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The Council is elected annually by the members of Galway Chamber. The Council meets monthly and it's function is to provide leadership and strategic direction for the Chamber.


Aengus Burns, Chamber President

Aengus Burns is President of Galway Chamber and an Advisory Partner with Grant Thornton in Galway. Originally from Dublin he moved to Galway ten years ago. He has chaired the ACCA Connaught panel in recent years. He has a keen interest in Rugby and is a supporter of Connacht Rugby.



Dermot Nolan, Deputy President

Dermot Nolan is the Group Finance Director for the Headspace Group. Previous to this, he worked with EY and Mazars in various roles up to partner level both in Ireland and internationally. He is a graduate of both NUI Galway and UCD, and is a Chartered Accountant.

Dermot is the Galway Chamber Deputy President, and is also the Chair of the Evolving Galway Committee. He is also a Board member of Bia Innovator, which is a food innovation and incubation hub in the West of Ireland and Baboro, the international children’s arts festival based in Galway. He is a native of Salthill, now living in Menlo, married with 2 sons and has a strong interest in sports, and is currently the President of Galway Hockey Club.



JP Gilmartin, Vice President

JP is a partner in the Corporate and Commercial Department of Ronan Daly Jermyn. Prior to joining Ronan Daly Jermyn and moving to Galway, JP worked with one of Ireland’s largest corporate law firms and also spent time in the US working in-house in the legal department of a large US pharmaceutical corporation. JP is a highly experienced transactional lawyer representing a broad range of clients from scaling companies to multinationals. JP is a B.Comm and LL.B. graduate of NUI Galway and has been a Council member of Galway Chamber since 2011. JP chairs the Audit Committee of Galway Chamber and is also a member of the business support committee. JP has a keen interest in all sports, but in particular, hurling, rugby, triathlons and swimming.


brian carey

Brian Carey, Company Secretary

Brian Carey joined Bank of Ireland in 2007 and is currently Head of Business Banking Galway City, having relocated back to Galway from Dublin in late 2014. He has worked in a variety of roles in Bank of Ireland including Regional Business Manager and Head of Branch Banking, Galway City. He is an ACCA Qualified Accountant and is a previous Chair of ACCA Connacht Members Panel and a member of the ACCA Ireland Executive Council. He is also our Company Secretary. Brian is married with 2 kids and has a strong interest in sports, mainly golf, rugby and football where he is actively involved in coaching within the underage structures in Maree Oranmore FC.




Emer Joyce, Treasurer

Emer is a partner with Laura Lynch and Associates. A Galway native, Emer is a Chartered Tax Advisor (CTA) and a Fellow of Chartered Accountants Ireland, having obtained a B.Comm from NUI Galway.
Before returning to Galway she worked as a tax advisor with both KPMG and Warren & Partners, a Dublin based boutique tax advisory practice. In 2009 Emer founded her own firm, Emer Joyce & Company, initially operating in Dublin and returning to Galway in 2013, before merging with EY.
Emer has strong links in the local business community across a range of business sectors, with a particular interest in advising family businesses on both corporate and personal tax matters.
Emer is an avid runner and a regular sea swimmer in Galway bay.


Eveanna Ryan

Eveanna has over 20 years’ experience within the hospitality and tourism industry, She is currently operating as the Group Sales and Marketing Manager for Connacht Hospitality Group, managing the sales and marketing for 10 of the groups brands. Eveanna also sits on the board of the Galway Convention Bureau and was recently awarded “Sales and Marketing Manager of the year” by the Irish Hospitality institute.  A Galway native, Eveanna has been a member of Galway Chamber since relocating back to Galway from Dublin in 2014. Eveanna is passionate about promotinng Galway as a region to both the domestic and international traveller.


Shane MacSweeney

Shane is managing partner of local business law firm, MacSweeney & Company, which he founded in 2003.  The firm has won the Connacht/Ulster Law Firm of the Year Award for the past 3 years. He holds a B.C.L. from UCC and an Employment Law Diploma from UCD.  Before returning to Galway, he was a partner in a top-five Dublin law firm.  He lectures at the Law Society of Ireland, regularly speaks at seminars and contributes to legal publications.  He is PRO of the Galway Solicitors Bar Association. In his spare time, he’s a bad golfer and a hurling coach.  He also has a keen interest in politics, history and languages.


Marilyn Gaughan Reddan

Marilyn Gaughan Reddan is an experienced Cultural Programme Manager, with over 20 years-experience in arts and cultural management, European programmes and in programme design and delivery,

She is an advisor to many organisations in the area of European programmes, policy, planning and strategic organisational development and sits on numerous boards. She has been involved in several European designations for Galway including the European Capital of Culture and UNESCO City of Film designations. She is a member of the EMPOWER advisory board and is passionate about supporting women in every way.

