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Minister Ring appoints new Board to the Western Development Commission

The Minister for Rural and Community Development, Michael Ring, T.D. today 18th August 2017 announced that he has appointed a new Board to the Western Development Commission.

Making the announcement, Minister Ring said:

"The Western Development Commission has played an important role in promoting economic and social development in the Western region since it was established in 1999.

The new Board is taking up office at a time of unprecedented opportunity for the Western region, as the Government places a renewed focus on regional development.  The Northern and Western region was recently named as EU European Entrepreneurial Region for 2018, while good progress is being made on the development of the Atlantic Economic Corridor proposal which seeks to maximise the region’s assets and support job creation in the region.  The Government will also be publishing the new National Planning Framework later this year, which will be a blueprint to support longer-term regional development."

The Minister continued:

"I want to thank the previous Board of the WDC for their work over the last three years in supporting the development of the Western region.

There were a large number of applications for appointment to the new Board and I want to thank everyone who took time to apply through the State Boards appointment system, and especially to those who have accepted the appointments to the new Board.

The composition of the new Board reflects an excellent mix of experience and skills from the business sector, the public sector, community interests and the education sector.  I have no doubt that the incoming Board can make a significant contribution to economic and social development in the Western region, in collaboration with other key stakeholders.

I have asked Dr. Deirdre Garvey to take up the positon of Chair of the Board, subject to meeting with the Oireachtas Committee in accordance with standard procedures for such appointments."


Notes for Editors

The Western Development Commission (WDC) was established in 1999 to promote, foster and encourage economic and social development in the Western Region, defined as the counties of Donegal, Leitrim, Sligo, Mayo, Roscommon, Galway and Clare.  Its activities involve policy development and analysis, undertaking key regional initiatives and management of the Western Investment Fund (WIF) which provides loans to SMEs.

Appointments to Board of the WDC follow on from the advertisement for expressions of interest on and an assessment process operated by the Public Appointments Service.  Final decisions on the appointment of members were based on a short-list provided by the Public Appointments Service.  The full list of members appointed by the Minister is provided below.  Their appointment is for a period of three years.

Members of the Board of the Western Development Commission, July 2017


Head of Centre, Mayo Campus, GMIT (Outgoing Board member)


MD, Care About You; former MD Resilience Healthcare


CEO, Banking & Payments Federation Ireland; former CEO Road Safety Authority

Head of Dept of Sociology, Maynooth University

MD, First Class Office, Co. Roscommon (Outgoing Board member)


Former Directory of the Border and Western Regional Assembly


Head of Department, Computing and Creative Practices, Sligo IT


Retired Communications Advisor and journalist


Secretary/Financial Controller, Letterkenny IT; former MD, Pramerica Systems Ireland

MD, AO Business Consultants; former mentor for Enterprise Ireland


Chief Executive, Commissioner of Irish Lights; non-Executive Director, SmartBay Ltd; former Director of Strategic Planning, Marine Institute