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Our people

Chair
Pamela McGovern

Vice-Chair
Patrick M. Shea

Treasurer
Robert Kerr

Honorary Secretary
Katherine Peacocke

 

Trustees
Jim Barriere
Christopher Deehy
Richard Hart
Mary McGovern
Kate Molson
Stephanie Murphy

Trustees
Erin O'Brien
Eoin Ó hÓgáin
Donald Regan
Michael Shannon
Honora Shaughnessy
Irene Woods

Matthew R. Tedford
Matthew R. Tedford

Founding Chair
Peter R. O'Brien, Montreal

Emeritus Chair
Brian Gallery, LLD


Pamela McGovern

Pamela McGovern, Chair

Pamela McGovern graduated from McGill University with a bachelor’s degree in political science in 1978, followed by a degree in civil law from the University of Ottawa in 1982. She is the ‘Secrétaire de l’Ordre et directrice des affaires juridiques’ at the ‘Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec’. She was the senior counsel at Aust Legal Inc. where she advised clients in commercial and construction matters and provides litigation management services to companies. She has also been the General Counsel and Principal Director of Legal affairs at Hydro-Québec. Prior to Hydro-Québec, Ms. McGovern was a partner with Lavery de Billy where she served for seven years as group leader, commercial litigation. She also sat on the firm’s board of directors. Ms. McGovern plays an active role in the International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC), and was a board member from 2011 to 2014. She has recently joined the audit committee of the association for a 3 year mandate.

Pamela McGovern sits on the board of Maison Biéler, a retirement home for Canadian Forces veterans. She is presently involved in a transition housing project for veterans suffering with post-traumatic stress disorder.  She is the proud mother of 3 daughters, the eldest having graduated from Concordia with a minor in Irish Studies..

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Patrick M. Shea, Vice Chair

Patrick M. Shea is a partner at the Montreal office of Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP, a leading Canadian law firm.  Patrick’s principal areas of expertise are mergers and acquisitions, private equity and corporate and commercial law. Prior to joining Blakes, Patrick was an associate at Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP in New York City for five years and a partner at Ogilvy Renault LLP in Montreal.

Patrick received a Bachelor of Arts from Princeton University in 1995 and both common and civil law degrees from McGill Law School in 1999.  He is a graduate of Loyola High School and Phillips Academy.

Patrick volunteers his time for a number of foundations, charities and other not-for-profit organizations. He is a director of the St. Mary’s Hospital Foundation, the vice-chairperson of the board of governors of Loyola High School, the past chairperson of the Loyola High School Foundation, a director of the Father Dowd Foundation, a director of the Andover Canadian Fund Inc., a member of the Princeton University Schools Committee, a member of the Faculty Advisory Board of the Faculty of Law of McGill University and a past president of St. Patrick’s Society of Montreal.  Patrick has held leadership positions in connection with past capital and annual fundraising campaigns and events for McGill University, Princeton University, Loyola High School, McGill University Health Centre, Centre hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal and St. Mary’s Hospital Center.

Patrick was employed by the Canadian Irish Studies Foundation between 1997 and 1999 while he was a law student.  He assisted Brian Gallery, Michael Kenneally and Peter O’Brien with the Foundation’s start-up and initial capital campaign.

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Robert Kerr, Treasurer

Robert Kerr is the Founder and CEO of the Kerr Financial Group of Companies since inception in 1979. He is a member of the Order of Chartered Professional Accountants in Quebec, Canadian Tax Foundation and International Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners. He was the first non-American to have been admitted to the U.S. Registry of Financial Planning Practitioners and is a U.S. Certified Financial Planner. Currently, he provides financial advisory services and investment management to high net worth clients, and focuses on business development, strategic planning and writing.

Mr. Kerr is well known as an author and advocate in the field of financial education. His articles on personal finance issues have appeared in many Canadian publications including The Montreal Gazette, The Ottawa Citizen, The National Post and The Toronto Star. He was also editor for the personal finance section of CA Magazine. Mr. Kerr wrote one of the few comprehensive planning books in the Canadian market, “The Only Retirement Guide You’ll Ever Need”, first published in 1994 by Penguin Books and the Globe and Mail that has sold more than 25,000 copies.  Mr. Kerr is a graduate of McGill University and traces his Irish ancestry to Lisburn in County Antrim.