Pat Piggott

Pat Piggott

Pat is a native of Galway and has been working with AIB in Galway for the last 25 years. He is currently Branch Manager of AIB Tuam Road, Galway and Hub Manager to AIB Tuam and AIB Athenry. A Qualified Financial Advisor he also holds a Certificate in Marketing from the Irish Management Institute and a Professional Certificate in Consumer Protection Risk, Culture & Ethical Behaviour in Financial Services from the Institute of Bankers. He has been a member of Chamber Council for the past 5 years and a Board Member of Chambers Ireland for the past 2 years.

Pat has an interest in all sports but his passion is Rugby. He was Honorary Secretary of Connacht Rugby from 2004 -2014 and was elected President for season 2016/17.

23/07/2020. Dorothy Creaven MD Rent The Runway who are based in the Claddagh in Galway. Photo:Andrew Downes

Dorothy Creaven

Dorothy Creaven is Vice President, Managing Director and site lead at the Rent the Runway European headquarters in Galway. She is an Electronic Engineering graduate from NUI Galway, and has over 20 years experience in enterprise software, tech startups, management and leadership for SMEs and multinationals alike. Dorothy specialises in scaling technology companies from rapid-growth greenfield sites to global software R&D organisations.

Her corporate background also includes large international companies such as Google, Abbott Vascular, as well as EPAM Systems, a US publicly-listed Forbes Fast 25 Tech company. Listed as one of Ireland's top 25 women in engineering, Dorothy also co-founded her own multi-award winning technology startup, an enterprise marketing automation company, Element Wave, successfully operating globally from Galway between 2010 and 2017.


Conor O'Dowd

Conor is the Chief Executive Officer for The Port of Galway. Before this, he worked with KPMG in their Galway and Dublin offices. Conor is a past president of Galway Chamber of Commerce and currently chairs the Backing Galway Business Committee.  He is also a director of the Galway City Innovation District, the company behind the PorterShed.

A native of Roscommon, Conor is interested in golf, horse racing and GAA.


Tara Dalrymple

Tara Dalrymple, HR Operations Manager & Employee Engagement has strong roots in multinationals and well-known household brands across different industries from IT, Hospitality, Gaming, Banking, Publishing and Retail. She was the founder of a Reward and Recognition platform and back-office outsourcing company operating in Ireland, Malta and England. For the last 6 years, she has worked in Community and Employee Engagement management and she is currently HR Operations Manager & Employee Engagement at Genesys for EMEA.

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Rachael Stewart

Rachael is Business Development Director with Stewart Construction, a fourth generation construction company established in Salthill, Galway in 1902. She has been a key player in the growth and development of the family business for the past 25 years, focusing on collaboration and innovation to translate client's bespoke needs into quality buildings and appealing spaces that promote business evolution.

A graduate of NUIG (BA & MBA), Rachael has been involved with many networks on a local and national level, both industry based and community based. She was a founding member of Construction Professionals Skillnet and is currently involved in the CIF Regional and Infrastructural Forum.

Rachael is committed to supporting the arts and community based projects and groups that bring practical benefit locally. She is actively involved with Architecture at the Edge (AATE), and also supports a number of varying local groups, charities and initiatives.

In her spare time Rachael loves family, food, good coffee, the arts and the sea.


orla flynn

Dr. Orla Flynn

Dr Orla Flynn took up the role of President of Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT) in March 2020, having been Vice President for External Affairs at Cork Institute of Technology (CIT) for the previous six years. Earlier management roles in CIT included Head of CIT Crawford College of Art and Design, Head of School of Humanities and Head of Department of Media Communications. She was a lecturer in the Department of Mathematics and Computing for 13 years prior to that. Dr Flynn served as a Director on the board of Cork Chamber of Commerce for four years and has a keen interest in driving strong relationships between GMIT and industry/business. A native of County Waterford, Orla is also an amateur beekeeper.


Darragh O'Connor

Darragh O’Connor, is Head of Sales for the newly opened Dean Hotel Galway and the stunning Glasson Lakehouse at Athlone. Previously he worked as Director of Corporate Sales for the Harbour Hotel in Galway City and Glenlo Abbey Hotel & Estate. A graduate of Shannon College of Hotel Management and having recently completed a course in Professional Sales Management at UCD,  there are two things that he is passionate about Sales and Tourism. Darragh is the founder and Chairperson of Galway Convention Bureau an organisation set up to attract International Conferencing to the City & County. He also serves as the current President of the Skål International Galway, Skål International is a professional organisation of tourism leaders around the world, promoting global tourism and friendship.In his spare time he enjoys cycling and tennis.


