Advisory Committee members

Chair - Prof Margaret Patterson

Prof Margaret PattersonProfessor Patterson is a Food Science Consultant. Up until the end of 2015, she was the Business Manager for the Sustainable Agri-Food Sciences Division (AFBI) in Belfast.

With a primary degree in Food Science, she also holds a Masters degree in Management and a PhD in Food Microbiology. She is a former President of the Institute of Food Science and Technology (2013-2015) and she was named as one of the top 100 practising scientists by the UK Science Council in 2014.

In June 2014 she was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for services to the food industry, especially in the areas of food safety and quality.

Mr Dermott Jewell 

Mr Dermott Jewell

Mr Jewell (B.Sc (Mgmt.) Law (TCD)) is Policy & Council Advisor to the Consumers’ Association of Ireland.

His representations include: Chairperson/Director of the European Consumer Centre (ECC) Ireland; Chairperson of the Financial Services Ombudsman Council and Member of An Bord Bia Quality Assurance Board.

He is Ireland's representative on the European Consumer Consultative Group (ECCG) of the European Commission (ends June 2016).

Mr Jewell is a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitration (Irish Branch) CIArb with accreditations in Employment Investigation and Mediation. He is also a Member of the Irish Institute of Mediation.

Mr Martin Roper

Mr Martin RoperMartin started his professional career as an Environmental Health Officer and was previously the Technical Director for EIQA (Excellence Ireland Quality Association).

Martin has an honours degree in Environmental Health and is a qualified Lead Auditor.

He has worked for more than 30 years developing and auditing quality and food safety management systems across a wide variety of industry sectors in Europe and the Middle East.

Mr Michael Bell

Mr Michael Bell

Michael Bell has 32 years’ experience in Agri-Food. He is Executive Director of the Northern Ireland Food and Drink Association Ltd. He is Chairman (Designate) of The Northern Ireland Agricultural Research and Development Council.

He is a board member of Agri-Quest - the Food Innovation Competence Centre. He has a primary honours Degree in Food Science. He is also a Fellow of the Institute of Food Science and Technology.

He has a Leaders in Industry programme Food and Drink Manufacturing sector award from The Queens University of Belfast. He is a Chartered (Food) Scientist. He has a Diploma in Company direction from the Institute of Directors.

Ms Therese Coleman

Ms Therese Coleman

Therese Coleman is a dietitian and nutritionist. She graduated in 1999 with a BSc (Hons) Nutritional Science from University College Cork, where she also undertook postgraduate studies, gaining an MSc in Food Business and Development (2001). Therese also completed a postgraduate diploma in Human Nutrition and Dietetics at London Metropolitan University in 2011.

Therese worked at University College London Hospital in the specialist bariatric surgery unit. She also worked within the Trust at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery. Prior to this, Therese worked for Nestle Cereals as Health & Nutrition Brand Manager. She also worked at the UK Home Grown Cereals Authority as Nutrition Manager and as a Nutrition Consultant in the UK food industry. She currently works as a clinical dietitian in the National Rehabilitation Hospital and also at Medfit Proactive Healthcare in Dublin.

Dr Mary P. Corcoran

Prof Mary CorcoranMary P. Corcoran is Professor of Sociology at Maynooth University. A graduate of Trinity College Dublin and Columbia University, New York, her research interests lie primarily in the fields of urban sociology, public culture and the sociology of migration.

A Taoiseach’s nominee to the National Economic and Social Forum, Corcoran has also served previously on the Senate of the NUI and on the Social Science Committee of the RIA. She is currently in her second term of office as a member of Maynooth University’s Governing Authority. She serves as a member of the Local Community Development Committee, South Dublin County Council, and is also a member of the Board of the Childhood Development Initiative.  ​

Dr Joseph Hegarty

Dr Joseph HegartyJoseph Hegarty, MEd, EdD, has headed the School of Culinary Arts and Food Technology at the Dublin Institute of Technology Faculty of Food and Tourism since 1972. A Fellow of the Irish Hotel and Catering Institute, he is past president of the European Federation of the International Council on Hotel, Restaurant & Institutional Education (EuroCHRIE), Director-at-Large of CHRIE International, and Vice-President of Association Mondiale pour la Formation Hôtelière et Touristique (AMFORHT).

