Appointment of new board of the International Fund for Ireland
The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr. Dermot Ahern T.D., has announced the appointment of a new Board of the International Fund for Ireland.
The appointment, made jointly by the Irish and British Governments, comes shortly after the launch of Sharing this Space, a five year strategy refocusing the organisation on reconciliation in the North and border counties.
Fund Chairman, Denis Rooney is re-appointed, as are three of the outgoing Board, Mr John McDaid from Derry, Ms. Deirdre Ryan from Dundalk and Mr Jackie Hewitt from Belfast. In addition, the General Manager of Donegal airport, Ms Anne Bonner; the Vice-Chair of the Northern Ireland Housing Executive Ms Anne Henderson; and independent HR Consultant Ms Mary Southwell have joined the organisation.
Minister Ahern paid tribute to outgoing Board Members, Mr Gene Murtagh, Ms Carmel Lynch and Ms Helen Kirkpatrick for their service to the International Fund over the previous six years.
“Each of the outgoing Board members has made a huge personal contribution to the Fund's work,” he said.
“Their dedication has been central to the organisation's success in promoting social and economic development in the North and border counties. They have served their communities well over the past six years and deserve our gratitude.”
The Minister also welcomed the appointment of the three new Board members.
“It is pleasing that three high calibre individuals have agreed to join the Fund Board at such a critical time,” he said.
“Sharing this Space is an ambitious strategy, which will re-orientate the Fund towards grassroots cross-community and cross-border activity. I have no doubt that the new Board members will play an important role in its implementation and I wish them well in their endeavours.”
The full Board of the International Fund for Ireland is:
• Mr Denis Rooney, Chairman
• Mr John McDaid
• Ms Deirdre Ryan
• Ms Anne Bonner
• Mr Jackie Hewitt
• Ms Anne Henderson
• Ms Mary Southwell
21st February 2006
Note for Editors:
The International Fund for Ireland is an international organisation established by the Irish and British Governments in 1986 with the objectives of promoting economic and social advance and of encouraging contact, dialogue and reconciliation between unionists and nationalists throughout Ireland. Contributors to the Fund are the United States, the European Union, Canada, New Zealand and Australia. Its total expenditure since 1986 is more than €750m.
The Fund's budget for 2006 is €36 million. Funding priorities will include grassroots level reconciliation and cross-community projects. In addition, the Fund will seek to address the root causes of deprivation in the most disadvantaged areas by using shared economic concerns as a platform for regeneration and cross-community activity. The Fund will also continue its pioneering work with children and young people throughout the North and border counties.
Mr Rooney, Mr McDaid, Mr Hewitt and Ms Ryan have been reappointed to the Board.
Members of the outgoing Board are Ms Helen Kirkpatrick, Ms Carmel Lynch and Mr Gene Murtagh whose terms have now concluded.
• Mr Rooney is a prominent businessman based in Belfast and has extensive experience in dealing with cross-community, cross-border issues in the North and border counties.
• Mr Hewitt is Manager of Farset/Inishowen and Border Counties Initiative
• Mr McDaid is a Derry based Chartered Accountant
• Ms Ryan is former Executive Director of Dundalk Chamber of Commerce and has extensive experience in cross-border business development
• Ms Henderson is Vice-Chair, Northern Ireland Housing Executive
• Ms Bonner is Managing Director of Donegal Airport Co.
• Ms Southwell is Independent HR Consultant based in Dublin