Robin is married to Carole and they have two children, Emma and Adam. He is a former member of Belfast City Council, being first elected in 1985 before stepping down in 2014. Robin elected to the Northern Ireland Assembly in November 2003 and re-elected in March 2007, May 2011 and May 2016.
Robin is the former Junior Minister within the Office of First and Deputy First Minister and was previously Chair of the Audit Committee and Deputy Chair of the Employment and Learning Committee. He is a former member of the Northern Ireland Policing Board and The Assembly's Education Committee.
Robin has long been a strong campaigner on behalf of older persons and works closely with the many tenants’ organisations, community and youth groups within East Belfast.
He takes specific interest in Northern Ireland’s prosperity through the building of a strong economy underpinned by high quality skills, education and training opportunities. Robin is also a fervent champion of law and order issues.
Robin’s past business experience as a Chief Executive of a management consultancy company has allowed him to work throughout Northern Ireland, GB and internationally and he brings this valuable knowledge into politics.
He is involved in many East Belfast organisations working to improve the quality of life in the east of the city. He places emphasis on a partnership ethos between the statutory organisations and the wider community as being necessary in the delivery of successful projects.
In November 2008 Robin had the great privilege of being named on the Queen’s Honours List and received his MBE from Prince Charles at an investiture ceremony in Buckingham Palace. He received his award for his services to local politics and the community and this award is one of the proudest moments in his life.
Before his interest in politics took priority he competed successfully in local athletics with a very credible 2hr 30min marathon time to his credit. Today, however with a busy political schedule his “athletic” activity is confined to walks with Carole and the family dog Lucy enjoying Northern Ireland’s stunning countryside.