Governance

Irish National Opera, registered as Irish Opera Transformations CLG, is committed to fully implementing the Governance Code. The company complies with recommended guidelines for financial reporting (SORP) and adheres to the Principles of Good Fundraising. The company operates in accordance with its Memorandum & Articles of Association and is governed by a Board of Directors. The Members of the company are the Directors.

Board

Gaby Smyth (Chair)

Gaby Smyth

Gaby Smyth is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants, and is principal of Gaby Smyth & Company Ltd.

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He has been in practice for over twenty years, specialising in the literary, music, film and theatre arts – representing and advising many of the major Irish practitioners in these areas. Gaby has also been involved with many arts organisations in Ireland; he has been the chairman of the boards of Temple Bar Gallery & Studios, Corn Exchange Theatre Company, and TEAM Educational Theatre Company. Until recently he was in the chair at Screen Producers Ireland, and animation company Boulder Media Ltd.; and he is currently chairman of the board of the Audi Dublin International Film Festival.

Appointed April 2017.

Jennifer Caldwell

Jennifer Caldwell

Jennifer is a former managing partner of both Maples and Calder's Dublin office and Binchys Solicitors.

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Admitted as a solicitor in England and Wales in 1980 and in Ireland in 1982 she has over 30 years experience, specialising in corporate finance and mergers and acquisition. She merged Binchys Solicitors, Dublin with Maples and Calder in January 2006, when she was the managing partner of Binchys. Maples was the first international law firm to set up in Ireland. Post the merger she was joint managing partner of Maples and Calder’s Dublin office and from January 2006 until she retired from practise in 2010 she was head of corporate in the Dublin office Jennifer’s expertise spans all areas of corporate law including mergers and acquisitions, takeovers, IPOs, joint ventures and debt and equity financing. For many years she represented a number of high net worth individuals, their investment vehicles and entities in which they invested. Since retiring from practise at the end of 2010 Jennifer has continued to work with Amnesty International, serving as a member of the Executive Committee of the Irish Section of Amnesty from 2005 until 2011, and now serving as a trustee of the Amnesty Foundation, she sat on the Board of Cantor Fitzgerald Ireland Limited (formerly Dolmen Stockbrokers) from January 2011 until the end of 2015 and she currently sits on the board of Irish National Opera.

Appointed April 2017.

Stella Litchfield

Stella Litchfield

Born in Dublin, Stella Litchfield originally trained as an opera singer at the College of Music and worked with many opera companies across Ireland and the UK.

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She spent fourteen years as a member of Chorus of Scottish Opera before embarking on a career offstage.

She is now Director of Development at National Theatre of Scotland.

Appointed April 2017.

Sara Moorhead SC

Sara Moorhead SC

Sara Moorhead was called to the Bar in 1989 and practiced as a Junior Counsel from 1989 to 2004. She has been a Senior Counsel from 2004 to 2017.

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She was a Member of the Bar Council between 1995 and 1999 and a Member from 2013 to 2017. In that role she was the Treasurer of the Bar Council and responsible with the Finance Director for the finances of an organisation involving two thousand three hundred members. She is keenly interested in the area of governance and is a director of a number of the companies operated by the Law Library. She was involved in the renegotiation of the debt of the Law Library and has extensive experience in the area of governance of boards.

Sara is a regular opera and theatre goer in Ireland. She also regularly attends opera and theatre in London and New York. She is a patron of Rough Magic and is also actively involved in the Irish Georgian Society.

She has a proven track record in relation to Volunteer activity. All the activities listed have been undertaken on a non-remunerative basis over a number of years.

Appointed April 2017.

Joseph F. Murphy

Joseph F. Murphy

Born in Tralee, Joe Murphy is a Chartered Civil Engineer by profession and a Fellow of the Institution of Engineers of Ireland. He is a graduate of University College Cork as well as having a post graduate qualification in Finance from the University of Limerick.

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He was a founding director of PUNCH Consulting Engineers in 1974. He retired as a director in 2008 but continues to be active in the firm as a consultant. Joe lives in Limerick and together with his wife Mary are very supportive of music in that city. Otherwise, their particular interest is hearing live opera performed in the opera houses of the world. In the past Joe has been a corporate supporter both of the Limerick Music Association as well as music in Great Irish Houses. More recently he has been a Friend of the Irish Chamber Orchestra where his particular interest is baroque music. Joe currently holds a Board of Management position in a palliative care centre. In leisure time he is a keen supporter of Munster Rugby.

Appointed April 2017. Re-appointed October 2018 for one three-year term.


Ann Nolan

Ann Nolan

Ann Nolan is a former Second Secretary General of The Department of Finance.

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Ann worked in financial services for nine years, before that she worked in both the expenditure and tax divisions of the Department. She has served on a number of State Boards including the Pensions Authority, the SBCI, the State Claims Agency and the Legal Aid Board.

Appointed April 2018.

Yvonne Shields

Yvonne Shields

Yvonne Shields is Chief Executive of the Commissioners of Irish Lights. Irish Lights is responsible for the provision of safety and navigation services around the coast of Ireland to meet the Irish and UK governments obligations under the SOLAS – Safety of Life at Sea - Convention.

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Yvonne has extensive experience in natural resource based policy, strategy, research and programme development in Ireland and Europe. She led the development and implementation of the National Sea Change Strategy 2007-2013 and in that context managed significant funding rounds under the National Development Plan, international peer and ex-ante evaluations and value for money audits and stakeholder consultations.

Yvonne has broad and extensive experience of corporate governance requirements (private, not for profit and public), department-agency relationships and Audit and Risk Committees. She is a Chartered Director and a member of the Institute of Directors (Dublin and London).

As a relatively new comer to Opera, Yvonne is particularly interested in future strategy, audience development and the outreach aspects of INO’s work.

Yvonne has a Masters in Environmental Science from Trinity College and an MBA from DCU. She is currently a Board member of the Western Development Commission which focuses on the economic and social development in the west of Ireland and places a high value on creative industries. She has served on the Board of the National Research Council for Science, Technology and Engineering, BMW Operational Programme Monitoring Committee, Tourism Industry Confederation and has held numerous international appointments.

Appointed April 2017.

Michael Wall

Michael Wall

Michael Wall is a practising barrister specialising in construction, planning and environmental law. He is chairman of the Irish Georgian Society and a member of the board of the Abbey Theatre.

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Michael is a member of the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland and the Irish Planning Institute and teaches at UCD on masters’ degree programmes in planning, urban design and landscape architecture.

Since April 2010 he has served as a member of the NAMA Planning Advisory Committee and is a member of the board of the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) since May 2015.

In addition to qualifications in architecture from DIT and TCD, he has a master’s degree in planning from UCD, an MBA from the Smurfit Business School at UCD and BL from the Honorable Society of the King’s Inns. Michael is also qualified and practises as a Mediator and Arbitrator. He is a board member/trustee of Simpson’s Hospital in Dundrum, Dublin.

In July 2018 he was appointed to the board of National Asset Management Agency and has served as a member of the NAMA Planning Advisory Committee since April 2010. He is a member of the board of the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) since May 2015.

Appointed April 2017. Re-appointed October 2018 for one three-year term.