Mr Ford was speaking after Ms Hendron was elected by fellow Alliance Youth members at the organisation’s AGM held on 31 August. She will be in the role for the next year.
David Ford said: “In recent years Alliance Youth has played an invaluable role in furthering the policies of the Alliance Party while increasing our membership in many areas.
“I welcome the election of Néidín Hendron as chair of Alliance Youth. I am confident that under her stewardship we will continue to show young people across Northern Ireland that Alliance is the only party able to reach out to all sections of our community.”
Speaking about her election Néidín Hendron said: “It is a privilege for me to accept the role of Chair of Alliance Youth and I thank the members who voted for me at the AGM. As the first female chair and the first chair to come from west of the Bann, I will be working hard to increase the youth membership of the Alliance Party across Northern Ireland, particularly west of the Bann, and also increase the number of women active in politics.
“The Alliance Party is unique in that it is able to reach out to all sections of our community, while standing firm on its key founding principle to build a truly shared society. The time for looking backwards has passed, together we can build a positive future for Northern Ireland.”