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Golden Bridges 2017 – Speakers

 

Speakers 2017

 

Professor Hugh P. McKenna CBE, PhD, B.Sc(Hons), RMN, RGN, RNT, DipN(Lond), AdvDipEd, FFN RCSI, FEANS, FRCN, FAAN

Hugh is Dean of Medical School Development at Ulster University. He has over 250 publications including 11 books and over £4 million in grants. He currently chairs Inspire Wellbeing, the largest Mental Health, Learning Disability and Addiction Charity in Ireland. He is a non-executive Director for the Patient and Client Council. He has been made a fellow of several acholarly organisations including the Royal College of Nursing, The European Academy of Nursing, The American Academy of Nursing and the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland. In 2008, he was awarded Commander of the British Empire (CBE) for his work on health and community and also received a Senior Distinguished Researcher award. In 2013, he received two lifetime achievement awards. Until Sept 2016, he chaired Innovation Ulster Limited, a venture capital subsidiary company that supported spin out pharmaceutical products. He also chaired the Steering Committee of the Economic and Social Research Council’s Administrative Data Research Centre and was on the Boards of NI Science Park, the Medical Research Council’s Methodological Hub and MATRIX, Northern Ireland’s Science Industry Panel. In 2014, he chaired the 2014 UK Research Excellence Framework panel for pharmacy, nursing, allied health professions, and dentistry. Currently, he is Adjunct Professor in the University of Moribor, Slovenia, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia, and Trinity College Dublin. For 5 years, he was adjunct professor at the University of Texas. In October 2016, he was awarded an Honorary Degree by Edinburgh Napier University, Scotland for his contribution to research. In 2017, he was appointed to UK’s Interdisciplinary Research Advisory Committee and asked to chair the Hong Kong Council’s Accreditation panel and the Swedish Research Council’s Health Research Committee.

Councillor Maolíosa McHugh, Mayor

Councillor Maolíosa McHugh is the third Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council. He was first elected to the former Strabane District Council in 2011 representing Sinn Fein in the Derg area and served as the Presiding Officer during the transition period of the amalgamation of the new Derry City and Strabane District Council in 2014.
Born in Mournebeg in the parish of Termonamongan, Maolíosa was raised in Castlederg, Co. Tyrone and is one of a family of six, with two sisters and three brothers. His late brother, Charlie McHugh, was also a Sinn Fein Councillor for the Derg Ward and a former Chairman of Strabane District Council.
Maolíosa was educated in St Patrick’s Primary School, Castlederg, and CBS Omagh before graduating with a BA (Hons) in Economics in 1975 from Kingston Polytechnic, now Kingston University. He obtained a post-graduate certificate in Irish from Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh.
Maolíosa is happily married to Geraldine and together they have five grown up children, Aoibhe, Eoin, Maolíosa, Cahir and Anna, as well as four grandchildren.
Maolíosa previously worked as a Senior Lecturer in the North West Institute for almost 33 years with special responsibility for the co-ordination of the Youth Training Programme and Essential Skills.

John Andy Bonar

John Andy Bonar is Head of Development at Letterkenny IT and holds Institute wide senior management responsibility for Research, Enterprise and Innovation, Internationalisation, Lifelong Learning and Engagement.
John Andy is a director of three not for profit Community, Sporting and Citizens Information organisations.
He holds a significant number of Regional, Cross-Border and National representational roles on behalf of LYIT and is currently Chair of the Audit Committee of Donegal County Council.
John Andy is a graduate of NUI Galway with B.Comm (Hons) and M.Econ.Sc (Hons) degrees as well as a range of other continuing Professional Development Qualifications.
He worked previously for 10 years in the private sector in Management Consulting in Ireland, and the Construction Industry in the UK before joining LYIT 20 years ago.
He joined LYIT as Lecturer in Business and was previously Head of School of Business before assuming his current role of Head of Development in 2007.

Seamus Neely, Chief Executive, Donegal County Council

Seamus Neely has been the Chief Executive of Donegal County Council since 2010. Seamus started his public service career with Donegal County Council before moving to various roles in Local Government in Cavan and Monaghan Town and County Council.  Seamus holds an honours degree in Business Studies from the University of Ulster and an MBA from Dublin City University.  He is currently a Board Member of Transport Infrastructure Ireland and is Chairman of Donegal Tourism Ltd.

Seamus has led the process of organisational change through a local government reform programme that has resulted in the merger of the four former Town Councils in Donegal with Donegal County Council. These reforms enabled the preparation of a Local Economic and Community Plan for Donegal that provides the basis for the collaboration with Derry City and Strabane District Council in the promotion and development of the North West City Region incorporating Letterkenny / Derry and Strabane as an economic driver for a cross border population of over 350,000 people.

Ray O’Hanlon

Ray O’Hanlon is the editor of the New York-published Irish Echo newspaper. A native of Dublin, O’Hanlon has reported from three continents in a 38-year newspaper that has unfolded on both sides of the Atlantic. In addition to his work as a reporter and editor, O’Hanlon has been a frequent contributor to U.S., Irish and British media outlets reporting on Ireland, Irish-American affairs, and Anglo-Irish relations. He has appeared on CBS 60 minutes, ABC World News Tonight, and the Lehrer News Hour on PBS. He has also been interviewed on RTE, BBC and ITV, both television and radio. His book, The New Irish Americans (Roberts Rinehart, 1998) was the recipient of a Washington Irving Book Award. The South Lawn Plot (Gemma Media, Boston) his first fiction work, was published in 2011. He is currently writing a book on Irish immigration to the United States.

John Kelpie

John Kelpie is the Chief Executive of Derry City ad Strabane District Council. Established in April 2015 as a result of a programme of local government reform in Northern Ireland, the Council area comprises the vibrant and youthful City of Derry/Londonderry, the busy market town of Strabane and a diverse and attractive rural area of designated outstanding natural beauty.

Derry is the second largest city in Northern Ireland/fourth largest city on the island of Ireland and is the principal sub-regional economic driver of a cross border City region of over 350,000 people.

