Taking action on smoking and health
Sheila DuffyMA, Cert.Ed, DipLIS, HonMFPH, HonFRSAChief Executive
Sheila Duffy became Chief Executive of ASH Scotland in January 2008. As such she has key responsibility for the organisation's strategic and operational direction. ASH Scotland is working towards a healthier Scotland, free from the harms and inequalities linked to tobacco use.
In 2016 her priorities are tackling tobacco related poverty and inequalities, and preventing youth uptake of tobacco. She is also currently working with Alison Douglas of Alcohol Focus Scotland to set up a new Cross Party Group in the Scottish Parliament with a focus on Non-Communicable Disease prevention, and joining up knowledge around tackling tobacco, alcohol and diet/obesity.
In 2013 she spearheaded a successful ASH Scotland campaign for a smoke-free policy for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games, and helped secure a strong Government commitment to standardised tobacco packaging. She has played a key role in securing Scotland’s tobacco legislation over the past two decades, including ending tobacco point of sale displays, and bringing in smoke-free vehicles with under 18s present.
In 2013 Sheila was the recipient of the REHIS Annual Award for Meritorious Endeavours in Environmental Health, and in June 2015 she was elected to Honorary Membership of the UK Faculty of Public Health. In 2016 she received the Annual Scottish Cancer Foundation prize. In 2017 she accepted Honorary Fellowship of the RSA.
Since 2004, Sheila has been Chair of the Scottish Coalition on Tobacco, a group of 19 professional and health organisations that campaigns on all matters related to tobacco and health. She also represents ASH Scotland on the Scottish Government's Ministerial Working Group on Tobacco Control, on the UK Smoke-free Action Coalition, and on networks such as the international Framework Convention Alliance.
As Director of Information & Communications at ASH Scotland from 2003, Sheila was responsible for developing and communicating the evidence in favour of smoke-free public places in Scotland and influencing the development of the Smoking, Health and Social Care (Scotland) Act of 2005 which ended smoking in most enclosed public places.
Between 1995 and 2003 as ASH Scotland's Information Manager and previously as Health Alliances Project Officer, she took a formative role in developing ASH Scotland's policy positions, information provision, and building external partnerships.
Before joining ASH Scotland, Sheila worked for four years as a series scriptwriter and researcher for Yorkshire TV and Grampian Television, mainly on Channel 4 educational programmes, and before that worked in production and European liaison with SPS Audio-Visual Ltd, a corporate video production company.
Sheila went to Cults Academy, and attended Gordonstoun School for two years on a sixth form scholarship. She graduated from Cambridge University in 1984 with a joint honours degree in English Literature and Education and Certificate in Education. While working full time at ASH Scotland, Sheila studied for and was awarded a Diploma in Library and Information Science from The Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen in 2002.
She was brought up in Aberdeenshire and Fife, where she currently lives with her husband and two daughters.
Action on Smoking & Health (Scotland) (ASH Scotland) is a registered Scottish charity (SC 010412) and a company limited by guarantee(Scottish company no 141711). The registered office is 8 Frederick Street, Edinburgh EH2 2HB.
ASH Scotland acknowledges with thanks the support of the British Heart Foundation and the Scottish Government in developing our website.