Katherine Peacocke

Katherine Peacocke, Honourary Secretary

Katherine Peackocke earned her B.C.L LL.B from McGill University.  She is a partner and practises corporate and commercial law at Dentons.  Her focus is on mergers and acquisitions of private companies and commercial real estate. She represents domestic and multinational corporations and pension funds on asset and share purchase transactions, corporate reorganizations, real estate transactions and financings. 

She is a member of the Ireland Canada Chamber of Commerce and of the ‘Association des femmes en finance du Québec’ (AFFQ) (Association of Québec Women in Finance)

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Jim Barriere

Jim Barriere has been a successful businessman and committed member of Montreal’s Irish community for more than 40 years. He is the president of BGL Brokerage, a customs and freight forwarding company with 85 employees in eight offices across Canada. Throughout his life, Barriere has been proud of his Irish heritage on his mother’s side, and has been a committed support­er of many organizations in the city. The Montreal Irish community has recognized his generosity in various ways: in 1987, he was named Irishman of the Year by the Erin Sports Association; in 1999, he was Grand Marshal of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade and, in 2008, served as its chief reviewing officer. He is a member of the Ireland-Canada Chamber of Commerce, the Montreal Board of Trade and a former director of the Canadian Society of Customs Brokers.

He founded the James Barriere Foundation for the Underprivileged, which helps the poor and the homeless, and is a founding director of the Generations Foundation, which provides food to 102 schools and 11 centres daily in the Montreal area. In addition to community and corporate awards, Jim Barriere was awarded the Order of Canada in 2000. 

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Christopher Deehy

Christopher Deehy has been practicing with the firm Lapointe Rosenstein Marchand Melançon since 1995 and is currently the head of its Labour and Employment Law group and has been a member of its management committee since 2012. He holds an LL.B. from Université du Québec à Montréal, an M. Sc. Industrial Relations from École de relations industrielles de l’Université de Montréal and an B.A. (Political Science) from McGill University. Christopher is a member of the St. Patrick’s Society. He has been the attorney for the Coalition for peace in Ireland and the Quebec Ireland Committee since 1998. He was an International observer with a Canadian delegation of International observers that travelled to Belfast and Portadown for the 1999  Orange Marches.  Christopher’s family originated in Carrick-on-Suir, County Tipperary, Ireland.

Speaking about the Foundation and the work it does to support Irish Studies, Christopher remarked, "I have always considered the School of Irish Studies to be an extremely worthwhile and positive project that highlights the Irish community, Concordia University and the city so well. A truly unique achievement."

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Richard Hart

Richard Hart was born in Montreal and grew up in Cedarhurst, New York. He attended Bishop’s College School from 1956 to 1961 and was awarded a BA from McGill in 1965. Hart has been employed as an investment advisor at Greenshields Inc from 1965 to 1990, at Thomson Kernaghan from 1990 to 2002 and at MacDougal, MacDougall & MacTier from 2002 to the present.

 

Mary McGovern

Mary McGovern

Mary McGovern has been employed with Saint Patrick’s Basilica and Saint Patrick’s Restoration Foundation since 1988.  She is a self-motivated and experienced administrator who is detail-oriented with ability to handle multiple projects.  Her responsibilities include managing assets and finances, preparing budgets and reporting to both Boards on a regular basis.  Essential skills to her work at both the Basilica and the Restoration Foundation include fundraising and applying for government funding.  Her strong leadership qualities result in successfully managing all aspects of personnel comprised of employees and volunteers.

Ms McGovern is a volunteer Director of Saint Patrick’s Society and President of the Saint Patrick’s Development Foundation.  

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Kate Molson

(née Katherine Brigid Finn) was born into a large Irish family in Boston, hailing from such Irish names as Ward, O’Toole and Mahoney. Her father’s grandparents emigrated from Ireland in the late 1800s and settled in Boston. Her mother’s parents arrived in Connecticut in 1930 from County Longford. Molson worked in a corporate capacity for 10 years, handling large business accounts for AT&T and American Express. When her family relocated to Denver, Colo., she settled into raising four children. Molson has served on a variety of committees, including those at Westmount, Que.’s Selwyn House School and Villa Sainte-Marcelline, where she and her team managed the school’s largest fundraising initiative. Molson has also worked on various projects with the Montreal Canadiens Children’s Foundation and Loyola High School.

