Key Speakers

Anna Wahlanna-wahl-2

Anna Wahl is Professor (Chair) of Gender, Organisation and Management and Vice Rector for Gender Equality and Values at the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), Stockholm. Professor Wahl’s current research interests are the gendering of management in different contexts, work for change and the impact of gender equality in organisations. She has been involved in several development and research projects in the Swedish film industry to promote increased gender awareness and initiatives for change. Recent publications include ‘The Gender Equality Index and Reflective Role-Plays: Introducing Gender in Management Education’ in Flynn et al. (eds.) Integrating gender equality into business and management education: Lessons learned and challenges remaining (2015), ‘Male Managers Challenging and Reinforcing the Male Norm in ManagemenT’, in NORA, Nordic Journal of Feminist and Gender Research (2014) and ‘Women as Power Resources: Putting Theory into Practice’ in Bilimoria et al (eds.) Women in STEM Careers. International perspectives on increasing workforce participation, advancement and leadership (2014).

Caroline Norburycaroline-norbury-mike-henton-2016-32-edit-1

Caroline Norbury, MBE is the founding Chief Executive of Creative England and dedicated to championing the creative industries.   Creative England invests in and supports creative ideas, talent and businesses in film, TV, games and digital media. Creative England is working to build the right environment for the future of the creative industries by helping them raise their ambition, create jobs, grow turnover and build the confidence and networks they need to be truly innovative.  It also lobbies for change and uses its unique local, regional and national perspective to feed back to the UK Government and policy makers. Caroline is a non-exec on the board of Crowdfunder, the UK’s largest rewards-based crowdfunding platform; a member of BAFTA; the Royal Society of Arts; the UK Trade & Investment Creative Industries Sector Advisory Group and leads on the work of the Creative Industries Council Access to Finance working group.

Melissa Silversteinmelissa-silverstein

Melissa Silverstein is a writer and speaker with an extensive expertise in the area of women and Hollywood. She is the founder and publisher of Women and Hollywood, one of the most respected sites for issues related to women and film as well as other areas of pop culture. Women and Hollywood – which will celebrate its 10th anniversary in 2017 – educates, advocates, and agitates for gender diversity in Hollywood and the global film industry.  She is the Artistic Director and co-founder of the Athena Film Festival -A Celebration of Women and Leadership – at Barnard College in NYC. The 7th annual festival will take place from February 9-12, 2017. Melissa has experience working on social media marketing campaigns and events for a variety of films including: My Week With Marilyn, The Iron Lady, Gloria Steinem: In Her Own Words, Bright Star, Revolutionary Road, Bend it Like Beckham, and The Hours. Previous experience includes work on high profile public education campaigns such as Take Our Daughters to Work Day, and she was the founding project director for The White House Project. Prior to that was the Chief of Staff at the Ms. Foundation for Women. In 2013, she was one of the recipients of the Susan B. Anthony Award from the NYC Chapter of the National Organization for Women. She is an Advisory Board member to Project Greenlight Digital Studios and a member of NY Women in Film and TV.

Panel Members

Jane Goganjane-gogan

Jane Gogan has worked in RTÉ for 11 years as Commissioning Editor for Drama and latterly Head of Drama with responsibility for commissioned drama, in-house drama, Fair City, RTÉ’s on-line drama, Storyland, and RTÉ’s short film investments. Drama series and events include political drama, Charlie, a drama about the public life of former Taoiseach Charles J. Haughey; Raw, an entertainment drama about contemporary city life viewed through stories around a restaurant and its staff; Amber, a story of of a missing child and the impact on her family; gangland drama Love/Hate; Clean Break, a serial crime drama set in Wexford; 1916 commemoration drama Rebellion and, most recently Striking Out, an entertainment drama set in a legal world. Acceptable Risk, a conspiracy drama, is currently in post-production. Before working in RTÉ Jane worked as Commissioning Editor in TV3 and was previously an independent drama and documentary producer. In her early years as a producer she also established Film Base, with a group of her peers, as the first administrator and chairperson of the organisation and was a founding member of Film Makers Ireland.

