Previously, Jackie was Chief Executive of The Stroke Association NI (formerly Speechmatters) from 2003 – 2008. During this time, she successfully increased services all over NI, income, profile and membership of Speechmatters and ultimately led on a full merger with The Stroke Association in 2006 to create The Stroke Association NI. Jackie also worked in partnership with DHSSPS to develop a bespoke stroke strategy - “Improving Stroke Services in NI”. Under her leadership, Speechmatters / The Stroke Association won two Link Awards, a Scope Award and various other awards marking progress and best practice within the Charity.
From 2008 – 2011 Jackie worked for CO3, the organisation providing leadership support to Chief Officers of 3rd Sector organisations in NI. During her time there, Jackie had responsibility for meeting the leadership development needs of Chief Officers through a series of innovative and creative programmes designed to develop and strengthen civic leadership across NI. Jackie designed and delivered the first ever Voyager Leadership Awards marking outstanding 3rd sector leadership in NI and cascading best practice and new ways of working to other CO3 members.
In her spare time, Jackie is the Chairperson and founding member of the award winning Tir Na n-Og cross community Irish Dance Drama group. She also received a Peace award in 2003 for her efforts in encouraging peace in North Belfast through community development and arts activity.