Senior Management Team
Professor Cathal Kelly took up the position of CEO/Registrar in December 2009. A Graduate and Fellow of RCSI, Prof. Kelly was previously Dean of the Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences from 2006-2009.
Prior to his appointment, he was a consultant general and vascular surgeon with a special interest in endovascular surgery in Beaumont Hospital. He combined this role with chairmanship of the surgical division and an academic position in RCSI as Vice-Dean for curriculum change. In addition to completing his basic and higher surgical training in Dublin, Prof. Kelly pursued a research fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, USA.
Prof. Kelly has won the prestigious Patey Prize of the Association of Surgeons of Great Britain & Ireland for research he conducted at Beaumont Hospital and he has also obtained first place in the intercollegiate Specialty Board Exams.
Professor Hannah McGee is Dean of the Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences at RCSI. As RCSI’s chief academic officer, she is responsible for the quality of degree-awarding activities in Dublin - and in RCSI’s overseas campuses in Bahrain, Dubai and Malaysia. Prof. McGee joined RCSI in 1987 as a Health Psychology Research Fellow. In 1997 she became Professor of Psychology and in 2006 she became the first Head of Population Health Sciences (PHS) at RCSI. She established RCSI's University-wide Research Ethics Committee in 1998. She is a graduate of TCD in [BA (Mod) Physiology/Psychology] and PhD in Psychology. In 2015, She was awarded a Doctor of Science (DSc) on published work by the National University of Ireland.
Previous leadership roles include President of the Psychological Society of Ireland (1991-1992), President of the European Health Psychology Society (1998-2000), Chair of the Cardiac Rehabilitation Section, European Association for Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation (2008-2010) and Chair of the Council of Deans of Faculties with Medical Schools in Ireland (2011-13). She is a fellow of the Psychological Society of Ireland, the European Health Psychology Society and the European Society of Cardiology.
In terms of research, Prof. McGee has led on research and evaluation projects to inform national health and social policy. Her main research interests include quality of life (QoL) (including instrument development - SEIQoL and HeartQoL), cardiac rehabilitation (research policy and service development), ageing and sexual health.
She chaired the Irish Department of Health's Committee to develop the current cardiovascular health strategy - 'Changing Cardiovascular Health (2010-2019)'. Current board memberships include the Economic and Social Research Institute, the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA) and National Children's Research Centre.
Eunan Friel was appointed Managing Director of the new RCSI Healthcare Management Institute in August 2016. The Institute brings together the already successful Institute of Leadership with a new Healthcare Outcomes Research Centre and a new Quality & Process Improvement Centre. These three units combine to firstly enhance RCSI’s role in supporting health service delivery across the dimensions of education, research and service and secondly, to support our approach to clinical education more broadly as it aspires to create leaders in healthcare.
Previously, he was Managing Director of Surgical Affairs at RCSI, a role he held since October 2010 with the responsibility for the development and implementation of a refreshed strategic direction for the Department of Surgical Affairs.
Prior to joining RCSI, Eunan was Managing Director of Johnson & Johnson Medical, one of the largest suppliers of medical devices to the Irish market. Previously, he held the role of Vice President of US Marketing at Johnson & Johnson Consumer Products Company in the US. He also held the position of Managing Director of Johnson & Johnson Consumer in Ireland for five years. Eunan brings with him a strong background in strategy development, organisational planning, change management and business focus. He has a strong record of business achievement and strategic positioning across the consumer goods and healthcare sectors in Ireland, Europe and the US.
Eunan holds a Bachelor of Commerce from NUI, Galway and a Masters in Business Studies from UCD.
Kieran Ryan was appointed as Managing Director of Surgical Affairs at RCSI in August 2016. He is responsible for the development and implementation of the strategic direction for the Department of Surgical Affairs. Core to this brief is the delivery of our National Surgical Training Programmes, engagement with our Fellows and Members and specialty groups, promoting RCSI as a world leader in surgical training and medical education and provision of greater support and input to surgical practice. Kieran, as a member of the Senior Management Team, also supports our postgraduate faculties in delivering their remit and strategic objectives.
Prior to joining RCSI, Kieran was Chief Executive Officer of the Irish College of General Practitioners, a post he held since 2011. Prior to this, Kieran worked with the RCSI Department of Surgical Affairs as Research Manager and then Associate Director. He brings with him a wealth of experience and his expertise across the many facets of the healthcare ecosystem will allow him to deliver the vision of the Surgical Affairs Department as well as the 2016-2020 Surgical Strategy that supports it.
Kieran holds a BSc (applied) from Kevin Street DIT and TCD, an MSc in Healthcare Ethics and Law, and MSc in Healthcare Leadership and Management Development.
Professor Fergal O’Brien was appointed Director of Research and Innovation in 2019, after serving as Deputy Director for six years.
Following a degree in mechanical engineering and a PhD in bone bioengineering from Trinity College Dublin, Prof. O'Brien was a Fulbright Scholar in tissue engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard Medical School.
Prof. O’Brien is Professor of Bioengineering and Regenerative Medicine and is the founding head of the Tissue Engineering Research Group in RCSI. He is also Deputy Director of AMBER, the SFI Research Centre for advanced materials and bioengineering.
Since his faculty appointment in 2003, he has published over 200 journal articles in leading peer-reviewed international journals, filed numerous patents and founded a spinout company that translated two technologies from his lab to the clinic. He has supervised over 40 doctoral students to completion. He was awarded a highly prestigious European Research Council (ERC) Advanced Grant in 2018, his third ERC award, for a research project that aims to revolutionise the treatment of damaged articular joints using gene therapy and 3D printing of advanced biomaterials.
Prof. O’Brien was elected as a Member of the Royal Irish Academy in 2018, the highest academic honour in Ireland. Read more about Prof. O'Brien's research.