Alan Esslemontalanesslemontpic

Alan Esslemont is the current Ardstiúrthóir/Director General at TG4. Alan is a Scotsman who holds an MA in French from Edinburgh University (1980) and a postgraduate MBA from the Open University (2005). Moving to Ireland in 1984 to a teaching position at University College Galway, Alan in 1989 became a member of the start-up team for Telegael, the first successful audio-visual company in the west of Ireland. Alan was appointed in 1995 to the senior management group of Teilifis na Gaeilge which launched TnaG in October 1996. He was a founding board member and treasurer of the Irish Film and Television Academy (1997 – 2000) and played a key role in the successful re-launch of TnaG as TG4 in 1999. He was appointed Director of Television for TG4 in 2000 and then in December 2007 Alan returned to Scotland to help set up and successfully launch BBC ALBA, the Scots Gaelic television channel. BBC ALBA was the first BBC licensed service to be managed within a partnership framework, jointly managed by MG ALBA and the BBC. In October 2016 Alan returned from Scotland to undertake the chief executive role at TG4. His wife, Mary, is from Mayo and they brought up their five children in Connemara through Irish.

Rebecca O’Flanaganrof

A graduate of UCD and King’s Inns, Rebecca worked in a freelance capacity for a number of years in the Irish film industry before she moved to the Irish Film Board to work as a Development Manager, selecting and managing the Board’s vast development slate including shorts, animation, television and film. In 2004 she left the Board and established Rubicon Films. In that year she also produced the RTE/Film Base-funded short Right Now Ladies and Gents. In 2006, she produced 4 one-hour episodes of the TV series The Running Mate for TG4, which won the IFTA for Best Drama Serial. Also in 2008, Rebecca executive produced The Eclipse for Treasure Entertainment, a feature film written and directed by Conor McPherson which won the award for Best Actor at the Tribeca Film Festival for Ciaran Hinds and also won the IFTA for Best Film. In 2009, Rebecca produced the feature film My Brothers which also premiered in Tribeca. In the same year she produced Your Bad Self, a six part TV sketch show for RTE, winner of the IFTA for best entertainment programme. In 2011 Rebecca executive produced BAFTA nominated Good Vibrations. In 2012 she produced The Stag which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival. In 2013 she produced Vivienne DeCourcy’s Dare to be Wild and executive produced Ivan Kavanagh’s The Canal. Her most recent credit is Paddy Breathnach’s latest feature film Viva.

Rebecca lectures on the MA in Screenwriting course at the School of Film and Digital Media in NUI Galway, as well as guest lecturing on a number of other film courses.


James Hickeyjames hickey 230x240

James Hickey is the CEO of the Irish Film Board/Bord Scannan na hEireann. He is a partner and Head of the Media and Entertainment group at Ireland’s largest law firm, Matheson Ormsby Prentice. James has represented many leading Irish film and television production companies as well as actors, writers, directors and composers while working in the field of media and entertainment law. He was formerly Chairman of the Projects Arts Centre and the Abbey Theatre and has had a lifetime commitment to the Irish film industry.

Lesley McKimmlesleyphotolarge

Lesley McKimm is a Producer and Co-Managing Director of Newgrange Pictures. A graduate of the Samuel Beckett Centre for Theatre Studies in Trinity College, she produced, line produced and post supervised feature films, documentaries, TV dramas, and shorts as a freelancer prior to founding Comet Film and Television in 1998. At Comet, she produced the TV series Any Time Now and No Tears. She joined Newgrange in 2006 and produced the feature film Happy Ever Afters. She is currently developing the screenplay An Exact Replica of a Figment of My Imagination with Lauren Mackenzie. She has been on the board of the Irish Film Board since 2005 and is a graduate of EAVE (European Audiovisual Entrepreneurs) (1998) and the Media Business School (2002).

Orla O’Connor orla-2014

Orla O’Connor is Director of National Women’s Council of Ireland. She holds a Masters degree in European Social Policy from NUIM and a degree in Social Science from UCD. Orla has worked in senior management in non-governmental organisations in Ireland for over 15 year. She was previously the Head of Policy of NWCI, and has led campaigns on a wide range of issues on women’s rights, including social welfare reform, pension reform and for the introduction of quality and affordable childcare. Orla has worked in local community based projects developing services for the unemployed, lone parents and young people.

