Young Ballymun

Board Members

Sandra Healy (Chair)

Sandra is CEO and founder of Inclusio. Sandra’s career spanned 20 years in the global telecoms industry and five years at Dublin City University where she established the DCU Centre of Excellence for Diversity and Inclusion. After four years in R&D, Sandra spun-out inclusio in 2020, bringing to the market a science based Diversity &Inclusion performance platform that links D&I to business KPI’s.

Sandra is an Organisational Psychologist and NLP Master Practitioner. Over 15 years she has championed and driven diversity and inclusion practice across industry and is considered a leading expert. In 2014, she provided critical expertise and sectoral knowledge establishing the EU Diversity Charter Ireland. In 2018 and 2020 she delivered keynote presentations at the International Academic Conference on Diversity in Organisations, Communities & Nations. Sandra was a member of the Expert Advisory Group for Ireland’s Citizens Assembly on Gender Equality and is a member of the Diversity and Inclusion Leadership Council for An Garda Síochána (Ireland’s Police Force).

Deborah Murphy

Deborah is  a leader with over  fifteen years of experience in the Global telecoms and mobile technology market. She holds a successful track record leading teams that deliver large-scale technical projects end to end, for customers and partners worldwide.  Deborah is an innovative thinker, with deep expertise in advanced mobile technology, an industry expert in the market place.  She is passionate about promoting and supporting diversity and inclusion in the technology industry with a particular focus on STEM education.  Deborah joined the board of Youngballymun in 2019.

Deborah’s interests include personal development, travelling and volunteering. In 2017 Deborah delivered NLP* workshops for Ballymun Outreach Programme leaders, focused on keeping young people in after school programmes.

* NLP = Neurolinguistic Programming Practitioner: strategies of excellence in team building, coaching, problem solving, influencing, communication, change management, leadership.

Colm O Shaughnessy

Colm is a Solicitor & Notary Public and principal of OSBROS Solicitors, a full service law firm which he established in 2018. His practice currently focuses on the needs of private clients and their SMEs.

With over 23 years’ experience in the legal field, Colm has worked in both private practice and as inhouse Counsel with AIB.

Colm’s experience is wide and varied given his interest in different areas of law. Past and present clients include commercial entities, property developers, Semi-State bodies, banks, monarchs and private individuals.

Colm relishes a challenge and is a trouble shooter.

Colm grew up and lives in Glasnevin with his wife and 4 young daughters.

Founder, secretary and treasurer of Glasnaíon FC – a junior football club founded in 2000 with 2 teams competing in the United Churches Football League. Our players traditionally come from the Glasnevin,  Finglas and Ballymun areas.

Enjoys keeping fit and participating in ultra-events.

Lecturer, tutor and internal examiner in the Law Society of Ireland Law School (professional course).

Duana Quigley

Duana is a Speech and Language Therapist, with extensive experience working therapeutically with infants, toddlers, children, young people and their families. She attained a B.Sc. in Clinical Speech and Language Studies (2000), M.Sc in Health Informatics (2009) and a PhD by research (2018), all through Trinity College Dublin. Duana’s doctoral research explored how mainstream classroom practices in areas of low socio-economic status can be enriched to supportive effective language enrichment. This research capitalised on inter-professional practice between speech and language therapist and teachers through collaborative action research. A key component of this research was chosen by the Department of Education and Skills as support material for the new Primary Language Curriculum.

Duana previously worked with Youngballymun for seven years and held the positions of Oral Language Development Officer with the Write-Minded service (2009-2014) and Programme Manager (2014-2016). Through her involvement with this pioneering programme of work, Duana gained diverse and valuable experience working across various systems, organisations, and with numerous practitioners within the fields of infant mental health, early years education, childhood language and literacy development, and youth mental health.

Duana is currently employed as the Practice Education Coordinator of the Clinical Speech and Language Studies undergraduate programme of Trinity College. Duana joined the Board in 2018.

