Our major event at Irelandweek this year once more is our IRELANDCON conference on Thursday November 1st, to be held at the new LMU Graduate school of Film and TV at 12105 W. Waterfront Drive, Playa Vista, CA 90094.

Irelandcon, the one stop shop for doing business with AND in Ireland.

With a key focus on celebrating innovation in tech, trade, entertainment and cultural ties between Ireland and Los Angeles, this year’s flagship conference is moving right into the heart of Silicon Beach to LMU’s new Playa Vista campus.

Immediately following the conference there will an excellent opportunity to connect with other makers and shapers at a B2B reception kindly hosted by LA Stadium & Entertainment District at the Belkin building next door to the conference.

This must not miss conference was a sell out last year, and we expect the same this year.

Conference Highlights include…

The New World Order

Doing International Business in a rapidly changing environment Discussion on GDPR/Privacy,Brexit and International Trade

The Innovation Journey from Ireland to Los Angeles

Success stories & challenges facing Irish companies & executives navigating the US market

LA as a leader in International Trade

Think Big

Funding Expert’s take on funding on a world stage

Disrupt, Scale, Globalize

How start-ups cultivate rapid success

Connecting Modern Ireland

An IrelandWeek success story CWB’s Joe Clarke on how IrelandWeek networking led to a 2018 success story

Featured conversation

on Ireland’s production tax incentives in the Film Industry

Location Ireland

The growth of tv film production and the knock on effect on tourism and the economy Keynote Interview: where music meets Film and TV

Celebrating Creativity and Innovation

Women in Entertainment

Clearing The Hurdle: Successful women in Entertainment and their journeys

Meet our 2018 speakers

John Corser

VP Production
NBC Universal Cable Productions


John Corser, VP Production, NBC Universal Cable Production

A recent addition to NBC Universal Cable Production, John’s 25 years as a Producer have taken him to over 20 countries and 5 continents.  He is a Producer’s Council member of the Producer’s Guild of America, an expert digital production workflows and advocate for cloud based production management. He has been a recurring speaker at the Digital Video Expo, the Sundance Film festival, the Cannes Film Festival, the Digital Production Summit (NAB) and many other festivals and conferences.

Stephen Cheung

World Trade Center


Stephen Cheung  – President, World Trade Center Los Angeles

Stephen Cheung is the President of World Trade Center Los Angeles (WTCLA). The WTCLA works to support the development of international trade and business opportunities for Southern California companies as the leading international trade association, trade service organization and trade resource in the Los Angeles region.
Prior to his current role, Cheung was the Secretary General for Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, and was responsible for managing policies and programs related to the Port of Los Angeles, Los Angeles World Airports, International Affairs and Global Trade.
Concurrently, Cheung was the Director of International Trade for the Port of Los Angeles – the busiest container port in North America, and was responsible for developing programs to increase trade through the Port of Los Angeles, and facilitate goods

Nina Hachigian

Deputy Mayor of International Trade
City of Los Angeles


Ambassador Nina Hachigian
Deputy Mayor of International Affairs City of Los Angeles 

Mayor Eric Garcetti appointed Ambassador Nina Hachigian to be the first Deputy Mayor of International Affairs. Her office seeks to use and expand Los Angeles’ global ties to help bring jobs, economic opportunity, culture, visitors and a great Olympics to the city. 

From 2014 to 2017, Ambassador Hachigian served as the second U.S. Ambassador to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). She is also a founder of WASA, Women Ambassadors Serving America, a group of some 200 current and former Ambassadors. 

Ambassador Hachigian served on the staff of the National Security Council in the Clinton White House from 1998- 1999.

Kieran Hannon



Kieran Hannon is the Chief Marketing Officer for Belkin International, encompassing all four of its brands: Belkin, Linksys, Wemo and Phyn, where he manages every aspect of the marketing organization globally including eCommerce.

Prior to joining Belkin, Kieran spent the past two decades building the best consumer experience in the mobile, digital and retail sectors. Kieran worked as vice president of marketing for UBM/Canon

Kieran is a Technology Advisory Board member of Enterprise Ireland, a government agency responsible for promoting Irish companies around the world and a founding member of the Irish Technology Leadership Group, where he sits on the management team of this non-profit. Forbes recently recognized him as “one of the most influential CMOS on Twitter”.

