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Judith Kyle Gillespie, CBE is a retired senior police officer. She was the Deputy Chief Constable of the Police Service of Northern Ireland, between June 2009 and March 2014.

Early life[edit]

Gillespie was born and raised in North Belfast.[1] She completed a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in public policy and administration. She went on to study for a Masters degree in applied criminology at the University of Cambridge.[1]

Police career[edit]

Gillespie began her policing career when she joined the Royal Ulster Constabulary in 1982 as a police constable.[2] She had previously been rejected by the RUC because of her gender.[3]

In 2003, she attended the Strategic Command Course at the Police Staff College, Bramshill.[4] In 2004, she was appointed assistant chief constable.[5] This made her the first female to reach chief officer rank in the Police Service of Northern Ireland.[4][2] In June 2009, she was promoted to deputy chief constable, becoming the second most senior police officer in Northern Ireland.[5] She served as acting chief constable from August 2009 to September 2009.[6] In March 2011, she was given the opportunity to retire early with a £500,000 severance package but choose to continue her career.[3]

A keen sports woman, she played hockey and squash for the RUC.[7] In 2013, when the World Police and Fire Games was held in Belfast, Northern Ireland, she served as the Chair of the Board.[8][9]

She retired from the police on 31 March 2014.[5]

Personal life[edit]

Gillespie is married and has two daughters.[10]

She took up running after the death of the sister-in-law from cancer. She has completed the Belfast Marathon relay, Race for Life and the Great North Run, raising money for Marie Curie Cancer Care.[7]


Gillespie was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2009 Birthday Honours for public service,[11] and promoted to Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2014 Birthday Honours for services to policing and the community in Northern Ireland.[12] In July 2012, she was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by Queen's University Belfast.[6]


  1. ^ a b Young, David (13 March 2014). "I'm leaving PSNI on my own terms, insists Deputy Chief Constable Judith Gillespie". Belfast Telegraph. Retrieved 16 June 2014. 
  2. ^ a b "Judith Gillespie, NI's most senior policewoman, to retire". BBC News. 20 December 2013. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  3. ^ a b Young, David (13 March 2014). "Judith Gillespie: I'll sue over vile online sex slurs says Northern Ireland's most senior woman police officer". Belfast Telegraph. Retrieved 16 June 2014. 
  4. ^ a b "First female PSNI Assistant Chief Constable appointed". Northern Ireland News. 4NI. 18 May 2004. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  5. ^ a b c "Deputy chief constable Judith Gillespie to retire". Belfast Telegraph. 20 December 2013. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  6. ^ a b "Deputy Chief Constable Judith Gillespie OBE". Police Service of Northern Ireland. Retrieved 28 September 2010. 
  7. ^ a b Bell, Stephanie (23 May 2014). "Judith Gillespie: The ex-cop and sports boss on the run with Mary". Belfast Telegraph. Retrieved 16 June 2014. 
  8. ^ "WPFG 'best and friendliest ever', says president of games". BBC News. 10 August 2013. Retrieved 16 June 2014. 
  9. ^ "Board of Directors". 2013 WPFG. World Police & Fire Games. Retrieved 16 June 2014. 
  10. ^ Beattie, Jilly (20 May 2004). "I went from the Shopping Squad to Super Nintendo to first female Assistant Chief Constable; JUDITH'S HISTORIC RISE TO TOP PSNI POST.". The Daily Mirror. Retrieved 16 June 2014. 
  11. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 59090. pp. 9–10. 13 June 2009. Retrieved 07 March 2014.
  12. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 60895. p. b9. 14 June 2014.
Police appointments
Preceded by
Paul Leighton
Deputy Chief Constable of the Police Service of Northern Ireland
2009 to 2014

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judith_Gillespie — Please support Wikipedia.
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5 news items

Belfast Telegraph

Belfast Telegraph
Thu, 18 Sep 2014 21:30:00 -0700

For our part, Sinn Fein has been entirely consistent in our support for the administration of justice." Mr Harris was chosen by the Policing Board to replace Judith Gillespie. The appointment process was thrown into uncertainty on Monday when Ms Ruane ...

BBC News

BBC News
Mon, 15 Sep 2014 05:49:37 -0700

The post became vacant when Judith Gillespie stepped down in March. Ms Ruane said in a statement on Monday: "In light of the need for absolute transparency in all public appointments, and to protect the Policing Board's integrity, I believe the best ...

Belfast Telegraph

Belfast Telegraph
Tue, 16 Sep 2014 19:47:31 -0700

Mr Harris – who sanctioned the arrest of Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams as part of the investigation into the murder of Belfast woman Jean McConville – was yesterday chosen by the Policing Board to replace Judith Gillespie, who retired in March. Only two ...

BBC News

BBC News
Wed, 10 Sep 2014 04:37:30 -0700

But only two people applied, and both are serving assistant chief constables with the PSNI. George Hamilton was appointed chief constable in June and the search then began for a deputy to fill the vacancy left by Judith Gillespie, who stepped down in ...
Mon, 15 Sep 2014 16:03:36 -0700

Judith Gillespie (Letters, 15 September) berates those who have arrived late at the independence debate for not paying more attention sooner. Had she herself done so, she would have known it is perfectly possible to obtain a clear mandate for one ...

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