Rosemary Kelly, OBE

Arts Council of Northern Ireland chairman receives OBE in New Year's Honours List

Rosemary Kelly, chairman of the Arts Council of Northern Ireland (ACNI), has been honoured in the 2009 New Year honours list with an OBE for Services to the Arts. The annual Honours List recognises outstanding achievement and service across the whole of the community.

Kelly was appointed chairman of the ACNI in 2003. She has also been chairman of the Ormeau Baths Gallery and deputy chair of the Ulster Orchestra, is a former president of the Association of Ulster Drama Festivals, and is a founding member of the Irish Film and Television Academy.

Congratulating Kelly on her award, ACNI chief executive, Roisín McDonough, said: 'The Arts Council is delighted that the chairman’s greatly valued service to the arts has been recognised in the New Year honours list. She has made a huge personal commitment to developing the arts in Northern Ireland, volunteering her time and expertise to a range of arts organisations. 

'As chairman of the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, she continues to make an important contribution, guiding the organisation through the changing political climate and challenging financial times for the arts.'

Kelly is a former head of public affairs and company secretary for BBC Northern Ireland, which she joined in 1981. She has worked for broadcasting regulator Ofcom and is currently a governor of the Irish Times and a member of the Council of the University of Ulster. She is also chairman of Help the Aged in Northern Ireland and a trustee of its International Board in London.