Joan Smyth has served 2 terms as Chairman of the Northern Ireland Transport Holding Company from 1 July 1999 to 30 June 2005. NITH Co is responsible for the delivery of public transport services in Northern Ireland through its Translink operating subsidiaries.
Dr Smyth was Chair of the Equal Opportunities Commission for NI from 1992 (Chair & Chief Executive until 1 October 1998) remaining in post until the new Equality Commission was established in October 1999. Joan Smyth was elected to the Board of the British Council in September 1999 and has Chaired its Northern Ireland Committee.
She has a BSc (Econ) from Queen’s University, Belfast and is a Companion of the Institute of Personnel and Development. In July 2000 the University of Ulster awarded her an Honorary Doctorate of Law for services to equal opportunities.
She was awarded a CBE in the 1998 New Year’s Honours List.
Currently Dr Smyth is a Director of Choice Housing Association, Chairman of the Chief Executives' Forum and Progressive Building Society, and President of the Red Cross, Northern Ireland Branch.
As a recent speaker Joan is only too aware of the need for women to work together on the many issues which need tackled to bring about a fairer society. The Forum brings together women from many different walks of life and organisations across Northern Ireland and has a proud record of awareness, advocacy and action. Its voice has been an important one in contributing to the debate on Government policies at local, national and international levels. Therefore she is pleased to support the work of Women’s Forum Northern Ireland.