Staff & Directors

MDN Team

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Sean Cooke

Seán Cooke is the Chief Executive Officer of the Men’s Development Network and has been since October 2018.

As Chief Executive Officer, Seán is responsible for the overall strategic and operational management of the organisation, including full responsibility for staff and budgetary management, implementation of strategy and supporting the board. He is also the official spokesperson for the Men’s Development Network, responsible for external relations and corporate affairs.

The Men’s Development Network is regularly asked by various government departments or agencies to represent Men on advisory or consultative fora and/or at conferences, both national and international, and in these spaces, I advance the policy positions of our organisation.

Seán’s primary degree was in Communications Studies with a Masters in Community Development. He has over 30 years’ experience working in Community and Voluntary sector both at front line and senior management level. Previous experiences included working in Community and Youth Development, Project Management of major community based capital projects and as a local development consultant.

Phone: 086 781 5605

Director of Services (Client Supports)

John Doyle

As Director of Services (Client Supports), John Doyle is responsible for the day-to-day management of our six MEND programmes in Waterford, Wexford, Carlow/Kilkenny, Laois/Offaly, South Tipperary and Kildare.

John has trained as a psychotherapist, specialising in body-based psychotherapy. He trained initially in Biodynamic Psychology and Psychotherapy at the Gerda Boyesen Centre in London, and has completed levels 1 and 11 trainings with Sensorimotor Psychotherapy Institute, Boulder, Colorado. He worked in private practice for 10 years. John is an Accredited Member of the National Association for Pastoral Counselling and Psychotherapy.

Since 2006 he has been the National Co-ordinator of MEND (Men Ending Domestic Violence), managing its delivery of the CHOICES programme. MEND represented Ireland in the European Crime Prevention Award (ECPA) in 2013.

John has presented at conferences nationally and in Europe and was a Board member of “Working with Perpetrators – European Network” for three years.

Phone: 087 231 1786

Training & Resource Development Manager

Lorcan Brennan

Lorcan Brennan is Training & Resource Development Manager.

He has almost two decades’ experience in the work that has included engaging with men, supporting the development of gender-sensitive training resources, informing men’s health policy, and mentoring and facilitating training with frontline service providers nationally.

Lorcan has been centrally involved in the Engage National Men’s Health Training Programme partnership.

He continues to support key men’s health initiatives focused on cancer prevention, engaging young and middle-aged men around mental health, international Men’s Health Week, the Irish Men’s Shed’s – Sheds for Life Programme, and Traveller men’s health matters.

Lorcan is an experienced broadcaster and has presented radio programmes highlighting issues impacting on men’s lives through MDN’s ‘Coming Into View’ radio programme.

Phone: 086 361 9884

Head of Programmes and Advocacy

Colm Kelly Ryan

Colm Kelly Ryan is Head of Programmes and Advocacy. He is responsible for the management, operations and rollout of training and development programmes.

Colm is also responsible for redesigning the Development Programme, establishment of advocacy campaigns (White Ribbon, Beyond Exploitation, Irish Ratification of ILO Convention No.190) and overseeing implementation of the organisation’s strategic plan and communications strategy.

An International Human Rights Lawyer, Colm holds an LL.M in International Human Rights Law from Lund University, Sweden. He has served as a consultant for one of Sweden’s largest human rights research institutes and was involved in the implementation of capacity building programmes in Turkey. He has also worked with development and food insecurity in Colorado, USA.

Colm’s research and advocacy interests include gender equality, sustainable development, economic, social, and cultural rights, sanctions, intersectionality, migration law and human rights cities.

Phone: 083 012 5488

Area Programme Coordinator MEND

Máirtín Doheny

Máirtín is Coordinator of the MEND Programmes in Waterford, Wexford, Carlow/Kilkenny, Laois/Offaly, South Tipperary and Kildare.

His specialised education and training, coupled with years of practical frontline experience, supports a large cohort of facilitators, partners, support workers and risk managers that work in the southeast of Ireland.

Máirtín brings transferable skills from past employment, company owner, community development work, volunteering work, sports coaching, coupled with a multi-agency approach to this challenging and diverse work in behavioural change for men and striving for better lives for all.

Máirtín has a flair and passion for work grounded in mindfulness and psychoeducation supporting all those around him to achieve their goals.

Phone: 087 318 0156

Area Programme Coordinator MEND

Michael Hennessy

Michael is Coordinator of the Mend Programmes in Carlow/Kilkenny, Laois/Offaly and Kildare. He has previously held several positions within MDN: NMHP Administrator, Engage National Men’s Health Training Co-ordinator, Company Secretary, Compliance Officer, Campaign and Events Manager.

Michael has been working full-time with MDN since 2014, but his involvement stretches back to our origins in 1997.

Michael has vast experience both from the private and public sector and holds a level 7 Dip. in Youth and Community Work from UCC, National Certificate in Business and People Management from the Institute of Leadership and Management.

Michael also holds a National Certificate in Business Studies (Business Enterprise Development) from Waterford IT. He has a logical mind with a practical approach to problem solving.

