Ted Brooks (Company Chairman)
Ted has over 30 years practical business experience having held a number of senior management positions in a multinational manufacturing company in Ireland and overseas and has extensive experience in strategy development, mentoring & business advisory services. Ted was an Executive Director of Element Six in Shannon where, he held international roles covering strategic planning, and global supply chain management. He has also held a number of other senior general management and financial positions. He graduated in Business Studies from UCD and is also a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ireland. He is an experienced businessman and facilitator who works with entrepreneurs and business owners to develop and improve the performance of their business and achieve their goals.
Jason Horner is a commercial organic vegetable grower living near Ennis. He is a member of the ISSA seed growers network and a seed guardian and has been saving seeds for ten years. He coordinates an apprentice grower programme for the Organic Growers of Ireland and is a committee member of the Organic Growers Alliance in the UK. In 2010 he graduated with an MSc. in Organic Farming from the SAC in Aberdeen.
Tony’s expertise is in the field of Education. He has an honours degree in Mechanical Engineering from QUB and a Masters degree with distinction in Energy and the Environment from the University of Sussex. He has more than thirty years of experience as an educator, in teacher training and later as a university lecturer at UL. His main area of interest is Energy, particularly conservation and renewables with a specialisation in Energy from Biomass. Tony has for many years been involved with organisations in the voluntary sector, being a founding parent of Raheen Wood Steiner School and until recently chair of the Board of management of the Alfa project (Active Learning for Adolescents). He has also been involved with East Clare Community Coop, East Clare men's group, the Mountshannon Festival etc.
Carmen Cronin is the founder and event manager of Clare Garden Festival, which has been running since 2012 and attracts over 2500 visitors and 70 quality garden & food stalls from all over Ireland every year. She is also managing and supporting other festivals in Clare and all over Ireland. Carmen has a keen interest in horticulture and conservation and serves on the board of directors of the Irish Seed Savers Association. Qualified as a Bachelor of Business at University of Limerick, she is an Experienced Marketing, Event and Project Manager with multinational industry experience. Carmen Cronin is the Purple Flag Ireland Manager with the not-for-profit membership organisation Association of Town and City Management (ATCM). She worked to bring the accreditation to Ireland in 2012/13 and has since been running the programme and supporting a network of the now 23 Purple Flag towns on the island of Ireland on behalf of ATCM. Carmen believes that best practice, actionable research and multi-layered communication are key elements required for place management.
Anita Hayes and Tommy Hayes (Founding Members)
Anita Hayes was born in the American Midwest and moved to Ireland with her husband Tommy Hayes in 1989. During her studies in Ecological Agriculture at Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington she was shocked to learn of the risks to food security through the loss of genetic biodiversity and began to focus her studies in this area. Inspired by the Seed Savers Exchange in Iowa in the US, Anita found that there was no similar organization in Ireland. Acutely aware of the importance of the work, she decided to just give it a go in Ireland and so began Irish Seed Savers Association.
Tommy is former Chairman and a founding member of Irish Seed Savers. Tommy Hayes has been at the forefront of traditional Irish music for over 30 years. He has been a member of a number of ground-breaking bands during his career. He was a member of Stockton's Wing from the bands inception in 1977 to 1983 recording four seminal albums. He was also the original percussionist for Riverdance. The strong link between Traditional Irish Music and the land inspired Tommy to create a recent collaborative film, dance and music performance called Apples in Winter which is now available on DVD the proceeds of which are being donated to Irish Seed Savers Association.