John led on the creation of the new organisation designing an innovative, flexible and responsive staffing structure with a clear vision and purpose to develop a thriving, prosperous and sustainable City and Region with equality of opportunity for all.

The Council is leading and delivering on this vision with its many civic, statutory, community and business partners through its Strategic Growth Plan 2017-2032 driving economic, environmental and social well-being and regeneration and by addressing and targeting poverty, social exclusion and disadvantage.

As Chief Executive, John leads a talented and dedicated senior management team and staff with an outcomes-driven focus on successfully implementing the key objectives of the plan which will see over £3.2 bn of investment and opportunity in the City and region over the next decade, significant physical regeneration and environmental projects delivered, increased community engagement and participation and improved citizen health and well-being.

Ciarán Harvey

Senior Managing Director & Chief Information Officer

Ciarán oversees the delivery of software and contact center services to Prudential’s business units.
Ciarán is also the accountable executive for Prudential El Paso Business & Technology Solutions Center located in El Paso, Texas in the United States.

Ciarán joined Pramerica as part of the original start up management team in 2000, when Pramerica was first established. It has grown from 35 employees to more that 1,300. Before joining Pramerica, Ciarán was a Software Development Manager for Eircom, based in Dublin and subsequently for International Test Technologies.

Ciarán and his wife have three children.

Attorney Eugene L. O’Flaherty

Attorney Eugene L. O’Flaherty was appointed to the role of Corporation Counsel for the City of Boston in January 2014.  Prior to his appointment, Attorney O’Flaherty served in the Massachusetts House of Representatives for seventeen years and has been practicing law for twenty years.
Elected to the Massachusetts Legislature in 1996, Mr. O’Flaherty served on the Education, Arts and Humanities Committee and as Vice-Chairman of the Banks and Banking Committee before being appointed to serve as the Judiciary Chair in 2002.  During his twelve-year tenure at the helm of the Judiciary Committee, Attorney O’Flaherty was responsible for the drafting, implementation, review and strategizing associated with the largest number of legislative proposals before the Massachusetts Legislature.  He was the chief architect of the overhaul of impaired driving statutes, court reorganization legislation, stronger sex offender statutes, tougher penalties for violent habitual offenders, CORI  reform and human trafficking while also repeatedly defeating attempts to reinstate the death penalty in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Attorney O’Flaherty oversaw the legislation and led the discussions required for the implementation of the Goodridge decision, which legalized gay marriage, making Massachusetts the first state in the United States of America to do so and served as the House of Representative’s lead negotiator on a number of complex and high profile conference committee negotiations with the Senate and Executive Branch.
In addition to his position as Judiciary Chairman, Mr. O’Flaherty served as a member of the House Leadership Team for more than a decade and under three successive Speakers of the House.  He played a pivotal role in the advising, advocacy and polling of the 160 member House body on a large spectrum of issues facing the Commonwealth such as transportation reform, education, revenue, economic development, health care and gaming, being honored several times for his excellence in these endeavors.
Mr. O’Flaherty graduated from Malden Catholic High School and received a Bachelor of Science degree from Suffolk University.  He was awarded a Juris Doctorate from the Massachusetts School of Law and was admitted to the Massachusetts bar in 1994 and the Federal bar in 1995.

Stephen Gillespie

Stephen Gillespie

Stephen Gillespie is the Director of Business and Culture at Derry City and Strabane District Council. The Business and Culture directorate encompasses a range of services the local Council provides such as economic development and job creation, business support and engagement, ICT, tourism, arts and culture, visitor services, heritage and museums and marketing and communications.

With the advent of Local Government Reform, which has seen the creation of a new organisation and the transfer of new powers, Stephen believes that there is a unique opportunity to improve the way local Council’s provide services for their stakeholders. ‘The organisational structure for this Council now allows us to better serve the needs of our ratepayers. This is an exciting time with the Business element as there are new strands of funding available to help support our local businesses. The Community Plan is critical as it’s now well underway and it will help shape our new Council for years to come.’

Stephen believes the cultural / tourism aspect of his directorate has an important role to play for tackling exclusion and disadvantage in Derry City and Strabane District ‘This Council area has a myriad of culture based talents, we are a creative and innovative community that lead the way in a range of sectors. We have proved through a range of tourism initiatives and projects, including City of Culture 2013 and our commitment to the Clipper Race that we can perform on a world stage and we need to capitalise on our strengths leading the way in creative and innovative

Nuala Wright

Nuala Wright

Originally from Fanad, Co Donegal, Nuala has been living in Boston for over 17 years. During this time she has been heavily involved with the Irish American Community. A previous member of the Board of Directors with the Irish International Immigrant Center in Boston Nuala worked closely with the center which provides necessary support for immigrants from over 120 countries. In addition she has served on many voluntary committees to assist with fundraising initiatives for the center.

Nuala has represented several Irish groups on a consultancy basis including Uduras Na Gaeltachta, The Donegal County Development Board, Donegal County Council and many individuals from the North West of Ireland. Acting as a liaison, Nuala provides support to traveling delegations by way of devising itineraries, logistical support and event planning.

Examples of previous events include: The Irish North West – Making Business Happen event, co-planned with Derry City Council and Donegal County Council which took place at the Massachusetts State House. The Fanad Accordion Band Tour of Boston. As part of a committee chaired by then State Representative Martin J. Walsh, 99 members of the group traveled to Boston to take part in the South Boston St Patrick’s Day Parade and a week of organized events. In addition Nuala has participated in The Golden Bridges Conference/Awards an annual event between the North West of Ireland & USA.

Nuala has also volunteered on several political campaigns including the Mayor of Peabody MA campaign and the Martin J. Walsh for Mayor of Boston Campaign. In her spare time, she is a current member of The Boston Donegal Association and an avid Donegal GAA supporter traveling to her native Donegal regularly to attend matches. Nuala is honored to be involved in the upcoming 2017 Golden Bridges Awards.

