Mary is a mother of two and is one of 53 cousins who grew up together in rural Northern Ireland during The Troubles. Her deep sense of family, understanding of economic disadvantage and experience of social division anchor and fire her commitment to shape and support positive change.
Following doctoral work at the University of Oxford, Mary moved to Edinburgh where she worked in a sector-spanning role for the NHS. A Churchill Fellowship in Australia showed her what could be done in a switched-on voluntary sector so on her return she moved to Barnardo’s where she was Assistant Director. She worked across all social welfare areas, and in-depth on education, criminal justice and equalities, as well as co-leading a major resource and UK-wide training programme supporting evidence informed decision making in the social sector.
Since 2011 Mary has focussed on issues around social investment/enterprise, grantmaking and corporate governance. She was in the founding group of Changing the Chemistry, an initiative aimed at increasing diversity across boardrooms in all sectors, is an advisor to Lloyds TSB Foundation for Scotland, and is non executive director of the Social Enterprise Academy, an award winning UK organisation with ventures in South Africa and Australia. In 2013 she founded NewStreet, a social consultancy.
Mary's research is available here