Irene has been Chair of the RSA's South East region since its inception ten years ago, Deputy Chair of the Fellowship Council for two years, Chair of the Fellowship Council for two years and has just been re-elected Chair of the Council for the next two years.
Until Christmas 2014 Irene was Assistant Director: Community and Customer Services for East Sussex County Council, where she was responsible for the front facing services: libraries, Registration Service (births, marriages and deaths), Record Office and Archives and for the Cultural Agenda. She was busy watching the building of new libraries, wedding rooms and an £18 million new Record Office near the football stadium in Brighton. Irene was also responsible for Corporate Complaints, Freedom of information and Data Protection. She also sits on the national executive of the Society of Chief Librarians. Before that she was Head of Customer Services for West Sussex County Council.
Irene has now made a change of direction and is working for the Publishers Licensing Society on the Access to Research periodicals initiative, which is being piloted throughout the Library Services in the UK. She has also started to research on the life and works of a 20th Century English Composer, since she has somehow managed to acquire his original documents and diaries.
For 8 years Irene was a governor of a grant aided school in West Sussex, but more recently is associated with Lancing College on the Sussex Downs. As well as her interest in Education, she has an eclectic collection of literary associations – has been the Chair of the West Sussex Literary Society, a Trustee of the Asham Literary Trust (Virginia Woolf) and also a Trustee of Shipley Windmill (Hilaire Belloc).
Within the RSA, Irene was Chair of the SE Region since its inception 11 years ago, but has recently passed the baton on. She was Deputy Chair of the Fellowship Council for 2 years, Chair of the Fellowship Council for 2 years and has just been reelected Chair of the Council for the next 2 years.
She has just begun a second 2 year term as a Trustee, representing the Fellowship Council.
Irene has a BA in Modern Languages from Leeds University, an MA from UCL in Librarianship and a PhD from Warwick University in Early twentieth Century Literature.
She is also a sometime writer for the Foody Traveller website.
Irene lives on a cliff top near Brighton.