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Business & Investment Conference – NYNB 19

Friday 14th June

The Loft, Pier A, Harbor House, Battery Place, NY


7:45am:        Registration & Breakfast

(Complimentary fresh bagels, pastries, tea, coffee and juices served)


8am:   Business BreakfastA Bridge to the Future: Rebuilding Belfast’s City Centre

Chair:   Suzanne Aquino, Chain IQ, Member Invest NI Advisory Panel, East Coast, USA

Panel:   Rajesh Rana, President, Belfast Chamber of Trade and Commerce

Ashleen Feeney, Deal Advisory and Head of Business Development, KPMG in NI

Gerald Hanweck, CEO & Founder, Hanweck Associates

Frank Lyons, Associate Dean of Research and Impact, Ulster University


8:30am:  Alternate Histories of the Future: The Belfast Story Machine

Chair:   Paul Moore, Head of the School of Communication and Media, Ulster University

Panel:   Donovan Wylie, Lecturer in BA/MFA Photography, Ulster University




9am:   Official Opening

Corey Johnson, Speaker New York City Council (Invited)

John Finucane, Lord Mayor of Belfast


9:20am: A Wider Reach: Expanding the Participation in our Universities

Chair:   Maura Kelly, Founder Purple Mountain Media

Panel:  William Bisset, Vice President for Enrollment Management, Manhattan College

Prof Adrienne Scullion, Pro Vice Chancellor,  Faculty of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences, QUB

Fr Joe Parkes, Provincial Assistant for pre-secondary & secondary Education, Maryland & USA Northeast

Billy-Jo McDowell, Graduate of QUB

Dr Karen Winter, Senior Lecturer in Social Work, QUB


9:50am:  A Manhattan Minute

Becca Hume, Entrepreneur, Founder TapSOS


9:55am:  Investing in Belfast — Europe’s Fastest-Growing Knowledge Economy

Chair:  Mary Ann Pierce, CEO & Founder, MAP Digital

Panel:  Jayne Brady, Partner, Kernel Capital, Belfast

Johnny Hanna, Partner & Head of Tax, KPMG in NI

Alan Foreman, BSecur (Invited)

Jack Butler, CFO, MRP, Philadelphia and Belfast

Representative from Datactics

Conor Twomey, Managing Director, Kx/First Derivatives, North America


10:25am: A Manhattan Minute:   Community Generator: A $10m Visitor Hostel

Fionntán Hargey, Director,  Market Development Association, Belfast


10:35am: In a World of Outstanding Tourist Attractions, Why Should Visitors Beat a Path to Belfast’s Door?

Presentation by Kristen Moore, CEO, Destinations of Distinction, NY on how Titanic Belfast captured the imagination of American travellers

Chair: John J. Reilly, Partner, Squire Patton Boggs

Panel:  Kristen Moore, CEO, Destinations of Distinction, NY

Michael Stewart, Director, House Belfast

Billy Condon,  VP Marketing USA, Tourism Ireland

Representative of Tourism NI


11:05am:  Manhattan Minute:  TBA


11:15am:  Better, Cleaner, Faster: Building Connected Cities

Chair:  Frank Barry, Contributing Editor, Bloomberg (Invited)

Panel:  Elizabeth Crowley, Chairperson and Founder, 21 In’21

Gordon McElroy, former President of the Belfast Chamber of Trade and Commerce

Patrick Foye, Chair & CEO, New York Metropolitan Transport Authority (Invited)

Michael Sorkin, Principal, Michael Sorkin Studio NYC


11:45am:  Manhattan Minute

Nicholas Malito, Irish Business Organisation of New York


11:55am:      Boardroom Dialogues

Our 21st Century Cities – From Division to Diversity  (Patrol Room)

Chair:             Richard Cushnie, Northern Ireland Bureau

Contributors:  John Connorton, Rodney Dickson, Marcus Robinson, Geraldine Hughes, Bill Page, Sophie Colgan, Pauline Turley


Boosting Irish American-Belfast business connections in a time of uncertainty: Beating the Brexit Blues  (New Yorker Room)

Chair: John Lee, Executive Director,  Goodman Media International

Contributors:  Hon. Francine A Schott, J.S.C.(ret.), Sean Gaffey, First VP of the Gaffey Mellody Group at Merrill Lynch, Chris McCausland, McCausland Holdings, Martin Mallon, South Bank Square Ltd


Be The Bridge: Lessons I Learnt While Forging a Transatlantic Partnership (Grace Room)

Chair: Jennifer Frankola, President, Brehon Law Society

Contributors: Sean O’Dowd, MD, Silvercrest Asset Management Group LLC, Tony Donnelly, Managing Partner, Northern Property, Steve Lenox, Irish Network USA, Sean McNeill, IBO, Mike Breen, Siobhan Dennehy



12:30pm-2:30pm:  Be The Bridge Awards Luncheon

Guest Speaker: Thomas P. DiNapoli, New York State Comptroller

Recognizing exemplary bridge builders between Belfast and NY over the past decade

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