"Unther" [Unner] Meaning: Under
William Leathem was appointed to the Board in December 2007.
William Leathem has lived in Magheragall outside Lisburn all of his life. He is married to Kathleen. He attended Knockmore Primary leading on to Lisnagarvey High School and then Lisburn Technical College. He also has completed courses in Media training, Understanding Aspects of Citizenship and Public Accountability for Board members.
He was self-employed and was responsible for all the business management operations for 16 years. For the past 6 years he was employed by MLAs in Lagan Valley as Personal Assistant and Research Officer. These posts gave him valuable experience, knowledge and awareness pertaining to the political institutions at local government level and the Northern Ireland Assembly. He is presently the project Manager for STRIPE a GOLI/OCN project funded by SEUPB based on Brownlow House.
He was elected to Lisburn City Council in 2005 and has been successfully re-elected on two occasions and has been Chairman of various committees. He was elected Deputy Mayor in 2011 and in 2012 was elected to the position of Mayor of Lisburn City Council.
He was a former Community Development Officer with Orange Community Network engaging with groups based in Orange Halls in County Antrim and East Londonderry where he assisted the Orange Family to access funding and financial support from a variety of funders and stakeholders with a view to building confidence and capacity and ensuring sustainability. This involved providing advice, information and assistance to the Orange Institution and community groups that use Orange Halls which enabled these premises to serve the community. He takes a full interest in the activity of community groups and he has helped and assisted in securing £4.5 million in grant funded programmes in recent years.
He was a founder member and inaugural Chairman of Brookmount Cultural & Education Society based in Lowquarter Orange Hall, Lisburn. He was also involved in the formation of Magheragall Pipe Band and is the present Chairman. From 2007 he has been a Board Member of the Ulster-Scots Agency, a post which he enjoys and this has added to his expertise in dealing with potential funders. He also serves as a Governor of two primary schools. He is active in all the Loyal Orders and for six years served as County Grand Secretary of County Antrim Grand Orange Lodge.
Through both his employment and voluntary work within the community he has developed a working knowledge and understanding of the principles and practices involved in community development and community relations. For over 10 years he has helped community and voluntary groups access funding for both capital and project based programmes. These have been for hall and venue improvement/refurbishment, educational and recreational projects, exhibitions and festivals. He has long been interested in Ulster-Scots history and culture particularly in the promotion of the Ulster-Scots music.