Dr Fiona Killard-Lynch has been appointed as the new director of research and innovation at the National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training (NIBRT). In her new role, she will be responsible for driving innovation and impactful biopharma manufacturing research. Dr Killard-Lynch brings a wealth of experience to the position, having previously worked as the head of strategic research development and director of the office of the Dean of Research at Trinity College Dublin. She has also worked in education in France, New Zealand, the UK, and Ireland. Additionally, she founded and managed the Bristol Doctoral College (BDC) at the University of Bristol and served as a member of the UK Council for Graduate Education. Dr Killard-Lynch has extensive experience in securing EU funding and is an expert in the Framework programme.
Niall O’Grady, the chief executive of Linked Finance, has been appointed as the non-executive chair of bonkers.ie, a leading comparison and switching website. Niall has been an independent non-executive director on the board of bonkers.ie for the past two years and brings a wealth of experience in the banking, finance, and insurance sectors. He has previously held senior roles in Permanent TSB, RSA, and 123.ie. In his new role as non-executive chair, Niall will work closely with the board of directors and management team of bonkers.ie to develop and execute the company’s strategic objectives. bonkers.ie is a platform that helps consumers compare prices and switch across a range of energy, banking, broadband, and insurance providers.
Sarah O’Toole has been appointed as the executive director of Samaritans Ireland, where she will oversee all operations, functions, and activities of the charity. Sarah brings a wealth of experience to the role, having previously served as CEO of development organisation CBM Ireland. She has also worked with firms including ACCA Ireland, Willis Towers Watson, and Colliers International. Sarah has been working in the non-profit sector since 2009, notably with organizations such as Trócaire, Concern Worldwide, and the Soul of Haiti Foundation. She spent two years in Haiti following the devastating earthquake in 2010. Sarah holds a Masters in International Strategic Marketing from DCU Business School and a Professional Diploma in Creativity, Innovation, and Leadership from UCD Innovation Academy.
Renowned economist Jim Power has been appointed as a non-executive director of Arboretum, a family-owned garden and lifestyle retailer. With over 35 years of experience in the private sector, Jim brings a wealth of economic expertise to the role. He currently runs his own economic and financial consultancy, Jim Power Economics. Jim has previously held positions as treasury economist at AIB, chief economist at Bank of Ireland Group, and chief economist at Friends First Group. He is also a board director of Love Irish Food. Arboretum, which has two outlets in Carlow and a presence in Chapter’s bookshop in Dublin, aims to cater to the needs of both local and city center gardeners.
Mark McKeon has been appointed as the director of Managed Services, a leading workplace security and compliance specialist. In his new role, Mark will be responsible for driving growth for CWSI’s dedicated Microsoft security practice and portfolio of security products and services. Mark brings 25 years of experience in enterprise services and sales, having worked for Microsoft, HP, and IBM. At Microsoft, he served as the director of enterprise support sales for EMEA, leading the consulting, support, and enterprise services teams. Prior to that, he held various sales roles with IBM Ireland. Mark will report to Des Ryan, CWSI’s chief operating officer, who also recently joined the company from Microsoft Ireland.
Richard McCarthy, an accomplished photographer from Sligo, has been elected as the president of the Irish Professional Photographers and Videographers Association (IPPVA). In his new role, Richard is committed to fostering growth and advancing the interests of professional photographers and videographers across Ireland. He plans to encourage continuous education and skill development among IPPVA members, empowering them to embrace technological advancements. As president, Richard pledges to advocate for fair compensation, ethical business practices, and increased support for freelance photographers and videographers. Richard’s photography studio covers a wide range of work, including weddings, portraits, and commercial photography. His clients include Failte Ireland, Bord Bía, Etihad Airways, Aurivo, Supervalu, Eir, and SSE.