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Government approves appointment of RTÉ and BAI Board members

minister white speaking at the silver surfer awards 2014

Dublin, 10 February 2015

Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Alex White TD, today obtained Government approval for the appointment of new members to the RTÉ Board and the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI), following their nomination by the Joint Oireachtas Committee (JOC) on Transport and Communications. The JOC nominated the following people:


  • Mr Padraig O’Ceidigh
  • Mr Shane Naughton
  • Ms Fionnuala Sheehan
  • Ms Margaret Ward

Broadcasting Authority of Ireland
  • Professor Maeve McDonagh
  • Dr Rosemary Day
  • Mr Denis Wolinski

The JOC nominated three people to the Authority, with a fourth name to be provided in due course.

Under Section 81 of the Broadcasting Act, 2009, the Government appoints seven members (including a chairperson) to the RTÉ Board on the nomination of the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources. Under Section 8 of the Broadcasting Act, 2009, the Government appoints five members to the BAI Board and on the nomination of the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources. The Government made these appointments on 4th November 2014 (RTÉ Board) and 2nd December 2014 (BAI Board).

Today’s additional appointments are made on the nomination of the JOC, also under Sections 8 and 81 of the Broadcasting act 2009.


Note to Editors

  1. On 4th November 2014, the Government appointed seven members (including a chairperson) to the RTÉ Board.
  2. On 5th December, Minister White wrote to the Chairman of the JOC with a statement indicating the relevant experience of the seven people appointed by the Government to the RTÉ Board, and requesting the Committee to submit a list of its four nominees, and also to set out the reasons for their nominations, in accordance with Section 81(2) (c) of the Broadcasting Act, 2009. (The JOC had previously written to Minister White on 1st October 2014 regarding nominations to these boards).
  3. The JOC then wrote to Minister White on 23rd January 2015 with its nominees to both the RTÉ Board and BAI Board, and setting out its reasons for making the nominations.

BIOGRAPHIES OF APPOINTEES (provided to the Minister by the Joint Oireachtas Committee)

Professor Maeve McDonagh
Academic Lawyer specialising in information law including freedom of information, data protection and information technology law, also in human rights law.

Dr. Rosemary Day
Head of Department of Media and Communications Studies in Mary Immaculate College at UL. Teacher and researcher on mass media, regularly publishes on media matters. Advocate on community broadcasting, involved in founding two community radio stations and CRAOL.

Mr. Denis Wolinski
Former National Manager Northern Ireland, Digital UK, Former Director of Ofcom Northern Ireland, former Head of the NI Independent Television Commission.

BAI Board

MemberFirst AppointedTerm-End Date
Dr Pauric Travers (Chair)02/12/2014 01/12/2017
Mr Alan McDonnell02/12/201401/12/2019
Ms Claire Duignan02/12/201401/12/2019
Ms Grace Smith02/12/201401/12/2019
Ms Michelle McShortall01/10/200901/12/2017
Professor Maeve McDonagh17/02/201516/02/2020
Dr Rosemary Day17/02/201516/02/2020
Mr Denis Wolinski17/02/201516/02/2020


Mr Padraig O’Ceidigh
Founder of Aer Arann and Aer Lingus Regional. He is Adjunct professor of Entrepreneurship and Business in NUI Galway, Chair of the Business School Advisory Board and Chairman of Failte Ireland West – West of Ireland Tourist Board. A former recipient of the Ernst and Young Irish Entrepreneur of the Year Award, Padraig is its current Chair. He is also a former Board member of CROI, Board Iascaigh Mhara and Chair of the National GAA Research Board.

Mr Shane Naughton
Global Chief Financial Officer of the Economist Group. Formerly Global CFO with EMI Music and United Business Media.

Ms Fionnuala Sheehan
Former CEO of MEAS/ and former Deputy Registrar at the University of Limerick. Group Treasurer of GPA limited and its Joint Venture Companies.

Ms Margaret Ward
Founder and CEO of Clear Ink, a brand communications agency. Founder of Broadly Speaking, which focuses on public speaking and corporate training in presentation. Founder and Chair of Women on Air, financial journalist.

RTÉ Board
MemberFirst AppointedTerm-End Date
Moya Doherty4/11/20143/11/2017
Fergus Armstrong1/09/20093/11/2017
Frank Hannigan4/11/20143/11/2019
Deborah Kelleher4/11/20143/11/2017
P.J. Mathews4/11/20143/11/2019
Anne O’Leary4/11/20143/11/2019
Aengus Mac Grianna4/11/20143/11/2019
Mr Noel Curran01/02/201131/01/2018
Padraig O’Ceidigh17/02/201516/02/2020
Shane Naughton17/02/201516/02/2020
Fionnuala Sheehan17/02/201516/02/2020
Margaret Ward17/02/201516/02/2020

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