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Minister White appoints SEAI Chair and Board Members

minister white appoints seai chair and board members

Dublin, 11 May 2015

Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Alex White T.D., is to appoint eight members, including a Chairperson, to the board of the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI). The appointments were noted by the Government at its meeting of Wednesday 6th May 2015.

Minister White intends to appoint Ms Julie O'Neill as SEAI chairperson for a period of five years. Ms O'Neill was Secretary General at the Department of Transport from 2002 to 2009 and was an SEAI board member between September 2011 and September 2014. She will serve alongside four newly appointed members: Dr Peter Brennan; Dr Lisa Ryan; Mr Michael Wall, and Mr Paddy Phelan.

Minister White also intends to reappoint Ms. Anne Connolly, Mr. Pat Gilroy and Mr. Brian Carroll whose terms on the board ended on 1 May 2015.

Minister White said: "I am delighted to appoint Ms O'Neill as Chairperson of the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland. I believe her appointment will strengthen the Board, and the other new appointments will add greatly to the expertise available to the board."

Minister White said the new Board members were people of high calibre who had been selected following a competitive selection process run on, and said he was confident that the new Board would successfully oversee the implementation of SEAI's strategic mandate.



Notes for Editor

Background on Selection Process

Following a selection process which was undertaken in accordance with the "Guidelines for appointments to State Boards," which was published by the Government in November 2014, six new appointments have been made by Minister White to the board of SEAI.

Vacancies on the SEAI Board, including that of the Chairperson, were advertised on on 22 January 2015. Expressions of interest were invited from applicants with the following skills and experience necessary to join the Board of SEAI.

• Experience in Public Engagement/Marketing/Communications

• Expertise in Legal/ Accounting / Governance and Compliance areas

• Experience in Strategy Development and Public Affairs

• Involvement in Entrepreneurship/ Enterprise / Innovation

• Technical competencies in the fields of Technology /Engineering /Construction/Architecture / Research

• Experience in Spatial Planning and Community Engagement.

234 individual applications were received from 179 individuals, on foot of which a shortlisting process was conducted.

Short biographies of chairperson, reappointments and new appointees

Julie O'Neill (Chairperson)

Career spent in the civil service culminating in the position of Secretary General of the Department of Transport (2002 to 2009); experienced non-executive director and strategic management consultant. Member of the SEAI Board from September 2011 to September 2014.

Experience: Corporate governance/public sector/SEAI board

Dr Peter Brennan

Former civil servant at Department of Industry and Commerce and the Department of Foreign Affairs; Former Director of Irish Business Bureau, Brussels; Consultant to private and public bodies; PhD (EU Policy).

Experience: Enterprise/innovation/ strategy development/public affairs

Dr Lisa Ryan

Currently energy economics research lead at the Energy Institute, UCD; Former senior economist in energy efficiency policy at the International Energy Agency; PhD Environmental economics.

Experience: Strategy development/R&D/energy economics

Michael Wall

Barrister, Law Library, Dublin; project director UCD (part-time); Board member An Bord Pleanala (1999-2006).

Experience: Legal/planning

Paddy Phelan

B.E. (Civil); Manager of Carlow-Kilkenny Energy Agency; Part-time Lecturer WIT.

Experience: Community engagement/technical/entrepreneurship

Anne Connolly

Currently leads Irish Smart Ageing Exchange (ISAX); previously Executive Director of the Ageing Well Network. First appointed to the SEAI Board in May 2013.

Experience: Corporate governance/community engagement

Pat Gilroy

Currently Country Director Ireland for Veolia. Previously M.D. of Veolia Environments Energy Division. Extensive experience of energy sector including ESB. Member of IBEC National Council. First appointed to the SEAI Board in May 2013.

Experience: Technical knowledge/strategy development/business experience

Brian Carroll

Principal Officer at Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources.

Experience: Principal Officer with responsibility for renewable energy. Prior to this he was Principal Officer with responsibility for Corporate Finance and Planning Section of the Department. First appointed to the SEAI Board in May 2010.

SEAI Board Membership

MemberPositionDate first Appointed
Ms Julie O'NeillChairpersonMay 2015*
Dr Brian MotherwayCEOMay 2012
Mr Brian CarrollBoard MemberMay 2010
Ms Anne FarrellBoard MemberApril 2012
Ms Michelle GreenBoard MemberMay 2012
Ms Anne ConnollyBoard MemberMay 2013
Mr Michael McGarryBoard MemberMay 2013
Mr Pat GilroyBoard MemberMay 2013
Dr Peter BrennanBoard MemberMay 2015
Dr Lisa RyanBoard MemberMay 2015
Mr Michael WallBoard MemberMay 2015
Mr Paddy PhelanBoard MemberMay 2015


*Ms O'Neill served as an SEAI board member for three years from September 2011.

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