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IoD Executive

Caroline Spillane CDir

Caroline Spillane CDir

Chief Executive Officer

Caroline Spillane CDir is Chief Executive Officer of the Institute of Directors Ireland.

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She commenced the role in July 2022. Caroline has held several senior leadership roles including most recently as Director General of Engineers Ireland, the all-Ireland professional body for engineers, CEO of the Medical Council of Ireland, the independent statutory regulator of over 25,000 medical practitioners and Assistant National Director of the Health Services Executive.

Caroline is an experienced Non-Executive Director serving as a board member of the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA), ESB Networks and Irish Manufacturing Research. She is also a member of the Advisory Group to Balance for Better Business, an independent business-led Review Group established by the government to improve gender balance in senior leadership in Ireland.

Caroline's qualifications include a BA from UCC and an MA from TUD. She is currently undertaking a Doctoral programme with SETU.  

Jacinta Wright

Jacinta Wright

Executive Assistant

Jacinta Wright is Executive Assistant to the Chief Executive Officer of the Institute of Directors Ireland.

Anne Mannion

Anne Mannion

Head of Marketing & Communications

Anne Mannion is the Head of Marketing & Communications for the Institute of Directors Ireland.
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Anne is responsible for leading the IoD’s communications strategy, inclusive of brand, marketing, PR, digital communications, research, public affairs and stakeholder engagement. 

Anne’s prior experience includes key marketing and communication roles for the Department of the Taoiseach (Irish EU Presidency team 2013), the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), and TheCityUK. She has also held previous roles with the Japanese Mission to the EU and the European Parliament. 

Anne has a Masters in International Relations, a BA Degree in History and Politics, and is also a Certified Digital Marketing Professional.

Lea McDonald

Lea McDonald

Digital Marketing Executive

Lea McDonald is a Digital Marketing Executive for the Institute of Directors Ireland.
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Lea is responsible for leading on training marketing and communications, the member ezine, as well as managing other digital marketing promotions and projects

Lea’s previous experience includes executing search engine marketing strategies for a Canadian marketing agency based in Toronto and managing digital projects for a brand design agency in Dublin.

Lea has a Postgraduate Diploma from the Digital Marketing Institute and a BA degree in Sociology and Social Policy from Trinity College Dublin.

Caroline Kinsella

Caroline Kinsella

Board and Member Services Director

Caroline Kinsella is Board and Member Services Director for the Institute of Directors Ireland and a member of the Professional Development Advisory Committee (PDAC).

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Caroline is responsible for developing a strategy to deliver a distinctive member experience that creates a sense of valued belonging, connection, and collegiality to IoD members. Her role also includes managing and developing IoD Ireland’s Boardroom Services, including Board Evaluations, and the Board Room Centre, ensuring these services continue to provide support to partner organisations and add value to the professional and career development of individual members.

Caroline was previously the Head of Business Development for UCD Smurfit Executive Development (SED), where she held overall responsibility for SED's Open Programme Portfolio, ranked #1 in Ireland and 35th in the world by the FT 2023 Executive Education Rankings. 
 
Prior to her role in SED, Caroline was Alumni Relations Manager for UCD Business Alumni Community. She has also worked in the Public Relations industry, Executive Search & Selection and worked with a government agency. Caroline's qualifications include a B. Comm from UCD (2000) and an MSc in Business (Leadership and Management Practice) from UCD Smurfit School (2019). 
 

Lesley Darling

Lesley Darling

Head of Membership

Lesley Darling is the Head of Membership for the Institute of Directors Ireland.
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Lesley is responsible for membership development within the IoD, and oversees the recruitment, retention, and attrition of members. She is also responsible for the administration of the membership database

Lesley’s previous experience includes office and facility management for both large and small businesses. She also previously worked as a Personal Assistant to several C-Suite Directors, where her role included detailed diary management, departmental budgeting, and travel arrangements.

Lesley holds a Certificate in Office Information Systems from GMIT and remains up to date on all relevant Membership recruitment and retention strategies and training.

Heather Croghan

Heather Croghan

Membership Officer

Heather Croghan is a Membership Officer for the Institute of Directors Ireland.

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Heather is responsible for the development and performance of the membership benefits scheme, including outreach to new providers and fostering relationships with current suppliers. She also co-ordinates regular member interview profiles for publication in the monthly ezine and other platforms.

Heather has extensive experience with membership programme development, promotion, and communications. Prior to joining  IoD Ireland she held membership and development roles at the National Gallery of Ireland and the Irish Film Institute and was Chair of the Dublin University Film Society.

Heather holds a BA(Hons) degree in Ancient History and Culture from Trinity College Dublin, and a Masters in Collections and Curating from University College Dublin.

Dara Gillis

Dara Gillis

Membership Officer

Dara Gillis is a Membership Officer for the Institute of Directors Ireland.

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Dara is responsible for looking after new members, handling membership queries, and developing membership within IoD Ireland.

Dara has previously worked in the area of membership and marketing for an NGO in Toronto, Canada. He has also worked in a variety of other industries such as telecommunications, corporate immigration, and finance

Dara has a BA (Hons) in Geography & Archaeology, and a Masters in Geopolitics and Economics from University College Dublin. He most recently attained a Graduate Diploma in Law from the University of Law.

Anna Hannigan

Anna Hannigan

Events Manager


Anna Hannigan is the Events Manager for the Institute of Directors Ireland.

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Anna is responsible for managing IoD Ireland’s calendar of events, including our Briefing series, Lunch Bites @ the IoD series, networking events, and our signature Christmas lunch.

Anna is an experienced event professional. With over 15 years expertise in the events industry, in a range of areas such as hospitality and destination management.

Anna has a BSc. degree in Tourism Marketing from TU Dublin.

Sheila Byrne

Sheila Byrne

Director Development & Training Manager

Sheila Byrne is the Director Development & Training Manager for the Institute of Directors Ireland.
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Sheila is responsible for overseeing the delivery of IoD director development programmes, including the Chartered Director Programme, bespoke in-house training and one-day training workshops and courses.

Sheila’s previous experience includes a range of training and communication roles with both public and private sector organisations.

Sheila has a Certificate and Diploma in Company Direction from the Institute of Directors, an MBA from Smurfit Graduate Business School, a Certificate in Public Relations from Technological University Dublin, and a BA (Hons) degree in History and Politics from University College Dublin.

Caitriona De Burca

Caitriona De Burca

Senior Training Executive

Caitríona De Burca is a Senior Training Executive for the Institute of Directors Ireland.
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Caitríona is responsible for the administration of IoD Ireland workshops and courses, and the IoD Chartered Director Programme. Her role also includes the preparation and compilation of reports for  IoD Ireland’s Boardroom Evaluation service.

Caitríona previously worked for Business2Arts where she was responsible for high-profile event management and providing advice to businesses and arts affiliates on the mutual benefit of arts sponsorship. She also worked at the Performing Right Society in London where she managed a team responsible for administering copyright royalties in the UK, ensuring accurate distribution and compliance with copyright agreements for PRS membership.

Caitríona holds a Professional Diploma in Compliance from the ACOI as well as a Certificate in Company Secretarial Practice with the ICSA. She holds a BA (Hons) in Music & Theology from Trinity College Dublin and a Diploma of the Associate from the Royal Irish Academy of Music in Violin teaching and examining.