Patrick Connolly - Chief Executive
Paddy Connolly was Chief Executive Officer of Inclusion Ireland since early 2012. Inclusion Ireland is a national disability organisation that advocates for the rights of persons with an intellectual disability.
Prior to this Paddy was CEO of Cairde for 14 years. Cairde advocates for the rights of Black and Minority & Ethnic Communities in Ireland. As part of his work Paddy has developed values-based approaches to equality and Human Rights advocacy and the application of values-based organisation management. He has particular interest and experience in managing organisational change and strengthening NGO capacity to bring about social change.
Earlier in his career Paddy worked in social care, youth work, community development and he has practiced as a certified family mediator and conflict specialist. Paddy holds a BA in Management and an MA in International Relations. In May of 2018 Paddy was appointed by President Michael D. Higgins as a Commissioner with the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission.
Carrie Benn- Head of Fundraising and Communications
Carrie Benn is the Head of Fundraising and Communications at Age Action. Carrie joined our team in March 2023, bringing with her a wealth of experience and skills from her expertise in marketing, financial accounting, impactful fundraising and effective communication. Carrie previously worked at Spirasi - The National Centre for Survivors of Torture, where she served as the Head of Development & Fundraising for over three years. In this role, Carrie led significant fundraising initiatives and played a pivotal role in supporting survivors of torture.
Carrie is currently undertaking a Master's degree in Philanthropic Studies from the University of Kent, a testament to her commitment to professional development and her dedication to the philanthropic sector.
Vicky Harris - Head of Programmes
Vicky Harris joined Age Action in 2020 as Head of Programmes. Vicky’s responsibilities include policy development, and the creation, implementation and evaluation of programmes which respond to the needs of older people.
Prior to taking up her post with Age Action, Vicky managed and developed all homeless and housing services for the Dublin Simon Community in Wicklow, Meath and Kildare. Vicky has worked with members of the Traveller Community in Ireland to support equality of access to mental health services. She also worked with a disabilities group in West Africa (Burkina Faso). While there, Vicky strengthened this grassroot organisation’s organisational and financial capacity. Key achievements include sourcing funds to build a school premises and securing three teaching positions for children with hearing difficulties.
Vicky has dedicated her career to working alongside marginalised groups. She has a history of developing services based on people’s self-identified needs. Vicky holds a BA in Politics and Economics, and an MA in International Security and Conflict Studies.
Jennifer Coen - Head of Administration & HR
Jennifer has been with Age Action since 2011 when she joined as the Assistant CE Supervisor having previous worked in the Central Remedial Clinic. She went on to become Officer Manager in 2013 and is now our Head of Administration & HR.
Before joining the organisation she lived abroad and co-owned and ran a successful business in Spain for eight years before returning to Ireland in 2008.
Mary Hamoodi - Head of Finance
Mary Hamoodi joined Age Action in 2019 as Head of Finance with the responsibility of providing a resilient and effective finance resource function, and is also part of Senior Leadership Team.
Prior to working at Age Action, Mary spent her career in the charitable sector in Canada holding the position of VP of Finance and Operations. Mary has a CPA designation from Canada and is also a member of CPA Ireland.
Mary volunteers her time with befriending an older person.
Gerard Scully - Information Officer
Gerard is with Age Action over 20 years, he came in originally on a Community Employment Scheme as a Librarian and Information Officer. He has a professional qualification in Librarianship and Information provision and a Masters in Anthropology.
Before Age Action he worked in Focus Point and Pavee Point as a Librarian. He manages Age Action’s Information Service and continues to enjoy working with and for older people.
Nat O'Connor - Senior Public Affairs & Policy Specialist
Nat has worked on social and economic policy for over 15 years and has worked in Dublin’s Homeless Agency, in the thinktank TASC, for the Labour Party in the Oireachtas, and at Ulster University and Maynooth University. He is the author or co-author of a range of publications, including Ireland’s first comprehensive report on economic inequality. Nat has a Masters in politics and social policy from the University of Dundee in Scotland and a PhD in politics from Trinity College Dublin.
