As a team, we are dedicated to supporting our members and their families, in this section you will find all of our staff and their contact information.
Barry Sheridan - CEO
Barry is our Chief Executive Officer and is a skilled business development and programme manager with diverse experience in local development − including social inclusion programmes supporting young people, unemployed, and those most disadvantaged, to fulfill their potential. He has 10 years’ experience of successfully developing innovative business development strategy solutions across the public and private sectors, with an excellent track record in increasing funding and attracting sponsorship from corporates and through national / EU funding applications. A highly flexible, adaptable, and effective at managing multiple projects, dedicated teams, and stakeholders - Barry is currently completing MSc in Local Development and Innovation on part-time basis. You can contact him via email at Barry@downsyndrome.ie … Read More
Member Support Team
Nicola Hart - National Research and Support Specialist
Nicola Hart is an experienced Speech and Language Therapist who has worked for more than 20 years with people who have Down syndrome and their families. She has been working for Down Syndrome Ireland since 2010, first in a local branch, then in the national office. Nicola became Team Leader for the Member Support Team in 2017. In early 2022, her role changed to reflect the increasing need for support for research and good practice across the lifespan. She is now employed as National Research and Support Specialist. Nicola remains a CORU registered speech and language therapist, and continues to offer general advice, training and support on speech and language issues alongside her other responsibilities. Nicola is committed to promoting evidence-led practice, and works … Read More
Fiona McGrane - Research Nurse
Fiona McGrane (CNM11, RNID, RCN) was appointed as research nurse in Down Syndrome Ireland in July 2010. She is based at Trinity College Dublin, Department of Paediatrics National Children’s Hospital Tallaght. This post is supported by Down Syndrome Ireland. Fiona is a qualified paediatric nurse and also an intellectual disability nurse. She holds a diploma in social care awarded by Stockport University. Fiona has a broad experience in acute paediatric nursing and also with children and adults with an intellectual disability. Her role is to provide support and education and to conduct research in the area of Down syndrome. Fiona is available from Monday to Friday to provide advice, up-to-date information and education in relation to any medical queries that you may have … Read More
Dr Fidelma Brady - Head of Education
Fidelma Brady is our Head of Education and is available to support you and your child in their journey through school from primary, post primary and special school. She will also provide advice and information at each stage of educational transition and when difficulties arise. Fidelma will also be available to provide support, information, advice and training for schools and teachers to assist them in the provision of appropriate education for children and young people with Down syndrome. The development and delivery of conferences, workshops and training at regional and national level for parents and education professionals will also be a key focus for Fidelma. A key component of our Member Support Team, she will continue to research, collect and disseminate current … Read More
Aoife Gaffney - Head of Employment and Projects
Aoife Gaffney is our Head of Employment, she previously worked with the Waterford & South Kilkenny Branch of DSI in 2016/17 and has worked in our National Office since July 2017. Aoife has over 10 years experience working with children & adolescents with Autism, Down syndrome & other disabilities. Aoife works on our Ability Programme, securing partnerships with employers and providing training and support to ensure meaningful employment opportunities for adults with Down syndrome. She also works hands on with adults with Down syndrome, delivering intensive pre-employment training, prior to them beginning work, and providing ongoing support while at work. Aoife manages our Beauty in all its Forms Programme, which is a joint initiative with Alfaparf Milano and provides training to adults with Down syndrome, … Read More
Sinéad Flynn - Adult Education Officer
Sinéad is our Adult Education Officer. She supports adult members, their families, branches, teachers and staff in the field of adult education. Her role includes the development of adult education courses for people with Down Syndrome. As a way for adult members to enjoy literacy outside the classroom and be part of the community, she works with members and libraries setting up and supporting nationwide book clubs. Sinéad also facilitates the National Advisory Council, enabling adults with Down syndrome to be the voice of people with Down syndrome and to have a say in Down Syndrome Ireland. Sinéad brings over 25 years' experience working across education in diverse settings to the role. She has worked in primary, post-primary and further education, including Special Education and mainstream, … Read More
John Condon - Head of Adult Education
John Condon is part of the Adult Education team at Down Syndrome Ireland. John has a back ground in special educational and school leadership. John will be supported in his role by Sinead Flynn, Adult Education Officer. Please feel free to contact John directly on (086) 1286025 or email firstname.lastname@example.org … Read More
Joanne Dawson - Employment Officer
Following a Bachelor's Honours Degree in Business and Marketing, Joanne qualified as a Life and Career Coach along with other qualifications which include Training and Community Development. With a passion and strong desire to support people to fulfill their goals, she has worked with many organisations over the years which includes working with people with disabilities supporting them towards their employment and education goals. Joanne’s role as employment officer is assisting in the expansion of the employment programme nationally. This involves securing partnerships with employers to establish meaningful employment opportunities for adults with Down syndrome. She works alongside adults with Down syndrome by providing pre-employment training and ongoing support when in employment. She also provides Down syndrome awareness training to employers. Joanne can be contacted … Read More
Annette O’Neill - Member Support Officer
Our Member Support Officer is Annette O’Neill. Annette provides support services to our members as well as with our branches around the country. Annette is also involved in organising and delivering our information events, conferences and our annual AGM. Other duties include the management of the membership database. Annette also handles Numicon inquires and liaises with our Numicon Trainers to deliver Numicon training which takes place regularly in branches, schools and education centres around the country. Numicon has proved to be an extremely effective tool in teaching Maths to people with Down syndrome. Annette can be contacted at by email at email@example.com or by phone on (01) 5632450 or mobile 083 4031 817 … Read More
Deirdre McGlynn - Early Years Specialist
Deirdre McGlynn is on the Early Years Specialist team. Deirdre has worked with children who have Down syndrome and their families for over a decade in a specialised preschool, mainstream preschools and in their family home. Working as a children’s nurse, Deirdre could see the potential in each child for growth and development and how they would blossom when the right supports were put in place. She believes passionately that the interventions in Early Years can have an impact that lasts a lifetime, the family is central to all learning and Play is the cornerstone to all of the child’s development. Deirdre can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or (086) 084 4844. … Read More
Regional Resource Officers
Our Regional Resource Officers help people with Down syndrome and their family’s access support locally.
