FAMILY BUSINESS AWARDS - Key Persons


Angela Canavan

Job Titles:
  • CEO of Canavan Byrne Management
Angela Canavan is CEO of Canavan Byrne Management and Training Solutions and has vast experience in the early years care and education/ School Aged Childcare industry. Prior to setting up her own business she held a senior role in Dublin City Council. Her company, Canavan Byrne, recently celebrated 21 years in business, a business that specialises in providing professional services to the early childhood care and education sector to include Policy and HR Advisory services, Compliance, Training Services , and Business advice.

David Donegan

Job Titles:
  • Member of the Law Society of Ireland
David specialises in the area of commercial law, commercial properties, finance and taxation. He has experience in family business, transfer from generation to generation, structuring of family businesses and family Estates. He sits as Non-Executive Director and Nominee Director on two Boards offering and oversight monitoring of company operations and risk management, input into strategic planning and ongoing monitoring of performance against targets, involved in budgeting, annual budgeting and reviewing of same and much more. David is a member of the Law Society of Ireland and an associate of the Institute of Taxation of Ireland He is a Director with the Tricel Group (Killarney) David is Co-Author of "Irish Stamp Duty Law" 5th Edition - Published by Tottels, has written articles published in Law Society Gazette, Tax Review and main stream press dealing with legal and tax structures, is a Committee member Quality, Safety and Governance Committee of Cope Foundation. He is also a Strategic Advisor to Family Business Ireland in respect of Family Businesses

Diarmaid Lennon


Dr Siobhan Killion

Job Titles:
  • Head of Management
  • Member of the Judging Panel
Dr Siobhan Killion is the Head of Management in the School of Management, People & Organisations at Technological University Dublin. Siobhan has her PhD in Family Business Research focusing on how family businesses can evolve successfully over time, has extensive teaching experience to management students and has published successfully in a number of Journals. Siobhan has been a member of the judging panel for the family business awards for a number of years and brings her academic experience and her own family business background to the table for this notable event.

Dr. Na Fu

Job Titles:
  • Professor in Human Resource Management at Trinity Business School
Na Fu is a Professor in Human Resource Management at Trinity Business School, Fellow at Trinity College Dublin, Fellow at CIPD, and the Co-Director at Trinity Centre for Digital Business and Analytics.

Jill Thornton

Job Titles:
  • Award Manager

JJ O'Connell

Job Titles:
  • Director of One of Ireland
JJ O'Connell has been the Director of one of Ireland's leading IFC's (Institute for Collaboration) for over 20 years, and in that time have been most fortunate to build-up a high value network of trusted advisors. He has a particular like and empathy with owner-managers and entrepreneurs and has core expertise is in Business Planning, Family Business & Succession, Group Facilitation, B2B Networking, Strategy and General Business Management.

John Kenny

John Kenny has worked in the arts and entertainment sector for over 20 years. He is the director of CultureHead, a leading communications agency for the creative industries in Ireland specialising in Public Relations and Digital Marketing for the arts, entertainment and technology sectors. Clients include numerous large scale national-cultural events including The UCD Festival, Culture Date With Dublin 8 and Culture Night Dublin as well as many of Ireland's key heritage sites and museums including Butler Gallery, Kilkenny the Wexford Arts Centre and the Seamus Ennis Arts Centre. John is founder of the Glow Depot, a creative production house that runs the ArtLot area at the annual Electric Picnic Festival. He has been a guest lecturer at University Limerick, University College Dublin and the graduate marketing program at EM Normandie. His commentary on arts and marketing has been published in The Sunday Times and The Business Post.

John McGrane

John is the Executive Director of The Family Business Network, the network organisation for experiential learning, mutual support and advocacy for and on behalf of Irish families in business. He is also the Director General of the British Irish Chamber of Commerce and Founder and CEO of kmend.com, the enterprise solution tech start-up. Retired from a forty-year career in business banking, his interests weave through commerce, culture and community. He sits on the Boards of Fishamble: The New Play Company and the Irish Film Institute and he has led numerous public policy initiatives including the Government's Forum on Philanthropic Funding of the Arts and the creation of the National Concert Hall Quarter.