Conor Houston

Strategic Business and Government Advisor


Conor provides trusted strategic advice to senior leaders across business, government, the third sector and entertainment industry.

As Director at Houston Solutions Ltd he has provided strategic solutions to dozens of companies on the impact of Brexit, including to a global consultancy firm based in London.

Conor is also Co-Founder of Finmondo, Head of Engagement for Digital DNA, Governor of The Irish Times Trust and Chair of the Ireland Fund Young Leaders Belfast.

Brian O’Leary

Senior Vice President, Tax Counsel
NBC Universal Media


Brian O’Leary is Senior Vice President, Tax Counsel for NBC Universal Media, LLC. Mr. O’Leary has been tax counsel to NBCUniversal since December, 1999. Mr. O’Leary’s practice focuses on tax controversies, tax policy and economic development initiatives. Brian is a frequent lecturer on film finance and tax matters and serves as a board member of the National Multistate Tax Symposium.
Before his current position, Brian was associated with the New York office of Fulbright & Jaworski, LLP. Mr. O’Leary previously served as Assistant Counsel to the New York State Tax Appeals Tribunal and worked in tax consulting with Arthur Andersen, LLP.

Dr Brian Moore



Dr Brian Moore is co-founder and CEO of Orreco. Brian has led global research into sports haematology since 2005 when he uncovered patterns in the haematology of elite athletes as part of his doctoral research at Brunel University, London. He has worked directly with multiple World and Olympic medalists, and numerous pro sports teams and athletes competing in MLB, NBA, NHL, PGA Tour, UEFA, America’s Cup Sailing and Formula1.

An Applied Physiologist and expert in blood biomarker technologies, Brian has an international reputation for using sports science and data science to provide evidence based actionable analytics to accelerate recovery, optimize performance and prolong the careers of elite athletes.

Hannah Dobson

Enterprise Ireland


Hannah Dobson joined Enterprise Ireland in September 2016 and is responsible for advising and supporting the growth of a world class portfolio of Irish companies across the animation, VFX, production, gaming, VR/AR and broader entertainment industries.

Hannah has a deep understanding of the dynamics & drivers of the Entertainment sector in LA and has led major initiatives more deeply connecting Ireland with this sector, most notably the June ’18 Trade Mission to LA consisting of 15 Irish Animation & Digital Entertainment companies.

Jacinta Tobin

SVP Sales & Marketing


Jacinta Tobin is SVP Sales and Marketing at Hustle. She previously was Chief Marketing Officer and SVP Global Sales at Cloudmark that was recently acquired by Proofpoint. Jacinta specializes in executing combined sales and marketing strategies for accelerated growth. She has been through 4 exists and assisted companies from seed stage to Series D. Now living in San Francisco, Jacinta started her career as a software sales executive in Dublin.


Chief Executive
Irish Film Board


James Hickey is currently the Chief Executive of the Irish Film Board, a position he took up in June 2011. The Irish Film Board promotes talent, creativity and enterprise in film production in Ireland and provides funding and other industry development supports for cinema feature films, feature documentaries, TV drama and animation TV production. 

James brought over two decades of experience in film and television production to the Irish Film Board and was previously a partner in the law firm Matheson working primarily in the areas of film financing, music law and intellectual property law.

Oisin Tobin

Mason Hayes & Curran


Oisín is a partner in Mason Hayes & Curran, the leading Irish law firm, and heads up the firm’s San Francisco office. He has particular experience advising on the development and rollout of innovative technologies and acting for businesses under investigation by European data protection authorities or engaged in privacy related litigation

Mary McKenna

Entrepreneur & Angel investor


Mary McKenna is a Donegal based technology entrepreneur & angel investor, previously co-founder/CEO of successful Irish e-learning company Learning Pool. Mary is interested in helping start and grow indigenous Irish tech companies and especially in working with female founders & entrepreneurs.

She is one of theEntrepreneurship Experts at Saïd Business School (University of Oxford), advisor to several governments, EU Horizon 2020 judge and the first ever entrepreneur in residence at St Mary’s College, an all-girls secondary school in the Creggan area of Derry.

