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Minister Smith appoints two New Directors to the Board of the Irish National Stud

Following consultation with the Minister for Finance, Brian Lenihan TD, the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Brendan Smith TD, today announced the appointment of two new directors to the Board of the Irish National Stud (INS) and confirmed his intention to make a further four appointments very shortly.

Minister Smith said that the two new directors - Sean Brady and Jessica Harrington - "brought a wealth of business and bloodstock experience and expertise from both inside and outside the industry."  The Minister expressed his appreciation to the new directors and said that he was "confident that their backgrounds and experiences would be of considerable benefit to the stud."  The Minister also thanked the outgoing directors for "their contribution to the development and success of the stud over the years."

Minister Smith said that he had stressed to the new and remaining directors the need to continue to maintain a clear focus on governance issues and, in particular, the need to ensure that the provisions of the revised and updated Code of Practice for the Governance of State Bodies continue to be strictly applied.

The Minister also said that "given the difficult economic climate, from which the bloodstock industry has certainly not been immune" he had asked the board, "as a matter of urgency, to review the company's financial situation and to take such decisions as are necessary to ensure that the Stud is placed on a sustainable financial footing and that its future financial situation is secured."

Note for Editors

The Irish National Stud is a commercial state company, established in 1946, and currently stands seven stallions.  It plays an active role in the development and promotion of Irish bloodstock.  It is the only stud farm in Ireland open to the public and also incorporates the Japanese Gardens, St Fiachra's Garden and the Horse Museum.

Dr Sean Brady is a successful businessman.  He is a former Chief Executive of the Irish Sugar Company and an interim Chief Executive of the Irish Dairy Board.  He is currently chairman of the 2020 Strategy Committee, established by the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food to draw up a long-term strategy for the agri-food, forestry and fisheries sectors.

Jessica Harrington is a highly regarded and successful national hunt and flat race horse trainer.  Jessica trains at Moone, Co Kildare, and will be forever associated with the great Moscow Flyer, winner of two Queen Mother Champion Chases and numerous other top-class hurdle and chase races.  She is also a patron of the Irish Horse Welfare Trust.

Date Released: 19 May 2010