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Nigel Hamilton is Head of the Northern Ireland Civil Service (NICS) and leads 29,000 civil servants. He is also head of the Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister and Secretary to the Northern Ireland Executive. In these roles, he is the most senior adviser to the First and the Deputy First Ministers.

As Head of the Civil Service Mr Hamilton has primary leadership responsibility for creating, developing and sustaining the NICS as an organisation which serves the devolved administration and the institutions  of government and the people of Northern Ireland through the provision of high quality, cost effective services.   

Mr Hamilton's main duties and responsibilities are:

*        Guiding the strategic direction of the NICS as an organisation

*        Accountability for the good management of the NICS

*        Leading and facilitating the development and enhancement of the NICS as an organisation

*        Representing NI at the highest level both in the UK and abroad

*        Chairman of the Permanent Secretary Group, which undertakes corporate personnel management of the Senior Civil Service

*        Secretary to the Executive

*        Accounting Officer for OFMDFM's budget

*        Principal policy adviser to the First and Deputy First Ministers across the full range of government issues

Nigel Hamilton joined the Civil Service in 1970 from Queen's University Belfast.

He worked in the former Department of the Environment (DOE), on roads, transport, water, housing and local authority policies. In 1987 he transferred to Central Secretariat where he became the first Director of "Making Belfast Work" and was also involved in the development of community relations policies.

He became Permanent Secretary in the Department of Education on 6 July 1998 and in July 2001 moved to become Permanent Secretary at the Department for Regional Development. He was appointed Head of the Northern Ireland Civil Service, with effect from 1 October 2002. He has also studied at the Management College, Henley, and the Federal Executive Institute, Charlottesville, Virginia.

He was President of the Ulster Society of Rugby Football Referees in 1996/97, although no longer an active referee. He is Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Ulster Branch (I.R.G.U).


As head of the Northern Ireland Civil Service he was a guest speaker at Women's Forum and is happy to support our participation in this "major digital inclusion initiative."



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