Active Disability Ireland is overseen by a Board of Directors made up of 10 members. The role of the Board as detailed within our company Constitution is to provide strategic direction and oversight.
Our Board of Directors
A native of Knockainey, Co. Limerick, Brian is a highly motivated professional with a 25-year track record of profitable small business ownership, boasting outstanding interpersonal, communication, organisational, negotiation and mediation skills, as well as business expertise in all areas ranging from sales and marketing, business administration and recruiting and training staff.
Brian’s entrepreneurial journey began when he ran his own bar in Hospital, Co. Limerick which saw him recognised by customers and colleagues alike as a consummate professional with a high degree of personal integrity. After a brief spell working in Air Traffic Control with the Irish Aviation Authority, Brian returned to his entrepreneurial calling, and founded EcoStraws Ltd, offering the largest range of biodegradable and reusable straws, and associated eco-friendly products in the world from its warehouse in Co. Limerick. This brought him recognition and awards from the All-Ireland Business Foundation and Enterprise Ireland National Startup Awards. Brian also introduced the world’s first plastic-free PPE shields to Ireland during Covid 19 which saw him recognised as a ‘Global Shaker’ for his fight on single use plastics.
During Covid, Brian also returned to college and graduated with top class honours in Business Management Applications from I.T. Sligo. Brian is currently part of the management team at Duggan Veterinary Supplies Ireland and UK, directly responsible for the expanding Marketing and Communications team, promoting products and services resulting in improvements in animal health and enhanced productivity within the veterinary industry.
Brian has spent many years volunteering for organisations promoting inclusion and diversity in sport and has held Management positions for Special Olympics Ireland at World Games in Los Angeles 2015, Abu Dhabi 2019, and Berlin 2023. Brian was also on the Games Organising Committee for Irish Games in Limerick 2014 and Dublin 2018.
In his spare time, Brian regularly guest lectures in universities across the country, as well as regularly appearing on local and national radio speaking on a variety of topics. He is also known as producer of his son’s Motivational Podcast – ‘The Paudcast’ which garnered worldwide acclaim promoting the mantra that ‘disability does not mean inability’, and both are huge advocates of promoting healthy, active lifestyles.
Bébhinn Murphy is a Barrister at Law, educated at The Honorable Society of King’s Inns, Dublin. Her practice as a barrister includes the areas of regulatory law and sports law. She is dedicated to civic, equality and environmental responsibility, also serving on boards of social enterprise and educational organisations, and a public partnership committee with her local government.
Niall O’Flynn is a writer, producer and director.
As award-winning journalist, he has covered major international news and sports events for newspapers, radio & TV – working in the Middle East, USA, Australia, Europe, UK & Ireland.
He directs a variety of RTE’s flagship programmes, including Prime Time, Claire Byrne Live, Winning Streak, The Sunday Game & International Soccer. He is the author of “Ireland’s Olympians” and a member of the Irish Film & Television Academy.
As a sportsman, he has represented Dublin, Leinster and Ireland, at various levels.
Sinéad White is a senior manager with over 20 years’ experience working in the Finance, Technology and Insurance industries. She is experienced in leading major programmes of change and specialises in project and process management. She graduated from UCD with a Masters in Economics and is currently working towards a Masters in Supply Chain Management. Sinéad is Head of Central Shared Services in VHI Healthcare.
She is a proud Laois woman and an avid sports fan from the couch to the side lines and in the thick of it. Running and fitness are keen interests and she has completed 2 Dublin City Marathons.
Leslee O’Loughlin joined Enterprise Rent-A-Car’s Graduate Training Programme in the United States in 1997. After successfully completing the training programme, Leslee received a series of internal promotions which afforded her the opportunity to assume key roles within the organisation in both a managerial and marketing capacity.
In 2004, Leslee was promoted to Group Recruiting Manager and was responsible for developing strategic partnerships with key universities throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.
In 2007, Leslee was promoted to Group Human Resources Manager for Enterprise in the Republic of Ireland. Since 2007 Enterprise has been the proud recipient of several awards including a Gradireland Employability Award in 2009, an AHECS Engagement Award in 2012 and 2013, the Gradireland Diversity Recruitment award in 2013, 2014, 2015 (silver), 2016 and 2017 (silver), the Chambers Ireland Workplace Award in 2014, Top 10 Employer 2016 and Best SME 2016 in Glen’s Workplace Equality Index. Enterprise in Ireland is #89 on Gradireland’s Top 100 Employers list for 2017.
