Office of the Chief Executive
Richard Williams – Chief Executive
Richard is Chief Executive of Northern Ireland Screen which has, in the last 10 years, taken the lead role in developing the screen industry in Northern Ireland.
Under Richard’s leadership, Northern Ireland Screen developed the Paint Hall at Titanic Quarter as a film studio which has been the home of HBO’s GAME OF THRONES for seven seasons. And more recently partnered with Belfast Harbour Commission in the development of Belfast Harbour Studios, a new purpose built studio complex.
During his time, Northern Ireland Screen has expanded its support to cover large-scale production, TV drama, independent film, factual/entertainment, animation and interactive.
Richard previously worked for Waddell Media, during that time representing Northern Ireland on PACT, the Producers Alliance for Cinema & Television. He also previously worked in newspaper management and was a commercial solicitor.
Marie Shivers – Office Manager and PA to CEO and Chairwoman
Joined September 2009. Marie is responsible for providing PA support to the Chief Executive and Chairwoman and is also responsible for the management of the office. Marie came to us from a career in the Diplomatic Service having served in various postings including Dublin, Singapore, New York, Uruguay and Macedonia.
Roma Cunningham – Office Assistant
Joined in March 2019. Roma is the first point of contact for many people either visiting or contacting Northern Ireland Screen. Roma works with all departments within Northern Ireland Screen and is currently managing Northern Ireland Screen’s Crew and Facilities Database.
Roma has a BA in Film Studies from Queen’s University, Belfast and has worked on several productions within the screen industry in Northern Ireland.
Development, Production and Skills
Andrew Reid – Head of Production
Andrew joined the industry in 1990 as a production runner, after a few years he was sent to London by the BBC to train as a television drama Locations Manager. He joined Northern Ireland Screen in 1997.
As Head of Production, Andrew is responsible for the investment of Northern Ireland Screen’s £13m annual development, production and skills funds. He oversees the delivery of: physical production; project development; new and emerging talent and skills development schemes.
Andrew has a BA in Drama, Film and Television from St John’s York; an MBA from Queen’s University Belfast; is an alumni of Cass Business School’s Inside Pictures; a member of BAFTA and a founding member of the Irish Film and Television Academy.
Nicola Lyons – Production Manager
Joined in October 2012 as Production Executive and was appointed Production Manager in June 2014. Nicola is the first point of contact for production funding enquiries and oversees physical production including locations, crews and facilities. Prior to joining Northern Ireland Screen Nicola worked in the film industry for over 20 years in London, spending 10 years with United International Pictures, the international joint venture of Paramount, Universal and MGM, and 11 years with Film Entertainment consultancy Hy Smith & Associates .
Ursula Devine – Development Executive
Ursula joined Northern Ireland Screen in January 2010 and is responsible for the Northern Ireland Screen Development slate of TV and film projects, overseeing the projects from application until they complete the development process. Ursula manages development schemes for emerging talent. Ursula is also responsible for maintaining and facilitating relations with commissioning bodies, literary agents and sales agents. Previous to joining Northern Ireland Screen Ursula worked in film production for 6 years, producing two feature films in the US and also worked for an international film distribution company based in Los Angeles.
Donal Philips – Digital Executive
Donal joined September 2014 and is the main point of contact for interactive enquiries at Northern Ireland Screen. He is responsible for assisting national and international developers to maximise their potential in Northern Ireland, delivering skills development projects to the local sector and reviewing funding proposals. With over 10 years’ games industry experience, Donal started his career as a community manager for Jagex before moving on to a variety of roles with Electronic Arts, Relentless Software & Microsoft while working within the indie sector.
Christine Morrow – New and Emerging Talent Executive
Christine works across all BFI Network and Northern Ireland Screen short film activity in fiction, factual and animation areas. She designs and manages workshops and seminars for new and emerging talent in animation, factual and fiction sectors. She also holds an MA in Film and Production Management from Ulster University. Before joining Northern Ireland Screen Christine worked as a Development Assistant with BBC Northern Ireland Drama.
Paula Campbell – Skills Manager
Joined in August 2011 as Co-ordinator for the Aim High training scheme, a joint venture with ScreenSkills and BBC NI, and was appointed Skills Executive in November 2014. Paula is responsible for managing all of Northern Ireland Screen’s training schemes across the 6 priority sectors. She is also responsible for organising additional training workshops, master-classes and trips to festivals and markets for trainees. Paula was appointed Skills Manager in 2019. Prior to joining Northern Ireland Screen, Paula worked in production for over 25 years including being a founder and director of a local production/post production company for 10 of those years.
FINANCE, FUNDING and CORPORATE GOVERNANCE
Linda Martin – Director of Finance and Corporate Services
Joined October 2005; Linda’s responsibilities include HR, corporate governance and the overall financial management of the organisation; she will liaise with funders and monitor the company’s investments in projects, as well as providing financial support to the Audit and Risk Committee of the Board of Northern Ireland Screen. Linda was previously Production Accountant with BBC.
Linda McGuinness – Financial Controller
Joined in December 2007; Linda is an ACCA graduate and holds the post of Financial Controller. Before joining Northern Ireland Screen Linda worked in the charity sector.