Kevin O’Connor

Kevin O’Connor

Kevin O’Connor is Head of Business at Derry City and Strabane District Council. Established in April 2015 as a result of a programme of local government reform in Northern Ireland, the Council area comprises the vibrant and youthful City of Derry/Londonderry, the busy market town of Strabane and a diverse and attractive rural area of designated outstanding natural beauty.

Derry is the second largest city in Northern Ireland/fourth largest city on the island of Ireland and is the principal sub-regional economic driver of a cross border City region of over 350,000 people.

Kevin is a member of the Senior Leadership Team of Derry City and Strabane District Council and is responsible for leading Council’s Business team. Kevin is responsible for City & Regional Economic Development, Entrepreneurship and Business Development, Rural Development, PEACE IV Programme, Rural Development and Digital Services.

The Council is leading and delivering on this vision with its many civic, statutory, community and business partners through its Strategic Growth Plan 2017-2032 driving economic, environmental and social well-being and regeneration and by addressing and targeting poverty, social exclusion and disadvantage.

As Head of Business, Kevin leads a talented and dedicated business team with an outcomes-driven focus on successfully implementing the key economic objectives of the strategic growth plan.

Kevin is a recent Alumni of the US State Department International Visitor and Leadership Programme with a specific focus on Entrepreneurship and Small Business Development.

Malachy Ó Néill

Dr Malachy Ó Néill

Dr Malachy Ó Néill completed his BA and PhD at Ulster University and was Head of Irish in St Mary’s Grammar School, Magherafelt before returning to the University in 2008 as Lecturer in modern Irish. He was appointed as the inaugural Head of School of Irish Language and Literature in 2012 and has led the subject in achieving 100% overall satisfaction in the NSS in recent years. He has also played a key role across the University in developing employability as a key component of the student experience and was awarded the Students’ Union prize for excellence in Employability and Placement Support earlier this year.

Malachy has an excellent track record in community engagement and leads a number of widening access programmes including ‘Irish in the Club’ (with Ulster GAA) and ‘Irish for All’ (with East Belfast Mission). He has played a pivotal role in establishing an Irish Studies Summer School for international students since 2013, developing the provision to incorporate International Business and Engineering in recent years.

His research focuses on the Ó Néill dynasty and he hosted an international conference at Magee in March this year to mark the 400th anniversary of the death of Hugh O’Neill, Earl of Tyrone. He is a member of the Review Board of the Irish Language Standard (Irish Government), a former editor of the An tUltach journal and was founding chairperson of Gaelscoil Eoghain, Cookstown. He enjoys close ties with the Donegal Gaeltacht and spent many years in Machaire Rabhartaigh and Gaoth Dobhair facilitating courses for teenagers and adult learners of Irish.

Anna Ní Ghallachair

Anna Ní Ghallachair, Chairperson, Údarás na Gaeltachta

Anna Ní Ghallachair was appointed Chairperson to the Board of Údarás na Gaeltachta in 2012 by the Minister of State at the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht for a five-year term.

Anna is Head of the School of Celtic Studies and Director of the Centre for Irish Language: Research, Teaching and Testing at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth. She was President of the Irish Association for Applied Linguistics 2004-07 and Chairperson of the Council of RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta 2010-13. She has over 35 years’ experience relating to all aspects of teaching languages, including Irish, French and German.

KARILYN CROCKETT

Director of Economic Policy and Research, Small Business Development
Dr. Karilyn Crockett’s research focuses on large-scale land use changes in twentieth century American cities and examines the social and geographic implications of structural poverty. Karilyn’s dissertation entitled, “ ‘People Before Highways:’ Reconsidering Routes to and from the Boston Anti-Highway Movement” investigates a 1960s era grassroots movement to halt urban extension of the interstate highway system. Prior to graduate school, Karilyn co-founded Multicultural Youth Tour Of What’s Now (MYTOWN), an award winning, educational non-profit organization. A Boston organization, MYTOWN hired public high school students to research their local and family histories to produce youth-led walking tours for sale to public audiences. During its nearly 15 years of operation, MYTOWN created jobs for more than 300 low and moderate-income teenagers, who in turn led public walking tours for more than 14,000 visitors and residents. In a White House ceremony, the National Endowment for the Humanities cited MYTOWN as “One of ten best Youth Humanities Programs in America.”
Karilyn holds a PhD from the American Studies program at Yale University, a Master of Science in Geography from the London School of Economics, and a Master of Arts and Religion from Yale Divinity School. She is a research affiliate in the Department of Urban Studies & Planning at MIT. Her career mission is to work at the nexus of education, economic development and urban revitalization.

Maureen Bennett

Maureen Bennett represents life sciences and health care clients conducting global clinical trials and research collaborations. For almost 20 years, Maureen has advised clients on the contractual, regulatory, and ethical issues associated with clinical research. She negotiates clinical trial agreements, reviews informed consents, provides advice regarding novel patient recruitment strategies and assists with interactions with regulatory agencies, including the FDA. Maureen also advises clients on emerging regulatory issues affecting clinical research, including the utilization of social media in patient and physician recruitment, the development of virtual clinical trial and telemedicine networks, and personalized medicine strategies implementing the use of biomarkers and companion diagnostics.
Maureen also represents clients in the structuring of complex outsourcing arrangements between life sciences companies and contract research organizations (CROs). Maureen has recently assisted a pharmaceutical company in the negotiation of a master services agreement with a CRO for a Phase 3 clinical trial with over 100 sites on four continents. She also represents clients in the assessment and mitigation of regulatory risks and the negotiation of liability allocation arrangements in M&A, licensing, and other commercial transactions.
Maureen is the Life Sciences coleader for the Firm’s Health Care and Life Sciences Practice Group and is currently serving as cochair of the Boston Bar Association’s Health Care Section. She was honorary cochair for the 8th Annual Boston-Northwest Ireland Golden Bridges Giant Step Conference 2015 and is a regular speaker at industry conferences. Maureen is a member of the Firm’s LGBTQ affinity group.

