About the event


Chartered Accountants Worldwide (of which Chartered Accountants Ireland is a member) partnered with Edelman to undertake research to understand the views of over 1,400 international business leaders and the role that they expect the finance and business profession to play in shaping the future. The objective was to find out, as the world emerges from the pandemic, who will be trusted to support business recovery and to build the sustainable, resilient economies we need.


This virtual event Trust Driving Resilience & Success; Evaluating trust in the profession was dedicated to presenting the results to the business community on the island of Ireland. During the session we launched the research and debated who should lead in rebuilding trust and consider what matters most now to business leaders as they recover and rebuild for the future. The research highlighted an opportunity for the accountancy profession to step forward and lead on these topics.


More information on the event speakers below.


Barry Dempsey

Barry Dempsey is Chief Executive of Chartered Accountants Ireland, having taken over the position in August 2017. Barry has wide experience acting in Chief Executive roles both in the commercial private sector and in voluntary organisations with extensive executive leadership experience.

Prior to joining the Institute, Barry held the position of Chief Executive of the Irish Heart Foundation. Before this, Barry was Managing Director of Peter Mark and Chief Executive of the Irish Cancer Society. He has also served as Chairman of the Council of the Irish Management Institute. Barry holds an MBA from Trinity College, Dublin. 


Paul Henry

Paul Henry FCA was elected President of Chartered Accountants Ireland in May 2020 and was re-elected in 2021, becoming the first President to serve a two-year term since the mid-1950s. He is also the current Chair of the Consultative Committee of Accountancy Bodies.

A Director at Osborne King, Paul leads the advisory and consultancy service, where he combines financial and commercial expertise with the embedded depth of property knowledge and experience. A graduate of Queen’s University, Belfast, Paul qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1989, and has subsequently worked in industry and in practice.


Niall Fitzgerald

Niall Fitzgerald (FCA), Head of Ethics and Governance, Chartered Accountants Ireland. Níall leads the enhancement and implementation of plans to deliver strategic objectives on business ethics and governance across operations, including policy, member support and resources and engagement with regulators, standard setters, and other stakeholders.
Níall is a member of the Institute’s Sustainability Expert Working Party and is passionate about internal implementation of sustainability initiatives and applying sustainability reporting frameworks. He is also a non-executive trustee for an Irish Charity and pension scheme, advisory committee member for Accountancy Europe’s Corporate Governance Policy Group and a Judge for the Irish Good Governance Awards.


Crona Clohisey

Crona Clohisey is the Public Policy Leader in Chartered Accountants Ireland and is a Chartered Accountant and Associate of the Irish Taxation Institute. Cróna has spent over 10 years working in tax consultancy in both KPMG and Grant Thornton and now researches, represents and publicly comments on public policy issues that affect members on the island of Ireland.

Cróna has contributed to several publications including The Next Financial Year: Supporting Business Through Recovery, Sustainability for Accountants, A guide to FDI in Northern Ireland, Pensions in Ireland, as well as several guides on EU exit, VAT and customs.


Dee Moran

Dee Moran (FCA) is Professional Accountancy Lead at Chartered Accountants Ireland and has significant experience in both practice and industry. The Professional Accountancy team is responsible for a broad technical policy agenda of relevance to the Institute and its membership and works to coordinate policy approaches and develop guidance for members.

Dee is a member of the Institute’s Sustainability Expert working party and leads the Institute in the area of sustainability reporting and in responding to consultations in this area. Dee is also a member of the Accounting Bodies Network and the Global Accounting Alliance Sustainability Working Group.


Nicola Scobell

Nicola Scobell joined Edelman in 2018 and has grown into an established Account Director in the Data & Intelligence team.

Her drive comes from helping organisations understand their key audiences as people first, and championing their voice, in order to drive deeper connections with audiences and smarter business decisions.

Within the Data & Intelligence team, her remit spans research into Brand, Trust, Reputation, Audience Insight and Content Development.
Her speciality lies in managing large-scale quantitative research programmes; helping clients to craft smart, unique and ownable thought leadership.

Nicola’s client portfolio is composed of international companies and institutions including Microsoft, Unilever, IKEA, GSK, Janssen amongst others.

