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Strategy & Policy Director (Designated Accounting Officer)
Aidan Gough in his role as Strategy and Policy Director, advises on collaborative strategy, policy and initiatives to help InterTradeIreland in boosting North/South economic co-operation to the mutual benefit of both economies on the island. Aidan leads InterTradeIreland’s policy and research team to identify areas where joint Government intervention can help to create an environment where it is easier to do business and increase the competitiveness of individual businesses and the island in the global economy. Aidan is a graduate of Queen’s University, Belfast with an MBA and MSc in Economics. Prior to joining InterTradeIreland in 2000, Aidan was Director of the Northern Ireland Economic Council.
Director of Programmes & Business Services
Margaret is responsible for leading the development and delivery of InterTradeIrelands suite of programmes and business services. InterTradeIreland provides financial assistance and support to businesses across the island. InterTradeIreland’s support is centred around Trade and Innovation including helping companies to access new markets, develop new products and processes and raising early stage finance. Margaret is a business and marketing graduate. She completed an MBA in 2004. Margaret’s career to date has focused on supporting the development of SME’s and early stage companies. She lead the development of InterTradeIreland’s Equity Network Programme. She was appointed to her current position in December 2009.
Assistant Director of Programmes & Business Services
Assistant Director of Strategy & Policy
Ken Nelson has extensive involvement in economic development, business start up and growth as chief executive of Local Economic Development Company (LEDCOM) Ltd. Ken has over 25 years’ experience working as a business advisor, mentor and trainer with entrepreneurs, start-up companies, small businesses and social enterprises. He has wide ranging experience in designing and delivering support initiatives for economic development, business incubation, managed workspace development, social entrepreneurship and small business growth.
Ken was one of the founding directors and former Chairman of Enterprise Northern Ireland, the association of NI’s local enterprise centres. In 2010 he was the sole Northern Ireland recipient of the Queen’s Award for Enterprise Promotion.
Brought up on a farm and married with six children, Ken began his career in the textile industry working in production management and product management.
Ken is a voluntary member of the board of directors of three social enterprises. He has a BA in Business Studies, MBA and MSc in Human Resource Management as well as being a Chartered Manager (CMgr) and Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute (FCMI). He is also a member of the Board of Governors of the Northern Regional College and Stranmillis University College.
Ken is a regular speaker at economic development and entrepreneurship conferences locally, nationally and internationally, as well as writing an occasional column on business issues for a local newspaper.
In April 2012, he was appointed to the Board of Invest Northern Ireland by the Northern Ireland Minister for Enterprise, Trade & Investment. He was re-appointed to the Board of Invest NI in April 2015.
In December 2016, he was appointed as Chairman of InterTradeIreland by the North South Ministerial Council and in 2018 was awarded an MBE in the New Year's Honours List.
Paul O’Sullivan is a former Director and Dean of the College of Business in the Dublin Institute of Technology. He has served as a member of the Higher Education Authority of Ireland and is currently a member of the Board of Solas. the government body for policy, strategy, financing and direction of all Further Education, Apprenticeship and Industrial Training in the Republic of Ireland. Paul has been a Director of the Bolton Trust (1992-2012), a registered charity devoted to fostering high tech graduate entrepreneurs and he was the first Chairman of the Small Enterprise Seed Fund. He has published in the areas of Marketing Communication and Sponsorship and Business Planning for SMEs. He has acted as Marketing Advisor to a number of public bodies and chaired a major Marketing Review for the GAA. He has served on the Board of a number of media companies and software startups. In December 2016, he was appointed as Vice Chair of InterTradeIreland by the North South Ministerial Council.
Ann Rudden runs one of Ireland’s leading artisan chocolate companies, Áine Hand Made Chocolate. Ann completed a course in bakery and management in the Dublin Institute of Technology in Kevin Street which led to landing her first full-time job with the Irish Chocolate Company, now known as Butlers Chocolates and then Lily O’Brien’s.
