Charlie Mack
Chief Executive Officer


Charlie Mack was appointed CEO of Extern in July 2013.

He previously held the posts of Group Director and NI Director at the Royal National Institute of Blind People. Prior to this he worked in the statutory and international private sectors in England until taking up a career in the voluntary sector in NI. He was also a senior manager in the NI Council for Integrated Education and the National Trust. He completed his MBA at this time and won a prestigious scholarship for voluntary sector management at Boston College, USA.

He is a Fellow of the Institute of Directors and is a Board Member of the Local Government Staff Commission and the Community Fund. He was previously a Non Executive Director of the Fire and Rescue Service and Committee Chair at the Northern Ireland Social Care Council.

Danny McQuillan
Director of Services

For over twenty years Danny has worked in the community and voluntary sector holding a variety of positions both voluntarily and in paid capacities. In his role as Director of Services, Danny draws on his particular areas of expertise which include service development and delivery, service commissioning and quality assurance, policy development, public relations, fundraising and social media development.

Danny oversees the delivery of a range of services to people who are homeless, people leaving prison, those living with an addiction and providing support to refugees.

As the Director of Services for Young People and Families and Communities on an all-Ireland basis, he is responsible for providing leadership to the directorate, ensuring a long-term strategy is in place and that it is achieving its objectives in full, as well as maintaining and substantially growing service provision across all-Ireland and assessing potential for growth into other geographic areas.

Dr Gavin Adams
Director, Business Development

Gavin joined Extern in April 2014 as Director of Business Development. Gavin was formerly Senior Manager for Business Development with the Royal National Institute of Blind People, where he led on the organisation’s fundraising, finance, public affairs, retail and communications/marketing activities across Northern Ireland. Previously he was a Programme Manager and Head of Programmes with the Big Lottery Fund where he managed the assessment of funding applications, existing grants and developed new funding programmes.

Gavin has a passion for the voluntary sector and is currently a non-executive Director of Ulster Supported Employment Limited - which provides employment and training opportunities for people with disabilities.

In his role as Director of Business Development Gavin is responsible for providing leadership to Extern’s income generation, communications and marketing and public affairs activity.

Leslie Ann Scott

Assistant Director, Young People & Families

Leslie Ann Scott has over 18 years’ experience with Extern, starting as a volunteer with our services in Northern Ireland and as a project worker on the Time Out Service in Fermanagh before becoming a manager for our services in Dublin.

As a qualified social worker with experience in child protection services, Leslie Ann is committed to the Extern vision of supporting families and young people to positively change their lives through the provision of quality assured and outcomes based support services.

As Assistant Director, Leslie Ann is also committed to leading the Young People and Families team in service design, development and delivery through best practice application and encouraging an environment of innovation and learning across the island of Ireland.

Thelma Abernethy

Assistant Director, Communities

Thelma has over 20 years’ experience working in the Voluntary and Community sector developing and delivering responsive services to meet the needs of individuals, families and communities affected by homelessness, alcohol and drug issues, mental health, and dementia.

Thelma started her career in youth work supporting young people across Europe to develop/maintain their skills and abilities for life at a time of major reform across eastern Europe. She then moved into the area of homelessness and developed a range of services to enable individuals to develop their confidence and skills, and to obtain and secure accommodation.

Following this she worked as area manager  for the Alzheimer’s Society, developing services across Northern Ireland to enable people affected by dementia to live well with the condition. Following this, she became Director of Addiction NI, developing the organisation’s reach across NI and diversifying the range of services provided.