Interim Head of the NI Civil Service
After serving on the Council of Ulster University for almost three years Jenny became Pro-Chancellor and Chair in July 2019 where she has been leading the implementation of a governance and effectiveness review.
Prior to her partial retirement in November 2020, Jenny was Chief Executive of the Utility Regulator (responsible for the economic regulation of Northern Ireland’s electricity, gas, water and sewerage industries) for seven years. Amongst other things she oversaw the expansion of the gas industry into the west of NI and the reform of the all-island electricity market – the ISEM project.
A BSc (Hons) graduate of Queen’s University Belfast, she joined the Northern Ireland Civil Service in 1985 and was appointed as Director of Energy Policy in the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment in 2004 where she managed policy and legislative responsibilities in relation to the electricity, gas and renewable energy industries for over 6 years. Under her stewardship the all-island Single Electricity Market, Europe‘s first cross-jurisdictional market, was created.
After becoming Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Department for Social Development in July 2011, with responsibility for urban regeneration and community development, Jenny was actively involved in the initial stages of Ulster University’s ambitious Greater Belfast Development expansion programme, championing in particular, its civic agenda. Jenny also chairs the executive board of the cross border International Centre for Local and Regional Development – a collaborative research and practitioner initiative between Maynooth University in Ireland and Ulster University, established in 2006
Jenny is a Fellow of both the Royal Geological Society (FGS) and the Energy Institute (FEI), and is also an alumna of the US Federal Executive Institute, Charlottesville, VA.