Barney Whelan

Director, Chair

Former Director of Communications, Corporate Affairs, Brand Development and Marketing at An Post, former Public Relations Manager at ESB, with responsibility for public relations, public affairs and brand communications. Former Director of Sales and Marketing at The Food Safety Promotion Board. Former board member of the National Concert Hall. Extensive experience in fundraising/PR, marketing, corporate governance and business management. Appointed Chairperson: 25/03/2020

Sean Angland


Treasurer, Director

Sean Angland is Chief Operating Officer of HIQA, a certified accountant, and the former Finance Director of Cork City of Culture 2015. Sean, from Newmarket, Co. Cork, sits on Cork City Council’s Audit Committee as an external member and has contributed as a board member and volunteer to a number of not-for-profit organisations. Appointed: 03/2017

Frank Berry



Frank Berry is an award-winning Irish Director with an expertise in community filmmaking and television. His first feature documentary, the critically acclaimed Ballymun Lullaby (2011) follows music teacher Ron Cooney as he produces music which gives a voice to the children of Ireland's only high-rise housing estate. It won the 'Director’s Finders Series' from the Directors Guild of America. Berry’s next film, I Used to Live Here (2014), a drama which explores suicide clusters among teenagers, won the Best First Feature Audience Award at the Galway Film Fleadh and was released in Irish cinemas to critical acclaim. His latest feature, Michael Inside (2017) is a prison drama which follows 18 year old Michael who becomes caught up in a drug bust and is sentenced to 3 months in prison where he struggles to adapt to the brutality of prison life. It picked up the award for Best Irish Film at the Galway Film Fleadh where its young star Dafhyd Flynn also claimed the Bingham Ray New Talent Award, and the Audience Award at Cork Film Festival 2017. Michael Inside was awarded the IFTA for ‘Best Film’ in 2018 and has garnered numerous five-star reviews. It is now available on Netflix. Frank is currently working on a new film, a love story about an asylum seeker and the Direct Provision system. Appointed: 06/2019

Nancy Hawkes

Head of Marketing, UCC


Originally from Nottingham, Nancy began her career in Cork as manager of Collins Bookshop. She quickly found her feet in the city and joined the staff of Cork University Press, Ireland’s oldest academic publishing house. She is currently Editor-in-Chief and Head of Marketing in University College Cork. A lifelong lover of cinema, she remembers the gift of a season ticket to her first Cork Film Festival in 1999 as a passport to a new world of ideas and inspiration. Appointed: 06/2020

Patrick O’Neill

MD, Wildcard Distribution


Patrick Is Managing Director of Wildcard Distribution and has over 20 years’ experience in the film industry, including seven years at the Irish Film Board where he managed their film distribution fund. In 2013 he set up Wildcard Distribution which has brought a wide mix of award-winning and critically acclaimed feature films and documentaries to Irish audiences including the smash hit comedy The Young Offenders, the bio-pic of Amy Winehouse Amy, and the Box Office successes Bobby Sands 66 Days and Cardboard Gangsters. Appointed: 05/2017

Sharon Brooks



Sharon Brooks is a qualified barrister in Ireland, New York, England and Wales. She also studied Documentary Filmmaking in New York City after which she worked with Academy Award winning filmmaker Alex Gibney to produce the series Death Row Stories for CNN. While in New York City she also worked to produce content for the David Lynch Foundation. Sharon was a recipient of the prestigious Marcie Bloom (Sony Pictures Classics) Fellowship in 2011. She currently practices as a barrister in Cork. Appointed: 06/2020

Scott Jevons

Business Consultant


Scott Jevons works in Ireland's largest business lobbying organisation, where he provides advice and representation on employment matters for business in Cork City and County. His qualifications are across business and legal, most recently between Dublin City University and the Law Society of Ireland. He has past board experience in a community welfare, not-for-profit, background from his time living and working in North Dublin. Scott is a native of Waterford, and has a lifelong affinity and love for movies and television. He spends weekends in his home in Dunmore East, Co. Waterford. Appointed 08/2020

