After stepping down following 6 years on RNID’s Board of Trustees, Dr. Brian Caul MBE reflects on his time with us as he prepares for a new chapter
“In 1984, my connection with RNID began when I served as Head of Student Services at Ulster University, inviting RNID to help improve access for prospective students with hearing loss. Collaborating with Queen’s University Belfast, we launched the Joint Universities Deaf Education Centre (JUDE), enhancing access and raising awareness among academic staff about empathetic student preparation. I later chaired the RNID Northern Ireland Advisory Group, celebrating the centenary of Wilton House, conducting research on the pioneering Francis Maginn, and conducting a groundbreaking survey on academic qualifications for people with hearing loss school-leavers in Northern Ireland.
My involvement with RNID evolved into research, volunteering, and the establishment of an information desk at Causeway Hospital. In 2017, I was elected onto the Board of Trustees serving two terms until November 2023. To my surprise, I received an MBE in 2022 for my volunteer work with RNID, a recognition I accepted with deep respect for HM Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh’s service to RNID. The award was presented by Prince William.
What I have most enjoyed as Trustee, in late 2017, I joined the board amid a time of change. All Board members were encouraged to participate in decision-making. Drawing on my experience, I enjoyed contributing ideas and being a critical friend. As I leave, I am confident in the soundness of our strategic priorities, set to impact the 12 million deaf people and people living with hearing loss, or tinnitus. Progress includes RNID Near You (a support network for hearing aid users), and research partnerships for potential cures (for those who want them). The most rewarding aspect has been forming strong friendships through collaborative teamwork.”
What I’ll do next
“I will continue volunteering at Causeway Hospital, running the information desk and hosting my Sunday radio request programme, while keeping in touch with the great team of professional staff and volunteers in Northern Ireland.”