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Meet the team

Banking & Payments Federation Ireland delivers an extensive range of services through its specialist team whose combined knowledge, expertise and commitment drives our ability to advocate and deliver on behalf of our members. For more information on our staff members and their roles please browse through our teams below.

Chief Executive

Brian Hayes, Chief Executive

Brian studied at Trinity College, Dublin and at St Patrick’s College Maynooth.

Brian served as a member of both houses of the Irish Parliament from 1996 to 2014.

In 2011 he was appointed as Minister of State at the Department of Finance. During his time as Minister of State, Brian attended Eurogroup, ECOFIN and Budgetary Council meetings on behalf of the Irish Government. He also led on the issues of procurement and public sector reform.

Following his election to the European Parliament in May 2014 Brian was appointed to the European Parliaments Economic & Monetary Affairs (ECON) Committee, and also elected as Vice President of ECON. He was the Vice Coordinator of Econ for the European People’s Party.

Brian was the European Parliaments rapporteur for the IORPS II Directive and shadow rapporteur for the Money Market Funds regulation and the Pan European Pension Proposal (PEPP). He also worked on the EPs first ever report on Fintech and on the subject of Third Country Equivalence.

In 2019 Brian was appointed as CEO of the Banking and Payments Federation of Ireland. He also serves on the board of the European Banking Federation.

Banking and Payments Team

Maurice Crowley, Director, Banking and Payments

Maurice Crowley is Director of the Banking & Payments team, where his remit covers Retail Banking, Capital Markets & Risk and Payments and he is actively involved in banking & payments issues at both national and EU level.

Maurice has over 26 years’ experience in Capital Markets and Retail Banking with AIB. During this time he held various general management roles within the bank, including Chief Financial Officer, Allfirst Bank USA, HR & Market Strategy as well as Product Management and eChannel Development in AIB, Republic of Ireland. Before joining BPFI Maurice was Programme Director for the integration of EBS under the AIB umbrella

He holds an MSc Business Administration from Trinity College Dublin and is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants.

Niamh O'Donnellan, Director of Regulation & Supervision

Niamh joined BPFI in 2016 as Head of EU Affairs. Based in Brussels she engaged on all policy and regulation originating from the European Union Institutions and related bodies/agencies.

Niamh previously held roles in both the European Parliament as an advisor to the former Chair of the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee and also the Council of Ministers as a member of the Presidency team during the Irish Presidency 2013 in Brussels. Niamh also worked as a Strategic Consultant advising financial services companies on regulatory and policy developments of relevance to the financial sector and how to engage with the European Union institutions on such matters.

She holds an MSc in Economics and Finance, a degree in International Commerce and Italian and a diploma in French Language and Culture.

Richard Walsh, Director of Industry Collaboration & Innovation

Richard joined BPFI in 2017 as Head of Digital and Payments working to formulate positions and responses to Digital and Payment policy and regulation at national, EU, and international level.

Before joining BPFI, Richard was CEO for FinTech & Payments Association of Ireland (FPAI) and managed the merger of the association into BPFI. In the years prior to this Richard provided consultancy in the development of digital commerce strategies for companies such as RBS/NatWest, Telefónica Group, Bank of Ireland, Monitise and Three Ireland.

Richard has a degree in Mathematics from Trinity College Dublin.

Sharon Brennan, Head of Technology & Business Change Projects

Sharon Brennan joined Banking & Payments Federation of Ireland in February 2016 and is Head of Technology & Business Change Projects. Her current project portfolio includes a number of cross collaborative initiatives, leveraging on the valuable BPFI membership network.

Sharon has a keen interest in exploring how the rapidly evolving world of technology can provide innovative business solutions to the Banking Sector.

Prior to joining BPFI, Sharon worked as an IT and Business Change Project Manager with Bank of Ireland. She has a degree in Computer Science and Mathematics from UCD, and is a Certified PRINCE2 Practitioner.

Michelle Byrne, Head of Consumer Banking

Michelle joined BPFI in June 2010 and has had various roles within the organisation since then. As Head of Consumer Banking, key areas of focus for Michelle at domestic level include the consumer protection regulatory agenda and the mortgage market, while her focus at European level is on a range of legislative and regulatory developments in the personal banking space.