Dr. Hegarty is co-author of The Story of the Dublin Institute of Technology and Academic Quality Assurance in Irish Higher Education: Elements of a Handbook and sole author of  Standing the Heat; Curriculum Quality Assurance in Culinary Arts and Gastronomy. He was joint winner of the Dean Robert A. Beck Journalism Award in 1995 and received the EuroCHRIE 2000 Achievement Award for Excellence in Food and Beverage Teaching.

Dr. Hegarty is co-editor of the Journal of Culinary Science (Haworth).

Prof Elizabeth Keane

Prof Elizabeth KeaneProf Keane is a graduate of University College Cork. She was Director of Public Health in HSE South (Cork and Kerry) from 1995 until 2014. She has lectured in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health in University College Cork since 1990 and was appointed Adjunct Professor in 2012.

Prof Keane was elected Dean of the Faculty of Public Health Medicine at the Royal College of Physicians in 2014 and also held several Ministerial appointments on statutory Boards including the National Cancer Registry, Irish Blood Transfusion Service, Interim Health Information and Quality Authority, Irish Medicines Board and the Health Products Regulatory Authority.

With over 30 years’ experience in the practice of Public health Medicine, Prof Keane has a particular interest in the role of food, food safely and healthy eating as determinants of population health

Prof Mary McCarthy

Prof Mary McCarthyDr Mary McCarthy is a Professor of Marketing and Vice Dean for Teaching and Learning at the Cork University Business School, University College Cork. She is a Principle Investigator in the HRB Centre for Diet and Health Research. Her specialism is consumer behaviour with a particular focus of food. Drawing on social cognition and social constructionist perspectives, she has explored consumer choice behaviours at product and dietary choice levels and has a particular interest in risk communication.

She has examined such matters as habit, innovation, trust, and normative and behavioural beliefs. Mary has published widely in international journals and recently has had papers accepted for publication in Psychology & Marketing Appetite, European Journal of Marketing, Health Communication and Consumption Markets & Culture.

Dr Elaine Mooney

Dr Elaine MooneyElaine is a lecturer in the Home Economics Department at St Angela’s College Sligo. She graduated with a B. Ed. Home Economics and Biology Degree from NUI St Angela’s and subsequently completed a Masters in Food Science in University College Dublin, followed by a Ph.D. from Ulster University in the area of Slimming Practices of Adolescent Females. Elaine has over 20 years’ experience in Food Education specifically working in the areas of Home Economics Education, Food Science and Nutrition. Her personal research interests include nutrition health promotion and food education. She is co-author of Recipes for Success: a GAA nutritional toolkit focussing on healthy living to optimise sporting performance.

Elaine sits on the Executive Board of the Nutrition and Health Foundation and is Chair of their Scientific Committee. She is a Director of St Angela’s College Ltd. and Director of St Angela’s Food Technology Centre Ltd.

Elaine is also a member of the Association of Teachers of Home Economics (ATHE) and a member of International Federation of Home Economics (IFHE).

Mr Gerry Leen

Mr Gerry LeenGerard Leen currently holds the post of Principal Environmental Health Officer with HSE - West.

He obtained a BSc (Environmental Health) degree in 1984 and has worked since that time as an Environmental Health Officer at district, senior and now principal level. He has over 30 years’ experience working in Food Safety with the HSE and has served on a number of Food Safety Authority of Ireland committees.

He completed a Master’s Degree in Occupational Health & Ergonomics in The National University of Ireland Galway in 1993 and subsequently held the position of Health & Safety Advisor in the Technical Services Department of the then Western Health Board. He has been a “change facilitator” for many projects in the HSE region and he also served as a part-time lecturer and course tutor in the Health Promotion department in NUIG.

Through his work he has carried out a number of research projects including a study on “House Dust mites - Asthma and the Indoor Environment” and a study on “Noise levels in discotheques”.

He presented Food Safety papers at EU organised training events in Romania, Bulgaria and Estonia in 2005, 2006 and 2007.

Dr Kirsten Dunbar

Dr Kirsten DunbarKirsten is currently the Food Standards Agency’s (FSAs) Head of EU Exit, Legislation and Operations in Northern Ireland and is based in the FSAs offices in Belfast where she is part of the Senior Management Team.

Following completion of a degree in veterinary medicine & surgery and a PhD, both in Glasgow University, and a number of years in private veterinary practice she has worked in Government gaining extensive experience in the fields of animal and public health. She joined the NI’s Department of Agriculture, Environment & Rural Affairs’ Veterinary Service in 1992, moving to the FSA in 2000.

She is a member of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, The North of Ireland Veterinary association and the Veterinary Public Health association.