Hockey Ireland has this morning announced the appointment of Ronan Murphy as its new Chief Executive Officer.

Murphy will replace Jerome Pels who stepped down earlier this year and will take up the role on October 17th, 2022.

Murphy joins Hockey Ireland, bringing with him a vast range of experience in sports governance, business leadership and strategic planning with over 20 years as a senior business leader.

From 2017 to 2020, he was the CEO of Horse Sport Ireland (HSI), implementing a complete restructuring of the National Governing Body based on the Department of Agriculture’s Indecon report recommendations within a record 10-month timeframe.

In the sporting arena, the highlight included the historic qualification of all three Irish senior equestrian teams for the Tokyo Summer Olympic Games.

During his tenure, HSI also devised and established robust, transparent and effective Corporate Governance systems and processes and developed sustainable, multi-annual funding models for the Irish Sport Horse Sector.

Most recently, he has been working in the agriculture sector but has maintained his links to sport as a board member of Dressage Ireland and as Chair of the European Equestrian Federation EU Committee.

He has also served as the CEO of Weatherby’s Ireland.

“I am excited to take up the role of CEO with Hockey Ireland as the sport looks to continue its recent growth and rise to prominence in Irish sporting life,” said Murphy.

“I see many aspects of hockey in Ireland that we can augment and develop, and I look forward to working with the staff, the board, provinces, clubs, members, sponsors and the grassroots of the sport to implement our strategic ambition and to realise the full potential of the sport across all levels from the very earliest participation and development pathways to delivering championship and Olympic success for Team Ireland.”

His appointment follows a rigorous selection process over the past few months following Jerome Pels’ move from Hockey Ireland to a role with England Boxing. Between now and October, Nick McElwee will continue in the interim role as Hockey Ireland CEO.

“We are delighted that Ronan Murphy will head up the team in Hockey Ireland to continue to drive and implement our ambitious strategy and take further opportunities for our sport,” said Hockey Ireland Chair Nick Watkins.

“Ronan’s experience and success in sport and business give him the ideal background to continue the drive to grow hockey in the community and continue our success on the international stage.”

Murphy’s brief will see him continue the implementation of the Hockey Ireland Strategy 2021-2024 and the clear vision to ‘Change the Game’.

The Strategy has a clear focus on the importance of the commercial and marketing functions, aimed at securing the future of the sport, developing a financially secure and commercially-focused organisation that maximises public funding, sponsorship and revenue-generating opportunities.

Murphy will take on the role amid a busy year in which the Irish senior women’s squad outdid their pre-tournament ranking at this summer’s World Cup and look forward to European Championship qualifiers and the FIH Nations Cup.

The senior men have a similar schedule with Euro qualifiers in August and the FIH Nations Cup in the winter while an exciting national season is just around the corner with several new clubs continuing their growth with Hockey Ireland support.



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