Sean Gaffey, Chairperson
Senior Financial Advisor and VP of Investments, The Gaffey Mellody Group Merrill Lynch
Sean Gaffey is a Senior Financial Advisor / Vice President of Investments within Merrill Lynch Global Wealth Management. At Merrill Lynch, Sean heads the Gaffey Mellody Group, a seasoned team of professionals that caters to the wealth management and financing needs of successful entrepreneurs, corporate executives, non-profit foundations and endowments. With his partner, Michael Mellody, Sean and his team are able to provide an extremely high level of service that gives clients the feel of working with a small boutique firm while providing a broad array of services offered through Bank of America Merrill Lynch. These services include, but are not limited to, portfolio management, retirement planning, trust and estate planning, credit and lending solutions, cash management, corporate benefits, etc. Sean and his team pride themselves in working to finance individuals hopes and aspirations.
Within the community, Sean has been an active member of the American-Ireland Fund and was one of the founding members of the Young Leaders. Sean was also one of the committee members who spear headed the Irish Executive Mentorship Program (IEMP), a joint initiative between IN-NYC and IIBN NY. He also serves of the President’s Business Council of the University of Scrantonand is a proud supporter of their alumni network. Currently Sean and his wife Allison reside in Rockville Centre, NY with their two sons Aiden and Liam.
Ailbhe Mullen, Vice Chairperson
Senior Sales Associate, Corcoran Group
Ailbhe is a Senior Sales Executive with The Corcoran Group where she is currently a member of The Blumstein Team at the Village office. Ailbhe has established herself as a trusted advisor for all types of property transactions and built a large client base of buyers, sellers, investors, and renters from across the globe seeking to live or invest in New York. Prior to embarking on her real estate career Ailbhe worked at the Parker Meridien Hotel. At the Parker Meridian Ailbhe engaged in various roles within the Hotel, including, after several promotions, the role of assistant manager. Ailbhe was also honored as manager of the year in 1996. Later, as Director of Restaurants, Ailbhe was responsible for Norma’s Breakfast Restaurant, and the opening and ongoing management of the popular Burger Joint. Ailbhe was honored as one of the ‘Top 40 under 40 Irish/Irish American ′ by the Irish Echo. Ailbhe has a Master’s de gree in Hotel & Hospitality Management from Colchester University in England and a diploma in Human Resources Management from New York University.
Marie Claire Hoey, Corporate Secretary
VP, Consumer Retail, Enterprise Ireland
Marie-Claire, originally from Co.Westmeath, has been living in New York since 2010. Marie-Claire currently manages the Consumer Retail sector for Enterprise Ireland North America, the Irish trade agency responsible for supporting Irish companies exporting abroad. In this role she is responsible for the development and promotion of indigenous Irish companies targeting the retail vertical across North America. Prior to joining Enterprise Ireland, Marie-Claire worked in the marketing/ecommerce department of Brazilian shoe brand, Melissa. She graduated with a B.A. in European Business and French, specializing in Marketing and Finance, with a year spent studying International Management at Reims Management School in France.
Mary McEvoy, Treasurer
Senior Director, PepsiCo
Mary McEvoy is Director, Global Procurement, PepsiCo located in Westchester, NY where she has manages the negotiation and purchase of plastic bottle packaging for PepsiCo’s food and beverage operations in North America. She has been with PepsiCo for over 15 years in a variety of roles, from R&D to procurement.
A native of Kilkenny and a very proud Cat, Mary received a B.Sc. in Applied Physics and Chemistry from Trinity College,Dublin.
Colman Lydon, Director and Head of Executive Mentoring Program
Colman is a successful entrepreneur. He is responsible for several start-ups encompassing telecoms, travel & technology. He sold his first business, an international telecoms company, in 2012 and remains active in the start-up space. Colman served as Chairman of IIBN NY 2011 – ’12, overseeing a period of prolific growth and establishing a sustainable framework for the future of the chapter.
Susan O’Brien, Director Sponsorship and Events
Founder, Smigin App
Susan O’Brien is the founder of Smigin – an essential travel app for people who travel but don’t speak the language. Smigin was born out of Susan’s experience of living and working in four non-English speaking countries. Susan speaks 6 languages, and has 15 years of proven experience in building unique product solutions, and driving international sales and business development. Susan has had executive roles in US-based public and private companies, and has worked directly with some of Ireland’s most successful entrepreneurs, including Denis O’Brien (Digicel Group).