Regional Resource Officers provide vital support and a point of contact for new parents as well as families who need help and support at local level at every life stage.
Mike Egan - Regional Resource Officer - Louth Meath Branch
Mike Egan started working with the Louth Meath branch of DSI as a part-time Regional Resource Officer in November 2016, having had over 10 years front-line and management experience in adult learning disability services.
His role in the Louth Meath branch is to act as an information and support officer for the members and committee, helping to ensure they are aware of their full entitlements and rights to get all the services and opportunities that they need. Where such services are not readily available, Mike works with the branch and DSI National Team to campaign for additional and improved services for members of all ages.
He has a particular interest in the possibility of individualised funding/personal budgets for people with Down syndrome to … Read More
Deirdre Nugent - Regional Resource Officer - Galway Branch
Deirdre Nugent is Regional Resource Officer for DSI, Galway Branch and works part-time in this role since November 2020. Deirdre has been involved with the Galway branch since the birth of her son Adam in 2006 who has a Dual diagnosis of DS and ASD. Deirdre has seen the branch get bigger and better over that time with over 300 members, spanning across the whole life span. With 2 DSG centres now up and running in Co. Galway, it has opened up countless opportunities for the running of various groups to support not just members but their families and carers also. Deirdre offers support and information about services and links families in with the National Member support team when needed, has helped DS Galway establish … Read More
Central Support Team
Down Syndrome Ireland’s Central Support Team supports members, branches and the professional community connected by Down syndrome.
Ross O’Neill - Junior Administrator
Ross O’Neill is our Junior Administrator. Ross has been working at DSI for 12 years and plays a central role at the National Office. His jobs include distributing in-coming post and ensuring that the post book is signed daily, issuing requests for 'student packs', photocopying and ensuring photocopier paper trays are filled, assisting with mailouts, greeting and looking after visitors to National Office and ensuring Visitor Book sign-ins. Ross also takes responsibility for setting up for meetings and conferences and clearing up after same. He takes in all deliveries and puts away as required. Ross weighs, franks, sorts and bags all out-going post and laminates posters and signs, as well as binding documents and publications. Ross also assists at fundraising events and assists all members … Read More
Payroll and Human Resources
Justin Keys - Chief Financial Officer
Justin joined Down Syndrome Ireland as Chief Financial Officer and is an experienced accountant who has worked in the not-for-profit sector for 20 years. Justin previously worked with Merchants Quay Ireland, Youth Advocate Programmes Ireland and Fighting Blindness. Justin has strong experience in financial management reporting and forecasting, financial controls, financial systems implementation and liaising with multi-level stakeholders to o deepen engagement, enhance productivity and drive transformation. Justin can be contacted at email@example.com. … Read More
Sandra Ryan - Bookkeeper
Sandra is our part-time Bookkeeper/Administrator in Finance providing support to both the National office and our branches. She brings years of experience from her previous roles as an accountant in the private sector. She also works as a substitute special needs assistant in her local schools. She has an amazing nephew, Henry with Down syndrome who inspired her to change her career to support children and adults with intellectual disabilities. You can reach Sandra at firstname.lastname@example.org … Read More
Communications and Lobbying Team
Our Communications and Lobbying Team manages communications with the media, our members, professionals, the general public and the various teams within our organisation both locally and nationally. The team also compiles the Down Syndrome Ireland magazine, e-newsletters and manages the content of our website and social media channels. The team also highlight national issues which impact on people who have Down syndrome and their families in order to influence Government policies.
