Marine Institute

Board Members

Photo of Chairman Dr John Killeen.

Dr John Killeen (2014 - 2019) (2019 - 2024)

Dr John Killeen is an engineer and a native of Co Roscommon who became an Honorary Freeman of Galway City in 2012. His career spans working with Local Government with a multi-national construction company that built the Grand Canal tunnel in Dublin in 1973 and seven years with Shell International subsidiary. Dr Killeen was President of Engineers Ireland 1995-1996 and was founding President of the Academy of Engineering in Ireland in 1996-1998. He is a retired CEO of Colas Group in Ireland and retired Managing Director of Cold Chon Galway Ltd.

In 2009, he was Chairman of the Volvo Ocean Race event in Galway. In 2012, he was President of the Volvo Ocean Race Festival and finale which broke all attendance records for a sporting event in Ireland, valued at approximately €80m in tourism and business income to the city. Dr Killeen is Chairman of the Saolta University Health Care Group and President of the Timoney Leadership Institute - a charity that promotes International leadership training for Irish CEOs.

Prof. Patricia Barker (2013 - 2018) (2018 - 2023)Photo of board member Prof. Patricia Barker.

Prof Barker is a Fellow of Chartered Accountants Ireland and qualified in 1973. Prof Barker completed an MPhil in Gender Studies in Trinity College Dublin. Her PhD developed a paradigm of disclosure of financial information to employees in organisations. She served her articles with Stokes Bros. & Pim in Dublin and worked for Peat Marwick Mitchell in Manchester. She later became a partner in an accounting practice in Manchester for six years and worked in Manchester University as a principal lecturer. 

Patricia was appointed lecturer in Dublin City University (DCU) in 1980 and progressed through senior lecturer, Associate Dean (Business School) and University Vice-President (Academic). She has worked as a visiting professor in universities in New York, Boston, Angers, Malawi, Dares Salaam, Sydney and Cape Town and has been an external examiner for universities and professional bodies.

She served as Chairman of the Chartered Accountants' Accounting Committee for twenty years and was a member of the Council of Chartered Accountants for four years in the 1990s and again for five years in the 2010s. She represented Ireland on the Accounting Standards Board in London for nine years and chaired the expert group reporting to the European Union on the role, structure and functions of the European Court of Auditors. She had several tours of duty as Election Supervisor for the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Ireland (OSCE) in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Republica Serpska, South Africa, Kosovo, Kazakhstan, Montenegro, Malawi and Belarus. 

Patricia worked as a Human Rights Monitor in Israel and Palestine. She has been a member of the Boards of Women’s Aid, the Sonas Housing Association, the National Chamber Choir and the Higher Education Authority (chairing the Audit Committee), and was Chairperson of the Irish Blood Transfusion Service for three years. 

She is currently a Director of Dublin Bus Ltd. and Tallaght Hospital chairing their Audit Committees. In addition, she is Chair of the Education Board of Chartered Accountants Ireland. In addition she is Chair of the Audit and Risk Committee for the Marine Institute. She is currently a voluntary counsellor and trainer for the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre. She has written books on group accounting, flexible working in the profession and more recently on women who have succeeded in the accountancy profession, as well as on corporate governance and professional ethics.   

Dermot Clohessy B.Sc Eng (2015 - 2020)Dermot Clohessy

Mr Dermot Clohessy (BSc Eng.) is an engineer by profession with postgraduate qualifications in both business strategy and finance. He has an extensive understanding of foreign direct investment (FDI) having worked for 28 years with IDA Ireland.

Dermot was the IDA's Executive Director/COO from 2006 to 2015 and was directly involved in the development and successful implementation of the IDA's corporate strategies during this period. His broad responsibilities included expanding the global markets in which Ireland competes for investment and developing new business areas for FDI into Ireland.

Dermot was a member and a sub-committee chairman of the Development Task Force established to support the implementation of Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth – an integrated marine plan for Ireland.

He is now a consultant, working internationally on business development strategies for both the private sector and government bodies. He is a strategic advisor with the Ireland-based International Development Ireland (IDI) - IDI works with governments on the practical implementation of projects of national strategic importance which underpin economic development.

Dr. Berna Grist B.L

Dr. Berna Grist B.L. (2015 - 2018) (2018 - 2023)

Dr. Berna Grist B.L., a barrister and chartered town planner, is Adjunct Professor in the School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy at University College Dublin. She holds a PhD from the University of Ulster on The Legislative and Regulatory Framework for Development in the Republic of Ireland and has published widely in the fields of planning and environmental law, public policy and governance. Together with the late James Macken SC, she co-edited the Irish Planning Law Factbook (2003), which she continues to update annually, and in 2012 she published the second edition of An Introduction to Irish Planning Law.

Dr. Grist was appointed Deputy Chairperson of the Aquaculture Licences Appeals Board on its establishment in 1998. During the period 2001-2006, she served as a member of An Bord Pleanála and, in 2013, she was appointed to the Expert Group advising the Minister for Housing and Planning on a successor to the National Spatial Strategy 2002-2020. She has contributed to a number of environmental research projects sponsored by the Environmental Protection Agency and is a member of the Irish Environmental Law Association.

Mr David Owens (2012 - 2018) (2018 - 2023)Photo of board member David Owens.

Mr David Owens (F.C.A) is currently Senior Vice President, Finance and Operations for SolarWinds (NYSE: SWI). Prior to joining SolarWinds, Mr. Owens worked for Red Hat, Inc., an enterprise software company, for over seven years, where he served initially as Director of Global Logistics and Production and then as Senior Director of Finance- EMEA.

Mr. Owens qualified as a chartered accountant with Ernst & Young and is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland.

Photo of board member Donal Kelly.

Mr Donal Kelly (2013 - 2018) (2018 - 2023)

Mr Donal Kelly is Managing Director of Fast Fish Ltd, a successful fish sales and oil supply business based in Castletownbere. Mr Kelly served on the Celtic Sea Herring Management Committee for 10 years and on the West Pelagic Committee for 3 years.

Mr Kelly has served on a number of boards, both in the private and voluntary sector, including the Cork County Community and Voluntary Forum and the Cork County Development Board and has acted as Chairman of Castletownbere GAA Management Committee. He is also a member of Berehaven Golf Club and the Castletownbere Community Development Association.