Jonathan Carroll

Jonathan Carroll is an independent curator based in Dublin. He has curated the visual arts strand for St. Patrick's Festival and was on the panel of curators for the Goethe-Institut. He was the assistant curator of the Project Arts Centre and is a regular columnist for the Visual Artists' News Sheet. He co-founded Artlot (programming outdoor art for vacant space) with John Kenny of Culturehead. Jonathan is a graduate of Art History UCD, Cultural Management Instituto Universitario Ortega Y Gasset, Madrid and Curating Contemporary Art at the RCA, London.

Rick McKee - CEO

Job Titles:
  • Chief Executive
Rick is Chief Executive of creative brand agency The Foundation. He has over 25 years' experience of marketing business leadership, with a background in business strategy, sales and operational delivery. From over 15 years driving the growth of the largest digital business of its kind in Ireland from start-up through an acquisition in 2009, Rick held a number of leadership and business growth roles within a large UK & Ireland media plc through to 2013. He is also an experienced business consultant and mentor, having spent some years designing and delivering strategic planning and management development assignments with an Irish consultancy business, before taking up his current role with The Foundation in 2017.

Sharon O'Donoghue

Sharon has significant experience and expertise in entrepreneurship, marketing, and brand development. She has worked in the hospitality and communications industry since 2000. A business graduate of IT Tralee, Sharon also holds the Public Relations Institute of Ireland (PRII) Diploma in PR and the Institute of Marketing, Diploma in Digital Marketing. Sharon is a former board member of Brook Foods, where she also held the position of Sales & Marketing Director from 2005 until 2016. She was also former Marketing Director of the Rose of Tralee International Festival, Sales & Marketing Manager of The Earl of Desmond Hotel. She was named ‘Network Cork Business-Woman' and ‘Network Ireland Business-Woman' of the year 2013. She elected first female president in Rotary Ireland in 2011. She is currently CEO of Media Life, a Marketing and Digital Company representing clients in the hospitality, enterprise, and healthcare sector. Her clients include Romantic Castles of Ireland, Audiology Medical Services, Small Business Ireland to name a few.

Steven Kilroy

Steven Kilroy is as an Associate Professor in Human Resource Management and Director of the full time MBA Program at Trinity Business School, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland. He holds a BA, MBS and PhD in Human Resource Management as well a postgraduate certificate in higher education and teaching. He is also a member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD). He has previously worked as an Assistant Professor of Human Resource Management at Tilburg University in the Netherlands and Queens University Belfast. Steven's expertise and research interests are in the areas of Strategic Human Resource Management and Organisational Psychology/Behaviour. Specifically, his research largely focuses on the impact of high- performance work practices on employee well-being and performance. He is also interested in the topics of employee burnout and engagement, leadership, change management, and retention (especially in the health care context). He has published in well regarded human resource management, organisational psychology and health care management journals. In addition to research, Steven has extensive teaching experience at undergraduate, postgraduate and executive education level in the areas of HRM, organisational psychology and organisational behaviour.

Tomás Sercovich

Job Titles:
  • CEO of Business
Tomás was appointed CEO of Business in the Community Ireland in January 2018. Previously, he was with Spain's largest sustainability network, Forética as Director of External Affairs, where he increased the international profile of the organisation and its external reputation and impact. Between 2002 and 2012 he held several positions with Business in the Community Ireland, among them Manager of the Membership Services Team. He is a member of the Board of Young Social Innovators and the Irish Association for Social inclusion Opportunities (IASIO). Tomás holds a bachelor's degree in international relations from Universidad de Belgrano in Argentina and a Master's degree in International Relations and International Management from the Università di Bologna in Italy. He also holds a Certificate in Management from DIT.