The Horse Racing Ireland (HRI) Industry Services
Committee was established to represent the interests of those employed, at all
levels, in the Irish horse racing and breeding industry. Chaired by HRI’s
Director of People and Industry Education, Carol Nolan, the Committee includes
nominees from SIPTU, Mandate, the Irish Jockeys Association and the Irish
Stable Staff Association.
The role of the Industry Services Committee is to identify and recommend, to
the Board of HRI, initiatives that could be implemented or supported, to
improve and strengthen the skill, learning and development of employees and
services within the industry.
To date, key areas of focus for the Committee have been on adequate levels of
representation for stable staff and stud employees; racecourse and workplace
facilities for staff; industry education and training; dispute resolution
policies and procedures, and the Stable Employee Bonus Scheme (SEBS).
The Committee can be contacted via e-mail at [email protected] or phone 045 455488.
Horse Racing Ireland (Chairperson)
Carol Nolan is Director of People & Industry Education at HRI and oversees
the activities carried out by HRI in relation to the support and development of
education and training opportunities at every level of the industry. Carol is
currently a participant on the Institute of Directors Chartered Director
Programme (2019, holds a Masters in Strategic Human Resource Management from
DCU, a BA in European Studies from Trinity College and is a qualified
Coach. Carol is a Board member of RACE and an independent Board member
within the education sector.
Irish Stable Staff Association
Bernard Caldwell is Chief Executive of the Irish Stable Staff Association
(ISSA). Bernard’s background was originally in sales before being elected to
the ISSA. Bernard has always had a keen interest in racing, his son Garry holds
a trainers licence and Bernard is involved in a number horses which are in
training with him. Bernard attends race meetings around the country on a
regular basis and is available to be approached with queries and suggestions.
Bernard is also a member of Kildare County Council and has been a counsellor
for the past 25 years.
Michael O’Donoghue is a qualified Member of the Irish Auctioneers & Valuers
Institute and has worked in the racing industry for the past 45 years,
initially with Seamus McGrath. Michael rode as a Qualified Rider in bumpers and
point-to-points for a number of years before moving into the Turf Club in 1983
(now known as IHRB). Michael has had a number of roles during his time
with IHRB including Racecourse Veterinary Assistant, Judge, Stewards’
Secretary, and Clerk of the Course. Michael also served as Inspector of
Course and Stewards Secretary at point-to-points. Michael has served on a
number of committees within the industry, he became an executive committee
member of RACE in 1990, a member of the apprentice advisory committee in 1998,
and was in charge of apprentices from 1990 to 2007. Michael has raced worldwide
in over 16 countries.
John Flannery is a retired SIPTU official and has represented the interests of
horseracing industry staff (mostly members of SIPTU affiliates, the Irish
Racecourse Bookmakers’ Assistants (IRBA), the Tote Staff Association, and
racecourse staff), for many years. Before he retired, John was
responsible for bringing to fruition ‘The Irish Horse Racing Industry Staff
Employment and Welfare Charter’, which was officially launched at the
Punchestown Festival in 2009. After he retired from SIPTU, John was
retained by the Irish Stable Staff Association for a period, to represent
members at Third Party hearings. He has sat on the Employment Appeals
Tribunal since 2010 and currently provides consultancy and secretarial services
to the IRBA.
Irish Jockeys Association
Andrew Coonan qualified as a Solicitor in February 1996 and has a degree in
politics and history. He pursued a career as an amateur jockey for a
number of years before turning his attention solely to law. Andrew is
secretary of the Irish Jockeys Association and practises in all aspect of law
but has particular expertise in the area of racing and equestrian industries.
Andrew also acts as a trustee on a number of racing-related charitable
trusts. He was a director of the Irish Pony Club until 2018. Andrew
also lectures on the Godolphin Flying Start Course and on the Trainers Course
at RACE. He is also on the Advisory Committee of the Jockey Emergency