30 Under 30 2019 – Young Leaders of Tomorrow

Sport for Business 30 Under 30 identifies those who will be among the next generation of Ireland’s sporting leaders.

Today we begin publication of the 2019 list from among those who have been nominated or who we have identified as having the potential to become the leaders of our industry over the coming years.

There is still an opportunity to put forward someone you work with or who you believe fits the bill.  We will build the list over the next six weeks, interspersed with thought leadership commentary from those who were on the list in 2018 and from among our first wave in 2017.

Later in the year then we will gather as a wider group with our partners for this initiative PwC and explore key areas of the ongoing and ever-developing relationship between sport and business

We have always believed in the power of youth to effect change and in the benefit of mentoring and networking to develop potential.

This is our way of putting that belief into practice, here are the first six of our 30 Under 30 for 2019.


Gavin O’Broin

Gavin O’Broin is a key member of the sponsorship team at the GAA.

He joined the line up last summer having previously worked on the events team at Croke Park.

Prior to that, he worked with the Business Tourism Unit at Fáilte Ireland and before that for a spell at advertising agency Rothco where he would have been exposed to the thinking on AIB’s #TheToughest activation as well as the work of Liberty Insurance with the GAA and the Camogie Association.

O’Broin is a graduate of Dublin Institute of Technology with a Masters Degree in Marketing and is a fluent Irish speaker.

He also continues to line out as a senior hurler with Ballinteer St Johns, the home club in Dublin of John Gillick of AIG and Coman Goggins of AIB.


Jen Ryan

Jen Ryan is a Senior Sponsorship Marketing Executive at Life Style Sports.

Having started her career agency side with Modern Green, working on brand activations including for O2, Heineken and Bank of Ireland, Ryan moved to work for O2, and subsequently Three, as Sponsorship Executive in 2015.

While there she worked across many of their sponsorship properties, including with the IRFU, Electric Picnic and the FAI, in addition to working on and on all brand events at the 3Arena.

Ryan switched to her current role at Life Style Sports in 2017.  She is a key member of the team working across key sponsorships including those with Leinster Rugby, Munster Rugby and on brand ambassador activation.

She has been credited with playing a key role in the redevelopment of the brand’s rugby sponsorship proposition and creative execution, which has led to wins for the team at the Irish Sponsorship Awards and Digital Media Awards. She also is a key player on the sports marketing team working on product launches, campaigns and content for brands and teams including Nike, adidas and the All Blacks.


Maeve Galvin

Maeve Galvin is a Senior Sponsorship & PR Specialist at Electric Ireland.

She plays a key role in managing the Darkness into Light sponsorship that won last year’s European Sponsorship of the Year as well as the brand partnership with the GAA Minor All Ireland Championships.

It was Galvin’s idea to bring The Championship Haircut to life at Croke Park last year by erecting a barbers shop in the grounds of the stadium on the morning of the All-Ireland football and hurling finals.

She played underage hockey for Leinster and Camogie for Dublin before graduating with a Bachelor of Commerce degree from NUIG and a Masters in Communications, Advertising and PR from University of Ulster.

Prior to joining Electric Ireland in March of last year, she worked as an Account Director with Maximum Media managing the SportsJOE/AIB GAA partnership winning Best Podcast and Best Video awards at the Digital Media Awards.


Chris Best

Chris Best works on the Sponsorship and Marketing team at Aviva.

He joined the company in January 2018 following spells as an intern with Golf’s European Tour and World Rugby. As part of the World Rugby team, he played an important role in delivering the 2017 World Rugby Awards in Monaco.   As a member of the partnerships team at the European Tour, he worked with brands such as Rolex, BMW & Emirates.

He was a later arrival to sport having achieved a BA degree in Geography, Planning and Environmental Science from UCD and then a Masters in Real Estate Finance at Cass Business School in London.

Two years in the commercial real estate environment was enough though before he decided to follow his passion and pursue a career in Sport.

Highly regarded by his colleagues at Aviva he is involved across all aspects of the brand engagement with the Aviva Stadium, the IRFU and the FAI.


Ann Marie Guinan

Ann Marie Guinan is a Client Relationship Manager at Future Ticketing.

In 2018 she was awarded the PRO of the Year by the Camogie Association for her work in that role with Offaly Camogie, and where she is also Vice Captain of the Senior Team.

Guinan joined Future Ticketing only a little over a year ago from a previous role with Kilbeggan Racecourse.  She has risen swiftly through the ranks to client relationship manager working with Basketball Ireland, Gymnastics Ireland, Dundalk FC, Punchestown Racecourse, The National Aquatic Centre, Tattersalls International Horse Trials, Connacht Rugby, Virgin Media and others both in Ireland and the UK.

A graduate with a degree in media and Public Relations from the Institute of Technology in Carlow, Guinan has also been a contributor to the Sports Show on Midlands 103.


Conor Sharkey

Conor Sharkey is the Digital Media Manager at Leinster Rugby.

He joined Leinster on an internship after graduating from UCD with a Degree in English and History and then going on to secure a First Class Masters Degree in Journalism from Dublin Institute of Technology (TU Dublin).

That led to a full-time role being offered in 2014 and the quality of his work meant a promotion to his current role in 2017.

Sharkey is now responsible for all Leinster Rugby’s social media activity and email engagement and led the redesign of the club’s website in 2016.

He showed his mettle in UCD as producer and presenter of the Sports Show on Belfield FM Radio Station and is reaping the reward of that hard work with a career managing one of the largest Club Rugby fan engagement programmes in the world.


Philip Greene

Philip Greene is a Sponsorship intelligence manager at Core Sponsorship

He played a key role in the development of the National Sponsorship index launched earlier this year and contributes to a number of strategic projects for many of the leading brands in the marketplace.

These have included projects for the GAA, Guinness PRO14, Munster Rugby, Horse Racing Ireland, SuperValu and KBC.

Outside of work, Phil is a passionate sports fan, keen writer and Twitter aficionado. The podcast he co-hosts, “Hurlers on the Ditch”, has twice featured in the Top 10 of the iTunes Sports Podcast for Ireland, and he is a contributor to award-winning sports websites such as The Set Pieces, Back Page Football and The Anfield Wrap.

He is a member of Leixlip GAA club, and his Kildare roots shine through in a love of horse racing.  he was an active member of the Horse racing society at Trinity College Dublin from where he graduated in 2016 with a degree in Business, Economics and Social Studies.


Take a look back at our list of 30 Under 30 from 2018


Who else should be on our list for 2019?

The criteria for submission is that the person should be working within the sports industry, or in a sponsorship or agency capacity that is bringing sport to life, and that they should be born in or after 1989.

We will identify those individuals over the coming weeks and provide a platform for them to share their thoughts on how Sport in Ireland can continue to develop.

We will build a programme of support based on the creation of a network of young leaders that could be of benefit to them throughout their working lives, and to our industry as a whole.

This is not the time to be shy, this is an opportunity to put forward those you have come across that have struck you as having real potential, or indeed for you to put yourself forward.

It’s not about where you are now. It’s all about where you could get to with the right breaks.

The nomination process is simple. Contact us today with a name and a few lines on why you or they could be one of our 30 Under 30 for 2019, and watch out as the list develops over the coming weeks



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