Gary Hanley 

Senior Vice President – Americas
Invest Northern Ireland
Gary is the head of American operations for Invest Northern Ireland, a branch of the UK government responsible for growing the economy of Northern Ireland.
Under Gary’s leadership, Northern Ireland has seen recent first time investments from dynamic and fast growing North American companies including CyberSource/Visa, 3Par now HP, ByteMobile now Citrix, BTI Systems, NaviNet, The New York Stock Exchange, CVS, Cowen, Dow and Chicago Mercantile Exchange.
In May 2008, Gary was instrumental in the success of the historic US-Northern Ireland Economic Conference which took place in Belfast.  The conference, supported by the Bush administration, was attended by Fortune 500 executives to meet with senior political figures including Gordon Brown and Brian Cowen (UK and Irish Prime Ministers). Keynote speakers included representatives from companies such as Allstate, Citi and Bombardier who are major investors in the region.
In 2009, he was honored in New York by Belfast Media Group’s US publication The Irish Echo as one of its Top 40 under 40.  In addition, he has been named to the Irish-American Magazine Top 100 Business Leaders as well Business and Finance Most Influential US-Irish Business Leaders in 2008.  Gary currently serves on the Board of Directors’ of the Irish Education Foundation and the American Ireland Fund – Dinner Committee.
With over eighteen years experience in the ICT industry in the US, Gary has held positions of leadership in software development, IT, sales and marketing for companies such as Sun Microsystems, GTE (now Verizon) and EMC.
Gary holds a Bachelor of Business Studies from the University of Limerick as well as a Master of Business Studies from the National University of Ireland at Galway.
He resides in Boston, Massachusetts with his wife, two daughters and a son.

Sean P. Moynihan

Attorney Sean P. Moynihan is the founder and principal of The Moynihan Group.  He is a 1992 cum laude graduate of Providence College and a 2001 cum laude graduate of Suffolk University Law School’s evening division program.  He was admitted to the Massachusetts Bar in January of 2002.  He has a dynamic record of professional experience in the insurance, financial services, non-profit, and public sectors of the economy.  

Mr. Moynihan spent over a decade in the public service arena.  He served in various positions within the Massachusetts House of Representatives including Counsel to the House Ways and Means Committee, Counsel to the Office of the House Majority Leader, and Legislative Director.  During his time in the Ways and Means Committee and the Office of the House Majority Leader, Attorney Moynihan worked on a myriad of significant public policy issues – in particular – energy and the environment, life sciences/biotech, education, labor, and the administration of justice in the Commonwealth.  

Attorney Moynihan, who holds dual citizenship with the United States and Ireland, has worked with international organizations, in particular those located in Ireland and Northern Ireland.  The Moynihan Group has co-sponsored and organized the “Gateways to Tomorrow / Boston – Northwest Ireland” conferences held in Boston since October 2009.  Moynihan’s efforts in establishing links between his home state of Massachusetts and Ireland was the subject of this article published by the Irish Echo.   

Attorney Moynihan serves as Chairman/President of Irish Network Boston (IN Boston) and as Vice President for Global Partnerships of the Boston Irish Business Association [BIBA].  He also serves on the Irish International Immigrant Center’s (IIIC) Internship Advisory Panel.  His past volunteer efforts include serving as a “Connector” with the former Boston World Partnerships (BWP) non-profit organization and as a trustee of the Irish Pastoral Centre.

Mr. Moynihan is a former Chairman of the Northboro Democratic Town Committee of Northboro, MA.  He has managed and worked on numerous municipal, state legislative, congressional, and presidential campaigns.

Brittany McDonough, Director of Global Partnerships

Brittany McDonough is the Director of Global Partnerships at MassChallenge, the
world’s largest and most startup friendly accelerator. At MassChallenge, Brittany
oversees strategic partnerships with international governments and institutions to
support MassChallenge in achieving its mission to catalyze a global startup
renaissance. Her work focuses on international expansion and launching new
Bridge to MassChallenge programs globally which support the economic growth,
vitality and development of innovation ecosystems.
Prior to joining MassChallenge, Brittany served in the Massachusetts Office of
International Trade and Investment (MOITI) under both Governor Deval L. Patrick
and Governor Charles D. Baker. At MOITI, Brittany oversaw Foreign Direct
Investment (FDI) and export promotion on behalf of the Commonwealth in Europe,
the Middle East and Latin America and served at the diplomatic liaison between
the Office of the Governor and the Diplomatic Corps.
Brittany graduated from Suffolk University, where she received a B.A. in Political
Science and currently serves on the young alumni board. Brittany is a 2014
Emerge Massachusetts graduate and was part of the short list for the inaugural
Civic category in BostinInno’s 2015 50 on Fire awards, recognizing the most
influential and change making Bostonians. Brittany remains engaged in the Boston
community through various boards including Friends of the Public Garden, the
Science and Technology Diplomatic Circle (S&TDC) and the UN Association of
Greater Boston (UNAGB) as well as the Board of Directors of the Boston Irish
Business Association (BIBA) and the ChileMass Alliance.
MassChallenge is a nonprofit, no equity, early stage startup accelerator with over
1,200 alumni who have generated $900m in revenue, raised +$2 billion in capital
and created over 10,000 new jobs in the global economy since 2010.

Marty Scaminaci

Marty Scaminaci is the Vice President, Global Business Services for Bemis Company, Inc. headquartered in Neenah, WI.
The Global Business Services group at Bemis provides shared services in the areas of Finance, General Accounting, Master Data Management, Payroll, IT and HR Services, and Corporate Aviation.
In his role prior to Bemis at R. R. Donnelley and Sons, Inc., Marty oversaw a total shared services organization of 600 professionals located in the U.S., Europe, Chile and India.
Earlier in his career, Marty worked for Pepsi Americas and Union Oil Company of California in various Finance, Shared Services, and Acquisition Integration roles.
Marty holds a bachelor’s degree in Finance from Northern Illinois University and is an active member of several professional associations, including the Credit Research Foundation and various Shared Services organizations.
On a personal note, Marty enjoys fishing, golfing, traveling and spending time with his family.