Jennifer Cullinane joined RCSI in 1998 as Financial Controller. In 2002, working with the former CEO, Michael Horgan, Jennifer developed the financial model for the first overseas campus in Bahrain.
She took up the position of Finance Director at RCSI in 2009. Jennifer is responsible for developing and managing the financial strategy of RCSI, ensuring that it can support the organisation's strategy and future development.
Jennifer graduated from DCU with a degree in business studies in 1990 and trained as a chartered accountant with PricewaterhouseCoopers in the audit and taxation departments of the firm.
After qualification, Jennifer joined Esso Ireland Limited as Financial & Treasury Accountant and worked closely with the UK office of the Exxon Group. She then moved to Bus Éireann taking up the position of Finance Manager.
Michael McGrail took up the position of Director of Corporate Strategy in October 2010 with responsibility for bank funding, investment properties and certain new international initiatives including The King Hamad Hospital and Oasis projects in Bahrain.
A commerce graduate from UCD, Michael is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland and a fellow of the Institute of Management Consultants and Advisers. He was appointed a partner in Coopers & Lybrand in 1985 with responsibility for establishing a corporate finance service and was subsequently given responsibility for the firm's management consultancy service.
On the merger of Coopers & Lybrand and Pricewaterhouse to form PricewaterhouseCoopers he became partner in charge of the combined corporate finance service and the combined management consultancy service. He was appointed a member of the Irish firm's eight-person Territory Leadership Team or executive board. In this capacity, he worked on the merger of the two firms and led the successful separation and sale of the firm's worldwide management consultancy service to IBM. He sat on the PwC European Corporate Finance Board and was a member of the PwC Worldwide Valuations & Strategy Board.
Since 2007, he has advised RCSI in respect of a number of overseas projects and also held the position of Acting Director of Finance.
Barry Holmes joined RCSI as the Director of Human Resources in August 2011 from RSA Insurance Ireland Ltd where he was the Director of Human Resources. Barry, as a member of the Executive team, successfully led that business from a broker-only intermediated business to a multi-channel, market leading one in the Irish General Insurance market. Prior to RSA Insurance Ireland Ltd, Barry held a number of senior HR roles at Intel Ireland including HR Manager for Ireland Fab Operations (IFO) and more recently as the Site Employee Relations Manager. Barry had commenced his working career with the Irish Business Employers' Confederation (IBEC) as an Industrial Relations Executive successfully representing and advising employers on all human resource and industrial relations matters both at enterprise level and before all of the industrial relations institutions of the State. Since March 2013 at RCSI, Barry has also assumed executive accountability for the Estates and Facilities functions in addition to the HR portfolio.
A Commerce graduate of UCD, Barry has also completed a Masters in Business Studies (MBS) specialising in Human Resource Management. In addition, Barry is a Chartered Fellow of the Institute of Personnel and Development (FCIPD) and a member of the Institute of Directors (M Inst D). Barry also completed an MSc in Corporate Governance at UCD and the Institute of Public Administration in 2018.
Before joining RCSI in May 2015, Aíne was Vice-President for Development at UCD from 2007 - 2015. For eight years, she led the €150m campaign for UCD, Forming Global Minds, successfully completing major capital projects including the O'Brien Centre for Science, the Sutherland School of Law and phase one of the Smurfit Graduate School of Business. The campaign was fundamental to the transformation of the Belfield Campus.
Before joining UCD, she was Director of Development at Queen's University, Belfast (QUB) from 1999 to 2007, where she spearheaded the £150m Retribuamus Campaign; the most ambitious and successful fundraising effort in the university's 171-year history. The Campaign moved Queen's to a new, more ambitious level by providing funding for developments such as the restoration of the Great Hall, the establishment of the Seamus Heaney Centre for Poetry, the redevelopment of the Student's Union and the building of the McClay Library.
A graduate of the University of Ulster and QUB, Aíne has worked in fundraising since 1987 - leading major campaigns for the NSPCC and MENCAP in Belfast and London. In 1998, the Institute of Charity Fundraising Managers named her Professional Fundraiser of the Year for her work with MENCAP's 50th Anniversary Blue Sky Appeal. She has served on the faculty of the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) teaching Campaign Fundraising and served as Director of the Board of the Ulster Orchestra assisting the Board to implement an ambitious new fundraising strategy.
Justin Ralph joined RCSI as Chief Technology Officer in 2017. Justin is responsible for the IT Department and the implementation of the Digital Strategy of RCSI.
Prior to joining the College, Justin served as Business Transformation Lead at BearingPoint for over a decade, where he lead a number of large transformational programmes. He has also worked with KPMG in the US, UK, and Ireland.
Justin graduated from TCD with a Bachelor in Accounting and Strategic Management in 1992. He also holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Information Technology from the NUI, Maynooth (1993), completed an MBA in Finance at Boston College in 1996 and passed the CPA (Certified Public Accountant) exams in Massachusetts in 1998.
Abi Kelly joined RCSI in 2020 as Director of International Engagement and External Relations with responsibility for the Office for Institutional Research and Planning.
Her role is to support the University’s reputation raising strategy and build its brand among key stakeholders. A key ambition for RCSI is to be recognised in the top 200 of universities in the world.
Prior to her role with RCSI, Abi spent eight years at Newcastle University (UK) where she was Executive Director of Corporate Affairs managing the external profile of this Russell Group university. She also led communications for the N8 Research Partnership, a collaborative mission group of the eight research-intensive universities in the North of England.
She has spent 28 years working in the public relations industry in the UK, including roles in local and regional government, and as a PR consultant for private-sector clients including Whitbread and Nissan.
A graduate in Ecology from the University of York, Abi is a Member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations and a contributor to the World 100 Reputation Network’s academy.