Gerry Dillon

Gerry a Chartered Civil Engineer, joined the Shannon Group in early 2014 as Operations and Development Director for Commercial Property and was appointed as Managing Director of Shannon Commercial Properties( previously known as Shannon Development) in 2019 . Gerry now holds the role of Shannon Group Property Director  and is responsible for all Commercial Property investment for the group.  Prior to this, Gerry worked across a range of sectors including Local Authority ,Civil Engineering infrastructure projects and large mixed use residential and commercial developments including healthcare and hotel projects in Ireland, Africa, Asia and the USA. Gerry resides in Barna and in his spare time enjoys participating in water sports and cross country adventure racing.


Lily Haskins

Lily Haskins is the Vice President of International Transformation at Diligent Corporation, the world’s largest GRC SaaS provider serving nearly 1 million users from 23,000 organizations. She has extensive experience starting and scaling new organizations and initiatives across the corporate, non-profit, political and government spaces.

Lily relocated from New York City to Galway in March 2021 to stand up Diligent’s new European Hub in Galway and is thrilled to work with her colleagues on the Chamber to draw and retain amazing professionals from across the world to the West of Ireland


Patricia Philbin

Patricia Philbin is a Director of Services with Galway City Council and has over 30 years experience in the public sector.  A graduate of GMIT and UCD she has worked across many departments of Galway City Council including Housing, Economic Development,  Community Development, Culture and Human Resources.  She most recently held the position of CEO of Galway 2020 European Capital of Culture.  


Enda McGuane

Enda is a former army officer and highly experienced senior manager and property professional with over 20 years’ experience. As MD of Winters Property, he oversees the operation of one of Irelands largest largest property service providers.
He is a dual status Chartered Surveyor and Society of Chartered Surveyors (SCSI) Fellow practising in the areas of Planning & Development and Property & Facilities Management as well as a RICS registered Red Book valuer. He is an external examiner on TUD’s Property and FM Studies degree. Enda is Chairman of the West/NW Region Committee of SCSI and sits on the National Planning and Development Committee and the Board of SCSI as 2nd Vice President. He is also the Vice-Chair of the Property and Facility Management Committee and a member of the Practise and Policy Committee.

He represents Galway Chamber as a member of Galway Co Co’s Housing Strategic Policy Committee, Chambers Ireland Sustainable Infrastructure and Planning Taskforce and as a member of the Board of Galway Technology Centre where he chairs the Strategy and Development sub-committee. In addition is a member of  Property Industry Ireland’s Market Supply and Demand Committee as well as the CIF’s Western and Midlands Infrastructure Forum. He is a board member of COPE Galway and chairs the Property sub-committee as well as a member of the Board of Co-Operative Housing Ireland where he chairs the Development sub-committee. Enda is a frequent commentator on housing issues in the media and a regular speaker at housing policy conferences.


Sinead Ní Fhatharta

Sinead is the Head of Enterprise within Údarás na Gaeltachta and has over 30 years’ experience in Economic Development in the Gaeltacht areas.  She managed an internet community project, worked as a European Liaison Officer in Brussels and as a development executive in the Connacht Regional office of ÚnaG prior to moving to the Enterprise and Employment Division to work with HPSUs.  As Head of Enterprise she works with promoters/investors to develop and grow companies in the Gaeltacht areas.   Sinead is a qualified CIMA accountant, and she holds an MBA honours degree from NUI Galway.  She has Diploma (Level 8) through the International Chartered Director programme, passed with distinction, and currently in the process to becoming a Chartered Director with the Institute of Directors Ireland.   She has completed a 5-year term on the Governing body of National University of Ireland Galway, where she was Chairwoman of the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Committee; Chairwoman of two+ Appeals Boards; Cathaoirleach ar fhochoiste Straitéis Gaeilge: Vice-chairwoman of the Finance Committee; Member of the Audit and the Standing & Strategic Planning Committees. Sinead was reappointed on the Governing body in May 2021.  She is currently Chair and Board member of Westbic.


John Ryan

John is the MD and Proprietor of The Ardilaun Hotel in Galway. A family run 123-bedroom, 4 star property with extensive Food and Beverage, Conference and Banqueting and Leisure facilities.

John is a graduate of Business and Marketing from Dublin City University and a graduate of The Shannon School of Hotel Management. He worked with The Movenpick group, Dromoland Castle and extensively through the Forte Organisation before returning home in 1995 to The Ardilaun.

John is a member of the Irish Hotels Federation National Council as Galway’s representative and formerly  National  Vice President of The IHF and is a member of the Galway Tourism Task Force.



Katie Finnegan


Carmel Brennan

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Declan Dooley