Mark Campbell, Senior Manager Randox Laboratories Ltd

Mark Campbell is a Senior Manager at Randox Laboratories; joining the company in 2008. Randox are a highly innovative blood-sciences diagnostic company with key facilities in Co Antrim, Co Donegal, Bangalore, India and West Virginia in the US. Randox employ 1400 people globally, including 400 research scientists and engineers, and are active I 145 countries. Last year Randox manufactured 3.5 billion tests and enabled diagnostic profiles for 5% of the world’s population. Randox’s biochip array technology is at the forefront of advanced diagnostics, promoting greater emphasis on preventive healthcare

Mark is responsible for strategic outreach and management, and government relations and affairs. Prior to joining Randox he served in the military, where his roles included Battalion and Regimental command, strategic planning in the Pentagon, Washington DC, instructor at the British Army Staff College, student at the Australian Army Command and Staff College and instructor, The Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. He holds an MA from KCL, was awarded the OBE in 2003, the CBE in 2007. He is a Deputy Lord Lieutenant for the City Borough of Belfast.

Sinead Ní Fhátharta, Enterprise and Employment Manager, Údarás na Gaeltachta

Sinead Ní Fhátharta is the manager of the Enterprise and Employment Division within Údarás na Gaeltachta which is the economic development agency for the Irish speaking regions of Ireland.  The Enterprise and Employment Division is responsible for attracting and developing enterprise in the Gaeltacht regions by supporting entrepreneurs in developing their businesses and driving job creation.  Sinead is a qualified CIMA accountant and she was conferred with an MBA honours degree from NUI Galway in 2008.  She holds a number of directorships.

Michael Heaney, CEO Údarás na Gaeltachta

Michael Heaney is the Chief Executive Officer of Údarás na Gaeltachta. He was employed as Director of Enterprise, Employment, Property and Engineering with Údarás from 2015 up to his appointment as CEO in September 2017 having previously been a development officer with the organisation in the past. Michael spent sixteen years as Director of Services with Donegal County Council with specific responsibility for Community, Culture, Planning & Economic Development. In this role he was also Chief Executive of Donegal County Development Board, the statutory body with responsibility for the implementation of the integrated Donegal Strategy for Economic, Social and Cultural Development. He also spent periods working with local and community development organisations in Inishowen, County Donegal at various times also.

Daniel Mulhall

Daniel Mulhall took up duty as Ireland’s 18th Ambassador to the United States in August 2017. He was born and brought up in Waterford and undertook his undergraduate and post-graduate studies at University College Cork where he specialised in modern Irish history. Ambassador Mulhall joined the Department of Foreign Affairs in 1978 and had his early diplomatic assignments in New Delhi, Vienna (OSCE), Brussels (European Union) and Edinburgh where he was Ireland’s first Consul General, 1998-2001. He served as Ireland’s Ambassador to Malaysia (2001-05), where he was also accredited to Laos, Thailand and Vietnam. In 2005, he was conferred with an Honorary Fellowship by the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland for his work in connection with the Asian tsunami. From 2009 to 2013, he was Ireland’s Ambassador to Germany. Before coming to Washington, he served as Ireland’s Ambassador in London (2013-17). During his time in Britain, he was a regular speaker on political, literary and historical topics at Universities all over the country, including at Oxford, Cambridge, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Manchester, Durham, King’s College London and the London School of Economics. He also spoke at the Oxford Literary Festival, the Newbury Festival, the Liverpool Literary Festival and the Edinburgh International Book Festival. He was a regular speaker at the University of Liverpool’s Institute of Irish Studies and is an Honorary Fellow at the Institute. Before departing for Washington, he was made a Freeman of the City of London in recognition of his work as Ambassador. During his diplomatic career, Ambassador Mulhall has also held a number of positions at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, including as Director-General for European Affairs, 2005-2009. He also served as a member of the Secretariat of the Forum for Peace and Reconciliation (1994-95) which was set up in 1994 in order to promote political dialogue between different political traditions in Ireland. From 1994-98, he was the Department’s Press Counsellor and in that capacity was part of the Irish Government’s delegation at the time of the Good Friday Agreement 1998. Ambassador Mulhall maintains a keen interest in Irish history and literature. He is the author of A New Day Dawning: A Portrait of Ireland in 1900 (Cork, 1999) and co-editor of The Shaping of Modern Ireland: A Centenary Assessment (Dublin, 2016) and has made numerous contributions to books, newspapers and journals published in Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and Britain. A keen advocate of public diplomacy, Ambassador Mulhall makes regular use of social media in order to provide information on the work of the Embassy, to highlight Ireland’s achievements and to engage with Irish communities and those with an interest in Ireland. During his time in Washington, he will provide daily updates on Twitter @DanMulhall and through regular blogs to be posted on the Embassy’s website.
Daniel Mulhall is married to Greta and they have a daughter and a son.

Billy Condon

35 years’ experience in the Travel Industry serving both Tourism Ireland and Aer Lingus in a variety of management positions in several overseas markets.

Position: Vice President Marketing – USA / Tourism Ireland (New York) 2013 -Present

Position: Manager Southern Europe / Tourism Ireland (Paris) 2008 – 2013

Responsible for Tourism Ireland’s Marketing Operations for France, Spain and Italy.

Manager Northern Europe / Tourism Ireland: (Brussels) 2004-2008

Responsible for Tourism Ireland’s Marketing Operations in the Benelux and Nordic Countries.

Manager Australia & New Zealand: Tourism Ireland (Sydney) 1998-2004

I was charged with developing the commercial distribution of the Irish tourism product throughout Australia and New Zealand along with project work in South East Asia.

Marketing Manager North East USA: Irish Tourist Board (New York) 1997-1998

Ensuring all investment in Media, Business Tourism and distribution opportunities were optimal and in line with corporate objectives.

