Darrin Morrissey PhD

Chief Executive, HRB

Darrin Morrissey took up the position of Chief Executive at the Health Research Board in July 2018.

Immediately before joining the HRB, Darrin was the Director of Programmes and Investments with Science Foundation Ireland, where he led the delivery of funding to science & technology research across the Irish public sector research institutions. With SFI Darrin played a leading role in the delivery of the SFI Research Centres; large-scale public-private partnerships that have delivered exceptional economic and scientific impact nationally and internationally. He also led an increased orientation of SFI’s funding programmes towards the evolving needs of industry and the broadening of SFI’s portfolio of international funding partnerships.

Darrin’s prior experience includes 16 years spanning research, manufacturing and commercial success in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries. In a variety of roles in companies including GSK and Sanofi, Darrin’s work ranged from leading the development of the GSK oncology business in Ireland, to managing clinical trials across various therapy areas, and from developing and delivering national and international business strategies, to the launch of melanoma other oncology products on global markets.

Darrin qualified with a BSc in Microbiology and he holds a PhD from University College Cork. His PhD research focused on the molecular mechanisms that underlie the spread of cancer. He also worked as a postdoctoral researcher at UCC, where he managed ‘first-in-human’ clinical trials of food products affecting the gut microbiome. Darrin also holds a Diploma in Advanced Management awarded by National University of Ireland Galway.

Over recent years Darrin has been a member of a wide range of national development policy groups, including the Life Sciences Alliance, the Smart Ageing Steering Group, the Knowledge Transfer Ireland Stakeholder Forum and the British Irish Chamber of Commerce Higher Education & Research Steering Group.