Michael Brewster – Managing Director, Credit-Suisse
Michael joined Credit Suisse Private Banking USA as a Managing Director in 2008. He invests money for high net worth individuals in three portfolios that he and his team run at Credit Suisse. He has spent 21 years on Wall Street; 16 at Lehman Brothers. Michael was recognized in 2010-2012 as one of Barron’s Top 1,000 Advisors. His career began at Casino Credit at Trump Castle Hotel Casino, having graduated from Athlone IT and Thomas Edison State College. Michael also serves on the boards of Enterprise Ireland Financial Services, National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG) and Haven USA.
Matt Dunn – Attorney, Carter Ledyard & Milburn LLP
Matthew Dunn is an attorney with the law firm of Carter Ledyard & Milburn LLP in New York. He represents and advises clients in general commercial litigation matters, as well as in matters relating to breach of contract and commercial torts, employment and restrictive covenants, maritime, bankruptcy, eminent domain, and trusts and estates. He has represented clients in state and federal courts, in FINRA and international arbitrations, and in connection with government agency investigations. He has experience in all stages of litigation, and in trials, arbitrations, and mediations, and has extensive experience advising on electronic discovery issues. He was previously a litigation associate at Sullivan & Cromwell LLP. He received his B.A. from the University of Notre Dame and his J.D. from Rutgers University School of Law-Newark. He also served four years on active duty as an officer in the U.S. Navy.
Mike Mellody – The Gaffey Mellody GroupMerrill Lynch, Senior Vice President
A first generation Irish-America, Michael’s parents emigrated to the US in early 60’s via Galway and Longford. During his childhood he was exposed to many of the traditions including button accordion and step dancing as well as junior Gaelic Football with St. Brendan’s. His connection to Ireland was reinforced through countless visits back home to visit his many cousins, uncles, aunts and friends.Throughout his nearly two-decade career, Michael has strived to help investors align their financial lives and personal circumstances. He is a Certified Financial Planner ™ certificant, awarded by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc., and works with families to create a customized wealth management plan that reflects their goals, values and needs.Michael joined Merrill Lynch in 2005 and has worked in the financial services field since graduating from Rutgers University in 1994 with a bachelor’s degree in economics. A New Jersey native, he now resides in New York City with his wife, Denise and their son, Gavin.
Margaret Molloy – Global Chief Marketing Officer, Siegel+Gale
Margaret Molloy, Chief Marketing Officer, VelocidiA native of Ireland, Margaret Molloy is Chief Marketing Officer at the digital marketing agency, Velocidi. She was previously SVP Marketing at Gerson Lehrman Group and held leadership positions at Siebel Systems. In the 1990s Margaret served as VP of Marketing at Telecom Ireland US Margaret is very prominent in social media community and has been listed among the top Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) on Twitter. She has been recognized by many organizations, including named as one of the “Most Influential US-Irish American Leaders” by Business & Finance magazine and “Top 100 Irish Americans in Business” by Irish America magazine.She earned an MBA from Harvard Business School
Martin Ryan MSD Capital, L.P Technology Infrastructure & Support Manager
Martin Ryan, from Dublin Ireland, is Head of Infrastructure Technology for MSD Capital, Michael Dell’s private investment firm based in New York City. Martin has been living and working in NYC since 2000. Martin will be heading up the IIBN side of the Irish Executive Mentorship Program in 2013, a co-created program between the IIBN and IN-NYC. The aim of the program is to harness the skills and insights of successful Senior Executives to help coach and develop the next generation of Irish and Irish American leaders across all industries.
Damian DeSola – Principal, DeSola Group
Damian is a partner at DeSola Group, a strategic consulting firm that advises executive management teams in the areas of brand strategy, market positioning and communications. Damian is a graduate of the University of Scranton
James Carey – Partner, Grant Thornton
Jim is an Audit Partner and the Professional Standards Partner in the New York Downtown office. With over twenty years of experience, Jim has served clients in a broad spectrum of industries including financial services, technology, manufacturing, and professional services. He has experience in providing audit services for both public and private companies, including companies pursuing initial public offerings and private placements. Jim also is the professional standards partner within the New York Downtown office and is responsible for monitoring the office’s system of quality control for the audit practice.
Alan Bernstein – Partner, Carter Ledyard & Milburn LLP
Alan Bernstein is a partner at the Wall Street law firm of Carter Ledyard & Milburn LLP. His corporate practice concentrates on transactions for technology companies and cross-border deals, with an emphasis on working with companies from Ireland. Mr. Bernstein has substantial experience in public offerings and private placements representing issuers and underwriters in initial public offerings, secondary offerings and venture capital investments; mergers and acquisitions, representing buyers and sellers in negotiated stock and asset purchases; and licensing and strategic partnering.