Mary was awarded the MBE by Her Majesty the Queen in the 2014 New Year’s Honours for services to digital technology, innovation and learning.

Christopher Thornberg

Beacon Economics


Christopher Thornberg founded Beacon Economics LLC in 2006. Under his leadership the firm has become one of the most respected research organizations in California serving public and private sector clients across the United States. In 2015, Dr. Thornberg also became Director of the UC Riverside School of Business Center for Economic Forecasting and Development and an Adjunct Professor at the School.

An expert in economic and revenue forecasting, regional economics, economic policy, and labor and real estate markets, Dr. Thornberg has consulted for private industry, cities, counties, and public agencies. He became nationally known for forecasting the subprime mortgage market crash that began in 2007, and was one of the few economists on record to predict the global economic recession that followed. In 2015, he was named to California State Treasurer John Chiang’s Council of Economic Advisors, the body that advises the Treasurer on emerging strengths and vulnerabilities within the state’s economy. Dr. Thornberg holds a Ph.D in Business Economics from The Anderson School at UCLA, and a B.S. degree in Business Administration from the State University of New York at Buffalo.


Executive Vice President Creative Services & Chief of Staff


NORA RYAN is Executive Vice President Creative Services & Chief of Staff for EPIX, where she oversees creative development and production.  A member of the team which launched the network in October 2009, she helped drive EPIX’s ‘TV Everywhere’ strategy, creating a program model and network design across traditional channels, VOD and emerging platforms.

 As Founding President and CEO of Sundance Channel, she negotiated the joint venture, wrote the business plan and launched the network.  She was also GM of Much Music USA/Fuse and GM of VOOM HD Networks.  She has run business development for both AMC Networks and Showtime Networks and was head of marketing at Showtime, where she expanded the subscriber base 65%, doubling share in the maturing pay TV market.  

Robbin D. Crabtree

Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts at LMU


Robbin D. Crabtree, Ph.D., is Dean of the Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts at LMU. An accomplished teacher and scholar, respected for her strong commitment to Jesuit education and widely published in communication, gender studies and community based pedagogy. She is a champion of the inherent, enduring and practical value of a liberal arts education.

Michelle Loughran

IDA Ireland


Since 2014 Michelle’s role as VP of Biz Dev, Sales & Marketing for IDA Ireland has involved promoting Ireland as a location to US high growth start-ups looking to centralize their European/EMEA operations.  Before joining IDA Ireland, Michelle served as business development manager for two Los Angeles ad agencies –  And Company and One Eighteen Advertising. Prior to that she worked with numerous LA non-profit organizations as a relationship analyst with Allied Irish Bank.  She holds a Master of Science in Marketing Practice from UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School and a Bachelor of Commerce from University College Dublin. She originally hails from Dublin and has lived in LA for the past 12 years.

Jeroen Dankbaar

Experience Center Manager
Smurfit Kappa


Over the last 15 years, Jeroen worked within the packaging industry in various positions, across different departments all over Europe. 2 years ago he build the first Experience Center for Smurfit Kappa outside of Europe.

The EC in Dallas is equipped with the latest cutting edge technologies, allowing customers and designers to come together and develop solutions that deliver customer growth and maximize business success through insights and innovation.

Marianne Grant

Motion Picture Association

Marianne Grant is the Motion Picture Association’s (MPA) Representative in the UK, Ireland and South Africa. She joined MPAA in June 2009 (as an SVP based in LA), after 10 months as a consultant – and is responsible for Government Affairs in those countries as well some significant content protection and consumer education initiatives. MPA’s member companies include Disney, Fox, Sony Pictures, Universal, Viacom and Warner Bros.  
Marianne is now based temporarily in London, UK. Before joining MPA, Marianne held several significant management, IT, busdev and business/technical positions in the US following several years in corporate IT management roles at LA Times in California and the London Evening Standard, Daily Mail and their parent – Associated Newspaper Group – in London

