Keynote Speakers 2020

Dr. Ann Sheahan – Co Founder – Entellexi

Ann holds a BSc, and MBA. She has over 25 years experience in both multinational and SME organisations in the field of Business Process Optimisation. She co-founded and currently manages ManOPT Systems Ltd. trading as Entellexi, a software development company specialiseing in enterprise performance optimisation and visualisation.

Ann has also facilitated a number of Lean Transformation projects for Enterprise Ireland Clients as well as ‘Lean for Micro’ projects for Local Enterprise Office clients.


Brian Coll – Lecturer in Quality & Lean Six Sigma – IT Sligo

Brian is a lecturer at the Institute of Technology, Sligo which is Ireland’s largest online provider of Lean Six Sigma & OpEx programmes. Brian lectures primarily to online students in the workplace and developed and co-delivers Ireland’s first Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on Lean Sigma Quality (White Belt).  This free online course launched in 2013 has since been delivered to over 12,000 participants from 50 countries with 75% from Irish organisations who utilise the course as an online training programme when implementing Lean & Opex initiatives. Brian was recognised for his work in this area as the recipient of an Irish National Teaching Expert award. Brian has more recently spent a semester as an adjunct faculty member with Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) – the largest private nonprofit university in the USA with 135,000 online students.

Brian is a regular contributor of presentations and papers on trends in online higher education particularly as it relates to the use of new technology in helping to up-skill the workforce. He has over 20 years of experience in Quality Management and has held senior positions at Director and VP level in multinational companies in Europe, USA, Puerto Rico and Mexico.


David Jones – CI Manager – Wisetek

David is a Qualified Lean Six-Sigma Blackbelt and Kaizen Practitioner, Trainer and Facilitator with 20 years’ Operational Excellence experience in the multinational Manufacturing and High Tech industry.



Deirdre Hynes – Global Performance Leader – Molex

Over the past 20 years, Deirdre has held key leadership roles within Molex in Quality, Continuous Improvement and Operational Excellence.

As a Global Performance Improvement Leader, Deirdre plays a key role in the development of the Molex Operating System with particular focus on the Value Stream Transformation program. She supports the strategic planning of deployment of VST across global sites as well as the training and coaching of employees.

As a certified Master Blackbelt, Deirdre is passionate about Lean Six Sigma and how Continuous Improvement drives excellence in performance.

Deirdre is a graduate of Cork Institute of Technology with a in B.Sc. Applied Physics & Instrumentation.


Eoghan Brophy – Lean Specialist – Glanbia Ireland

Eoghan Brophy is a Lean Specialist working in Glanbia Ireland as part of their Opex team, known as GPS (The Glanbia Performance System).Eoghan heads up their (GPS) Opex Academy, which is an initiative to engage and roll out Lean & Operational Excellence training to over 2000 Glanbia Ireland employees using a combination of in-house blended and online learning from IT Sligo. Eoghan has worked in various manufacturing and OPEX roles for the last 10 years. Eoghan is currently completing his Master of Business in Lean Enterprise Excellence with WIT.


Fergal Brophy – Innovation & Creativity Expert – Fergal Brophy Innovators

Fergal is Entrepreneurial Specialist at the Innovation Academy, University College Dublin and founder of Fergal Brophy Innovation. His focus is on facilitating and mentoring innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship for Corporates, SMEs and the undergrad/postdoc startup community. He has advised on a wide range of innovation initiatives at ESB, MetLife, Deloitte, PwC, BDO, Roche Pharma, Primark, Bank of Ireland, Enterprise Ireland, US Embassy, Oou Public Service 2020 and numerous SMEs. Fergal is lead facilitator for the Innovation Pillar on Enterprise Ireland’s Go Global 4 Growth management development program and is a mentor to awardees of the not-for-profit Social Innovation Fund (SIF). He has extensive commercial experience in South-East Asia and China. Fergal co-founded Open Financial Services, a fintech company, in 2001, with many Fortune 500 clients, which was scaled and sold to GreatWest Life, one of World’s largest financial services firms in 2014.


Jason Casey – Associate Director – Ardmac

Throughout his twelve years’ experience with Ardmac Jason has gained considerable experience in Technology & Interior Operations Management. He is a highly conscientious Operations Director with exceptional commitment to managing each element of work to the customer’s satisfaction, and driving programmes whilst maintaining a firm focus on safety, quality, and budget. Jason has been a leader in the Ardmac “Lean Construction Journey”, and is a champion of innovation and change. Jason is also a Lean Construction Ireland Director and is a Chartered Construction Manager.