Cian Blackwell

Operating Officer and Deputy CEO, Irish Management Institute


Cian is Chief Operating Officer and Deputy CEO of Irish Management Institute. He is also a non-executive director of the Irish Aviation Authority, and of Limor, a social media startup. He is a Chartered Accountant with over 25 years’ experience in finance, operations, risk and governance. He has previously worked as a management consultant with Accenture, as a partner with Grant Thornton and as Head of Internal Audit and Group Treasurer with Ryanair. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Civil Law and a Graduate Diploma in Corporate Governance from University College Dublin, and a master’s degree in Risk Management from New York University Stern School of Business. Appointed: 07/2021

Avril Hutch

Director of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, UCC


Avril has over fifteen years’ experience in Equality, Diversity & Inclusion (EDI). She established and led the EDI Unit at RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences, where she developed and successfully implemented the RCSI EDI Strategic Plan 2018-22, including landmark programmes such as Women on Walls. Avril previously managed human rights and equality programmes on behalf of the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission (IHREC) and UNICEF. She spent seven years working on Irish Aid and United Nations (UN) funded capacity development programmes in Sub-Saharan Africa and South-East Asia. Avril holds a PhD in History and was awarded the UCC Boston College and Washington College scholarship. Dr Hutch also completed a postgraduate diploma in human rights and equality, a diploma in humanitarian law, and a certificate in visual art practice. Avril served as Chair of the Athena SWAN National Committee 2020-21, is a member of the Higher Education Authority (HEA) National Committee for EDI and is also a board member of Women on Air. Appointed: 07/2021

Cathy Cullen

Digital Strategy at Sky


Cathy has worked in TV for over a decade, and co-hosts the award-winning and critically acclaimed film podcast The Cinemile. She began her career in the programming department of TV3 in Dublin, before emigrating to Sydney where she managed programming for multiple channels at Foxtel. She has spent the last 6 years in London leading on digital content and campaigns at Sky. Originally from Cork, she completed a BA in UCC before graduating from DCU with an MA in Film and Television. She's thrilled to combine her love of film and Cork City in joining the CIFF Board.

Elaine Geraghty

Managing Director Ardmore and Troy Studios.


Elaine is currently Managing Director of Ardmore and Troy Studios, and formerly Chief Executive of Screen Producers Ireland. She has more than 30 years’ experience in the audiovisual and media sector. She has held a variety of senior management positions in the Communicorp Group, the Sunday Tribune and 98FM. As Chief Executive of Newstalk, Elaine developed the local Dublin radio station to become Ireland’s first independent national talk radio broadcaster. She was Chief Executive of ReachOut Ireland, (formerly Inspire Ireland Foundation), an online youth mental health organisation that supports young people aged 12-25.

Emma Jane Joyce

Investment Director with the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF)


Emma Jane is an Investment Director with the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF) where she leads on the design and implementation of the Fund’s unique Sustainability and Responsible Investment Strategy across the whole Fund, Global and Irish Portfolios, multiple investment structures and asset types and across the life-cycle of investments. She represents ISIF on a number of sustainability platforms including SIF Ireland and the CDP Ireland Network (past Chair). She has extensive investment experience and has held a variety of investment roles within the National Treasury Management Agency. She has recently completed the Executive Diploma in Corporate Governance at UCD Smurfit Graduate School of Business.

Cllr. Derry Canty

FG Councillor


Derry joined the board of the Cork International Film Festival in August 2019. First elected to Cork County Council in 1991 and serving as County Mayor in 2009, he had the honour of being elected to Cork City Council in 2019. As a full-time Councillor, he continues to serve the people of Cork.

Cllr. Paudie Dineen

Independent Councillor & Paramedic


Cllr. Seán Martin

ESB executive


Barry O’Hare

Finance Manager, CCC