Maggie Murphy

Producer / Associate Professor

Maggie is a highly competent, creative and inspiring teaching professional brings 30+ years of experience developing and producing award-winning primetime television with A-list talent to the next generation of creative executives/writers both in the United States and around the world.
Extensive experience producing international co-productions and working with new media, Maggie has Developed projects with award-winning, A-list talent including Darren Star (Sex and the City), Howard Gordon (Homeland), Diablo Cody (Juno), Rob Thomas (Veronica Mars), Ron Moore (Outlander), David Kelley (Ally McBeal), David Shore (House), Jason Katims (Parenthood), Melissa Rosenberg (Twilight) and many more. She has also developed and supervised many critically acclaimed and award-winning shows such as Ally McBeal, The Practice, Chicago Hope, Veronica Mars, Roswell, Bernie Mac, John Doe, Wonderfalls, Malcolm in the Middle, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, In Plain Sight, X-Files and The Simpsons. digital and multiplatform programming. Expansive network of actors, directors, executives, producers and writers.

Niall McKay

Executive Director
Irish Screen America


Niall McKay is an Irish writer, director and film curator. He’s a shorts programmer for the Tribeca Film Festival and founder and curator of Irish Screen America, an Irish film festival held at LMU in Los Angeles and NYU in New York. Niall won and 2008 Emmy for the PBS film Sikhs In America and is the writer director of a new short film called The Ferry.

Mick Kiely

CEO and Founder


Mick Kiely is a world leading authority on auto music generation. With over thirty years’ experience in all media music composition and live performance, Mick combines Innovation, Professional Leadership, Development and Business Strategy, to bring disruptive and cutting-edge technology solutions to the forefront of the music industry, with a focus on production music. Company CEO and Founder, Mick innovated the Xhail technologies. Xhail now based in LA with development headquarters in Dublin, Ireland enjoys continued growth. Mick is widely recognised as one of Ireland’s most productive and versatile musical composers, a consensus he takes to an all new medium becoming Ireland’s first AAA Games composer. His extensive music catalogue boasts global placements from TV and Film productions to major corporate advertising. In 2012 he cofounded Games Music Ireland. GMI a non-profit organisation designed to support Irish Composers wishing to become involved in composing for the global digital games industry. He designed the game composers training module for world famed Windmill Lane Studios, Trinity College Dublin and Griffith College Dublin

Shruti Shah

Entrepreneur in Residence
Silicon Valley Bank


Shruti Shah is an entrepreneur in residence at Silicon Valley Bank where she is currently working with the early stage team on strategic partnerships while developing a new idea for a new type of financing for startups. She was previously the co-founder and COO of YC backed Move Loot, an online marketplace for buying and selling used furniture.

Robert O’Driscoll

Consul General of Ireland
to Western USA


Robert O’Driscoll assumed duty as Consul General of Ireland to the Western US in July 2017. Prior to his appointment as Consul General, he was Deputy Director in the Trade Division in the Irish Foreign Ministry. In 2015 he was the first Irish diplomat chosen to participate in a public-private staff exchange programme in which he was seconded to the Avolon aircraft leasing firm in Dublin. In 2009 CG O’Driscoll was posted to set up Ireland’s new Embassy to the United Arab Emirates. He also served in Ireland’s Embassy to Saudi Arabia from 2008 to 2009

Wes Nichols

Board Partner
Upfront Ventures


Wes Nichols is a serial technology entrepreneur, investor and independent board director, and Board Partner at Upfront Ventures, advising companies on digital transformation, predictive analytics, and AI/machine learning, as well as the author of Harvard Business Review cover story Analytics 2.0. Prior to becoming a VC, Wes was Chief Strategy Officer at Neustar (NYSE: NSR), taken private in $2.9 billion acquisition by Golden Gate. A year earlier, Neustar acquired MarketShare, where Wes was co-founder/CEO. MarketShare is the world’s largest software solution for planning and attribution analytics of marketing, deploying by the CMOs of over half the Fortune 100. Prior to that Wes was the President, CEO of TBWA’s digital business at Omnicom Group (NYSE: OMC), following its acquisition of Direct Partners, which Wes founded and led as CEO. He currently serves in Board of Director roles for TrueCar (NASDAQ: TRUE), Persado, Urban Airship and GumGum, and is a Strategic Advisor to SNAP (NYSE: SNAP) and comScore (NASDAQ: SCOR). He holds a BA in Psychology from Randolph-Macon College, where he is on the Board of Trustees, and an MA from The Johns Hopkins University. Mr. Nichols is 2016 winner of EY Entrepreneur of the Year Award.

