Board of Trustees

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Kate Marshall

Chair

Kate Marshall is Cancer Fund for Children’s Chair. She joined Cancer Fund for Children’s board of trustees in 2013 and was appointed Vice-Chair in 2017. Kate is a highly experienced Facilitator, Mentor and Executive Coach with over 20 years of working with Boards, executive teams, and CEOs in a variety of organisations. She brings a wealth of experience in developing organisations to achieve their strategic aims, which will help us on our mission to make sure that every young person under-25 diagnosed with cancer has access to the vital support they need.

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Prof Joan Ballantine

Honorary Treasurer

Joan joined the Board in 2017 and in her day job, Joan is a Professor of Accounting at Ulster University Business School. Joan has held external examiner positions on MBA programmes at Manchester Business School and the University of Edinburgh Business School. She has previously held the position of Chair of the ACCA Ulster Members’ Network Panel and is currently a non-executive board member of Kabosh and the Chair of the British Accounting and Finance Association, Accounting Education Special Interest Group.

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Ken Brundle

Board Member

Ken has a wealth of Board experience in both the private and charity sector. He is currently Honorary Chairman of Bombardier Belfast, Chairman of both Bombardier Aerospace and Transportation UK Pension Boards. Additionally, in the charity sector he is Chairman of Praxis Care, Chair of the Bombardier Foundation and Vice-Chair of Ulster Wildlife. Ken is also the Canadian Honorary Consul in Northern Ireland. His career in Aerospace started in Belfast at Short Brothers in 1973 working his way up becoming Chief Executive in 1996. From 2000-2004 Ken worked in Montreal for Bombardier Aerospace and had responsibility for all aerospace operations worldwide.

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Michelle Hatfield

Board Member

Michelle is Director of Corporate Services at Belfast City Airport having joined the business back in July 2006. Alongside her executive team colleagues, Michelle sits on the main Board and has over 20 years’ experience working at a senior managerial level. Prior to joining BCA Michelle held various senior HR positions across a number of industries including Telecommunications, Manufacturing and Retail before moving into Aviation. In her present role, Michelle has responsibility for People, Corporate Responsibility, Public Affairs, IT and Business Transformation. Michelle is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), a Fellow of the Institute of Directors and in recent years has led the airport in winning a number of prestigious business accolades. Michelle is currently Chair of Cinemagic Ireland, Chair of CR Leaders (NI) and has held a number of previous Board positions.

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Dr Cormac Owens

Board Member

Cormac is a Consultant Paediatric Oncologist at Children’s Health Ireland, Dublin. He trained initially in Dublin, followed by fellowships at Institute Gustave Roussy, Paris and the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto. He is a member of the European Neuroblastoma Society (SIOPEN) executive and clinical trials committees and the international society of paediatric oncology (SIOP) scientific advisory council. At CHI, he is the director of the clinical trials unit.

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Donal O’Shaughnessy

Board Member

Donal is an experienced Senior Executive and Active Investor with over 10 years’ experience in the highly successful Digicel Group of telecoms companies in the Caribbean and Central America including roles as Chief Operating Officer and Chief Executive Officer. He was previously involved with the Irish mobile telecommunications company Esat Digifone as a member of the team responsible for the rollout of the network throughout Ireland. Over the last 9 years Donal has been involved in developing and investing in businesses spanning technology, property, financial services, media, hospitality, and utilities both in Ireland and internationally. He also provides advisory and representative services to a number of international banks and fund managers.

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Gerry Halpenny

Board Member

Gerry is a partner in the Corporate and Commercial Department of LK Shields Solicitors. He also leads the firm’s Mergers and Acquisitions practice. Gerry qualified as a solicitor in 1981 and joined LK Shields Solicitors as a Partner in 1998. Gerry joined the Cancer Fund for Children (Ireland) Board in March 2015. He has been involved since 2009 with the Haven charity which works extensively in Haiti and also served on the corporate advisory group of Paralympics Ireland in the run up to the 2016 Rio Paralympics.

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Pádraic Ó Giolláin

Board Member

Pádraic is the Regional Chairman for Ireland of the Hottinger Group, an international Family Office in the financial services industry. Pádraic graduated from the Naval College as an officer in the Irish Naval Service and studied in the Britannia Royal Naval College in Dartmouth UK. Having served at sea and as a staff officer at Naval Headquarters, he retired to pursue a career in financial services and has held a number of senior management and leadership roles before co-founding the Hottinger Group in 2011. Pádraic is a member of the Institute of Directors.

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Peter O’Brien

Vice-Chair

Peter is an independent communications consultant with over 40 years’ experience in both the public and private sectors. He worked for the Irish Government in both civil service departments and semi state bodies – IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland.

Peter been responsible for international corporate affairs teams in two of the world’s leading multinational companies Wyeth, now part of Pfizer, and Diageo. Peter is an experienced Mentor to several executives in charities and social enterprises supported by both Carmichael House and Social Entrepreneurs Ireland.

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Peter Shields

Board Member

Peter is the group manager for Optomise and Telford Opticians. Optomise provide an award-winning eye care service across Northern Ireland for anyone unable to get out to a high street practice. He has over 18 years senior management experience in the retail sector, leading teams to win multiple national awards. Since 2015 Peter has been a fundraising volunteer for Cancer Fund For Children and continues to volunteer for the fundraising team at local events. In 2021 Peter was selected to be part of the Boardroom Apprentice Program where he shadowed Cancer Fund For Children’s board of trustees from September to August 2022. On successful completion of the programme Peter was delighted to be asked to join the board permanently.