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FAI take further step to finally appointing independent directors to Board

Almost 17 years after the Genesis Report recommended so, the football body today went closer to bringing an outside perspective to its decision-making.

FAI HQ, Abbottstown.
FAI HQ, Abbottstown.
Image: ©INPHO

ALMOST 17 YEARS after the Genesis Report recommended so, the FAI today took a step to finally appointing independent directors to its Board of Management.

Genesis, commissioned to improve the running of the FAI in light of the Saipan fiasco, included in its recommendations that there be two independent, non-executive directors included on the FAI Board. 

That never happened. 

Therefore, having analysed how the FAI has been since, the FAI-Sport Ireland Governance Review Group last month included in its 78 recommendations that four of the 12 directors appointed to the new FAI Board be independent. 

The Association have today announced the hiring of recruitment experts Amrop to help in their search for the right candidates. The group tasked with hiring the independents will be the newly-formed Nominations Committee, which will be initially chaired by President Donal Conway. 

Amrop will sit on this Committee, along with one other FAI Board member and up to three further people co-opted. The FAI have assured that two of these will be co-opted by Sport Ireland. Once the independent directors are in place, one of them will chair the Nominations Committee instead of Conway. 

Further to that, one of the independent directors will chair the FAI Board, rather than President Conway, as is currently the case. 

The positions will be publicly advertised in Friday’s Irish Times and this weekend’s editions of the Sunday Business Post and the Sunday Independent. 

The four independent directors will join Conway, Vice-President Paul Cooke, John Earley, Martin Heraghty, Dick Shakespeare, John Finnegan, Dave Moran and Joe O’Brien on the new Board. 

Another of the governance report’s recommendations is that a balance of 33% of each gender be achieved on the Board. This balance is mandatory within two years, and desirable over the next 12 months. All four independent directors will be female if the balance is achieved this year. 

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Gavin Cooney

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