Matt is a member of An Garda Siochana based in Tullamore, Co. Offaly. He has served as a member of the National Disability Authority Board for a number of years.
Well known for his successful career in Gaelic Football, Matt has represented Offaly in winning an All-Ireland in 1982 and his role as mentor with the Minor and Senior teams over several years. He has a passion for inclusion in sport and physical activity.
Martin Conway is a member of the 25th Seanad and previously served in the 24th Seanad on the Administrative Panel, having been elected in 2011. He is the Seanad spokesperson on Justice and Equality and is the first visually impaired member of the Oireachtas.
He was first elected to Clare County Council in June 2004 representing North Clare and was re-elected in 2009, topping the poll.
Martin first joined Fine Gael whilst at school in Ennistymon and his interest in politics continued throughout his college career. In 1998 he graduated with a Degree in Economics and Politics from University College Dublin.
One of his proudest moments was to receive the prestigious University College Dublin President’s Award for Excellence, in recognition of his commitment for campaigning and advocacy for people with disabilities.
Martin is a founding member of AHEAD-The Association of Higher Education Access and Disability- which endeavours to make education accessible to all. He is particularly proud of the Willing Able Mentoring (WAM) programme which has successfully placed over 150 graduates with disabilities in employment over the last seven years.
Martin campaigns tirelessly on behalf of people with disabilities for the provision of adequate housing, improved education and employment opportunities, and enhanced sport and physical activity opportunities.
Mary O Connor is CEO of the Federation of Irish Sport. She is a native of Cork and has worked in sport all her professional life and is an avid sports fan.
In 2016 Mary graduated from University College Cork with a Masters in Voluntary and Community Sector Management. Before joining the Federation of Irish Sport, Mary worked with the Camogie Association as Director of Technical Development and Participation. She excelled in this role and led the association in to an unprecedented era of growth. Under her direction as Acting CEO of the Camogie Association in 2013, she successfully guided the association through change in the form of the new affiliation model for individual members, which saw camogie ensure a more equitable membership structure for all clubs.
Mary has represented her native Cork in both Camogie and Ladies football amassing a total of 12 Senior All Ireland medals over a 16-year dual intercounty career. She has won All Stars in both codes, national leagues and provincial titles and more recently was honoured with an Honorary Doctorate from University College Cork (2012) in recognition of her amazing contribution to sport in Ireland.
Shay Kearns is a Fellow of the Association of Certified Chartered Accountants with over 20 years’ experience in both the public and private sectors. Largely working in the software and pharmaceutical industries for large global multinational companies, he is currently working for West Pharma as Director of Accounting.
He is passionate about sport, with sport playing an integral part of his family routine. He is passionate about bringing sport and physical activity to the very centre of every individual in Ireland.
Shay has long been an advocate for inclusion and equality for those with additional needs, having played a leading role in the introduction of bilateral cochlear implantation to Ireland in recent years.
As an avid Dublin GAA supporter, Shay finds time in his busy schedule to mentor a juvenile team with his local club in Castleknock, while in his down time enjoys running and cycling.
The Governance Code for Sport (the Code)
The Board of Active Disability Ireland is committed to achieving compliance with Governance Code for Sport which is overseen by Sport Ireland. The Governance Code for Sport (the Code) is a voluntary code of practice for good governance of sport organisations in Ireland. Achieving compliance will make a public statement about our culture and commitment to fairness, accountability and transparency for our stakeholders.
Strategic Plan 2023-2027
Building on the success of our previous strategy, which established our organisation as a leader in advocating for increased opportunities for people with disabilities to participate in sport and physical activity, we are delighted to present our 2023-2027 strategic plan, developed in collaboration with people with disabilities across Ireland.
The strategy sets out a roadmap for Active Disability Ireland for the period 2023-2027 which reflects our ambition to increase physical activity opportunities for people with disabilities across Ireland.
Our strategy outlines a clear commitment to work in collaboration with national and local partners to make active lives possible for people with disabilities while ensuring the voice and needs of people with disabilities is placed at the forefront of all our decisions and actions.