Naoise Farrell

Director of Finance


Naoise recently relocated from New York to LA to take an exciting new role as Director of Finance at a high growth tech startup, “Clutter”. Prior to that, she resided on the East Coast for ~5 years, spending the majority of her time in New York, and working on the Finance team at Getty Images. Originally from Dublin, she studied Commerce International at University College Dublin and completed the ACA qualification at Deloitte & Touche, Dublin.

Linda Thomas

Senior Strategic Growth Manager


Linda joins us from Compass, a tech startup disrupting the luxury real estate market where she leads strategy and growth in LA. Prior to joining Compass, Linda worked for Google for 5 years, both in Europe and the US. With a strong passion for entrepreneurship, women in tech and the start-up scene, Linda developed her own start-up in 2016 and consulted to a variety of tech and lifestyle brands. She holds a BA in Business and Economics from Trinity College Dublin and now lives in Silicon Beach Venice CA.

Joe Clarke



From the Rubberbandits to The All Ireland Hurling homecoming and Fuerza Bruta to Feile Classical, Joe Clarke through the company he founded with Paul Boland in 2006, CWB is one of the key figures in the
Irish Music and Events space. Whether it’s guiding The Strypes to a multi-million euro record deal or consulting on Ireland’s first National City of Culture, he brings fresh ideas and brings together the right people for each project

Today as CWB is Ireland’s leading full-service production, promotion and artist management company, Joe remains as dedicated as ever to delivering innovative ideas, devising cutting edge strategies and helping clients achieve their aspirations.

John Houlihan

Fox Music


John is a veteran Music Supervisor and Music Producer who has helped shape more than 50 feature films, and dozens of popular soundtrack albums. His work has generated worldwide hit songs and music videos by Madonna, Lenny Kravitz, Pink, and Destiny’s Child. Highlights include his Music Supervision of all three Austin Powers films, both of the Charlie’s Angels films, and Training Day which earned a Best Actor Academy Award for Denzel Washington. John has built a diverse set of credits including 13 Going on 30, Assault On Precinct 13, Get Rich Or Die Tryin’, Mortal Kombat 1 and 2, The Lake House, Charlotte’s Web, Nacho Libre, Sandra Bullock’s “All About Steve” and the 2009 re-make of the movie musical Fame. He has also worked in network television, advertising, documentary films and supervised the music of high profile media projects for the 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns of Barack Obama. John co-founded and is serving as Vice President of the Guild Of Music Supervisors.

Jim Carroll

RTÉ Brainstorm


Jim Carroll is the founder and host of the Banter series of public talks, interviews and conversations. Since 2009, Banter has put on over 200 events in Ireland and elsewhere featuring over 1,000 guests talking about a wide and diverse range of topics. See thisisbanter.com for more details.

He is also the editor of RTÉ Brainstorm, a project set up by Irish public service broadcaster RTÉ in conjunction with a number of universities and third-level institutions in 2017. The initiative, which sees academics and researchers writing and commenting on news events, will become a radio series in late 2018. See rte.ie/brainstorm for more information.

Prior to this, Jim was a journalist with The Irish Times; content strategist and copywriter; co-founder of the Choice Music Prize event for Irish Album of the Year; radio and club DJ; record label co-founder, A&R man and press officer; and freelance contributor to dozens of magazines and publications. See byjimcarroll.com for more stuff

Skarpi Hedinsson

LA Stadium & Entertainment District


SKARPI HEDINSSON has been named the Chief Technology Officer for the LA Stadium & Entertainment District. In this role, Hedinsson will lead the team driving the vision for and overseeing the implementation of technology throughout the 298-acre district. Since 2017, Hedinsson has served as the CTO for the Los Angeles Rams. Previously, Hedinsson was the CTO, Disney/ABC Television Group, where he oversaw efforts to identify new technology talent, capabilities and platforms, including deploying the revolutionary WATCH ABC and WATCH Disney services. Hedinsson is the inventor or co-inventor of seven issued US Patents and fourteen pending US Patents in the field of digital media and streaming video.

Jay Roewe

Senior VP, West Coast Production


Jay Roewe is a Senior Vice President of West Coast Production at Home Box Office (HBO). He is the co-head of physical production, and manages the film and television incentives, both domestically and internationally for all productions produced by HBO and Cinemax.

