Who are we? 

NIPanC, brings together families who have suffered losses from pancreatic cancer and survivors. 

All have separately promoted pancreatic cancer awareness and raised fund for necessary research.


Mark Taylor


Mr Mark A Taylor PhD FRCSI FRCS(Eng) FRCS(Gen Surg) is a Consultant HPB Surgeon at the Mater Hospital, Belfast Health and Social Care Trust. He trained in Belfast and at the Regional HPB and Transplant Unit in Edinburgh. His Doctorate of Philosophy was in the pathophysiology of obstructive jaundice. He is the President Elect of GBI Hepato-pancreato-biliary Association (GBIHPBA), Lead for Education, Research and Training at the AUGIS and on the Medical Advisory Board of Bowel Cancer UK.  In 2016, he was appointed by the Health Minister to an independent Expert panel tasked with Reconfiguration of Health and Social care in Northern Ireland. In 2018 he was appointed the Director of Professional Affairs (NI) for the Royal College of Surgeons of England.

In his spare time he is the District Surgeon and Trustee of St. John Ambulance and a keen cyclist. He has published extensively in the field of Hepatobiliary Surgery.


Susan Cooke

Vice chair & Co Founder

Susan lost her husband Colin in February 2013 at the age of 45 only 11 weeks after being diagnosed. 'Despite being from a nursing background I was ignorant of the signs and symptoms, discouraged that survival rates had not improved in 40 years. I became regional rep for Pancreatic Cancer Research Fund. Holding the first ever pancreatic cancer event in Stormont.

Together we can make a difference which is why NIPanC is so important to me. 


Kerry Irvine

Vice chair & Co founder

After losing her husband to pancreatic cancer and becoming a widow at the age of 38 left to raise two small children, Kerry decided to 'Do Something' in 2014 Action4Noel was born, a fund for Pancreatic Cancer Action for Northern Ireland. 

The launch of NIPanC saw Action4Noel retired. Early diagnosis and research go hand in hand which is why NIPanC is so exciting, a partnership with two amazing charities. 


Ivan McMinn


As a fit 49 year old who was in training for the 2012 London Marathon, I was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer in November 2011.

Whipples surgery, followed by 6 months of Chemotherapy meant that I didn't run the 2012 London Marathon but I did run it in 2013 and again in 2014.

7 years post diagnosis that same determination drives me to do all I can to defeat this terrible disease and I am very proud to be NIPanC's Treasurer playing my part in what is a wonderful team of folks who all share that same goal.

Working in conjunction with PCA and PCRF will get there.


Brian Gryzmek

PR & Media

Brian Grzymek (Media and PR)

Brian, a civil servant in the Department of Justice, lost his wife Caroline to Pancreatic Cancer six years ago.  His experience of this terrible disease is not uncommon.  Caroline, a former ward sister in the Belfast City Hospital was a very fit and active woman who walked miles every day (with dog Monty) and was very health conscious.  She suddenly started to have back pains, went off her food and began to lose weight.  Over an eight week period she went repeatedly to the GP and to the Ulster Hospital, with no explanation as to her symptoms and was being lined up for a gastro-scope!  At that point she experienced very severe back pain and went into kidney failure.  Caroline was admitted to the Ulster hospital where she died sixteen days later, with a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer being confirmed only two days before she died.  

Like others involved with NIPanC, Brian and his family started fund-raising for pancreatic cancer research in memory of Caroline.  He joined the then support group to raise awareness of the condition, to campaign for more funding for research and to help other families affected by pancreatic cancer.  He runs an annual Christmas Chillifest in the Department of Justice in aid of NIPanC, which enables civil servants to support the cause over several gallons of ‘chilli with attitude’.  Brian is a bee-keeper, a mad skier and a supporter of Tottenham Hotspur.

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Gary Carson


Gary has spent his entire working life in the NI Civil Service after leaving school in November 1979 and is currently the Health and Safety Manager within the Driver & Vehicle Agency.

Interests include walking, watching most sports and notably golf, tennis and football and have been an avid supporter of West Ham United since childhood.

In his own words Gary says 'My association with NIPanC is intensely personal as Sandra, my lovely wife of almost 28 years, died of pancreatic cancer on 20 August 2014 and just one month after being diagnosed with this horrible disease. By supporting NIPanC I want to help raise awareness of this condition, encourage fundraising in order to enable essential research work to continue and critically to be able to stand with others whose lives have also been devastated by pancreatic cancer.'