Government appoints four to board of Irish Water parent

Former chief executive of Tesco Ireland to be chairman

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Simon Coveney has announced the appointment of four non-executive board members to Irish Water's parent company Ervia.

Former chairman of Tesco Ireland Tony Keohane and former commercial director at Scottish Water Christopher Banks have been appointed on five-year terms. Former chief executive of the National Roads Authority (NRA) Fred Barry will be on the board for four years, while former deputy chief executive of Wessex Water Keith Harris takes up his role for a three-year period.

Mr Coveney said his nominee for chair would be Mr Keohane, who must appear before the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Housing, Planning and Local Government before his formal appointment can be finalised.

Mr Coveney said the appointments process was conducted in line with Government procedures for making appointments to State boards through the Public Appointments Service and the specific arrangements that apply to NewERA State bodies, which include Ervia and Irish Water.


Mr Keohane was chairman of Tesco Ireland from July 2013 until July 2015, and chief executive of Tesco Ireland from February 2006 to July 2013. He became chairman of Repak in November 2013 and is a non-executive director of Bord Bia.

Mr Banks was commercial director at Scottish Water from 2002 to 2014.

Mr Barry was chief executive of the NRA from 2005 until the end of 2015, and was a group managing director of the UK and Ireland division of Jacobs Engineering Group between 1995 and 2005. As NRA chief executive, he was on the board of the National Development Finance Agency from 2005 to 2012.

Mr Harris joined Wessex Water in 1989 and became deputy chief executive in 2005. He left Wessex Water in 2010. He is a non-executive director and chair of the audit committee of South Staffordshire Water.

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson is an Irish Times reporter