Lyndsey Waring – Assistant Accountant
Joined December 2008; Lyndsey assists the Director of Finance & C.S and Financial Controller with the day to day running of the Finance department. Before joining Northern Ireland Screen Lyndsey was a bookeeper for IFS Global Logistics.
Suzanne Harrison – Funding Manager (maternity leave)
Joined January 2012; Suzanne manages the Funding Department including the operation of production and development funding programmes across all sectors in the screen industry. Suzanne previously worked for BBC’s UK corporate charity, BBC Children in Need, managing the grants administration process and supporting locally funded projects and fundraisers.
Acting Funding Manager – Jennifer Johnston
Jennifer joined Northern Ireland Screen from London where she previously worked for a number of organisations dealing with application processes and has a background in Arts Management. Jennifer is currently acting manager for the funding department, with responsibilities including the operation of production and development funding programmes across all sectors in the screen industry.
Nicky Coyle – Funding Executive (maternity leave)
Joined July 2016; Nicky assists the Funding Department in all administrative matters regarding those funds within the remit of the funding team, particularly the Lottery and Skills Fund. Nicky previously worked for a media company in Toronto as a member of its finance team, dealing with public funding and tax credit applications.
Richard Bruce – Systems Administrator
Joined October 2007; Richard is responsible for maintaining and developing all aspects of IT within Northern Ireland Screen and providing IT support to all Northern Ireland Screen staff. Richard has over 10 years’ experience in IT and telecoms support having previously worked for National Australia Group, Nortel Networks and C2K.
EDUCATION and DIGITAL FILM ARCHIVE
Bernard McCloskey – Head of Education
Joined October 2003; responsible for the strategic development and implementation of Northern Ireland Screen’s educational policy and for the management of the Digital Film Archive. Bernard works closely with Northern Ireland’s three Creative Learning Centres; the Nerve Centre, Derry, Nerve Belfast and the SELB’s Amma Centre in Armagh. The centres provide training for teachers and young people in creative digital technologies.
Bernard was previously the Creative Director with the FÍS project – a three year pilot project introducing moving image into the primary curriculum in the Republic of Ireland. Prior to this Bernard was a successful video and commercials producer/director and worked internationally in the advertising industry as a Creative Director for a number of leading advertising agencies including Saatchi & Saatchi and McCann-Erickson.
David McConnell – Education and Careers Manager
David joined April 2019 and is the main point of contact for education and careers enquiries at Northern Ireland Screen. In collaboration with key partners, David is responsible for providing opportunities for careers advice, and work experience for young people within the expanding screen industries. With over 12 years’ experience across the Creative Industries, David started his career in economic development before working as a programme manager for the Arts Council and the Department for Communities.
Francis Jones – Heritage and Archive Manager
Francis has two decades of experience in archive and records management. Specialising in broadcast collections, he previously worked for Queen’s University Belfast, Libraries NI and as a Broadcast Archivist for BBC NI.
Since 2010, Francis has been employed by Northern Ireland Screen. In his current role, he is responsible for ongoing heritage and archive initiatives.
He is a member of the Royal Television Society Archive Group, a Film Archives UK trustee and part of the British Film Institute’s Nations and Regions working group.
IRISH LANGUAGE BROADCAST FUND (ILBF)
Áine Walsh – Head of ILBF
Áine joined in November 2007 and is responsible for the strategic management and delivery of the Irish Language Broadcast Fund. Áine works closely with the Irish language production sector and the broadcasters to ensure delivery of quality Irish language content and to help the sector develop. She is also responsible for a number of training programmes for Irish speakers working or seeking to work in the local production sector.
Before joining, Áine had spent 10 years working in production – as an assistant producer and producer in UTV, working across entertainment and documentary programmes and also as a radio presenter and producer for BBC Northern Ireland’s Irish Language Unit.
Áine has been an executive board member of the Celtic Media Festival since 2009.
Doireann Nic Dhomhnaill – ILBF Officer
Doireann joined the Northern Ireland Screen team in June 2018. Before joining Doireann worked in Dáil Éireann (Irish Parliament) as a Parliamentary Assistant. She also worked as a Policy Advisor in the European Parliament in Brussels.
MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS
Mary McVey – Marketing & Communications Manager
Joined in June 2007 as Marketing Officer and was appointed Marketing Manager in June 2014; Mary is the first point of contact for all marketing and communications enquiries. Mary works closely with the Marketing Executive in the provision of a first-class marketing, publicity and information service covering all aspects of the film, television and new media industry and film and television culture in Northern Ireland. Before joining Northern Ireland Screen Mary worked as a Press and PR executive with UTV.
Lauren Lynch – Marketing Executive
Lauren joined the marketing team in August 2019. As a Marketing Executive, Lauren assists in the implementation of Northern Ireland Screen’s marketing strategy, including the provision of its communications plan and undertaking an integrated approach to its key economic, education and cultural objectives. Before joining Northern Ireland Screen, Lauren worked as a Communications Specialist at Liberty IT and as a PR Executive at LK Communications.
Matthew Smyth – Marketing Assistant