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Society Structure


The Council

The Council is the governing body of the Society. Its role is to uphold the Foundation objectives of the Society and monitor progress on achieving these. It provides leadership and strategic direction and oversees management of the Society’s activities and resources. It has a duty to ensure that the Society conducts its affairs in an ethical, legal and responsible manner and it reports to the Members on stewardship and performance.

The membership of the Council consists of the Honorary Officers (the President and the Vice-President), the Honorary Members of the Council (Past-Presidents) and 36 elected Council Members.

On election new Members of the Council are appointed by the Council to serve on one of the five Standing Committees or the Membership Committee.

There are three Sections of the Council:

  • Agricultural Section – usually comprising appointed Members of the Committee of Agriculture and Rural Affairs and the Equestrian Committee;
  • Section for Science and its Industrial Applications – usually comprising appointed Members of the Committee of Science and Technology and the Committee of Enterprise;
  • Section for the General Purposes of the Society – usually comprising appointed Members of the Committee of Arts and the Membership Committee of Council.

Each Section has twelve elected members.

The Council normally meets five times a year. Meetings are chaired by the President.

The current members of the Council are:

Professor J. Owen Lewis 

John Dardis

Agriculture Section

Patricia Byrne
Dr Michael Carey
John Crowley
Lt Col Tom Freyne
Tom Kirley
Gillian Kyle
Comdt John Ledingham
Flor Madden
Professor Cathal O'Donoghue
Dermot A. Power
Faith Ponsonby
Olga Scully

Section for Science and its Industrial Applications

Professor Catherine Adley
Dr Sheila Donegan
Daniel Fitzgibbon
Ingrid Hook
Christopher Hone
Sheila Horkan
Dr Charles Mollan
James McGing
Eoin McVey
Professor Ronan McNulty
Tony O'Brien
John Whelan

General Purposes Section

Peter Cavan
Seamus Crimmins
David Dodd
Dr Philip Dodd
Patrick Downes
Ian Fox
Stevan Griffiths
Bernardine Hurley
Emmet Kane
Dermot Kelly
Noel Kelly
Gaby Smyth


Honorary Members of the Council

Bernie Brennan
Liam Connellan
Matthew Dempsey
Professor Dervilla Donnelly
Dr Austin Mescal
Michael D. Jacob
Martin Alphonsus (Fonsie) Mealy
Col. William A. Ringrose
Dr Tony Scott


The Board of Management oversees the day-to-day administration of the Society on behalf of the Council.

The Foundation Board focuses on developing the philanthropic RDS work programme on behalf of the Council.

The Standing Committees & Membership Committee


For further information, please contact:

Cliona Deegan

Dublin 4
Tel: +353 (0) 1 240 7221
Fax: +353 (0) 1 660 4014

Email: registrar@rds.ie


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