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Stephanie Murphy

Stephanie Murphy is project manager, Americas and Asia, at Investissement Québec, where her role is to attract foreign direct investment to the province. She works with financial, legal and accounting partners, companies, government and research insti­tutes across a range of sectors, including gaming, IT, aerospace, life sciences, environment, transportation and mobility, in establishing subsidiaries in Quebec. Murphy’s work experience spans academia, industry and govern­ment. Her background in trade and international development includes working in Ottawa with Industry Canada before working for the Japanese and British governments in Montreal and abroad. As advisor to Université de Montréal’s Bureau Recherche Dévelop­pement Valorisation and commercial arm Univalor, she produced a best practice re­port on commercializing health science in­novations for the university and its affiliate institutes. Later, as a consultant, she served Canadian and European clients seeking to expand their respective markets.

A former director on the Board of the Ireland-Canada Chamber of Commerce, Murphy remains an active community member, taking in Montreal Irish happenings both business-related and cultural. Motivated to contribute to the Foundation, she has already attended several events organized by the School of Canadian Irish Studies along with her family, which includes an Irish dancer and aspiring fiddlers. Murphy holds an MBA from Université du Québec à Montréal and a BSc in biology and environmental sciences from Université de Montréal. 

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Erin O'Brien

Erin O'Brien, CFA, ICD.D, is a retired senior partner and director of Jarislowsky, Fraser Limited, one of Canada’s oldest and most reputable investment advisory firms.  Throughout her career at the firm, she managed the portfolios of private clients and foundations and held many roles including CFO, CCO, Head of Operations and Executive Committee member. 

Ms. O’Brien sits on the board and/or committees of multiple charitable organizations including the MUHC Foundation, Batshaw Youth and Family Centres Foundation, McCord Museum Foundation, Canadian Guild of Crafts and Nature Conservancy Canada.

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Eoin Ó hÓgáin

Mr. Eoin Ó hÓgáin is a native of Kilkenny, Ireland and, since 2016 has been a Vice President of Power Corporation of Canada and Power Financial Corporation. Mr. Ó hÓgáin holds a Bachelor of Business Studies and French degree with first class honors from Trinity College Dublin, where he was a Foundation Scholar.  He is a CFA charter holder and has a Master of Business Administration degree with High Distinction from the Harvard Business School.

Before coming to Montréal, he spent more than a decade in the energy and investment sectors, working for companies such as Morgan Stanley, McKinsey & Company and State Street.  His career has brought him from Dublin to New York, Houston, Dubai and Buenos Aires.

Mr. Ó hÓgáin is a strong supporter of Irish culture, especially the Irish language.  He is married to Sonya Thomas from Flint, Michigan and they have three daughters. In Montréal, Eoin Ó hÓgáin is a director of the Ireland-Canada Chamber of Commerce.

Mr. O'Connor graduated from Loyola College in 1962 and completed his law degree (B.C.L) at McGill University in 1965. He practiced with Oglivy Renault from 1968 to 2005 in the area of commercial law, principally real estate and banking law, with emphasis on property development. He was made a Senior Partner of the Firm in 1991 and was a member of the Executive Committee of the Firm and the partner in charge of the Firm's international practice from 1994 to 2004. Mr. O'Connor became Counsel to the Firm on January 1, 2005 and remained Counsel until June 1, 2011.

Mr. O'Connor was a Trustee of Legacy Hotels Real Estate Investment Trust (1997-2007) and has been a Director of the Imasco Pension Fund Society and the Imperial Tobacco Corporate Pension Plan since 2005. Mr. O'Connor obtained a Certificate in Canadian Irish Studies from Concordia University in 2008 and has been a Trustee of The Canadian Irish Studies Foundation and on its Board of Directors since 2005.

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Donald Regan

Donald Regan is a Montrealer who earned a BA in economics in 1970 from Sir George Williams University, one of Concordia’s founding institutions. Having worked at various research and marketing projects at CN for over a decade, he joined Ronsco Inc. as a partner in 1971. Headquartered in Montreal, Ronsco is one of North America’s largest privately held suppliers of products and services to the freight rail, passenger and transit industries. In 1984, Regan took full control of Ronsco, becoming chairman and president. He is also chairman and president of Donnelgan Investments Inc., a real estate and private investment company. He has been a member of the Railway Research Advisory Board of the Railway Association of Canada, and is past chairman of the Canadian Railway Club and past president of the Canadian Association of Railway Suppliers. He is a past president of the Montreal Amateur Athletic Association.