Joan Mulvihill – Digitisation Lean – Siemens

Joan is an experienced CEO and Senior Manager with breadth of business experience across the gamut of industry sectors – ICT, FMCG retail, manufacturing, professional services and not-for-profit. A confident and compelling leader and communicator with exceptional critical thinking and analytical skills. Outstanding track record for business development and relationship building underpinned by strategic business planning, operations and implementation capabilities.


Karen Boyle – Lean Specialist – Wright

Innovation & Continuous Improvement Lead, primarily responsible for driving a culture of Operational Excellence & developing a strategy for business transformation and customer innovation strategy. Strong project Leader with track record of execution and experience of running complex revenue generating projects. Being part of Promed for a number of years, it has been importantly changing roles and gaining new experiences, skills and training. Helping to develop and instill our Culture and employee engagement.
Key skill areas: Continuous Improvement/ lean & Six Sigma and Leadership skills. Sales, Commercial and product communication, Marketing, Event management .
Characteristics of a forward thinker and self motivator that thrives on new challenges and adapts quickly to learning new knowledge, promoting innovation and creativity.
As part of a fast growing and ambitious company and a team that focus heavily on Performance Improvement.


Mary Buckley – Executive Director – IDA Ireland

Mary is the Executive Director and also member of the Executive Leadership Team at IDA Ireland – the state agency with responsibility for attracting foreign investment into Ireland.  Mary has held senior leadership positions in the organisation over the past 14 years, operating in Ireland and in North America.

In October 2015, Mary was appointed Executive Director with responsibility for the implementation of IDA Ireland’s Corporate Strategy, Winning FDI 2015 – 2019.  Prior to that, she was Divisional Manager covering Regional Development, Property and Corporate Operations overseeing the implementation of IDA Ireland’s Regional Development and Property strategies.  In this role she was also Head of Human Resources and Organisation Development and oversaw the Finance and Corporate Governance functions of the organisation.

From 2006 to 2010 Mary was Director of IDA Ireland’s North American operations, leading the team in winning investments across all business sectors.  Prior to her relocation to New York, Mary was Director of the South Region based in Cork.

Mary is based in IDA Ireland’s Head Office in Wilton Place, Dublin 2.


Michael Buckley – CI Manager – Wisetek

Michael is a very experienced Technical Business Leader, specialised in Strategy, Program Delivery and Operational Excellence, aligned to the Lean Six-Sigma methodology. His background is the ICT Manufacturing Industry where he have an excellent track record of developing progressive frameworks and building, guiding and mentoring multi-disciplinary, global, teams.
Michael combines innovation, creativity and resourcefulness with a strong data driven analytical capability, as a powerful development and problem-solving skillset, which delivers the best possible outcomes for quality, cost, and service.


Micheál Cassidy – Chief Technology Officer – Irish Manufacturing Research

Micheál Cassidy is founder and CTO of Irish Manufacturing Research since its formation in 2014.  Prior to this, he has had a number of management and engineering roles in large multinationals including Philips and TDK and manufacturing start-ups and SMEs.  Micheal is responsible for the strategic technical roadmap and managing diverse high performing technical teams in areas such as Knowledge Management, Energy Efficiency, Augmented Reality and IoT.  He also directs company operations and has raised over €20M in public and private R&D funding.


Niall Sheehan – Senior Digital (Cloud) Transformation Leader – General Motors

Responsible for the GM private cloud strategy, architecture, digital product portfolio roadmap
Head of the Global GM cloud transformation program office
Chief product manager with ownership for the scaled agile product management framework



Nuala O’Hagan – CI Manager – Rabobank

Nuala is a highly engaged Continuous Improvement leader and workplace coach. Significant cross-discipline experience designing and implementing sustainable Continuous Improvement ways of working to drive enterprise excellence. Deep experience in engaging and coaching staff to effect a cultural shift, and improve transactional and technical processes. High-energy and effective communicator, trainer and mentor.


