The purpose of the Governance Committee is to provide oversight of POI’s progress and strategic vision, and to advise on aspects of policy, procedure and programme sustainability. The POI Governance Committee also evaluates and advises regarding POI's performance and, taking into account the directions advised by the Industry and Charity Advisory Boards, they ensure there is clear vision and direction for the consortium.
Chair, POI Governance Committee
David Byrne is a former Attorney General of Ireland and in 1999 he became the EU Commissioner for Health and Consumer Protection. He is a founding member and Co-Chair of the Brussels based European Alliance for Personalised Medicine (EAPM) and also serves as a member of the Scientific and Ethical Advisory Board (SEAB) of BBMRI-ERIC. As health commissioner he enacted the EU Tobacco Products Directive and a second directive banning cross-border tobacco advertising and sponsorship. He was an active partner with the WHO in drafting the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) which he signed on behalf of the EU in 2003. He also set up the European Centre for Disease Control (ECDC) following the SARS epidemic, and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). Following his retirement from the EU commission Mr Byrne served as chair of the ethics committee of the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). He is an honorary Fellow of RCP (London) and of the faculty of Public Health RCPI.
Tommy Bracken has 25 years' experience in the healthcare sector. He spent 15 years in the pharmaceutical industry working primarily for Novo Nordisk, Pfizer and Abbott in various strategic and commercial roles culminating in the role of Global Director for Abbott International. In 2010, he joined the Mater Private Hospital as an executive director and board member before setting up Hexagon Consulting, a specialist healthcare consulting business in 2014. He is a founder and director of the Bobbie Bastow Genetics Foundation, a cancer genetics research charity, and has worked extensively for the Ireland East Hospital Group in cancer, genomics, cardiovascular, ophthalmology and women’s health. Tommy is the Strategic Lead for the Clinical Research Centre in UCD and a strategic advisor to the Royal Victoria Eye and Ear Hospital.
A consultant endocrinologist for over 30 years, Prof Buckley has extensive experience as a principal investigator in clinical trials and has chaired several Independent Data and Safety Monitoring Boards for large cardio-metabolic and rare disease clinical studies. Brendan is Honorary Clinical Professor at UCC and Adjunct Professor at UCD. He was director of UCC’s European Centre for Clinical Trials in Rare Diseases. He has published about 200 papers and chapters including a key book on clinical trials. He was a board member of the Irish Medicines Board (now HPRA) and a member of the European Medical Agency (EMA)’s and Scientific Advisory Group for Diabetes and Endocrinology. He was also a member of the EMA Committee for Orphan Medicinal Products from 2000-2003 and a member of the EMA’s panel of experts. Prof. Buckley previously served as chairman of the Anti-Doping Committee of the Irish Sports Council and is the chairman of the Board of Fighting Blindness. He was Chief Medical Officer of ICON plc 2011-2017. He is co-founder and an executive leader or board director of several companies in the biopharma field.
Prof. Linda Coate, Consultant Medical Oncologist, University Hospital Limerick, was elected Vice Clinical Lead by the Clinical Executive of Cancer Trials Ireland and held this from the 1st January 2017 until 30th June 2020. Dr Coate graduated from UCD in 2000. She completed an MD thesis focusing on translational thoracic oncology research in 2006. In 2008 she took up a clinical research fellowship in the Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto under the mentorship of Prof. Frances Shepherd. She was appointed as a Consultant Medical Oncologist in University Hospital Limerick in 2011 and took over as Director of the Cancer Clinical Trials Unit. She also chaired the Lung cancer group for CTI which is responsible for the development and conduct of the Irish Thoracic Oncology trial portfolio. Linda has been and continues to be the National Principal Investigator for numerous thoracic oncology studies and sits on a number of steering committees and advisory boards.
Prof. Cecily Kelleher qualified in medicine from UCD in 1980. She worked subsequently in clinical medicine, obtaining an MD degree on the relationship between hypertension and diabetes from UCC in 1987 and fellowship of Royal College of Physicians in 1991. Having completed a Master's degree in public health at UCD she took up a post as senior scientist in clinical epidemiology at the Medical Research Council Epidemiology and Medical Care Unit in London, working on the large-scale Thrombosis Prevention Trial. She was appointed to the foundation chair of Health Promotion at NUI Galway in 1990. In 2002 she was appointed to the Chair of Public Health Medicine and Epidemiology at UCD and was head of the UCD School of Public Health, Physiotherapy and Population Science until 2015. In September 2015 she became College Principal, College of Health and Agricultural Sciences.
