Roy Barrett to step down as Chair of FAI Board
Roy Barrett took up the position of Chairperson in 2020 at a critical time and has been a key figure in stabilising the Association over the past three years. He has confirmed he will continue in his role until such time as a suitable replacement is appointed in the coming months.
In a statement to the General Assembly, Barrett said: “My intention to step down from my position provides a clear opportunity for the Board, to ensure that at least 40% of the Directors are female by the end of 2023, as required by the Constitution, and the Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) with Government. This is something that I feel very strongly about, and I am convinced that this is in the best long-term interest of the FAI and the game of football in Ireland.
"I have been Chairperson for the last three years and, whilst there have been many challenges, I am pleased with the progress that the organisation has made over the period. We now have much greater financial stability, we have a new CEO and management team which I am increasingly impressed with and there is a clear direction for our sport in Ireland, as evidenced by the 2022-2025 Strategy we approved last year. Similarly, relationships with the key stakeholders of the FAI have been repaired and there is a lot of support there for the game and its development. This is a good point for me to step aside and let others continue on with the journey. I will continue to fulfil my role and responsibilities with the same energy and enthusiasm until a replacement is found.”
Gary Twohig was first elected to the Board as an Independent member at the May 2021 AGM and subsequently appointed as Chairperson of the FAI’s Commercial Committee. In this role, he has supported the restructure of the FAI’s commercial, marketing and communications functions.
Commenting on his decision, he said: “The FAI has committed to have a more gender-balanced Board with at least two more female Board members needing to be appointed by the end of this year. In order to help ensure we deliver on that commitment I have taken the decision to step down from my position as an independent Director. It has been a privilege to work alongside my fellow Board members and I am proud of what we have been able to achieve together with Jonathan Hill and the FAI Senior Leadership team in the last few years."
President of the FAI Gerry McAnaney said: “I personally would like to sincerely thank Roy for all his work in helping to stabilise the Association after a difficult period. I look forward to continuing our positive working relationship over the coming months as we seek a successor.
"I also wish to thank Gary for all his valued contribution to the Board. His commercial acumen has been a huge asset to the Association, and I speak on behalf of all our Directors when I wish him well with his business interests going forward.”
FAI CEO Jonathan Hill said: “I would like to thank Roy and Gary for their contribution to the FAI throughout a transformational time for the Association and their confidence in the executive team as we continue to implement our 2022-2025 strategy. Their decision clearly creates the platform for the Association to achieve gender balance targets, which we are confident will be the right thing for Irish Football into the future. I would particularly like to thank Roy on a personal basis for his leadership, hard work and counsel during my own time at the Association – it has been hugely appreciated.”
The FAI will conduct an executive search for the recruitment of Independent Directors to replace Roy and Gary on the Board through an open, public process which will be overseen by the Association’s Nominations Committee in the coming months.