Regan has a wide variety of philanthropic interests, including Irish Studies at Concordia. He looks forward to serving as a trustee of the Canadian Irish Studies Foundation as it continues to consolidate Irish studies as an academic discipline at Concordia.

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Michael Shannon

Michael Shannon, CFA, is a Partner of Pembroke where he is also a Portfolio Manager. Mr. Shannon focuses on the technology, healthcare, and natural resource sectors in Canada and the United States. Prior to joining Pembroke, Mr. Shannon worked as a research analyst at Burns Fry Ltd. and as an engineer at two major Canadian technology firms.

Mr. Shannon graduated from McGill University in 1980 with a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering and from the Richard Ivey School of Business at The University of Western Ontario in 1983 with a Master in Business Administration degree.  He received his Chartered Financial Analyst designation in 1990, and joined the Firm in 1994.

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Honora Shaughnessy

Honora Shaughnessy graduated from Loyola College with a bachelor’s degree in 1971 followed by a Masters in Library and Information Studies from McGill in 1973.  She is currently working as a senior advisor on university advancement after completing a 37 year career at McGill University.  During her time at McGill she held a number of senior administrative positons, most recently as Senior Executive Director of Alumni Relations.  Honora has held executive positions in a number of professional organizations including the Canadian Council for the Advancement of Education, the international Council for the Advancement and Support of Education and the Council of Alumni Association Executives. She currently serves on the boards of the Montreal Oral School for the Deaf and the McGill Council on Palliative Care, and is a member of the Loyola Medal Committee. Ms. Shaughnessy also volunteers for Santropol Roulant, the MUHC and Cedars Institute in Montreal.

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Irene Woods

Irene Woods has always been deeply involved in all aspects of education with a passionate interest in students who have to overcome challenges to learn. Born in Cork, Ireland, where she earned a Bachelor of Science at University College Cork. After graduation, she volunteered to teach with the Catholic Mission in Eastern Nigeria for two years. She came to Canada in 1971 to join the Department of Experimental Medicine at McGill University, Montreal as a PhD. student.  She soon realized that a PhD. in Experimental Medicine was not the path she wanted to follow and in 1974 switched from Experimental Medicine to Education earning a degree in General Education from Concordia University and also a degree in Special Education from McGill University. Her passion for helping students with learning disabilities such as dyslexia inspired her to open The Westmount Learning Center in Montreal in 1978. This was the embryo that subsequently grew to become Kells Academy–that is today a registered and recognized Elementary, Middle and High School with a student population of over 400 pupils. Founded on the principle that each student has a unique personality and different abilities and talents, Kells Academy upholds the principles of innovative learning methods based upon the most recent scientific educational research. A great believer in the power of technology in education, Ms. Woods has a humanistic view of education where the focus is on individual students thriving in a harmonious community but using the power of technology to help them achieve their maximum potential. She is justifiably proud of how her dream has translated into the reality of Kells Academy.

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Brian O'Neill Gallery, Emeritus Chair

Brian O'Neill Gallery graduated from Loyola College in 1957 and became President of the Loyola College Alumni Association in 1971-72. He founded Canadian Sailings, an international weekly publication, in 1982 and was its publisher for 17 years.  Mr. Gallery was a Director and Acting Chairman of Canadian National from 1986 to 1989 and Vice-Chairman of CN from 1989 to 1990.  He was a Director of the Export Development Corporation from 1993 to 1997.  He was Mayor of the City of Westmount from 1983 to 1987.  He is a former President of Galbri Holdings Inc. and past Chairman and Director of the Brome Lake Land Foundation.  Mr. Gallery was awarded the Medal of Merit by the Canadian Port and Harbour Association in 1983, the Commemorative Medal for the 125th Anniversary of Confederation in 1993, and the St. Patrick's Society of Montreal Community Award in 1997.  In 2000, he was elected Irishman of the Year for Montreal.  In 2002 he received the Queen's Golden Jubilee Medal.  In 2010, Mr. Gallery was awarded the Humberto Santos Award of Merit by the Concordia University Alumni Association in recognition of his central role in the creation of the School of Irish Studies.

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