Dromore Castle in Limerick
Dromore Castle in Limerick. Image: Kwiatek7/Shutterstock

Moving to Limerick? Here are 11 people you should follow

16 May 2018

Thinking of relocating to Limerick? Stock up on a host of top influencers for your news feed to learn more about who’s who in the mid-west region.

As we look across the world at the major global tech hubs, we tend to mistakenly only consider one ‘main’ focal point in any country – often the capital city.

But there are so many more sci-tech hubs within England than London; for example, Bristol or Bournemouth.

Similarly, while you may be forgiven for automatically thinking of Dublin as the epicentre of Ireland’s sci-tech ecosystem, there are so many strong regional hubs to which the world should pay attention.

That’s why Siliconrepublic.com is shining a spotlight on Limerick for the month of May, highlighting one of the country’s many tech strongholds outside the capital.

With any strong tech hub comes a great number of influential people – the who’s who of the location.

While we couldn’t possibly name every incredible person making their mark on the region’s sci-tech scene, we’ve rounded up 11 top Limerick influencers you should definitely be following.

Deirdre Sarsfield (@deemaloney)

Deirdre Sarsfield is the director of corporate marketing at Kemp Technologies in Limerick, having worked at the company for nearly eight years.

The Limerick native received both her bachelor’s degrees from Limerick Institute of Technology (LIT) and she is well connected within the thriving tech region.

Pat Carroll (@PatCarrollTouch)

Pat Carroll is a well-known connector in the Limerick and mid-west region, through companies, entrepreneurs and start-ups.

He works with Bank of Ireland as innovation community manager for Limerick, supporting entrepreneurs and start-ups to succeed and grow. He is also the chapter director of Startup Grind Limerick.

Orlaith Borthwick (@APJMidWest)

Orlaith Borthwick is the programme manager for the Mid-West Action Plan for Jobs, working across the local authorities of Clare, Limerick and Tipperary.

A former Limerick Chamber economist, Borthwick is leading the delivery of economic projects and policies that facilitate enterprise growth and job creation in the mid-west.

Niall O’Callaghan (@Niall_SHeritage)

Niall O’Callaghan is currently the managing director of Shannon Heritage, one of Ireland’s largest visitor experience operators.

Prior to his current position, O’Callaghan was the mid-west regional manager for IDA Ireland.

During his time with IDA, he presided over the most successful period of foreign direct investment into the mid-west in the agency’s history.

Emily Ross (@emilyjaneross)

Another incredible influencer from the region’s start-up scene is business adviser and entrepreneur Emily Ross.

Ross is one of the founders of SportsTech Ireland, an initiative based in Limerick that seeks to develop sports technology research and business growth in Ireland.

In 2016, Ross also founded Inkvine Communications, a consultancy firm based in the city.

Paul Sweeney (@PaulSweeney)

Limerick native Paul Sweeney is the executive vice-president of product at Webio, a start-up that uses AI to streamline inbound and outbound customer communications.

Sweeney is also the co-founder of ConverCon, a conference dedicated to the opportunities and challenges of the move to conversational interfaces.

Laura Ryan (@LauraMR)

Laura Ryan is the head of communications and marketing with Limerick City and County Council.

With a strong journalism and communications background, she spent more than seven years as a news reporter with TV3 before stepping into a number of communications roles in Limerick. She has her ear to the ground with everything happening in the region.

Dave Griffin (@Dave_Griffin)

Dave Griffin is the business development director of Dell in Limerick, with more than 20 years’ experience in the company.

His current role involves working with Dell Limerick to align and develop sustainable future strategy for the site as well as new value propositions.

Gillian Barry (@GillianBarry)

Gillian Barry is the head of innovation and enterprise at LIT and chair of Learning Hub Limerick.

Barry’s role in LIT supports start-ups and entrepreneurs, while Learning Hub Limerick works with parents and education providers to provide an inspiring learning environment for young people. Barry also manages the New Frontiers accelerator programme at the Hartnett Centre.

Paul Ryan (@poloriain)

As director of technical support and site lead at WP Engine’s Limerick site, Paul Ryan is overseeing the growth and development of WP Engine in the region.

WP Engine’s Limerick site opened in 2016 with the aim to hire 100 employees over three years. Outside of his work at WP Engine, Ryan also volunteers in promoting STEM with primary and second-level students in Ireland.

Gert O’Rourke (@gertorourke)

With more than 25 years of professional business experience supporting the start-up and SME sector, Gert O’Rourke has become a valuable part of the regional community.

O’Rourke is currently the centre manager for Nexus Innovation Centre in University of Limerick. Nexus is a growing community of entrepreneurs with a purpose-built office that supports the development of start-ups in the region.

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Jenny Darmody
By Jenny Darmody

Jenny Darmody became the editor of Silicon Republic in 2023, having worked as the deputy editor since February 2020. When she’s not writing about the science and tech industry, she’s writing short stories and attempting novels. She continuously buys more books than she can read in a lifetime and pretty stationery is her kryptonite. She also believes seagulls to be the root of all evil and her baking is the stuff of legends.

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