In 1999 Ann started developing her own range of chocolate products. Based in the village of Stradone, her business grew from strength to strength and won numerous awards including 25 Great Taste Awards, two IQ awards and recommendations from leading food critics such as John and Sally McKenna and food guru Rick Stein.
The Company now produce a range of bars and gift boxes and has markets in Ireland, UK, Malaysia, France and Dubai a host of independent retailers such as Avoca, Kilkenny Shop, Morton’s and Fallon and Byrne. In addition, she also ships to a number of finefood retail outlets in the UK, Dubai, Russia and Malaysia.
Ann Rudden is a member of the Cavan Economic advisory forum at Cavan council.
James Spratt has worked all his life in the public sector and has extensive knowledge of local and central government. He served on Castlereagh Council from 2005 to 2013 serving on many committees and bodies. He was Chairman of the Northern Ireland Joint Council representing the 26 councils and also served on the National Joint Council.
James also was a member of the NI Assembly from 2007 to 2015. He was Chairman of the Standard and Privileges Committee 2014 – 2015, Chairman of the Regional Development Committee 2011 to 2014 and Chairman of the Assembly Executive Review Committee 2008 -2011. He also served on the Committee of First & Deputy First Minister from 2007 - 2015.
James was a Member of the NI Policing Board 2008 - 2011 as well as serving as Chairman of the Human Resources Committee during that period. James Spratt is a married man with 4 grown up sons and 7 grandchildren.
Patrick Joy is the founder of Suretank Group and was the 2013 Irish EY Entrepreneur of the Year. He is a Chartered Mechanical Engineer (University College Dublin, 1974) and also has an MBA (Trinity College Dublin, 1988). Married to Mary, they have 5 children and two grandchildren and live in Baltray, Co. Louth.
Patrick recently hired a new CEO for Suretank and has stepped back from his previous full time role of managing his business. He devotes his time to mentoring and investing in new start-up businesses and he is a director of a number of companies including Suretank Group where he retains a significant shareholding.
Outside of his business interests, Patrick is a member of Engineers Ireland, EO – The Entrepreneurs Organisation, Boyne RFC, Royal Dublin Society and Co. Louth golf club. He is also a council member of the Irish Exporters Association.
Paul Greenfield was elected to Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon (ABC) Borough Council in May 2014. He is currently Deputy Lord Mayor of the ABC Council and serves on the Economic Development and Regeneration Committee and also the Leisure Services Committee. Paul has 20 years experience working in the retail motor industry in some of Northern Ireland’s leading dealerships. He currently manages three new car franchises and a used car department. Paul has enjoyed numerous successes throughout his career including a Customer Quality award, ranking top in the UK.
He is Board member of East Border Region, Vice Chairman of his local DUP branch and Co-Chair of the Peace IV Partnership Board. Paul is married, with three young children and lives in Waringstown.
Terry Crossan worked for many years in the Licensed Trade industry with the Garvan O'Doherty Group. Now semi-retired, he works part-time as a Security Advisor for music events and festivals
He served on the Board of Foyle Carlingford and Irish Lights for 10 years including 3 years as Chair of the Board. He was also on the Board of Bogside Brandiwell Initiative for several years as well as serving on the Board of Cooperation Ireland for four years.
Micheál Briody, FCMA is the CEO of Silver Hill Farm which is the Irish owned leading producer of premium duck worldwide. The company has operations north and south of the border and exports to 24 countries and employs over 200 people. Micheál is also Chairman of the GAA’s Club Player Association which acts as the voice for all GAA club players in 32 counties.
Tim Cairns is Wales and Northern Ireland Director for the Community Transport Association UK. Having served as a Special Adviser in the office of the First Minister and at the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment, Tim’s background is in policy and public affairs.
Tim also served as Director of Policy for the Democratic Unionist Party and has worked in the voluntary sector, both in Northern Ireland and Canada, for over 15 years. A non-practising barrister, Tim has been engaged widely in development, implementation and advocacy, across a range of diverse policy areas.