News roundup


Interim Chief Executive appointed at HRB

Dr Mairéad O'Driscoll, will be appointed Interim Chief Executive at the Health Research Board while recruitment for the position is underway.

Currently the Director of Research Strategy and Funding, Dr O'Driscoll will take up the position on 1 June 2020.

Highlighting the key role Dr O‘Driscoll will play, Prof Jane Grimson, Chairperson of the Board, said,

‘I would like to thank Mairéad for stepping into this role at such a critical time. Health research is key to tackling COVID 19 and to ensuring we have a sustainable, high-quality healthcare system. It is essential that we have someone with the expertise and experience to lead the growing role that the HRB has taken in confronting this international challenge'.

Dr O'Driscoll said,

‘The HRB has a key role in delivering research and evidence to inform health decision making and policy. My priority will be to lead the organisation's activity in context of the COVID 19 challenge, while ensuring we sustain the current momentum in achieving our strategic goals'.

Prof Grimson acknowledged the contribution of Dr Darrin Morrissey as Chief Executive in recent years.

‘Darrin embraced this role with great enthusiasm and commitment. His consultative approach ensured the support of staff and external stakeholders in delivering on the organisation’s goals and as he led the development of the new HRB strategy 2030. I wish him well as he moves on to a new position in NIBRT'.

Bionote: Dr O’Driscoll

Dr Mairéad O’Driscoll is the Director of Research Strategy and Funding at the HRB, with responsibility for a budget of approx. €40 million p.a. and awards portfolio of approx. €150m. Before being appointed Director of Funding, she was Head of Policy, Evaluation and External Relations at the HRB.

She worked as a researcher in academia and industry before moving into policy research, first with the Royal Society in London and then with the Wellcome Trust.  She also spent time in South Africa where she worked on the development of a national research and technology foresight study.

She is a member of several national and international groups, including the Executive Committee of IC PerMed, the International Consortium for Personalised Medicine, which she chaired for the two years. Mairéad is a graduate of Trinity College, Dublin, and the University of London.