Mr. Bernstein serves as a director of the Community Development Venture Capital Alliance (www.cdvca.org) and is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Archive of Contemporary Music (www.arcmusic.org). From 2000-2004, he was on the Board of Editors of “Start-Up and Emerging Company Strategist” (published by The New York Law Journal).
Mr. Bernstein received his B.A. in 1979 from Stanford University and his J.D. in 1983 from Boalt Hall School of Law, University of California, Berkeley.
Mary-Ann Pierce – Founder & CEO, MAP Digital, Inc.
Mary Ann Pierce has fused the Internet to live events for over fifteen years. Our MetaMeetings™ software is one portal that manages conference apps, Webcasting, content management; and attendee registration and networking for conferences. The MAP Digital team has produced integrated digital events for J.P. Morgan, Deutsche Bank, Lehman Brothers, Morgan Stanley, Havas Worldwide, IPG, DRAFTFCB, CBS Interactive, The Wall Street Journal, Novartis, Pfizer, Starwood Hotels and Resorts, and New York University, among others. For two years, Mary Ann was an adjunct professor at New York University where she lectured on Internet solutions for the Meetings Industry. Before embarking into digital events, Mary Ann worked in creative services and production for Jack Morton Worldwide, Caribiner, and Imero Fiorentino Associates. She was the Managing Director of the Atlantic Theater Company, Marketing Director for P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center (MoMA), and copywriter at Wunderman, a direct marketing agency. MAP Digital: MetaMeetings™ has been certified by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council.
Deirdre Connolly – Executive Producer Embassy Row
Deirdre Connolly is an Executive Producer at Embassy Row, a highly regarded television production company based in NYC. In addition to developing projects for various TV networks, Deirdre is the EP and showrunner of Bravo’s Watch What Happens Live! with Andy Cohen and Bravo’s Fashion Queens with Bevy Smith. She produced the first episode of WWHL in June of 2009 and it has since gone on to become a late night talk show phenomenon consistently beating its competition. Prior to joining Embassy Row, Deirdre’s experience included producing MTV’s flagship daily show Total Request Live from Times Square in Manhattan as well as launching the English version of Total Request Live for MTV in London.
Originally from Hingham, MA, Deirdre graduated from Boston College with a degree in Political Science. Her mother is from Castlegregory, Co. Kerry and on her father’s side, her grandfather is from Moycullen, Co. Galway and her grandmother is from Curry, Co. Sligo.
Maura Kelly – Media & Marketing Executive
Maura is an Emmy Award-winning producer and consultant who works on a range of digital media, marketing and events through Purple Mountain Media. She’s held executive positions in broadcast TV at PBS, created Web TV with LiveStream, education products with Scholastic and the Jim Henson Co. and worked in development with non-profit, HOPe. For 15 yrs, Maura was an Executive Producer at WNET/ PBS and produced signature series, like Planet H20 with America Ferrera, MythQuest, Bill Moyers specials; oversaw distribution and corporate partnerships. Prior, Maura was Director of Marketing for the producers of the WSJ Report. She has a Masters in Media Management from NY Institute of Technology where she also was an adjunct professor. In 2013, Maura was elected to the Board of Directors of NY Women in Film, TV & Digital Media (2000 members). Twitter @maurakellymedia
Matthew McBride – Senior Vice President, Global Brokerage Services, CBRE
Matthew McBride is a Senior Vice President in Global Brokerage Services in the Midtown Manhattan office of CBRE. A Northern Ireland native, Matthew came to the U.S. in 1994, where he quickly established himself in New York commercial real estate. An 18-year industry veteran, Matthew began his career at the Edward S. Gordon Company (ESG), growing with the company as it merged first with Insignia then with CBRE, the world’s largest commercial real estate firm. Matthew has consistently been a top 100 producer for CBRE nationally—the result of his boundless energy, deep market knowledge and wide-reaching network across a myriad of industry sectors. In 2013 alone, Matthew was involved in transactions totaling nearly one million square feet. In keeping with his active nature, Matthew is a member of the American Ireland Fund, The Real Estate Board of New York and The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (MRICS). His family keeps him quite busy, too. He resides in Darien, CT, with his wife Casey and their four sons Liam, Max , Callum and Jude.
