Mr Joe M Stewart OBE, LLB, JP, has an in-depth understanding and appreciation of the issues impacting farmers and the local agricultural sector. Since the 1890s the Stewart family have farmed in Comber, Co Down. Today Mr Stewart runs two breeding flocks on the farm, namely, Suffolk and Texel. He is also an experienced horse breeder, breeding Irish Draft Horses. Mr Stewart is a trustee of the Suffolk Sheep Society and joined the LMC Board as a member in 2021. He has served as Chair of the Commission’s Audit and Risk Assurance Committee and is currently a Non-Executive Director of the Public Health Agency (including Chair of its Governance and Audit Committee). Mr Stewart retired following a wide-ranging career including the Engineering Employers Federation, Harland & Wolff, Police Authority of NI, (PANI) and PSNI (non-police role). In 1994, Mr Stewart was appointed an OBE for Public Service. Mr Stewart has significant finance and governance experience in the private and public sectors, he will bring this expertise, coupled with personal experience of farming to the role of LMC Chair.
Mr John Hood has over 23 years in-depth experience in investment, marketing and economic development. For the last 10 years he was the Director of the Food and Drink Division at Invest NI where he delivered significant growth across the food and drink sector.
Mr David Mark has extensive experience across the agri-food sector. Throughout his career he has worked directly with producers and major customers on agricultural technical areas. He previously served on the Northern Ireland Food Advisory Committee of the Food Standards Agency and is Chair of the Trade Exhibits Committee in the Royal Ulster Agricultural Society (RUAS).
Mr Sean McKeever is a Chartered Accountant and has substantial strategy, finance and governance experience within Health and Personal Social Services and NHS organisations. He currently serves as a non-executive director, and chair of the Governance and Audit Committee, of the Business Services Organisation. He also brings on farm experience as a producer of beef.
Mr David Torrens is a recently retired vet who has an in-depth knowledge of the agriculture sector through his role as Director of DAERA’s Veterinary Service Animal Health Group. He currently serves as the Northern Ireland representative on the British Veterinary Association’s Policy Committee. He has extensive experience in the public sector, including in corporate governance and financial and risk management.
Mrs Elaine Willis is a Retail Operations Director and brings significant experience in the Agri-Food Processing Industry, including New Product Development, Business Development and Sales and Marketing. Elaine represents the red meat processing sector on the College of Agriculture Food and Rural Enterprise (CAFRE) Advisory Group.