Tom Parlon to leave Construction Industry Federation at end of 2023

Construction industry lobbyist gets contract extension, as his successor is also named

The State's top building industry lobbyist, former government minister Tom Parlon, has had his contract as director general of the Construction Industry Federation (CIF) extended.

Mr Parlon, who has run CIF for more than 14 years, had been due to finish up at the federation at the end of 2022. His contract was last year extended to that date to help steer the sector’s lobbying efforts through the disruption wrought by the pandemic.

It is understood that Mr Parlon, who at 68 has passed the normal retirement age, was keen to stay on even longer. He says the members of the CIF, which includes some of the biggest building firms in the State as well as smaller companies, recently “went into conclave” to decide on his future. The federation’s powerful audit and organisation committee then offered him an extension, he says.

Mr Parlon says he is now due to retire from the organisation at the end of 2023. His final year, however, will essentially be one of handover, as his successor has already been decided.


Director general-designate

Hubert Fitzpatrick, the CIF's long-serving chief operations officer, will be named as director general-designate of the organisation at the beginning of 2023. He will then take over the top role formally in June of next year, while Mr Parlon will stay on to help with the changeover until the end of the year.

Mr Parlon, who is prominent in the media as a robust advocate for the construction industry, took over the CIF in late 2007, months before the then-booming sector faced near collapse in the property and financial crash.

It was widely reported at the time that his salary when he joined was €250,000, although the CIF director general’s pay packet is not formally disclosed.

Mr Parlon was previously a TD for the Progressive Democrats and a minister of State in the Department of Finance from 2002 to 2007, when he lost his seat. Prior to this, he was a farming lobbyist as president of the Irish Farmers' Association.

Mark Paul

Mark Paul

Mark Paul is London Correspondent for The Irish Times