Maggie Cunningham worked at a senior level in the BBC for over twenty years. Her roles included Head of Radio, Scotland and Joint Head of Programmes and Services, Scotland. Since 2009, she has worked as a leadership and executive coach. She is a Content Board member of Ofcom and chaired the Board of MG Alba for six years from July 2012. She chairs Kyle and Lochalsh Community Development Trust and is an independent member of Edinburgh Festivals Forum. She was a founding Board member of Sistema Scotland from 2007 until 2019.
John Joe MacNeil hails from the island of Barra where he grew up surrounded by Gaelic language, song, culture and traditions. John Joe won the coveted Traditional Gold Medal at the National Mòd in Lochaber in 2017. He went onto win the Gold Medal in Inverness in 2021. He is a member of Còisir Ghàidhlig an Òbain (Oban Gaelic Choir) and also conducts Oban Gaelic Ladies Choir. He is the conductor of a new Gaelic harmony collective called Binneas. He is also the conductor of Còisir Ghàidhlig Bharraigh (Barra Gaelic Choir).
John Joe works for the University of Edinburgh as a Lecturer in Gaelic Education. Prior to this appointment, he was the Head Teacher of the first Gaelic primary school in Lochaber – Bun-Sgoil Ghàidhlig Loch Abar. John Joe is also a freelance broadcaster. He is a volunteer at Celtic Music Radio where he presents and produces a number of programmes. John Joe also freelances for a number of Gaelic media companies as a contributor and presenter. He recently presented an online series of programmes for the National Mòd featuring winners of the prestigious Gold and Traditional medals throughout the years. His voice can be heard on BBC Radio nan Gàidheal’s Smuain na Maidne (Thought for the Day) along with other programmes.
Skye-born Mr Campbell has been at the forefront of the promotion of Gaelic for near forty years, having had a career in broadcasting with the BBC before holding the post of Chief Executive at Comunn na Gàidhlig. As well as serving on the boards of most of the Gaelic organisations over the years, Allan initiated and led the campaign which led to the Gaelic Language (Scotland) 2005 Act and the establishing of Bòrd na Gàidhlig, and he became the first CEO of the Bord.
Allan’s contribution to Gaelic development was recognised by the award of an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Aberdeen in 2008.
Allan Campbell was appointed President of An Comunn Gàidhealach in 2017 and served until 2023.
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.
She has worked for the Gaelic cause all her life. Since stopping teaching full time, she has worked for Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, tutoring students of An Cùrsa Inntrigidh, and other college courses. She is also involved with the running of the Mull Local Mod, 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!
In 2017, at the start of the Lochaber Mòd, she was honoured to be presented with the Gaelic Ambassador of the Year award by the Scottish Government.
As a Glasgow born,of Harris parents, at the age of 5 I had no English when I started primary School.This was relatively common where I lived in Glasgow and we were known as the Glasgow Gaels. During my 40 year career with BT I had the opportunity of speaking Gaelic daily to my colleagues and customers.My only regret is the Gaelic Medium Education came far too late for me to benefit. However , since retirement from BT I have learnt to be able to read Gaelic although writing is still a bit of a struggle.Being a member of An Comunn Gaidhealach Board has given me the opportunity to contribute to the furtherance of the Gaelic language and culture which I appreciate and endeavour to contribute to the best of my ability.
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 Leòdhais 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.
Eilidh is from North Uist, where she lives and works. She completed a degree in Gaelic Studies at Aberdeen University before continuing to further studies. She moved back to Uist after many years working at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig and Bòrd na Gàidhlig. Eilidh is now employed in Community Learning and Development at Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, working with young people and community groups.She is interested in a variety of initiatives and events taking place in communities in the islands and nationally, in Gaelic, heritage, drama, music and the work of voluntary organisations and charities.