Before joining Edelman, Nicola worked client-side within insight teams for Ocado, Transport for London and Cancer Research UK.

Nicola holds a degree in Economics from the University of Cambridge.


Dearbhail McDonald

Dearbhail McDonald Journalist, Author and Broadcaster. Dearbhail McDonald is an award-winning Journalist, Author and Broadcaster. Dearbhail has recently undertaken the role of presenter on BBC Northern Ireland’s ‘Crime NI’ alongside fellow journalist, Wendy Austin. The show is the first of its kind in Northern Ireland and features crime appeals and updates on PSNI investigations. PSNI detectives discuss the details of major police probes and appeal for the public's help in cracking cases. 

Dearbhail presented ‘Sunday with Dearbhail’ on BBC Radio Ulster. The show brought an in-depth look at current affairs, interviews, discussions and analysis, including an essential guide to the Sunday papers. Dearbhail also regularly sits in the hot seat on RTÉ Radio One covering Brendan O’Connor. 

A global Eisenhower Fellow, the former Group Business Editor of Independent News And Media is a recipient of the Mary Cummins Award for Women of Outstanding Achievement in Media. Her recent documentary (‘Fertility Shock’, RTE) addressed the future of work, diverse workforces and the impact of fertility trends on economic growth. Dearbhail has also recently began writing for IMAGE Magazine as part of their IMAGE Business Club ‘Championing Visionary Women’. President of the strategic committee of the Centre Cultural Irlandais in Paris, where she also holds the position of secretary of the board of the Foundation Irlandaise, the Newry born writer served a seven-year terms as a member of the board of Fighting Words, Ireland’s national creative writing centre for children and young adults. 

The author of ‘Bust: How the Courts Exposed the Rotten Heart of the Irish Economy’ (Penguin), Dearbhail has also served on the Board of the St Stephen’s Green Trust and the External Advisory Board of Maynooth University Department of Law. 

Dearbhail received an inaugural Dublin City University Special Alumni Achievement Award for her contribution to public affairs journalism and is an Irish Tatler Media Woman of the Year. 

Dearbhail holds an LL.B (Law) from Trinity College Dublin as well as a Masters Degree in Journalism from Dublin City University. 



Eamonn Kennedy

Éamonn Kennedy is Storyful’s Chief Product & Technology Officer. With 20 years’ experience in online development, his career to date has focused on driving innovative user centric technology by building agile cross disciplinary teams. Before joining Storyful in 2014, he acted as founder and product lead for a number of web-based startups, winning industry innovation awards, including the Web Summit Spark of Genius. At Storyful he leads an R&D team that creates systems to help journalists and analysts understand and interpret the vast amount of public content and data that is shared as our societies move online. Éamonn holds an M.Sc in Computer Science from Trinity College.


Helene McManus

Helene McManus is the current President of the ILCU following her election at the 2021 AGM in April. She has been a Director on the ILCU Board since 2017 and served as Treasurer from 2019 to 2021. Helene has been actively involved with Kilcloon & District Credit Union for over 20 years as a volunteer serving in all principal roles, most recently as Vice Chair to the Board.

In her professional career, Helene works as a HSE Health Care Manager delivering community social care services in North Kildare. Helene holds a Masters in Management from Trinity College Dublin.


Kirsty McManus

Kirsty was appointed National Director for the Institute of Directors in Northern Ireland in August 2017. The Institute supports 1,000 Northern Irish business leaders through unparalleled access to information, advice, peer networks and learning opportunities.
Formerly Deputy Director at the NI Confederation of British Industry (CBI), Kirsty’s appointment followed a successful career during which she has held senior positions at the Ulster University, NI Chamber and Vistage in California.
Kirsty has over 20 years’ experience working in markets such as the United States and Europe.
Kirsty was appointed Chair of the Ministerial Advisory Panel on Infrastructure by Minister Mallon on August 2020 and a founding member of the Northern Ireland Business Brexit working group.
Kirsty has a degree in Information Management from Queens University, an MBA from Ulster University Business School and achieved the IoD Diploma in Company Direction. Kirsty is also a trustee of Charis Cancer Charity.