Megan Reilly - National Volunteering Manager
Megan joined Age Action in late 2022 as National Volunteer Manager. Prior to this she worked as Training and Engagement Lead with Women for Election, running programmes for women to encourage them to get involved in political life and address the gender gap in Irish politics.
She also previously worked with Fóroige, running youth groups for marginalised young people and also recruiting, training and supporting volunteers across West Dublin. Before that she was Vice President for Equality and Citizenship with the Union of Students in Ireland, advocating for marginalised students and their rights and access to education. She has been a passionate Volunteer for over 12 years with various different organisations, and is a Board Member of the Irish Family Planning Association.
Yoey McCarthy - Regional Programmes Manager
Yoey McCarthy joined Age Action in 2021 as Regional Programmes Manager for the Eastern Region. She has worked between the public and voluntary sector over the past 17 years. Yoey supported people living with dementia and their families in her role as Case Manager with the Alzheimer Society of Ireland. Following this, Yoey was involved in the Assessment of Need process as HSE Disability Case Manager/ Liaison Officer for Dublin South East. Yoey also has 4 years’ experience of working in the homeless sector where she managed a Supported Temporary Accommodation for Dublin Simon Community. Before joining Age Action, Yoey was the General Manager of a Community Probation Project.
Yoey holds a BA Degree in Sociology and Social Policy and a Diploma in Life and Workplace Coaching
Jipe Kelly - Regional Programmes Manager
Jipe Kelly joined Age Action in 2022 as Western Regional Programmes Manager. He has more than 12 years of experience in the community and voluntary sector in Ireland and 7 years with international NGOs in both management and consultancy roles and has worked with organisations such as Integrating Ireland as Western Alliance Regional Manager, Galway Refugee Support Group as Community Development Officer, International Cooperative Alliance as Regional Capacity Development Manager for Africa, Africa – Europe Diaspora Development Platform (ADEPT) as Capacity Development Manager, and Principal Consultant at Diversity Matters. He holds a Master of Business Studies (MBS) in Co-operative and Social Enterprise from University College Cork (UCC), Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Economics from the University of Buea, Cameroon and Certified Management Consultancy award from the Institute of Management Consultants and Advisers (IMCA).
Jipe was awarded the Social Entrepreneurs Ireland award and the Enterprise Ireland’s New Frontiers Phase 1 and 2 awards in recognition of his contribution to innovating and promoting the development of social enterprises in Ireland. He founded Dream Opps and Diversity Matters and co-founded Mayo Intercultural Action (MIA). He also served as a member of the Ministerial Council of Integration (appointed by Minister Mary White) from 2010 – 2015 and represented Ireland on the European Migration and Integration Forum from 2010 – 2015.
Luke Decaux- Corporate Partnerships Manager
Luke Decaux joined the Age Action team in 2023, taking on the role of Corporate Partnerships Manager. His journey to Age Action was marked by a notable tenure at Focus Ireland, where he honed his skills in building meaningful relationships and strategic partnerships, essential for any successful fundraising effort. Prior to his impactful work in the nonprofit sector, Luke spent several years in the competitive private sector, specifically within the tech and sales industries. This unique blend of experiences has equipped him with a keen understanding of both corporate and charitable landscapes, making him exceptionally adept at identifying and nurturing partnerships that drive mutual value and advance Age Action's mission.
Luke's academic background is as impressive as his professional one. He is a proud alumnus of the University of Maynooth and Université Toulouse - Jean Jaurès, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts and a Masters in French, respectively. His pursuit of knowledge didn't stop there; Luke further expanded his expertise by obtaining a Masters of Science in Innovation and European Business which took place across three different universities - University College Cork, ISC Paris & HU Utrecht. These academic achievements have provided him with a solid foundation in critical thinking, cross-cultural communication, and sustainable business practices—skills that are invaluable in his current role.