About the Ulster Society

Chartered Accountants Ulster Society is the oldest district society of the Institute and serves around 4,500 members throughout Northern Ireland. The Chairman is Niall Harkin.

The Ulster Society provides professional, educational and social services and events for its members (in practice, in business, in the public sector and charity/ voluntary sector) and is a strong voice for Northern Ireland's business sector. The Society also actively fosters relationships with other accountancy, professional organisations and government bodies.


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Zara Duffy has been appointed as the first Head of Chartered Accountants Northern Ireland, representing and managing services for over 4,000 Chartered Accountants.   Mrs Duffy previously held the position of Director of Finance and Operations with Employers for Childcare and has significant experience at senior finance director and board level within the professional services, voluntary and charity sector, financial services, retail and construction markets.   Welcoming Mrs Duffy to the role, Pat Costello, Chief Executive of Chartered Accountants Ireland said: “I am delighted to welcome Zara to the role of Head of Chartered Accountants Northern Ireland.   “Her wealth of business experience and leadership skills will ensure that we continue to meet the changing needs of our membership and indeed, represent the needs of the local business community to the very highest standard.”   On taking the new role, Mrs Duffy said: “I’m proud to be leading the largest and most long-established professional body of accountants in Northern Ireland and I look forward to making a significant contribution in terms of supporting local Chartered Accountants and firms.   “I am keen that our profession makes its voice heard and brings its expertise to bear for the benefit of Northern Ireland. I want to encourage our membership to make a strong contribution to economic debate and to be a compelling advocate for the local business sector.”   Pamela McCreedy, Chair of Chartered Accountants Ulster Society said: “Zara is a key appointment for our Institute. She will have a vital role in terms of representing members’ views and in tapping into the experience and ability of our membership throughout Northern Ireland.   “Our members do have concerns about the challenges which we face in Northern Ireland such as the effects of uncertainty over Brexit and the difficulties posed by political instability, but we are keen to play our part in making Northern Ireland a great place to do business, and a great place to live.”    Mrs Duffy is a Masters Graduate from Queen’s University, Belfast and Fellow of Chartered Accountants Ireland.  She began her career with Price Waterhouse, specialising in small business audit and advisory services.  

May 15, 2017
Public sector

Presentations from the 'Risk Management - A Fresh Perspective' event run jointly with the Institute of Risk Management are now available in pdf format below: Carolyn Williams Risk Agenda - Ireland March 2017 David Mills presentation Mar 17 Davy Elliott Business as Usual  

Apr 12, 2017

“Public and Private Sectors must realise Northern Ireland’s potential together” says new Chair Pamela McCreedy has been elected Chair of Chartered Accountants Ulster Society at its 110th Annual General Meeting in Belfast. The Ulster Society represents over 4,000 Chartered Accountants and is a district society of Chartered Accountants Ireland, the largest and oldest professional accountancy body in Ireland. Mrs McCreedy, who takes over as Chair from Dawn Johnston, is Deputy Chief Executive/ Director of Operations for the Northern Health and Social Care Trust. Prior to her current role, Mrs McCreedy held a senior role at the Health and Social Care Board and was Director of Transforming Your Care, leading the reform of health and social care services in Northern Ireland. Addressing the Society’s AGM, she said: “There is great potential in Northern Ireland but to realise that promise we need the power of the private and public sectors to work together. “We need a collaborative approach from business and the public sector if we are to deliver a sustainable local economy and the associated social, health and education benefits that we all want to see. My experience, both in practice and in the public sector has shown how important that partnership can be in delivering for local people. “It is more important than ever before to ensure that the public interest is represented ethically and with integrity. In the context of local political uncertainty and the challenges of the outworking of Brexit, the Chartered Accountancy profession and the business sector in general has a crucial role in the year ahead in advocating and lobbying Government and in demonstrating that Northern Ireland is open for business. “I know that our membership will embrace the challenges and I look forward to leading the Ulster Society in the year ahead.” Mrs McCreedy previously worked at the South Eastern Trust and was the Director of Public Sector Advisory in KPMG with specific responsibility for health and criminal justice. Mrs McCreedy trained as a Chartered Accountant with KPMG and specialised in public sector audit and advisory since 1998. Prior to becoming Vice Chair of the Ulster Society in 2016, Mrs McCreedy served as Honorary Treasurer of the Society and as a member of the Chartered Accountants Ireland Strategy Committee in 2015. 

Apr 12, 2017