gateway Reviewer with the NI Centre of Excellence. In late 2019, he undertook the Prince of Wales Business and Sustainability Programme at University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership and now has access to a global network of sustainability leaders.