Brian Moloney - CEO and Founder, Silvergrove
Silvergrove’s professional team is led by CEO and founder Brian M. Moloney. Over the past three years, Mr. Moloney has represented middle market companies in successful M&A transactions with approximately $600 million in aggregate value. Prior to his advisory work, Mr. Moloney was an investment professional with private equity firms, including GE Capital, Windward Capital and The Cypress Group, which managed more than $5 billion in control and non-control investments in middle market companies. Previously, he worked as a management consultant to Fortune 500 companies in Europe and the U.S. Mr. Moloney holds the Series 7, Series 24 and Series 63 licenses. He received an MBA from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business and a BA with honors from Yale University.
Michael Pryce - Head of Portfolio Risk Management and Director of Financial Institutions in New York – National Australia Bank
Michael Pryce is Head of Portfolio Risk Management and Director of Financial Institutions in New York for National Australia Bank (NAB), the largest financial institution in Australia based on market capitalization and assets. He manages a multi-billion dollar portfolio of counter party credit and market risk for NAB’s US FI’s group of global banks, sovereigns and diversified financial institutions. Prior to joining NAB, Michael was a vice president at Credit Lyonnais and previously managed their Securities Lending Operation. Earlier in his career, he established and ran the Securities Lending Asia Desk at Bankers Trust. Michael is the former President of HOPe (Helping Other People), a non-profit development organization with projects in Ethiopia, South Africa, Peru and Costa Rica. He is an IRISH AMERICA WALL ST 50 Honoree for 2013. Michael has an MBA in Finance from Fordham University and Bachelor of Commerce from University College Cork.
Dara Kelly – Leader, US Irish Business Group, Grant Thornton
Dara has extensive experience in advisory services and was made a Director in 2010. In 2013 he relocated to New York to lead the Grant Thornton Irish Business Group.
The Irish Business Group is a collaborative initiative between the U.S. and Irish member firms of Grant Thornton International Ltd, whose primary purpose is to provide clients who have operations in both the U.S. and Ireland with a fully integrated service solution.
These include: market entry solutions, business advisory, Irish tax planning, merger & acquisition assistance, financial accounting and advisory services, corporate reorganization, and global audit coordination.
Dara has an excellent awareness of the multiple service lines offered by both the Irish and New York offices, as his position in a lead advisory role requires interaction and collaboration across the various client service lines to deliver a full service solution.
Dara has acquired a well-rounded skill set which incorporates experience from the provision of business reviews, strategic option papers and exit strategies to both accelerated and controlled mergers and acquisitions, obtaining maximum value for his clients.
Dara provided the following services to clients:
- leader for the provision of all aspects of deal origination, execution and post-transaction integration services;
- identifies turnaround solutions for distressed corporates;
- provides corporate restructuring advice to range of clients including shareholders and financial institutions
Fionuala Pender, Executive Director, IIBN
Prior to joining IIBN in September 2007, Fionuala was the Executive Director of the Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE UK), a global not for profit networking organisation which spans 45 cities in 11 countries. Fionuala headed up two TiE offices in London and Manchester and worked closely with the Board to help drive strategy. During her 4 years with TiE, Fionuala delivered a technology focused tour in India which showcased over 100 technology start up companies in New Delhi, Bangalore and Mumbai. In the UK, Fionuala saw the group triple in membership and corporate sponsorship was gained from 4 key industry sectors. Fionuala also helped to build and deliver a mentoring programme to the growing membership who required business guidance and advice.
Fionuala has also worked for Lehman Brothers Investment Bank within its IBD Technology division. Fionuala is a graduate from the London School of Economics, and her first job after graduating was for a London based charity which focused on alleviating poverty in the UK working closely with the European Union.
Sinead Crowley, Executive Director, IIBN
Sinead joined IIBN in 2011 and shares the Executive Director role at IIBN with Fionuala Pender.
Prior to moving to the UK Sinead worked as a Projects Manager with the South West Regional Authority in Ireland for almost 15 years on EU and Nationally funded programmes & projects related to regional and socio-economic development. Areas of expertise include strategic planning, socio-economic development, cross sector partnership development, innovation and knowledge based economy, collaborative environments, broadband and the information society, edemocracy, egovernment and distance learning at regional, national and pan-EU levels.
Sinead has a Joint Honours Arts Graduate of UCC and Post Graduate Diploma in Law from College of Commerce Rathmines.
When not working at IIBN Sinead helps with fundraising, events and strategic planning at UK registered Irish Charity icap
Conor Foley, IIBN Founder
Conor Foley founded IIBN in London in May 2007. He continues to take an active interest in all three chapters as he divides his time between New York, London and Dublin