Dr. Patrick Lynch – Programme Director – RIKON

Dr. Patrick Lynch, a Co-founder and Director of RIKON, WIT obtained his PhD in innovation and new product development and has extensive commercial experience including the creation and growth of early stage companies. As Director of RIKON, Patrick has amassed considerable industry, consultancy and applied innovation research experience in both management and delivery capacities spanning innovation processes and framework development, market and business research and analysis, new product and service development and business modelling and development and market development. Patrick has been researching and teaching innovation management and market analysis for over 10 years in Waterford Institute of Technology and has extensively published in national and international conferences, books and journals.


Richard Burke – Production Specialist, OPEX Site Lead – Tosara Pharma Ltd.

Richard has over 30 years’ experience working in the Pharmaceutical Industry. Richard has worked in a variety of roles, studied in Limerick University (Lean Leadership) and is currently completing his MSc Business Excellence degree in WIT Waterford. Richard holds the position of Production Specialist / Site OPEX Lead, at Tosara Pharma Ltd (part of the Teva Group). Creating a Culture of Employee Engagement, identifying waste, and encouraging associates improve their work, brings great satisfaction to his role.


Richard Seroter – Director – Google Cloud

Richard is Director of Outbound Product Management at Google Cloud, with a master’s degree in Engineering from the University of Colorado. He is also an instructor at Pluralsight, the lead editor for cloud computing, a frequent public speaker, the author of multiple books on software design and development, and a former 12-time Microsoft MVP for cloud. As Director of Outbound Product Management at Google Cloud, Richard leads a team focused on products and customer success for app modernization (e.g. Anthos). Richard maintains a regularly updated blog on topics of architecture and solution design and can be found on Twitter as @rseroter.


Sean McNulty  – Founder – Dolmen

Sean McNulty founded Dolmen product design in 1991. In the last 25 years Dolmen has developed award winning, IP rich products for multinational, SME and entrepreneurial clients across the FMCG, ICT, Telecoms and Life Sciences sectors. Clients include ABB, Diageo, Hollister Inc, Stryker, Moocall, Klas Telecom, Merlyn Showering and Ash Technologies.

Sean is a national expert on Lean Product Development and has led working groups on the development of a new CEN in Innovation Management as well as new award winning standards of Universal Design in the energy and tourism sectors. Sean delivers workshops to accelerators in the area of new product development both nationally and internationally.


Stephen Creaner – Executive Director – Enterprise Ireland

Stephen joined Enterprise Ireland as Executive Director in September 2018 and leads a new Directorate incorporating the Food, Industrial, Life Sciences, Consumer, Research, Innovation and Operational Excellence Divisions.Prior to joining Enterprise Ireland, Stephen held a wide range of leadership roles across the multinational and SME sectors, including the Pharmaceutical, Semi-Conductor, Life Sciences, Construction and Facilities services industries. His most recent role was as COO with Grosvenor Services Ltd, preceded by positions as General Manager and Senior Director of Operations with Waters Technologies (Ire) Ltd and EMEA Director of Corporate Services with Intel Ireland.Stephen is a graduate of University College Dublin with a BEng in Chemical Engineering.


Stuart Nelson – Principal Consultant –  Jigsaw VAE

Stuart is principal consultant with Jigsaw VAE and works with organisations to solve problems and enable them to develop an Organisational Growth Mindset.  Jigsaws original Lean Mindset research and workshop won the inaugural Lean Business Ireland award for Contribution to Lean Knowledge in 2018.

Stuart brings over 20 years’ experience to the analysis and improvement work he carries out.  Using tools from Lean, Six Sigma, and Design Thinking, and techniques such as coaching, mentoring, and training, he is optimally positioned to guide the person and the process through the change cycle.

Recognising the critical role of the cultural and the individual in the Lean improvements, Stuart completed degree studies in Psychology with research into the leader’s role in team engagement, learning, and openness to change.  The findings of this research have been presented at academic and professional conferences.  Stuart holds Black Belts in Lean and Six Sigma along with 3rd level qualifications in Psychology, Innovation, Strategic Management.  Jigsaw VAE is a Lean Business approved provider of the Enterprise Ireland Lean Business Offer.


TJ Scally – Co Founder – Lean Robotics

TJ is a Business Consultant and Master Black Belt with over 20 years experience primarily within the Financial Services Industry. His primary focus areas are Operational Excellence, Leading Transformation Programmes, Risk and Operating Model Design, Team Leadership, LEAN Six Sigma, Intelligent Automation, M&A, Strategy and Programme Management. He has worked with FS clients across Europe, Asia, North and South America.