New Chairman Of Siamsa Tíre Board Of Directors Appointed

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Outgoing Chairman of Siamsa Tire, Joe Leonard Artistic Director Jonathan Kelliher, Executive Director Róisín McGarr, and incoming Chairman Seán Murphy.

SIAMSA Tíre, the National Folk Theatre of Ireland held its AGM on Wednesday where Joe Leonard stepped down as chairman and was replaced by Seán Murphy of Murphy’s Ice Cream.

Joe, who is Group HR Director with PM Group, an engineering and construction management company in Cork, was first appointed as chairman in 2011.

“During his time with us, Joe has been a great leader, ambassador and friend of Siamsa Tíre,” said Artistic Director Jonathan Kelliher.  “I had the pleasure of working closely with Joe over the last eleven years during challenging but rewarding times.”

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Siamsa Tíre’s Executive Director Róisín McGarr will also miss Joe.  “The creative, collegial, supportive, and thoughtful organisational culture at Siamsa Tíre is testament to the leadership, integrity, and personal values of our out-going chairman Joe Leonard,” she says.

“His talents enabled Siamsa Tíre to successfully navigate challenging circumstances with care, commitment, and skill.”

Seán Murphy, founder and CEO of Murphy’s Ice Cream, is the new chair. Born and raised in New York and living in Dingle for the past 21 years, Seán is a keen musician who has always had an interest in the arts.

“We have focused on supporting local ever since we set up Murphy’s Ice Cream,” said Seán.  “This is an opportunity to expand that support to the county’s premier theatre and art space.  I am joining a wide group of people who have worked hard over the past 50 years to keep folk heritage alive. Being a part of the future of that heritage is an honour and a privilege.”

The team at Siamsa is looking forward to working with Seán who joined their board earlier this year following an open recruitment process.

“Seán’s fresh perspective and boundless energy has already had a hugely positive impact on the organisation even in the short time since he joined us,” said Róisín.  “I hope to work with him in the years to come to strategically and sustainably position Siamsa Tíre for success in a post-Covid world.”

Siamsa Tíre will be open from Thursday to Sunday throughout the summer, restrictions permitting.  The National Folk Theatre photo exhibition will be installed for the first month of re-opening and in July, a new interactive Homecoming Exhibition will be launched.  Visit for more details.

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