The Irish Greyhound Board has appointed Gerard Dollard, the Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Economic Development of Clare County Council, as its new CEO.
He replaces Dr Sean Brady who has served as interim CEO since the departure before Christmas 2016 of former CEO Geraldine Larkin.
Dollard is an accountant by training and has spent his career to date in public service. He completed a Masters in Business administration at the University of Limerick in 2002 and has also undertaken a course on Local Government at Harvard University.
A native of Limerick City, he has responsibility for the promotion of economic development and tourism in County Clare and brings a significant record of long term strategic planning, financial, human resource and community development expertise to the CEO role.
In recent years, he played a key role in the promotion and development of internationally known tourism projects such as the Cliffs of Moher Visitor Experience and the UNESCO Burren Geopark. He has held the position of Finance Officer, Director of Service Environment and Emergency Services and Director of Service, Community and Enterprise with Clare County Council.
Dollard will now lead the Irish Greyhound Board which has overall responsibility for sixteen racing tracks around Ireland and for an industry that provides direct and indirect employment to several thousand people.
The Irish Greyhound Board itself employs almost 800 full and part time staff. The industry is also a major exporter with 83 per cent of the greyhounds racing in Britain bred here.
It has been through a bruising first half of the year with a dispute over the closure and sale of Harolds Cross Stadium in Dublin leading to a long term closure of all racing in the Capital which only came to an end in June.
“The Irish greyhound industry is undergoing rapid change and is moving into a more positive space after a number of difficult years,” said IGB Chairman Phil Meaney.
“Gerard Dollard has a proven, relevant skills set as the Irish Greyhound Board looks to the future of the industry.”
“Our ambition is to deliver a commercial, well regulated Greyhound Racing and Breeding Industry and a customer centred, exciting and value led entertainment experience. The Board and I look forward to working with Gerard to realise these objectives.”