Michelle chairs a number of working groups internally in BPFI and participates in a number of working groups run by external stakeholders at both national and European level, including the European Banking Federation (EBF) Retail Committee and the European Mortgage Federation (EMF) Executive Committee.

Prior to joining BPFI, Michelle worked as a Planning Consultant with Tíros Resources Limited and as a Management Consultant with Deloitte.

Michael Concannon, Head of FPAI Strategy and Development

Michael is responsible for driving the strategy of the Fintech and Payments Association of Ireland (FPAI), which is affiliated to the BPFI. Through his role, Michael seeks to further the interests of stakeholders in the Irish Fintech ecosystem through events, information sharing and networking. The FPAI’s membership reflects the diverse nature of Fintech, comprising start-ups, scaling and mature domestic and international businesses.

Prior to joining the BPFI, Michael worked in various roles within Treasury and Digital Banking, and was Head of Cash Management in AIB for over 10 years. Michael has a Bachelor of Financial Services Degree from UCD, which is EQUIS and AACSB accredited.

Niamh Davenport, Head of Fraud Prevention

Niamh Davenport joined BPFI in 2017.  Niamh is leading the industry’s fraud awareness programme FraudSMART both internally with members and externally with the media and other outlets.

Key areas of focus for Niamh are fraud prevention initiatives and working groups at a domestic and EU level along with bank collaboration projects with BPFI members in the areas of fraud, payments and data sharing. Niamh sees the seamless and digital experience key to future banking requirements while at the same time ensuring fraud protection for consumers.

Prior to joining the BPFI, Niamh qualified as a Chartered Accountant working in industry and practice before moving to AIB working in the credit risk function, lending and fraud prevention.

Niamh holds a degree in Commerce from University College Dublin and is a member of Chartered Accountants Ireland with a diploma in Forensic Accounting.

Bernice Evoy, Head of Legal & Regulatory

Bernice joined BPFI in September 2014 and is Head of Legal & Regulatory.   Bernice advises BPFI and consults with members on legal and regulatory issues affecting the industry and assists where required in formulating appropriate responses when dealing with the industry’s stakeholders.  Bernice has responsibility for BPFI’s Legal & Conveyancing Committee and chairs a number of BPFI working groups.

Bernice trained and worked in McCann FitzGerald Solicitors before leaving to join Danske Bank, where she worked on its Legal Team. Bernice is a solicitor and a member of the Law Society.

Joan Gill, Manager Payment Schemes

Joan joined the organisation in 2013 working on the payments team with responsibility for providing operational and administrative support and assistance in respect of the day to day payments operations of member banks and their customers with a particular focus on SEPA payment schemes.

Joan was previously employed in the financial services sector as a programme manager for direct banking channels.


Keith Gross, Head of Financial Crime & Security

Keith has worked with the Federation for over ten years and is the Head of Financial Crime and Security.

Key areas covered by Keith include Fraud, E-Fraud, High –Tech Crime, AML & CFT, Physical Security and CIT (Cash- In- Transit) which involves engagement with external stakeholders, partners and law enforcement agencies. Keith chairs a number of working groups and committees internally in BPFI. He is the national representative at various committees and Advisory Groups at EBF and Europol for example.

Keith has worked previously in the number of other sectors including banking, bank assurance, pensions, investment consultancy and security.

Keith was educated at the National University of Ireland Galway (B. Comm), the Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) (postgraduate studies) and the Institute of Banking in Ireland. Keith also holds an MSc, Masters in Criminology.

Marian McCarville, Head of Funding & Resolution

Marian joined the BPFI in March 2019 as Head of Funding & Resolution, working with members to formulate positions on, Accounting, Taxation, and Recovery & Resolution policy and regulation matters at national and EU level, and representing those agreed positions to policy makers, legislators, regulators and other stakeholders. She also has responsibility for SME policy developments and building collaborative relations and initiatives with SME representative bodies.

Prior to joining BPFI, Marian worked in a range of senior management roles in AIB, predominantly in the Business Banking and Product Management.areas. She also worked in BOI for almost 3 years in project management roles. She holds a BA Hons Degree in Management.

Peter McGuigan, Head of EU Affairs

Peter McGuigan joined BPFI in August 2019 and is Head of EU Affairs in our Brussels office, working on areas of financial legislation relevant to members and assisting with BPFI’s engagement with EU policymakers.

