New appointments made to boards of State bodies

Bruton announces new members and online system for Student Grants Appeals Board

Fifteen appointments to the boards of two State organisations were announced on Friday.

Minister for Education Richard Bruton has appointed five new members to the Student Grants Appeals Board, and reappointed six directors.

Meanwhile, Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed has appointed one new member to the board of the Irish National Stud, and reappointed three members.

New members of the Student Grants Appeals Board, set up in 2011, include former Union of Students in Ireland president Kevin Donoghue, accountancy lecturer Martin Corboy and Mary Jane Deegan, professor in pharmaceutical chemistry at Trinity College Dublin.


Chairman of the Charities Regulatory Authority, Patrick Hopkins, is also to join the board, along with Dr Gráinne Healy, chairwoman of Marriage Equality.

Those reappointed include current chairwoman and retired director at the Department of Social Protection Maureen Waldron, and Pádraig McNamara, retired chief executive of the State Examinations Commission.

Also reappointed were Dr Marie Clarke, head of education at UCD, Eithne Frost, former head of the Irish Motor Neurone Disease Association, Brenna Clarke, retired professor of English at St Patrick's College of Education, and Prof Kevin Ryan, former registrar of the University of Limerick.

Grants system

Announcing the appointments, Mr Bruton said he would introduce a new online student grants appeals system this year.

“This new system will complement the Susi online application process that students are familiar with, and further enhance the student experience by enabling them to lodge appeals 24/7, using various platforms from anywhere in the world,” he said.

Meanwhile, solicitor Dairine Walsh is to join the board of the National Stud.

She has previously served on the board of Johnson & Johnson and Dunnes Stores. She is also an external member of the Department of Agriculture audit committee.

Well-known horse trainers Jessica Harrington and Mark Weld have been reappointed, along with Dr Sean Brady, former chief executive of the Irish Sugar Company and chairman of Kilkenny County Council audit committee.

Mr Creed congratulated the board members and said he was confident “their backgrounds, experiences and individual skillsets will bring a wealth of professional experience to the stud”.

He also said the appointments were made following a competitive selection process run by the Public Appointments Service.

Fiona Gartland

Fiona Gartland

Fiona Gartland is a crime writer and former Irish Times journalist