John is a native Gaelic speaker from Carloway in the Isle of Lewis, but has lived in Edinburgh since 1970 when he moved there to join the police service. Now retired, (but not idle) he has been actively involved in several areas of Gaelic development, notably education, arts and community, for many years. He was Convener of Comann nam Pàrant (Nàiseanta) for seven years, his two children Màiri & Calum having been educated through the medium of Gaelic in Edinburgh.
Amongst his current duties are Gaelic translation work, distributing Gaelic News Bulletins, part-time Gaelic Community development work in Edinburgh, and Gaelic Adviser to Comunn na Clàrsaich, with active involvement in the organisation of the Edinburgh International Harp Festival. He became President of An Comunn Gaidhealach in 2007, having been a South-East Regional representative on the Ard Chomhairle. John is married to Christine who belongs to Caithness – co-incidentally the venue for Am Mòd Nàiseanta Rìoghail 2010.
Janet was born and brought up in Tobermory, in Mull, and in fact she still lives there. She graduated in Gaelic and Mathematics from Edinburgh University, and spent many years teaching those two subjects. She won the Gold Medal in Inverness in 1984, but before that she competed in many Local and National Mods. She was a member of the “Sound of Mull” group, which was very well known in the 70s and 80s. She still sings with the Mull Choir and Atomic Piseag.
She has worked for the Gaelic cause all her life. Since stopping teaching full time, she works for Sabhal Mor Ostaig, tutoring students of An Cùrsa Inntrigidh, and other college courses. Also she is involved with the running of the Mull local mod, Fèis Mhuile, the Mull & Iona Gaelic Partnership, and any other initiatives which support the language. Janet likes to ensure that the Gaelic of Argyll has a high profile, where possible!
John is the Chief Executive of An Comunn Gaidhealach. Born and brought up in Ness on the Isle of Lewis he worked previously as the Finance & Administration Manager at the Angus & Dundee Tourist Board and prior to that as Assistant Secretary at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, University of Dundee. In his spare time he helps run a Youth Football Team and has been a member of Broughty Ferry Community Council. He is also a board member of the Tayside Buildings Preservation Trust.
Duncan J Ferguson, An Comunn Gaidhealach director (since April, 2014). Married to Catriona (nee Finlayson of Skye parents): daughter - Sarah; son - Aonghus. Native of Portnahaven, Islay
Education – Portnahaven Primary; Keil School, Dumbarton; Glasgow University – MA (2i Honours in Latin & Mediaeval History, 1975); MEd at Glasgow University, 1991
Career - teacher, Albert Secondary, Glasgow (76-79); Head of Classics, Lochgilphead High School (79-86); Depute Headteacher, Tobermory High School (86-92); Rector, Plockton High School (92-2013); evening class tutor in Conversational Gaelic and Scottsh History
Involvement in various Gaelic organisations including chair, Argyll region of An Comunn Gaidhealach, chair, BBC Gaelic Advisory Commmittee, first cathraiche/chairman, Bord na Gaidhlig
Commitments and community involvement currently include local church; board member, West Highland College; member, steering group, Crofting connections project; board member, Am Bata project (Plockton High School)
Interests include regular tweeting; all aspects of Gaelic language and culture; book collecting/reading; independent research/writing on education and Gaelic issues; arts including traditional music and Irish drama; archaeology/history; politics; Francophile; sport including shinty
Rosemary was born in Helensburgh but her family relocated to the Isle of South Uist when she was quite young. She learned Gaelic at Garrynamonie Primary School and went on to become the first Gaelic Medium immersion teacher in Sir John Maxwell Primary in Glasgow in the 1980s. She spent many years as a Gaelic Quality Improvement Officer in Argyll and Bute Council before taking up post as the Director of Education for Bòrd na Gàidhlig. She is currently the Director of the Gaelic Books Council, which has its base in Glasgow. She is married to Gerard and has two children, Sean and Eilidh.
Norma, who is from the Isle of Skye, works as a Quality Improvement Officer for Highland Council Education and has responsibility for aspects of Gaelic Medium Education across Highland. She is an Associate Assessor with HMIE and a member of the Educational Broadcasting Council for Scotland.
She has been involved with the Skye Provincial Mod since returning to Skye to take up the post of Head Teacher in 1985. She has been an active member of Roinn a Tuath since 1991, holding the post of chair for 4 years and, due to work commitments, more recently vice-chair. She is a member of the Board of An Commun and is involved with the National Mod since 2001.
Donald joined An Comunn Gaidhealach (and the SYHA!) in 1982 when he went to work in London. He became involved in running the Lewis Provincial Mod in the early nineties and moved forward with Mòd Ionadail Leodhais in 2001. He was joint treasurer at the National Mods held in the Western Isles in 2001 and 2005 and Treasurer for 2011; he joined the board as one of the 2 representatives from the Western Isles Region in 2007. He worked as a Software Analyst for the local council, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar since going ‘back’ to Lewis in 1987 until he retired in 2011. His main leisure pursuits are hill walking and travel.
Skye-born Mr Campbell has been at the forefront of the promotion of Gaelic for many years, having had a career in broadcasting before holding the post of Chief Executive at Comunn na Gàidhlig then Bòrd na Gàidhlig.
David Cannon represents Caledonian MacBrayne (CalMac), the main commercial supporter of the Royal National Mod, on the board of An Comunn. A journalist by training, David has more than 30 years experience in press and public relations in both public and private sectors. As CalMac’s Public Affairs Manager he is responsible for CalMac’s relationships with the media and Parliament and is the senior manager responsible for developing and implementing the company’s Gaelic Language Plan. He attended his first Royal National Mod in Falkirk in 2008 and has been a key member of the CalMac team which has been working to raise the company’s profile at the event. He has a strong affinity with the Gàidhealtachd having worked for the former Highlands and Islands Development Board in the 1980s and has enjoyed rekindling his relationship with the area since joining CalMac.
Marilyn (MacLean) Waters has worked with Gaelic and Gaelic-medium qualifications at SQA since 1999. In her current role as Qualifications Coordinator for Gaelic she is responsible for the educational commitments contained within SQA’s Gaelic Language Plan, including the development of a sustainable long-term strategy to support the ongoing expansion of the organisation’s support for Gaelic-medium education in Scotland. SQA’s role as one of the main Sponsors of Am Mòd Nàisteana Rioghail is an important part of this developing strategy.
Marilyn’s family are Gaelic-speakers from North Uist (Locheport) and Harris (Drinishader). As a young person she competed in the Mòd as a member of Lochaber High School Gaelic Choir, in a folk band and solo competitions - so fully understands the passion and commitment which competitors and organisers bring to the Mòd on an annual basis. The support of SQA’s CEO Dr Janet Brown, Head of Service Robert Quinn and colleagues further affirms how important the organisation’s sponsorship of the Mòd is to the broader educational aims of SQA as it moves forward with Curriculum for Excellence.