Phone: 087 716 8674

Financial Administrator

Deborah Corcoran

Deborah is the Financial Administrator for Men’s Development Network, with a BA in Accounting. She spent over fifteen years working in industry, with extensive experience in business management, accounting and bookkeeping. She deals with the financial functioning of the MDN organisation.

Deborah is on the Waterford Mental Health Association committee as Deputy Treasurer, Waterford WRAP Network committee, a volunteer with Waterford Befriending Service and a WRAP (Wellness Recovery Action Plan) Facilitator.

Phone: 051 844260

Communications & Web Management Coordinator

Jamie O'Keeffe

An experienced writer, editor, and editorial-designer, Jamie spent seven years as a parliamentary assistant before taking up his role in Men’s Development Network.

From Butlerstown, Co. Waterford, he was a full-time provincial newspaper journalist and editor from 1993-2013.

Jamie has also produced and published a number of books and his interests include sport (being secretary of soccer and GAA clubs), graphic design, history, and travel.

Phone: 083 0125496

Counselling Co-ordinator & Advice Line Supervisor

Derek Smith

Derek is Coordinator of the MDN Counselling Programme and is also the Supervisor of the Male Advice Line.

He is a fully accredited counsellor with the IACP and has a degree in Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy, plus a Master’s Degree in Philosophy and Modern English Literature.

Derek has also extensive experience in the field of addiction.

Phone: 051 844260

Advice Line Counsellor

John Kilgarriff

John is a qualified integrative Counsellor and Psychotherapist with nine years’ experience working with people of various backgrounds and presenting issues. 

He works using a person-centred approach that is individually tailored to meet specific clients’ needs. Before joining Men’s Development Network John held counselling roles with Pieta House and the Cari Foundation as well as other previous voluntary and community-based therapy positions.

John has six years’ experience working in telephone and helpline support.

Phone: 051 844260

Project Development Officer: Research, Policy and Advocacy

Kenny Doyle

Kenny Doyle is our Project Development Officer for Research, Policy and Advocacy. He has a degree in English and Sociology, a Masters by research in Sociology and is close to completing PhD research on active labour market policy and the government of unemployed people in Ireland.

Kenny has presented his work at national and international conferences and has published a number of journal articles and think pieces related to his research. His research interests include Employment and Unemployment, Governmentality, Sanctions, and Active Labour Policy.

Kenny has worked as lecturer and tutor in both Sociology and Social Policy and has worked in numerous research roles.

Phone: 083 2083241

Administrative Assistant

Gavin Winters

Gavin is a valued member of the team, with a range of experience in administrative roles.

Excelling in attention to detail and organisational tasks, Gavin previously worked with Waterford College of Further Education and Waterford City Enterprise Centre before joining MDN as an Intern.

Phone: 051 844260

FarmConnect Coordinator

Clare Thoma

Clare Thoma is Coordinator of the FarmConnect Programme. She is responsible for the roll-out and implementation of the pilot and works closely with the MDN training and development team.

Clare holds a BA Hon’s degree with Postgraduate Diplomas in Education and in Community Development. She has worked extensively in local, rural and community development and has significant experience in the implementation of EU and publicly funded development programmes.

Phone: 086 8167798

Project Support Worker

Joe English

Joe is a Waterford IT graduate holding degrees in both Business and Horticulture. His background includes sales and marketing in social enterprises as well as being on the board of directors for family resource centres in Waterford and providing administrative and marketing assistance for various programmes within FRCs.

Joe provides administrative support to MDN across a varied range of programmes and projects.

Phone: 083 027 4954

Client Support Worker

Joyce O'Sullivan

Joyce O’Sullivan works as Client Support Worker for the Men’s Development Network. She liaises with a variety of other services, ensuring the promotion of the Male Advice Line, and works collaboratively with them to support all clients. She provides over-the-phone and face-to-face support where required for men in the Midwest area of the country.

Joyce has a degree in Theology and Sociology, with a post-grad diploma in Counselling and Psychotherapy. She holds qualifications in Clinical Pastoral Education and is accredited as a healthcare chaplain. She has extensively worked across all areas of support within her role as Pastoral Care Worker and Chaplain in numerous healthcare settings. 

Joyce has experience working with the vulnerable, patient advocacy, and counselling. She is currently undertaking a masters in Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy. 

Phone: 083 208 3223

Client Support Worker

Fredrick Okungu

Fredrick Okungu is the new Male Advice Line Client Support Worker overseeing the Dublin Region. 

Based in Dublin, where he is taking a Masters in Gender, Politics, and International Relations at UCD, Fredrick is a native of Kenya, where he previously worked in a range of programmatic capacities for UN Women, the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, and legislative caucus KYMCA.

His professional interests are embedded in gender equality and social inclusion, minority and marginalised groups’ rights, advocacy and lobbying. Fredrick has also studied Alcohol and Drug Abuse (ADA) and the impact of violence on men’s and women’s health.

Phone: 086 415 0318

Board of Directors

Chairperson: Noel Synnott | Secretary: Joan Bolger | Treasurer: Owen Hillery 

Gary White, Mia De Faoite, Frank Hutchinson, Rose Hearne, John Brophy, Natalie Cooke