BOARD OF MANAGEMENT
Oberstown Children Detention Campus is governed by a Board of Management appointed by the Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth under the Children Act 2001, as amended (s. 164). Under the Act (s. 167), the Board has 12 members plus a Chairperson and the membership includes: representatives of the Minister’s Department, the Department of Education and Skills and Túsla; two representatives from the local community and two staff members, with five members identified via the State Boards appointment process. Members are appointed for a term, renewable, of up to four years. The Board’s authority is set out in the 2001 Act (primarily ss. 165 and 167) which provides that it has such powers as are necessary or expedient for the exercise of its functions.
The Oberstown Governance Handbook sets out the respective functions, authority and responsibilities of the Minister, the Board of Management and the Director. The Code of Conduct for Board Members sets out and amplifies the duties of all members of the Board and Board Committees.
The new Board of Management of Oberstown was appointed by Minister Dr Katherine Zappone, TD on 1 June 2019 under the Children Act 2001.
The Minister re-appointed Professor Ursula Kilkelly of the School of Law, University College Cork to the position of Chairperson of the Oberstown Board for a period of four years.
The Minister has also appointed other members to the Board as follows:
|Mr. Eamon Clavin||Ministerial (DES nominee ) (Reappointment)||4 years|
|Ms. Bernadette Costello||PAS||4 years|
|Ms. Jennifer Gargan||PAS||4 years|
|Ms. Elizabeth Howard||Ministerial (Community Representative) (Reappointment)||3 years|
|Mr. Donal McCormack||Ministerial (Tusla nominee)||2 years|
|Mr. John McDaid||PAS||4 years|
|Mr. Don O’Leary||PAS (Reappointment)||3 years|
|Mr. Denis O’Sullivan||Ministerial (DCEDIY nominee)||2 years|
|Ms. Emer Woodfull||PAS (Reappointment)||3 years|
|Vacant awaiting appointment||Ministerial (Community Representative)|
Professor Ursula Kilkelly - Chairperson
Professor Ursula Kilkelly was appointed Chairperson of the Board of Management in January 2016. She is a Professor of Law at University College Cork and an established international expert in youth justice and detention and children’s rights. At UCC, she teaches Juvenile Justice and Children’s Rights on the LLM in Children’s Rights and Family Law and is co-editor of Youth Justice: An International Journal. Appointed by the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr Katherine Zappone, TD.
Eamon Clavin, appointed on 4 July 2019 by the Minister on foot of the requirements of section 167 of the Children Act 2001. Eamon is a Divisional Inspector in the Department of Education of Skills. He is attached to the Inspectorate’s Teacher Education and Inclusion Evaluation and Policy Support Unit. He has a particular interest in Special Education, DEIS and Traveller Education and he is a Council member of the National Council for Special Education (NCSE).
Bernadette Costello, appointed 4 July 2019, Appointed by the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, following selection through the PAS process. She is a former Director of Internal Audit & Risk Management, National University of Ireland, Galway. Bernadette has extensive experience in financial and management accounting, corporate governance and related areas.
She has served on the Council of Chartered Accountants Ireland, and past Chair of Chartered Accountants Ireland Audit Committee and Chair of the Board of Accounting Technicians Ireland. Bernadette is a Chartered Director, a Chartered Accountant and holds a Bachelor of Commerce and Higher Diploma in Education from National University of Ireland, Galway
Jennifer is currently a member of the Board of the Irish Family Planning Association and Barnardos Audit and Risk Committee.
Jennifer was appointed to the Board of Management on 4th July 2019 by the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs.
Elizabeth Howard, appointed 4 July 2019, is a local community representative resident in the vicinity of the Oberstown campus. She was appointed by the Minister on foot of the requirements of section 167 of the Children Act 2001.
Donal McCormack was appointed on 22 March 2021 by the Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth on foot of the requirements of section 167 of the Children Act 2001. He has over 30 years’ professional experience in social care staff and management roles, spanning community and residential services – from youth and community work to child psychiatry, youth detention, mainstream centres and special care. Child centeredness is at the core of his professional and management practice. More than 15 of these years have been in dedicated senior operational management roles. Donal is the service director responsible for Tusla, the Child & Family Agency’s Children’s Residential Services nationally.
John McDaid, Appointed 4 July 2019 by the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, following selection through the PAS process. John is the Chief Executive of the Legal Aid Board having previously worked for the Board as a solicitor and also having worked in private legal practice. He holds a Masters of Science in Business Practice.
Denis O’Sullivan is a Principal Officer in the Children Detention Schools Unit, Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth (DCEDIY). He was appointed on 1 April 2021 by the Minister on foot of the requirements of section 167 of the Children Act 2001. Denis worked in the Department of Children and Youth Affairs from its establishment in 2011 up to the establishment of DCEDIY in 2020 and prior to that he served in various senior management roles within the Department of Health.
Emer Woodfull, appointed 04 July 2019 is a practicing barrister at the Law Library Dublin who was called to the Bar in 2003. She has a background in child, criminal, investigative, inquiry & employment law. She was previously an award winning current affairs broadcaster and series producer in RTE the national broadcaster. In her early career she worked as a teacher in a school for young offenders. Appointed by the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, following selection through the PAS process