Aoife Feeley - Communications Manager
Aoife Feeley joined the team as Communications Manager in December 2022. She can be contacted at email@example.com or (086) 102 6538. … Read More
Down Syndrome Ireland has a very small, but very active fundraising team. 86% of the money needed to run services has to be raised through fundraising. Meet our team:
Mark O’Doherty - Head of Fundraising and Retail
Mark joined Down Syndrome Ireland as Head of Fundraising and Retail in 2016. Having spent twenty years’ working in the private sector with companies specialising in branding, advertising and marketing communications, he decided to apply his experience and skill set to the non profit sector. In 2010, he applied for and won a much coveted place on the Vodafone Foundation’s World of Difference Programme. Since then, he has worked in Fundraising and Communication roles with a number of charities and completed a Masters in Management: Community & Voluntary Services. Mark believes in leading by example and has participated in four Camino walks and two parachute jumps to date for charity. Mark can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or (01) 563 2463. … Read More
Down Syndrome Ireland has a growing number of Charity Shops which are an integral part of our annual fundraising activity as they provide much needed sustainable income on a regular basis.
Barbara McCarthy - Charity Shop Manager (GPO Arcade)
Barbara joined Down Syndrome Ireland in July 2017. She brings over 20 years experience working in retail in the charity sector and to our shop in the GPO where she is Manager. Barbara enjoys working with her dedicated team of volunteers as they work together to develop a strong customer base, all the while promoting the values of Down Syndrome Ireland. She can be contacted at email@example.com or086 0274178. … Read More
Gerry Moore - Charity Shop Manager (Finglas)
Gerry joined Down Syndrome Ireland in March 2015 as a Charity Shop Sales Assistant, after many years in the Retail and Hospitality sectors. Applying skills learned in both areas helped him attain the Shop Manager’s position, first as part-time, but now as a full-time Manager in our Finglas shop. Ensuring customers are happy and returning is what keeps Gerry going, whilst hopefully increasing sales and building awareness about Down syndrome with the general public. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 086 411 2603. … Read More
Celine King - Charity Shop Manager (Templeogue)
Celine is the shop manager in our Templeogue shop. She joined Down Syndrome Ireland at the end of 2019 after spending a decade working in retail in the UK, for a large charity. Celine's main goals are to ensure that customers are happy and enjoy their shopping experience with us, and to build a good rapport with them. Our cause is very close to Celine's heart as she has a brother with Down syndrome. Through her shop management work, Celine sees the benefit and real difference that can be made to the lives of so many people with Down syndrome and their families. She can be contacted at Celine@downsyndrome.ie or on 086 604 6180. … Read More
Amanda Molloy - Charity Shop Manager (Clondalkin)
Amanda has worked in retail and sales/merchandising all her working life. She joined Down Syndrome Ireland’s Clondalkin charity shop as a volunteer in 2021, having previously completed a Community Employment programme in the charity field, where she gained lots of valuable experience. Amanda became full-time Shop Manager in our Clondalkin shop in March 2022. She has built up a great working relationship with the shop volunteers, and looking after our wonderful customers is always her top priority. She can be contacted at AmandaM@downsyndrome.ie or on 086 067 5621.
Amanda has worked in retail and sales/merchandising all her working life. She joined Down Syndrome Ireland’s Clondalkin charity shop as a volunteer in 2021, having previously completed a Community Employment programme in the charity field, where she gained lots of valuable experience. Amanda became full-time Shop Manager in our Clondalkin shop in March 2022. She has built up a great working relationship with the shop volunteers, and looking after our wonderful customers is always her top priority. She can be contacted at AmandaM@downsyndrome.ie or on 086 067 5621.… Read More
George Oliver - Projects Manager
George previously worked in the life and pensions industry where he held a number of roles including Head of Operation and Customer Services.
He is currently working on a number of key projects for DSI including the Champ (DSI member database) system, compliance and insurance review. … Read More
Claire Wright - Senior Compliance Officer
Claire Wright was appointed as Senior Compliance Officer of Down Syndrome Ireland in November 2021 working in our national office. She enables DSI to define clear operational frameworks to ensure high levels of governance. She will also provide support and guidelines to follow, so the organisation works in a safe and productive environment. Claire has over 20 years’ experience as a solicitor and a partner in a number of law firms. She completed a professional coaching qualification in 2021 and is an active member of Toastmasters International – a public speaking and leadership organisation. You can contact her via email at email@example.com.
Claire Wright was appointed as Senior Compliance Officer of Down Syndrome Ireland in November 2021 working in our national office. She enables DSI to define clear operational frameworks to ensure high levels of governance. She will also provide support and guidelines to follow, so the organisation works in a safe and productive environment.
Claire has over 20 years’ experience as a solicitor and a partner in a number of law firms. She completed a professional coaching qualification in 2021 and is an active member of Toastmasters International – a public speaking and leadership organisation. You can contact her via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.… Read More
Down Syndrome Ireland receives valuable support to fund two team positions through the Scheme to Support National Organisations in the Community & Voluntary Sector (SSNO).
This project was approved by Government with support from the Dormant Accounts Fund.