Roewe joined HBO in 1994, originally serving as Vice President of Production for the then titled HBO Pictures. In 2000, he began overseeing the miniseries division as well, until 2010 when he was promoted to Head of Physical Production for all series in the company.

Roewe is a 30+ year veteran of film and television production, with experience ranging from news, corporate, music videos and commercials to long-form television, miniseries, theatrical features and television series production.

Roewe is a member of the DGA (Director’s Guild of America), the PGA (Producer’s Guild of America), the ATAS (Academy of Television Arts and Sciences) and BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television – LA Chapter).

As a graduate of Boston University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Television, Jay now sits on the Board of Overseers for the University as well as the Board of Advisors for the College of Communication.

Paul Boland



Paul Boland co-founded CWB with Joe Clarke in 2006. Initially dedicating himself to technical and production management, in recent years Paul has focused on furthering CWB’s strategic service offerings. With a unique creative and technical background, Paul provides solutions to the most challenging of industry operations from bespoke one-off events to festivals, corporate and touring events of all scales. With over 20 years in-depth experience in the entertainment industry, Paul provides event consultation services to clients including ABC, Bank of Ireland, FAI, St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations (Jordan), Channel 4, GAA, KCP, MTV and MGP New York. Most recently, Paul spearheaded the revival of Féile – Ireland’s answer to Woodstock – where some of Ireland’s most celebrated bands of the 90’s will reunited for a very special performance with the Irish Chamber
Orchestra as Féile Classical at Semple Stadium in Thurles Co. Tipperary.

Maire Sogabe

Pacific Gas & Electric


Marie Sagobe is responsible for program management and strategic initiatives to identify and manage physical and cyber security risks to protect PG&E’s people, critical infrastructure, information assets and business operations. She has over 15 years of experience implementing complex technology initiatives in utilities and financial services.

Creative and innovative solutions are required to address our climate challenges and ensure a clean-energy future. She is passionate about driving and accelerating innovation in the energy industry.

She has a keen interes in Smart Cities, Block Chain, Electric Vehicles, and Autonomous Vehicles.

Some career highlights include ;
Irish Technology Leadership Group Silicon Valley Global Award 2018
Two-time hackathon winner
Energy hackathon organizer
Vice President of the Irish Network Bay Area
PG&E Diversity & Inclusion Champion
PG&E Employee Engagement Ambassador
Recognized as a top volunteer for PG&Es Women’s Network for 3 years

Owen O’Donoghue



Owen O’Donoghue leads Facebooks Business Development efforts across Gaming in the Americas. Originally from Dublin but now based in LA, Owen and his team have helped scale Gaming companies from Start up mode to Unicorn status through the Facebook platform.

Denise Tormey

President and Co-Founder


“Throughout her executive career Denise has held leadership positions with PlanNet21 Communications, Videnda, 3play Plus, Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC). She is an accomplished Leader and Entrepreneur with more than 20 years of success spanning information technology, finance, life science, and manufacturing sectors.

She was an International EY Entrepreneur of the Year 2015 Finalist , Current member of YPO (Young President’s Organisation), NorCal Chapter and currently serving on the Exec Board of Irish Network Bay Area. Recently announced as one of Top 50 Irish American Technology Leaders making a significant impact on the world of technology in Silicon Valley 2018 Awarded by Craig Barrett Ex Chairman and CEO of Intel Corp.

Denise attained her degree with honors in Business Studies & IT from the University of Limerick and is a Chartered Accountant. Denise holds nonprofit board positions with Young Leader of the American Ireland Fund, Cork/San Francisco Sister City Committee, Cork IT – Project TARA, and AYSO-Youth Soccer.”

Seth William Meier

Executive Producer


Worked in production moving into effects overseeing builds for SMURFS 1&2, Transformers 3, The East, Iceman, Stalingrad and G.I. Joe 2. Select producing credits include: In My Pocket, Maker Shack Agency(Amazon) Cooties(Lionsgate) The Bye Bye Man(STX), Visions, Stephanie and Happy Death Day(Universal) The Turning, Molly & Max(Amblin).

More to be added…


The LA Stadium Experience
on the 4th floor of the Belkin Building