Celine Craigcelene-craig-1-higherres_pk

Celene Craig is Deputy Chief Executive of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI), since its establishment in 2009, in addition to having worked with its predecessors the Broadcasting Commission of Ireland and the Independent Radio and Television Commission. A significant dimension of her work has been her involvement in the formulation and implementation of a range of broadcasting-related policies, including licensing, compliance and enforcement, transition to digital terrestrial television, media ownership and control, and codes and standards for broadcasting content. Over the past six years, she has had responsibility for the remit, financing and performance aspects of the regulation of public service broadcasters in Ireland, including the completion of a five-year review of public funding for the Irish public service broadcasters, RTÉ and TG4. Celene is one of two Authority nominees to the BAI’s statutory Contract Awards Committee, which is responsible for the award of licences for broadcasting services and multiplex operations. More broadly, her role in the BAI also extends to matters of corporate governance and finance. She is currently Chairperson of the European Platform of Regulatory Authorities (EPRA) (since May 2015), and is an active participant in European fora on audiovisual policy matters.

Teresa McGraneteresa-mcgrane

Teresa is currently Deputy CEO of Bord Scannán na hÉireann / the Irish Film Board.  She is across all aspects of the Board’s work from the commercial and financial aspects of projects that the Board invest in to the marketing and promotion of Irish films and the Irish film sector, domestically and internationally.  She is also across the Board’s strategy with regard to the audiovisual industry training to increase the creative and business capacity of the sector. She is a qualified CPA and holds an MBA from DCU.

Rebecca Dalyrebeccadaly

Following a BA in Drama and English and an MA in Film, Daly directed her first short, Joyriders, in 2006 (Best Short – Galway Film Fleadh 2006, Irish Film and Television Award 2007). Her most recent short, Hum, was selected and funded as one of the finalists for the Berlin Today Award 2010. Daly’s first feature film, The Other Side of Sleep, was selected for the Cannes Résidence du Festival. It premiered in the Directors Fortnight at the Cannes Film Festival and was included in the official selection of the Toronto International Film Festival 2011. She is currently working on her second feature, a love story called Mammal. Daly has been selected with the project to participate in the first Berlinale Residency.


Guest Chairs

Lauren MackenzieVersion 2

Lauren has extensive experience in both film and television as a writer, editor and producer. Her television work, as Development Executive with Accomplice Television, includes award-winning drama series for RTE/BBC Bachelors Walk and Pure Mule. Prior to that, she was Senior Story Writer/Editor on Fair City. She wrote several episodes RTE’s drama series On Home Ground and The Clinic and co-wrote Na Cloigne, a supernatural drama for TG4. She spent the last eighteen months working as Story and Series Producer on award-winning Red Rock (TV3, Element, Angel Station). The Daisy Chain (2008), her first feature, was directed by Aisling Walsh and starred Samantha Morton. She is currently adapting Elizabeth McCracken’s memoir An Exact Replica of a Figment of My Imagination for Newgrange Pictures. Anand Tucker is attached to direct. You Will Be My Last, a feature also supported by the Irish Film Board, is at first draft. At present, Lauren is Deputy Chair of the Irish Writer’s Guild and a member of the Equality Action Committee (EAC).

Marian QuinnMarianQuinn2015[1]

Marian Quinn is a writer-director who won Best Feature at the Galway Film Fleadh with 32A, which also won the IFTA for cinematography and the Tiernan McBride Screenplay Award. 32A premiered at the Berlinale, sold worldwide and has toured over 100 festivals. Since 32A Marian has developed several projects backed by the Irish Film Board as well as a TV series set in Chicago. She teaches directing at DKIT. She is chair of the Equality Action Committee (EAC) of the Screen Directors Guild and the Writer’s Guild.

Amy Rowanamy-rowan

Amy is one of Ireland’s leading casting directors working with directors and production companies at home and abroad – casting film, television and commercial projects with a heady mixture of flair and attention to detail. Her career in film and television began in 1995 with various production roles before she made the move into casting in 1998. Credits include Lenny Abrahamson’s Adam and Paul and Garage, original casting on The Clinic, Pure Mule and Moone Boy and most recently Gerard Barrett’s Smalltown with more than 30 other major credits in between as well as many short films and commercials. Her theatre work includes productions for the Abbey Theatre, Druid, Dublin Theatre Festival and Max Stafford-Clark’s Out of Joint. Amy is a member of EFP’s International Network of Casting Directors. She has served as a juror on judging panels for the International Emmys and IFTA.