The Board 

Our Board of Directors provides independent leadership, governance and oversight to the running of organisation and promotes the achievement of excellence in cancer research. Current Board members are:

Dr Jonathan Westrup, Chair

Head of Graduate Studies at the Irish Management Institute, Programme Director of the Diploma in Strategy & Innovation and the Senior Executive Programme.


Prof Ray McDermott, Clinical Lead
Consultant Medical Oncologist at the Adelaide Meath & National Children’s Hospital, Tallaght, and St Vincent’s University Hospital, Dublin


Prof Bryan Hennessy, Vice Clinical Lead

Consultant Medical Oncologist in Beaumont Hospital, Dublin, and Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda, Lecturer at Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI), an Adjunct Professor in the Division of Cancer Medicine at MD Anderson Cancer Centre (MDACC).


Dr Leisha Daly
Country Director of Janssen.

Dr Jerome Coffey,
Director of the National Cancer Control Programme (NCCP).

Berchmans Gannon, Legal Expert,
Formerly Beauchamps Solicitors.

Evelyn O’Rourke, Patient Advocate.
Radio and Television Broadcaster with RTÉ.

Dr Robert O’Connor
Head of Research at the Irish Cancer Society.

Darren Byrne, Chair of Audit Commitee
Commercial Experienced Chartered Accountant / CFO and Non-Executive Director

Diane Hanly, Patient Advocate
Chair of Cancer Trials Ireland’s Patient Consultation Committee (PCC)


Committees of the Board

There are five Sub Committees of the Board

The AuditCommittee provides oversight of the organisation’s finances and is chaired by Darren Byrne.

The Clinical Executive Committee is responsible for discussing, agreeing and making recommendations to the Board on important issues related to clinical and operational aspects of cancer care delivery relevant to cancer clinical trial execution and has the authority to represent and make recommendations to the Board on behalf of the Cancer Trials Research Units.

The Scientific Management Group (SMG) is responsible for the planning and development of scientific research priorities and the resourcing of these priorities within the allocated Cancer Trials Ireland funding. This involves setting the strategy in terms of under-served disease areas, ratio of academic versus industry studies, and the balance of studies across disease areas. The SMG reports to the Board through the Clinical Executive Committee.

The Disease Specific Sub Groups (DSSGs). There is a DSSG representing each relevant disease area. Each group  is responsible for discussing potential new studies and/or collaborations. Once a study has been approved by a DSSG and has undergone peer review (if applicable), the study is submitted to the SMG for approval.

The External Scientific Advisory Review Board. Consultations are currently underway in relation to the role of this Board to clarify and maximise its input.