Gene Mehigan

Gene Mehigan is Principal Lecturer and Director of Post Graduate Studies at Marino Institute of Education, Dublin. He has leadership responsibilities for Literacy Instruction, Post Graduate Studies and Continuing Professional Development. Gene has been a primary school teacher, a literacy specialist, an educational consultant, and a teacher educator over the past thirty years. His research interests are in early literacy development, particularly among children living in disadvantaged settings and in teacher education.

Gene serves as a consultant for a number of education and policy organisations and has worked in The Gambia as a Government advisor to the Department of State for Education on the development of a sector wide approach for the reform of literacy education. He is past President of both the Literacy Association of Ireland (LAI) and the Irish Learning Support Association. Gene joined the board of Youngballymun in 2015.

Vanessa Fitzgerald

Vanessa Fitzgerald has worked for the Health Service Executive for 21 years, having spent most of her career in Disability Services and recently moved into Primary Care as a General Manager for Dublin North Central. Prior to that she spent a significant amount of time on improvement projects for the HSE focusing on reducing patient waiting times. Vanessa believes in person centred care and timely intervention.

In 2017 Vanessa was part of a team that founded the first culture change initiative in the HSE where the focus was on enhanced cultural change through social movement, and she is a viral change fellow with Viral Change.

Vanessa is a Social Worker and has a degree in Sociology from the University of Western Ontario in Canada. She recently completed a Diploma in Leadership and Community Healthcare from the RCSI and is working on her Masters in Psychotherapy from DCU

Vanessa is married and a busy mom of three, who likes to run and has recently taken up golf.

Geraldine French

Geraldine French is an Associate Professor, the Head of School of Language, Literacy and Early Childhood Education, the Programme Chair of the Master of Education in Early Childhood Education and Senior Fellow of Advance HE (SFHEA) in the Institute of Education, Dublin City University. Geraldine has worked for a variety of governmental and voluntary organisations, national and international, in conducting continued professional development, research, needs analysis, evaluations and consultancy for strategic planning with a particular focus on educational inequality.  She has published in the areas of parenting and the experience of poverty amongst families with very young children.  In the context of early childhood settings Geraldine has published on quality professional practice, supporting early language, literacy and numeracy and nurturing babies’ learning and development.

Lilian O’Brien

Lillian has lived in Ballymun for the past fifty years. She worked for over thirty years in the field of community development and in particular worked in the Community & Family Training Agency  (CAFTA) as a facilitator / trainer on accredited courses. She also facilitated courses for the National College of Ireland (NCI) in community and family support.

Lillian was involved in a housing regeneration programme during the social regeneration of Ballymun over a ten year period. Lillian is involved currently on the pastoral council of the three local churches and she sits on the Board of Management of ST. Josephs Junior School. Lillian joined the Board of Youngballymun in 2009.


Fiona Keane

Fiona is a Global Talent Acquisition Manager with 20 years’ experience. She is a proven leader with experience scaling and managing highly functioning EMEA & International Recruiting teams.  She currently consults with start-up companies providing expertise as they scale and build in EMEA. Prior to this role, she held the position as Europe, Middle East & Africa Head of Recruitment for Airbnb where she has worked for 6.5years and before that the Europe, Middle East & Africa Head of Business Recruitment for Facebook for just under 4 years.

Fiona holds a degree in Psychology, and postgrad diplomas in HR (CIPD) and ACCA (dipFM) and is currently in DCU completing her MSc in Work & Org Psychology/Behaviour”.


Tony Fahey

Tony is Professor Emeritus of Social Policy in University College Dublin. He is a sociologist by training and before joining UCD in 2007 spent fifteen  years as a social researcher in the Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin. He has published on a range of topics connected with social policy and social trends in Ireland, the European Union and the United States.

He is a board member in a number of NGOs connected with social advocacy and social services in Ireland.  Tony joined the Board of Youngballymun in 2016 and held the position of Chair of the Board from 2018 to 2020.