Passenger Sales Manager USA & Canada: Aer Lingus (New York) 1992-1997

I assumed responsibility for the marketing and sales budgets for North America whilst managing the sales force operations of our offices in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Boston.

Passenger Sales Manager West Coast: Aer Lingus (Los Angeles) 1989-1992

I opened and managed the Aer Lingus office in Los Angeles in preparation for direct services from Ireland.

Booking Office Manager: Aer Lingus (London) 1987-1989

Aer Lingus Travel Shop, Regent Street, London.

Aer Lingus Dublin 1979-1987

Ground Operations, Passenger Services and Customer Relations,

Education: Graduateship in Marketing M.M.I.I. (Grad) (Marketing Institute of Ireland)

Sarah Delude, International Business Strategy Manager

Sarah has worked in international relations for over 10 years and joined the City of Boston in 2016. In this role Sarah focuses on scaling up international relations through public diplomacy, economic partnerships, business engagement, and marketing Boston as a global and welcoming city. Prior to joining the City of Boston, Sarah worked in public diplomacy as Head of the Politics, Press and Public Affairs Section at the British Consulate-General in Boston, where she also held the Policy and University Engagement portfolio. Sarah also held roles at the Center for European Studies, an interdisciplinary research center at Harvard University. There she was responsible for programming, communications, external relations, student advising, and Visiting Scholars Programs. Sarah earned a B.A. from Syracuse University in International Relations and a Master’s degree from Harvard in Government.

Nuala McGowan

Nuala McGowan is the Director of Research Finance and Compliance for the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, the largest school at Harvard University. Nuala supports faculty and administrators in the management of sponsored programs. Nuala has been in Research Administration and Compliance for over 13 years, beginning her higher education career at MIT, with their Internal Audit division, before moving to Harvard University in 2007. Nuala was the recipient of the Dean’s Distinction Award in 2013.

After completing her education in business and finance, at the North West Institute in Derry, Nuala received her Morrison Visa and traveled to Boston in 1995. She began her career as a financial analyst with Staples, Incorporated, and advanced to a Senior Business Analyst position on their Y2K team. Nuala continued her career in corporate retail with two fortune 100 companies as a Senior Internal Auditor.

Nuala played Gaelic football for Tir na Nog LGFC for many years and was the recipient of the Boston GAA “All-Star” award in 2009. Nuala also played for the Eire Og Camogie Club for seven years and served as chairperson of the club for four years.

Nuala was born in Donegal Town, the daughter of Mary McGowan, and the late Eddie McGowan. Nuala is one of nine and has a sister living close by in New York. The remainder of her siblings reside in Donegal Town, and several play a role in operating their family business, Daytona Heavy Haulage. Nuala currently lives in Arlington, MA with her wife Erin and their three-year-old son Ronan. They are expecting a new baby girl on November 30th.

Christine Kinealy

Since completing her PhD at Trinity College in Ireland, Christine Kinealy has worked in educational and research institutes in Dublin, Belfast and England and, more recently, in the USA. In September 2013, Professor Kinealy was appointed the founding Director of Ireland’s Great Hunger Institute at Quinnipiac University in Connecticut.

Professor Kinealy has published extensively on modern Ireland, with a focus on the Great Hunger. These publications include, This Great Calamity. The Great Irish Famine 1845-52, Repeal and Revolution. 1848 in Ireland, and Daniel O’Connell and Abolition. The Saddest People the Sun Sees, and her most recent book, Charity and the Great Hunger in Ireland. The Kindness of Strangers. More recently, she completed a graphic novel on the Great Hunger, entitled, ‘The Bad Times’ or, in its Irish language version, ‘An Droch Shaol’. Professor Kinealy is also a Director of the Frederick Douglass Ireland Project, and is currently completing a book on ‘Frederick Douglass in Ireland’.

Professor Kinealy has lectured throughout the world on the Great Hunger. In 1997, she was invited to speak to invited audiences in both in the British Houses of Parliament and in the American Congress on this topic. Since 2013, Professor Kinealy has been named one of the top 100 educators in Irish America. In March 2014, she was also inducted into the Irish America Hall of Fame. Earlier this this year, she won an Emmy for her contribution to the documentary, ‘The Great Hunger and the Irish Diaspora’.

Professor Kinealy has two children, Siobhán and Ciarán, who were born in Dublin and Belfast respectively. She shares her live with a a dog called Cú. And she is a keen soccer fan.

Michael Quinlin

Michael Quinlin is executive director of the Commonwealth Marketing Office in the Baker-Polito Administration. His office produces marketing materials on business development, international trade, travel & tourism and sports marketing. He oversees Massitsallhere.com and publishes an annual MassJazz Guide to promote the state’s vibrant jazz scene.

Mike previously worked at the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority; at Boston City Hall during the Raymond L. Flynn Administration; at Massachusetts Institute of Technology; and in scholarly publishing in New York City and Cambridge.

He and his wife Colette formed the Boston Irish Tourism Association in 2000 to connect the state’s Irish cultural venues with the hospitality industry, while strengthening travel ties between New England and Ireland and Northern Ireland. BITA operates several web sites and issues a free Travel & Culture magazine for tourists three times a year.

Quinlin created Boston’s Irish Heritage Trail, a three-mile walking tour of Irish landmarks. He is author of Irish Boston (Globe Pequot Press) and editor of Classic Irish Stories (Lyons Press), and a longtime contributor to the Irish Echo and Irish America Magazine.