With over five years’ experience in EU Affairs and financial services policy, Peter joined BPFI from a Brussels based consultancy where he worked as part of its financial services practice, advising clients on all aspects of their engagement with EU institutions and relevant legislative developments. Prior to that, Peter worked as an assistant in the European Parliament for an Irish MEP on the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee (ECON), where he closely followed the financial services agenda.

Peter holds an MA in International Relations and a BA in History and Philosophy.

Gill Murphy, Head of Payment Schemes

Gill joined the Federation in August 2018 and is Head of Payment Schemes, key areas of focus include PSD2, SEPA & SWIFT.  Gill chairs a number of BPFI member working groups and represents domestic positions to policy makers, regulators and other stakeholders. Gill represents BPFI members at a number of European fora through active participation in working groups at the European Payments Council and the European Banking Federation.

Before joining BPFI, Gill worked with Exela Technologies Ltd as Head of Operations Ireland.  Prior to that Gill had an extensive career with Bank of Ireland spanning operational functions such as Retail & Cross Border Payments, SEPA Direct Debits & Cheque Clearing.  Throughout her career Gill’s focus has been to balance service excellence against a fast paced and changing payments landscape.

Louise O’Mahony, Head of Sustainable Banking

Since  joining BPFI in 2002, Louise has worked in a number of roles in both Public Affairs and Retail Banking, including Retail Banking Advisor and Head of Mortgage Policy and is now Head of Sustainable Banking.

In this role she is driving out the sustainable banking agenda with BPFI members and stakeholders, which includes facilitating sector preparedness on sustainable finance and climate change and building on BPFI’s successful Safeguarding Customers Agenda.

Louise  is a member of the Sustainable Finance WG at the European Banking Federation, Finance Green Committee Ireland and the Safeguarding Ireland committee and chairs a number of internal BPFI working groups.

She served on the Board of Investor Compensation Company Limited from 2013-2016 and on the Executive Committee of the European Mortgage Federation from 2013-2017.

Prior to joining BPFI, Louise worked as a researcher onto consumer credit markets in Europe and Latin America. Louise is a Chartered Banker with the Institute of Banking and has an MA in Political Science from UCD. She is fluent in Spanish.

Gavin Purtill, Head of Capital Markets

Gavin Purtill joined the organisation in 2011 where he is Head of Capital Markets. He is active in many of the key areas of interest to FIBI (Federation of International Banks in Ireland) members such as EMIR, MiFID, UCITS V, MMF, AIFMD, ACS and Securitisation. Gavin is currently a member of the Financial Markets Committee of the European Banking Federation, a member of the ECBC (European Covered Bond Council) Steering Committee and ACS Ireland Committee Secretariat.

Prior to joining BPFI, Gavin worked with Aareal Bank AG as a Treasury Dealer and Regulatory Accountant for six years where he learnt first-hand the importance of regulation in determining the strategic direction and long term positioning of banks. He holds a Masters in Investment Treasury and Banking.

Ali Uğur, Chief Economist and Head of Prudential Regulation

Dr Ali Uğur joined the organisation in 2008 and is BPFI Chief Economist and Head of Prudential Regulation. He is a member of the Banking Supervision Committee and the SSM Steering Committee at the European Banking Federation representing BPFI. He is responsible for supervisory and regulatory topics as well as economic research and commentary within BPFI.

Ali graduated with an economics degree from the Middle East Technical University in Turkey followed by a PhD in economics from Trinity College Dublin in 2003. He started his career as a post graduate researcher and lecturer in the Economics Department in TCD. Ali then joined Forfás as an economist working for the National Competitiveness Council and subsequently became a manager in the enterprise surveys and evaluations department in Forfás. Prior to joining BPFI, Ali was an economist at the Office of the Revenue Commissioners.

Public Affairs Team

Olivia Buckley, Director, Public Affairs

Olivia is a strategic communications and public affairs specialist who has worked with leading Irish companies and organisations for over 20 years.  She has worked with a diverse range of national and multinational clients in sectors including taxation, manufacturing, agri-business, politics and privately-owned Irish enterprises.  Ms. Buckley has led a number of campaigns, including on EU referenda in Ireland and has been an adviser to key groups in Ireland and the UK on Brexit. She is an established media commentator and contributor on business, enterprise and economic issues. She holds a B.Sc. Management (TCD) and a Diploma in Strategy and Innovation from UCD Smurfit School.