Mark is Associate Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Professor of Digital Health, and Chair in Translational Cancer Genomics at Queens University Belfast. He has received numerous awards including the prestigious 2018 European Health Award. He is a member of the Board of the European Alliance for Personalised Medicine and led development of their research strategy. He was architect of the European Cancer Patient’s Bill of Rights, launched in the European Parliament on World Cancer Day 2014. He led the European Code of Cancer Practice initiative by the European Cancer Organisation which he launched with EU Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides in September 2020. He is also Co-chair of their Special Network on COVID-19 and Cancer. Mark is Associate Director of Health Data Research Wales-Northern Ireland and Scientific Director of DATA-CAN, the UK Health Data Research Hub for Cancer. His leadership in heath data research, with a particular emphasis on cancer has led to key publications in the premier international journals.
Professor John McCaffrey graduated from University College Dublin Medical School in 1988, and completed early Medical Oncology training at St Vincent’s Hospital Dublin. He was appointed Assistant Professor and clinical Attending Physician in Genitourinary Medical Oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York and the Cornell University Medical Center. He returned to the Mater Misericordiae University Hospital in 1999, as Consultant Medical Oncologist, and to the Cavan General Hospital where he established a Nurse-led Medical Oncology Unit as a satellite to the Mater campus. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland. He is a former President of the Irish Society of Medical Oncology (ISMO),and was previously ISMO representative to the European Society of Medical Oncology (ESMO). He is a National Specialty Director (NSD) in Medical Oncology and is the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Programme Director for the Irish College. He has served on a number of committees advising ESMO, ASCO and the NCCP. He is an active Member of the Irish Clinical Oncology Research Group (ICORG) and the Principal Investigator for the Mater Campus. He was appointed UCD Associate Clinical Professor in 2011.
Derick Mitchell, PhD is the Chief Executive Officer of IPPOSI - the Irish Platform for Patient Organisations, Science & Industry. Derick has a background in research, strategy and advocacy from over 12 years’ experience spanning a number of leadership roles in research and multi-stakeholder engagement in Ireland and at the EU-level. Derick is an elected board member of the EUPATI Foundation, a global initiative which is training patients to become involved in the medicines R&D process, and has spread the IPPOSI public-private partnership model to over 20 countries. Derick serves on the advisory boards and steering committees of a number of health-related initiatives including Health Innovation Hub Ireland, DataSavesLives.eu, EHealth Ireland, HIQA HTA Advisory, UCD Research Ethics Committee, as well as the Medical & Life Sciences Committee of the Royal Irish Academy. Derick is also chairperson of the Scientific Advisory Board of the HRB-Trials Methodology Research Network (HRB-TMRN).
Dr. Darrin Morrissey was appointed CEO of NIBRT in June 2020. Immediately prior to joining, Darrin was the CEO at the Health Research Board (HRB), Ireland’s primary funder of health and health systems research. Previously Darrin was the Director of Programmes and Investments with Science Foundation Ireland (SFI), where he led the delivery of STEM research funding to the Irish research institutions. Darrin’s past experiences also includes 16 years in the pharmaceutical industry – with GSK, Sanofi and others – in a variety of senior roles spanning across clinical research, commercial and manufacturing. Darrin qualified with a BSc in Microbiology and a PhD in Cancer Biology from University College Cork. Over recent years Darrin has been a member of numerous national and international policy and decision-making bodies, including the governing board of Science Europe, the British-Irish Chamber of Commerce Higher Education & Research Steering Group, the Knowledge Transfer Ireland Stakeholder Forum and Enterprise Ireland’s Industrial Research and Commercialisation Committee.
In 2011 at the age of 39, Jan was diagnosed with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia. She participates in a clinical trial in the UK for a novel theraphy and is doing well. In 2017, she and her husband Michael set up Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia Ireland, a patient led advocacy group and registered charity (RCN 20158552) that aims to support others with her condition. CLL Ireland’s team of volunteers held events in Dublin, Cork, Galway and Mullingar to provide much needed information and support for CLL patients and their loved ones. CLL Ireland has an active social media presence and has collaborated with the Irish Cancer Society and BCNI supporting the blood cancer community in Ireland. Internationally CLL Ireland are members of CLL Advocates Network and Lymphoma Coalition and also colaborate with CLL Society US.