Samantha Traynor B.A. Hons Educ. PGDip, Vice Principal of North West Regional College

The Newtownstewart native has more than 20 years of experience in the education sector, having started out her career as a Primary School teacher.
Samantha joined North West Regional College in 2002, as a Lecturer in Early Years, and has held various positions, including, Head of School and most recently Head of Department Training and Skills.  In 2017, she was appointed the Vice-Principal of Curriculum and Information Services.
Samantha is committed to ensuring that the people of the North West region and surrounding hinterlands, including her own area of West Tyrone get the best opportunities that further and higher education can offer them in Northern Ireland. Through the College’s dedicated Business Support Centre, she encourages local businesses and industry in the North West to avail of the training and up-skilling opportunities that exist in the College and assists them to source funding to undertake innovative research and development activities.
North West Regional College is the largest learning and economic agent in the region with a turnover of £35M. There are 790 staff employed at the College and almost 16,000 enrolments in full and part-time study across campuses in Derry~Londonderry, Limavady and Strabane.
As Vice Principal, Samantha plays an active role in some of the key city and region economic and innovation forums in partnership with the Regional Councils, Ulster University, Invest NI, Londonderry Chamber, Letterkenny Institute of Technology and Donegal County Council through the North West Corridor. NWRC provides an industry focused Professional and Technical Curriculum and is both a NEF (UK) – STEM Assured College and one of 11 leadership colleges in the UK Creative and Cultural sector.
The College Business Support Centre (BSC) provides a range of technical innovation intervention to SME’s in association with the Department for the Economy, Invest NI, Inter-trade Ireland and SEUPB. The College has been developing specialisms in Food Technology, Assistive Living and Digital Technologies. All this is underpinned by a strong qualifications base in traditional STEM Curriculum. The College is also active in supporting Invest NI in growing both indigenous industry and attracting foreign direct investment to the City and Region.

James Davitt Rooney

James Davitt Rooney is Principal of Rooney Associates LLC, a Boston-based strategy, business development, and public affairs consultancy. He has represented and advised corporations, foundations, universities, and governments on global economic and social development for 20 years.
Rooney co-founded the Harvard Business School Alumni Angels of London when living in the UK from 2012-17, co-leading its programming and helping it raise $10M for more than 30 start-ups. From 2011-12 he was Vice President of the Massachusetts High Technology Council, leading its Talent, Clean Energy, and Technology Transfer portfolios and spearheading local tech council support for federal clean energy legislation.
Rooney served as the Boston Foundation’s Director of Public Affairs from 2005-10, when it won the Council on Foundations’ top national award for public policy impact. He co-led the state’s Race to the Top Coalition and other research and advocacy instrumental in the passage of new state laws on a wide array of competitiveness and quality of life concerns. From 2001-05 he helped to launch and lead the national urban think tank CEOs for Cities as its Director of Policy & Associate Director, shaping and presenting research and advising cities on the then-nascent knowledge economy.
Throughout the 1990’s, Rooney worked at Brown University, including as Director of Community and Government Relations, leading its first economic and community impact studies and legislative policy institute; he also served in Alumni Relations and Development offices. Rooney frequently appears in the media, placing op-eds on the 2016 U.S. presidential election, providing on-air commentary on the 2012 election for BBC Surrey, and making the first known call for Pope Francis to write an encyclical on climate change.
Rooney, whose family originally hails from Belfast, has assisted the Boston-Belfast Sister City Partnership and earlier this year delivered the keynote at the Belfast Business School launch. He earned an MPA from Harvard Kennedy School and a BA in Ethics and Political Philosophy from Brown.

Andrew O’Brien

Andrew O’Brien is Managing Director and Market Leader for Burson-Marsteller in New England. In his role, O’Brien serves as lead for the firm’s business in Boston and throughout New England. O’Brien joins Burson-Marsteller from Weber Shandwick, where he was Executive Vice President in the corporate practice.
Before entering the private sector in 2016, O’Brien served as U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s Special Representative for Global Partnerships. Under O’Brien’s leadership and with the engagement of a cross-section of private companies and NGOs, the Office of Global Partnerships played a major role in ongoing economic development efforts in Northern Ireland, the U.S. Water Partnership, the Secretary’s Our Oceans Conference, the Global Entrepreneurship Summit and the U.S. response to the Ebola crisis in West Africa in 2014. During his tenure at State, O’Brien joined a leadership team which leveraged over $800 million in public and private resources with over 1,600 partners around the world.
Before that, O’Brien held several positions in public life including State Director and Senior Advisor to then-Senator John Kerry, Special Assistant to Mayor Thomas M. Menino of Boston, Executive Director of Mayor Menino’s Office of Neighborhood Services, Special Assistant to the Director of the Boston Redevelopment Authority, Chief of Staff to the Massachusetts State Lottery Commission and Deputy Chancellor of the University of Massachusetts Boston.
O’Brien has also worked on numerous political campaigns at the local, state and national levels, including in several capacities during John Kerry’s 2004 presidential campaign in Iowa, New Hampshire, Ohio, as well as at the Democratic National Convention in Boston. Additionally, he has lectured on politics and government at colleges and universities in Massachusetts and throughout the country. In 2007, O’Brien was named one of the city’s “Ten Outstanding Young Leaders” by the Boston Jaycees and in 2009 he was named one of Massachusetts’ “Top Ten Political Operatives” by Campaigns and Elections Magazine. In January of 2017, he was presented with the State Department’s Distinguished Service Award by Secretary of State John Kerry.

Sherry Lassiter, CEO and Director The Fab Foundation, Director Fab Lab Program @ MIT’s Center for Bits and Atoms

Sherry Lassiter is one of the architects of the MIT global initiative for field on-site technology development, the fab lab program.  A fab lab, or as users like to call it, fabulous laboratory, is a rapid prototyping platform for technical education, innovation and personal expression.  The fab lab network includes over 1200 digital fabrication facilities in 100 countries. Lassiter is President and CEO of the Fab Foundation, a non-profit organization committed to building technical capacity in a locality, improving individuals’ abilities to develop themselves and their communities and bringing access to tools and knowledge that cultivate and support innovating practices.  Lassiter is currently engaged in the deployment and growth of fab labs (http://fabfoundation.org) around the world, enabling grassroots technology development by, for and of the community.

