Pension Council Members

Jim Murray, Chairman:

Jim Murray was the first Director of Consumer Affairs, responsible for the implementation and enforcement of a wide range of consumer laws, including laws on false trade descriptions, misleading advertising, food labeling, product safety and consumer credit.

He then moved to Brussels to become Director of the European Consumers Organisation (BEUC), leading a team campaigning for consumers on legal, financial and economic issues and policies on health, food and safety.

He served a term as special Advisor to the Consumer Commissioner, Meglana Kuneva, and was a member of many advisory and policy groups at EU level, including the High Level Group for the Reduction of Administrative Burdens, and the Transatlantic Consumer Dialogue, of which he was a founding member.

As Director of the National Social Service Council in the seventies he was responsible for setting up first national network of Citizens Information Centres.

He has a degree in Physics and Maths and is a qualified barrister.

Roma Burke:

Roma is an actuary and partner with Lane Clark & Peacock Ireland Ltd, a firm that specialises in the area of pensions and investments. She is a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries in Ireland and of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries in the UK. Roma also holds an MA from Trinity College Dublin and is a Qualified Financial Adviser.

Kirstie Flynn:

Kirstie is a pensions lawyer with Willis Towers Watson. She is also a director of corporate trustee companies, Trustee Principles Ltd, Willis Trustsure Ltd and Planlife Trustee Services Ltd, providing professional trusteeship to pension schemes. A qualified barrister, she is a former chairman of the Association of Pensions Lawyers in Ireland.

Kirstie was also a member of the Legislation Committee of the Pensions Board and was a contributing author of “Practical Employment Law”.

Anthony Gilhawley:

Tony Gilhawley is an actuary and principal of Technical Guidance Ltd who provide technical consultancy services to various institutions in the life assurance and pensions industry.

Tony is the main author of the Qualified Financial Adviser (QFA) course. The QFA is the recognised benchmark designation for individuals giving financial advice/planning to consumers on most retail financial products. He is also the author of the Retirement Planning Adviser course (leading to the RPA designation) provided by the Life Insurance Association (LIA).

Brendan Keenan:

Brendan Keenan is a former Business Editor and Economics Editor for the Irish Independent.

Sandra Rockett:

Sandra Rockett is Director of International Business at Irish Life Investment Managers. Previous to this she was Head of Financial Planning and Pensions at Davy working in the Private Client business. Prior to Davy, Sandra worked in Mercer as an Actuarial Consultant working with a range of public sector and multinational corporate pension clients.

Sandra holds a first class honours degree in Actuarial and Financial Studies from UCD and is a member if the Society of Actuaries in Ireland.

Sinead Ryan:

Sinead Ryan worked in the financial services industry for 15 years and as an Examiner with the Life Insurance Association. She qualified as a Financial Adviser with diplomas in Economics and Journalism.

Since 2005, she has been a freelance journalist working in consumer affairs and personal finance. Sinead is a columnist with The Herald, the Irish Independent and is a regular contributor to radio and television.

Sinead also set up a not-for-profit organisation in 2009 teaching budgeting skills in school and in 2010, her book “Cents & Sensibility” was published.

Dr Shane Whelan:

Dr Shane Whelan is an actuary and senior lecturer in UCD School of Mathematical Science, and former Head of the Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science. Previous to his academic career he held senior roles in investment management and pension advisory companies, including directorships of Friends First Asset Management and Acuvest. He was the managing editor of the British Actuarial Journal for several years, and served on councils of the actuarial profession both nationally and internationally.

His publications include topics such as pension policy, pension investment, and longevity forecasting. His research highlights the weak protection afforded to pension entitlements in Ireland, the high level of investment risk and the impact of charges in private pensions. He advocates change to the Irish pension system in both academic papers and articles in newspapers and magazines.

Marie Louise Delahunty:

Marie Louise is Deputy Head of Insurance Supervision for the Central Bank of Ireland. Marie Louise previously worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers and is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants Ireland.

Brendan Kennedy:

Brendan Kennedy is the Irish Pensions Regulator and chief executive of the Pensions Authority, which is the Irish statutory body responsible for regulating pensions and for providing pension policy advice to the Minister for Social Protection. He has held this position since 2006.

Peter Brazel:

Peter is the representative from the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform.

Helen McDonald:

Helen is the representative from the Department of Social Protection.