Dara Connolly has been appointed as the new Chief Executive Officer of Common Purpose Ireland. He is taking over from Isobel Phillips, who has been CEO of Common Purpose Ireland since January 2017. Under Isobel’s stewardship, Common Purpose Ireland continued to thrive and expand. Isobel moves to an exciting new chapter in her life, freelancing in education and leadership development, and hopes to play a part in future Common Purpose programmes as an associate. Common Purpose Ireland and the global team remain grateful to Isobel for her contribution and wish her the best.

Dara has over 15 years’ experience working across sectors, and is a Common Purpose alumnus! He first got involved with Common Purpose when he attended the Dublin Matrix programme in 2007, and subsequently returned as a speaker and challenge-holder for two Common Purpose programmes in Ireland.

Dara is passionate about nurturing social change, developing leaders and forging personal development in others. Having worked in the property, event management, NGO and IT sectors, he has seen first-hand the power of different sectors working together. His accomplishments include winning the Social Entrepreneur Ireland Impact Award, Social Innovation Fund Animate Award and Dublin City Enterprise Award in 2016.

Most recently, he was Head of Partnership and Business Development at Young Social Innovators (YSI), Ireland’s largest social innovation programme that empowers youth to bring about positive social change. Prior to that, he was Executive Director at ReCreate Ireland, a social enterprise that makes eco-friendly arts and educational supplies available across Ireland and raises awareness about the green benefits of reusing materials. ReCreate was namedone of the top four innovative social enterprises in Ireland in 2015 by the Social Innovation Fund, and the organization received the Pakman Award for Community Education in 2016 and 2017. Dara has previously worked at Camphill, Saplings Special School for Children with Autism, Temple Bar Cultural Trust and Sustainable Ireland.

Dara expressed his delight at joining the Common Purpose Ireland team: ‘I’m proud to be in this role and am looking forward to meeting and connecting with people around the world. Common Purpose has given me the opportunity to engage with leaders at all levels over the past several years, and it’s exciting to be a part of such an incredible team!’

We are excited to welcome Dara on board and look forward to the continued growth and development of Common Purpose Ireland under his leadership.