General Industry

Two New Directors Appointed To Board Of Tourism Ireland

By Robert McHugh
Two New Directors Appointed To Board Of Tourism Ireland

The North/South Ministerial Council (NSMC) has appointed two new directors to the board of Tourism Ireland.

Karen Sugrue Hennessy has been appointed director and vice-chairperson, and Paul Gallagher has been appointed as director. Each will serve a five-year term.

‘Wealth Of Experience’

“On behalf of the board of Tourism Ireland, I warmly welcome our two new board members, Karen Sugrue Hennessy and Paul Gallagher,” said Christopher Brooke, Tourism Ireland’s chairman.

“They bring a wealth of experience and expertise, and I look forward to working with them as Tourism Ireland continues to increase the value of overseas tourism to the island of Ireland, sustainably supporting economies […] and the environment by inspiring visitors and strengthening strategic partnerships.”

Karen Sugrue Hennessy

Karen Sugrue Hennessy is the CEO of agri-tech company Real Leaf Farm, which focuses on the development of sustainable hydroponic farming in Ireland and the UK.


Hennessy also has experience in scaling food businesses, having spent nine years in Glanbia, where she was responsible for acquiring its first nutritional businesses.

She is a board member of the Port of Waterford (POW) and chair of the POW Green Committee and Audit Risk Committee. Previous directorships include being chair of Showcase Ireland Events Limited, vice-president of the Bureau of European Design Associations, and a board member of the Kilkenny and Carlow Education and Training Board.

Paul Gallagher

Paul Gallagher is the general manager of Buswells Hotel in Dublin. He is a fellow of the Irish Hospitality Institute, a past president of the Irish Hotels Federation, and a past chairman of the Irish Tourism Industry Confederation (ITIC).

Gallagher chaired Tourism Ireland’s Central Marketing Partnership and was a member of its Brexit taskforce. He is a non-executive director of the Convention Centre Dublin and vice-chairman of Original Irish Hotels. As well as serving on the government’s Advisory Group on Small Business, he served as a member of Ireland’s Tourism Recovery Taskforce in 2010 and the Grow Dublin Taskforce in 2008. Gallagher was appointed to the Tourism Recovery Oversight Group by Minister Catherine Martin in November 2020.