Russell Bryce, Head of Public Policy Engagement and Research

Russell joined BPFI in 2016 as Head of Projects – Public Affairs before being appointed Head of Digital Communications and Social Media in 2019. In this role he has responsibility for maintaining and enhancing BPFI’s digital communications channels, engaging with and facilitating dialogue between members and stakeholders and with the general public through social media channels.

Prior to joining BPFI Russell was Internal Communications and Online Manager for Fianna Fáil, having graduated from Trinity College Dublin in 2011 with a BA in Business and Politics.

Jillian Heffernan, Head of Communications

Jillian Heffernan joined BPFI in 2013 and is Head of Communications. In this role she is responsible for establishing and maintaining communications channels with a wide variety of internal  and external stakeholders.

With over ten years of experience across the PR, communications and media sectors, Jillian previously held the role of Communications Officer with the National Longitudinal Study of Children in Ireland in Trinity College, Dublin. She also worked as Account Manager with one of Dublin’s leading PR agencies and began her career as a radio journalist and sub-editor with RTE news.

Jillian graduated from DCU with a BA in Journalism in 2000 and has also received a Postgraduate Diploma in Public Relations from the PRII.

Anthony O’Brien, Head of Sector Research & Analysis

Anthony joined BPFI in 2005.  He manages BPFI’s research activities, including its stable of mortgage and SME-related research publications.  He also liaises with a range of government departments and agencies on research issues.  He is a member of the Statistics Committees of the European Banking Federation and the European Mortgage Federation.  In addition to a primary degree in marketing management from the Dublin Institute of Technology/Trinity College Dublin, Anthony obtained an IMI Diploma/UCC Postgraduate Certificate in Data Business in 2014.

Prior to joining BPFI, Anthony worked in banking and payments research and finance journalism.  Among other roles, he was editor of Electronic Payments International, a leading industry publication, between 2000 and 2005.

Lisa Shevlin, Head of Conference & Events

Lisa Joined BPFI in December 2006 and is Head of Conference and Events on the Public Affairs team.

She is responsible for the execution and delivery of BPFI’s conference, seminar, and events programme.  Lisa has extensive experience of dealing with external stakeholders to ensure a high standard of delivery of BPFI’s conference and events programme.  Her key focus is BPFI’s two annual flagships events, The FIBI International Banking Conference and the BPFI National Conference.

Prior to joining the organisation, Lisa worked as a Senior Account Executive in Grayling PR where she worked as a communications & event management consultant for a number of clients.

Corporate Services Team

Ann Smith, Director, Corporate Services

Ann Smith joined BPFI in late 2016 as Director Corporate Services. She has responsibility for financial management, corporate governance, people management and facilities within BPFI and its related entities.

Before moving to BPFI, Ann worked with Chartered Accountants Ireland for 20 years in a variety of education, regulatory and financial roles. Ann trained and worked in Butler Chance & Co/Touche Ross before moving to Irish Life Building Society as financial accountant.

Ann is a Chartered Accountant and fellow of Chartered Accountants Ireland.

Rosaleen Gibson, Executive Administrator, Corporate Services

Rosaleen joined the organisation in 2006 working in the payroll department and administering the Direct Debit Database. Rosaleen’s role in Banking & Payments Federation Ireland sees her liaise with the organisations IT providers, accounts reconciliation and general office duties.

Orlaith Kelly, Executive Assistant to the Chief Executive

Orlaith joined the organisation in 2019 as Executive Assistant to the Chief Executive as well as providing corporate services support to the wider team.

Orlaith has over 15 years’ experience working as an Executive Assistant with roles in Dolmen Dublin, State Street London and M&G Investments London.

Summer Lee, Finance Team Lead

Summer Lee joined BPFI in August 2019 as Finance Team Lead in the Corporate Services Team. She is responsible for the finance function and processes and also supports the Director Corporate Services to ensure all key deliverables within the Corporate Services team are completed to a high level.

Summer has gained a variety of finance experience through her work in SSP Group and NetScout Group.