Elizabeth Crabill

Elizabeth Crabill

Elizabeth Crabill is CEO of CIE Tours International, the largest Irish-owned tour operator in the US. With 15 years’ experience leading sales, marketing and strategy for some of the best travel brands, she is one of the leading travel and tourism executives in the United States. She took the reins of the 85-year old tour operator in 2016, with a mission to expand the digital footprint of the brand, raise the visibility of Irish tourism excellence and introduce a new generation of travelers to the tour experience. CIE Tours currently sends 50,000 travelers into Ireland and Britain each year, and hosts a team of Ulster University students to Morristown, NJ headquarters annually for a year-long student work experience program. A graduate of Smith College with an MBA from Harvard Business School, Crabill is actively involved with the promotion of international tourism and development of new travel experiences throughout the island of Ireland, for all ages and interests.

Ryan D. Mahoney

Ryan D. Mahoney

Ryan Mahoney is Executive Director of Ireland’s Great Hunger Museum at Quinnipiac University. The museum contains the world’s largest collection of Great Hunger-related art by noted contemporary Irish and Irish American artists as well as a number of period paintings by some of Ireland’s most important 19th-century artists.

Prior to joining Ireland’s Great Hunger Museum, Mahoney was the Executive Director of the Irish American Heritage Museum in Albany, NY. He holds has a dual-degree in history and political science from St. John Fisher College and a master’s degree in public history from the University at Albany. He has served as a national board member of the Irish American Cultural Institute, as well as a board member of the United Irish Societies of the Capital District, Inc. He has also been active with the Ancient Order of Hibernians and Albany St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee. In 2016 Mahoney was named an Irish Top 40 Under 40 by the Irish Echo.

Dr. Karilyn Crockett

Dr. Karilyn Crockett is the Director of the Small Business Development department & Director of Economic Policy and Research for the City of Boston. Her portfolio guides implementation of Mayor Walsh’s strategic priorities for citywide economic development. Karilyn’s academic research focuses on large-scale land use changes in twentieth century American cities and examines the social and geographic implications of structural poverty. Her dissertation entitled, “’People Before Highways:’ Reconsidering Routes to and from the Boston Anti-Highway Movement” investigates a 1960s era grassroots movement to halt urban extension of the interstate highway system. Prior to graduate school, Karilyn co-founded Multicultural Youth Tour Of What’s Now (MYTOWN), an award winning, educational non-profit organization. A Boston organization, MYTOWN hired public high school students to research their local and family histories to produce youth-led walking tours for sale to public audiences. During its nearly 15 years of operation, MYTOWN created jobs for more than 300 low and moderate-income teenagers, who in turn led public walking tours for more than 14,000 visitors and residents. In a White House ceremony, the National Endowment for the Humanities cited MYTOWN as “One of ten best Youth Humanities Programs in America.”

Karilyn holds a PhD from the American Studies program at Yale University, a Master of Science in Geography from the London School of Economics, and a Master of Arts and Religion from Yale Divinity School. She is a research affiliate in the Department of Urban Studies & Planning at MIT. Her career mission is to continue to work at the nexus of education, economic development and urban revitalization.

Mark Brodeur

Mark Brodeur

As Director of Tourism at the Rhode Commerce Corporation, Mark is responsible for implementing and managing the activities of the Corporation Tourism efforts, which includes managing the division’s staff, communications, publications, travel trade, International and domestic marketing programs and tourism research. Mark also oversees operations at the Rhode Island Building at the Eastern States Exposition (Big E) in Springfield, Mass., the nation’s fifth largest fair. In addition, as the Rhode Island Economic Development’s Hospitality and Tourism sector lead, Mark is the first point of contact for industry development interests. A 35-year veteran of the tourism and hospitality industry, Mark has worked as Director of Operations for Rhode Island Tourism and Manager of the Rhode Island Welcome Center, and held leadership roles at Paragon Tours and Travel and Suisse Chalet hotels. He also has worked as a consultant for such firms as Travel Access, AAA, Scholastic Tours, and Camera Tours. Mark is a graduate of Johnson and Wales University in Providence.

Senator Thomas M. McGee

Senator Thomas M. McGee proudly serves the Third Essex District, which includes the communities of Lynn, Lynnfield, Marblehead, Nahant, Saugus, and Swampscott. Senator McGee has been a member of the Joint Committee on Transportation since 2003 and has served as its Senate Chair since 2010. He is the Vice Chair of the Senate Committee on Bonding, Capital Expenditures and State Assets, and serves as a member of the Joint Committee on Children, Families and Persons with Disabilities, the Joint Committee on Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture, the Joint Committee on Economic Development and Emerging Technologies, the Joint Committee on Ways and Means, the Senate Committee on Ways and Means, and the Senate Committee on Post Audit and Oversight.
He is currently Co-Chair of the Massachusetts Afterschool and Out-of-School Time Coordinating Council, Co-Chair of the Metropolitan Beaches Commission, and Co-Chair of the Metropolitan Planning Organization Commission. Additionally, Senator McGee serves as a member of the Water Transportation Advisory Council, Autonomous Vehicles Working Group, and Bus Rapid Transit Advisory Council. He is also a member of the Council of State Governments Eastern Regional Conference Transportation Committee and the Massachusetts General Court-Quebec National Assembly Partnership.
Senator McGee is committed to issues of quality education and extended learning opportunities to students in the Commonwealth, improving the state’s transportation system and fighting for regional equity, working to improve the lives of children and their families, ensuring accessible and affordable childcare and healthcare for working families, and expanding workforce training and development.
Before his election to the Senate in 2002, McGee served four terms in the Massachusetts House of Representatives (1995-2002), where he represented West Lynn and Nahant. Prior to holding office, McGee practiced law at Quinn and Morris (1990-1994), and served as an Assistant District Attorney for Essex County (1988-1990).
McGee served as the Chairman of the Massachusetts Democratic Party from October 2013-November 2016. He has been a member of the Democratic State Committee since 1976 and has been a delegate to several State and National Democratic Conventions.
The Senator is a life-long resident of Lynn where he lives with his wife, Maria, and their children, Thomas and Katherine.

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