He was able to bring his expertise to bear as he launched the Government's response to the Riddell report on special needs (TESS last week).
"Which is it - RIDdell or RidDELL?" he asked a startled Professor Sheila, unused to such direct informality from a minister of the crown.
RidDELL, he was told.
Galbraith immediately spotted the significance - "in the west of Glasgow, it's RIDdell; by the time you get to Edinburgh it's RidDELL."
A noted predecessor of Galbraith's, we recall, went through the same identity crisis with a name remarkably close to Riddell.