Mike Smith, Non-Executive Chairman, Lighthouse Communications

Mike Smith OBE, Non-Executive Chairman

After over 35 years’ experience in leading private and public sector organisations, Mike Smith was awarded an OBE in the 2013 New Year Honours list for services to Economic Development and Urban Regeneration in Belfast.

As one of Northern Ireland’s most senior business leaders, Mike brings a range of skills and expertise to the Lighthouse Communications team.  He has held a number of senior positions throughout his career including CEO and Managing Director of Titanic Quarter Ltd, and chairman of Cinemagic.

As a Chartered Surveyor and Chartered Town Planner (FRICS, FRTPI), Mike continues to act as an advisor to Belfast City Council and is an experienced conference presenter on subjects including urban planning, regeneration, economics and leadership.

He is a graduate of both Trinity College Dublin and Queen’s University Belfast.

Stephen Smith, Managing Director

Since establishing Lighthouse Communications in 2009, Stephen has built an enviable base of international and locally-based clients, whilst developing a growing team of award-winning team consultants.

With more than 25 years’ media and communications experience, he has devised and directed strategies for a variety of blue chip, SME and public sector clients. Stephen has vast experience in crisis management.

Prior to entering the public relations sector, he spent eight years working at the BBC in Belfast and Radio 5Live in London across the fields of news and sport.

Stephen holds a Diploma in Company Direction from the Institute of Directors; a Diploma in Public Relations, Marketing and Advertising from Queen's University Belfast and a Certificate in Marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing. He is a member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations.

Alyson English, Director

Having joined the Lighthouse team in 2010, Alyson leads the team to devise and deliver creative, intelligent PR and digital communications strategies that achieve objectives set by the client and exceed their expectations.

With considerable experience in crisis management, corporate and B2C marketing communications, across sectors including travel and tourism, hospitality and leisure, motor retail and manufacturing, Alyson is trusted by her clients to protect their reputation and communicate key messages to target audiences.

Alyson holds a Digital Marketing Diploma from the Chartered Institute of Marketing and a BA (Hons) Degree in Public Relations and Media, Culture and Communications from University of Lincoln.

An active member of the Institute of Directors (IoD), Alyson holds a Diploma in Company Direction from the IoD. She is also a member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations and was a Non-Executive Director at Bryson Recycling.

Kingsley Donaldson, Director of Public Affairs

Kingsley Donaldson previously worked with the Ministry of Defence. His last appointments were concerned with national defence and security strategy. He now advises a number of governments, companies and private clients and has unrivalled political contacts across the island of Ireland, GB and beyond.

An international consultant on peace-building and conflict resolution, Kingsley is also Executive Director of the Scobie McIntosh Group, National Chairman of the Veterans Advisory and Pensions Committees and a non-executive director at NI Water.

Kingsley co-authored 2020 World of War, a critique of global political and security trends and threats. He is an Irish Studies graduate of Queen’s University.

Carly Rodgers, Head of Digital

An expert in all things digital, Carly’s talents lie within social media management, digital strategy, web copy development, online reputation management, blogger outreach, social advertising and analytics evaluation.

Working closely with the Lighthouse team, Carly ensures all digital activity complements the client’s offline strategy.

Upon completion of a full digital audit, clients trust Carly to carve a digital pathway that will assist with the achievement of their overall corporate objectives. Based on the requirements of the client, Carly facilitates varying degrees of digital communications support starting with basic digital and social media training.

With six years’ experience, creative flair and strategic focus, Carly has continuously delivered impactful, multi-channel campaigns across the digital landscape that showcase her innate understanding of digital partnerships and reciprocal marketing.

Carly holds a First Class BSc (Hons) degree in Public Relations and Communications from Northumbria University and has previously held Marketing roles at Manchester United and Newcastle Falcons.

Simon Cunningham, Account Director

A former journalist, Simon joined Lighthouse in 2017 after 10 years in the media industry.  Simon’s well-honed writing skills and enviable knowledge of the economic landscape allow him to quickly and effectively identify the needs of Lighthouse clients.

Before joining Lighthouse, he spent four years as business correspondent at the Irish News in Belfast, gaining a reputation for accurate and fair reporting across all sectors in Northern Ireland.

Simon, a former deputy editor of the Tyrone Courier in Dungannon, has worked in all areas of print journalism as a respected news and sports reporter.

Simon is a graduate of Queen’s University Belfast where he attained a BA (Hons) degree in English and Politics. Simon also received a newspaper journalism qualification from Belfast Metropolitan College.

Alastair Luke, Multimedia Content Producer

Joining Lighthouse in 2017, Alastair brings a wealth of experience across all aspects of multimedia production tailored to a wide range of audiences and clients.

Alastair's array of skills across corporate video production, print design, digital design and animation allows Lighthouse to service its clients with a robust multimedia offering. Skilled at delivering engaging visual content for both traditional and digital media, Alastair can effectively meet the growing demand for multimedia content from corporate and consumer audiences alike.

He has worked as a graphic and web designer within both the Northern Ireland business media and print industries. He also has experience with some of Northern Ireland’s most respected corporates, public sector agencies and not-for-profit organisations as part of both in-house and agency-based public relations teams.

Alastair is a graduate of Ulster University where he attained a BSc (Hons) in Social Psychology. He also received an Interactive Media qualification from Belfast Metropolitan College and is an accredited PR practitioner by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations.

Molly Cullen, Digital Communications Executive

Molly holds the position of Digital Client Executive at Lighthouse and works to develop holistic marketing and PR campaigns across a range of channels including websites, social media and digital news platforms.

With a background in both traditional and digital PR, Molly’s experience gives her the understanding of how to effectively combine the best of offline campaigns with new trends in content marketing, social media marketing and online brand management.

Having joined the team in 2018, Molly’s skills lie in writing content, event management, social media management and delivering creative ideas that meet client objectives. Molly has previous experience with local and international clients and a strong knowledge of the media landscape.

Molly graduated from Ulster University in 2016, where she achieved a First-Class BSc (Hons) degree in Communication, Advertising and Marketing along with a diploma in International Business. Molly is a member of the CIPR and is currently working towards becoming an accredited PR practitioner.

Dearbhla Mac Donald, Junior Client Executive

Dearbhla studies Communication, Advertising and Marketing at Ulster University Jordanstown and is the Lighthouse Communications 2019/20 placement student. She currently works across a range of clients and projects and is using her time at Lighthouse Communications to gain invaluable industry experience, develop her skills set and put into practice her learnings from university.