Meet Our Management Team

Margaret McCabe

Chief Executive Officer

Margaret McCabe

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Margaret McCabe is the Chief Executive of the Public Appointments Service (PAS), since 1 January 2023. In this role, Margaret is the Accounting Officer for the Vote of the Public Appointments Service. She is answerable to the Board for the effective leadership, management and control of the administration and business of the PAS. As Chief Executive she has responsibility for the development and implementation of strategy. This includes keeping abreast of developments in the recruitment industry and achieving greater efficiencies to maximise the quality and range of services provided for client organisations and candidates within available resources. Margaret is also guardian of the values and reputation of the organisation.

Margaret has extensive experience in the area of Recruitment & Selection in the civil service. Prior to becoming Chief Executive, she was Chief Operations Officer and she previously held the position of Head of Recruitment & Selection, overseeing recruitment to the civil service, local government, An Garda Síochána and the Health Service Executive in the Public Appointments Service. Margaret holds a Masters in HR and a Higher Diploma from the IPA and she is also a graduate of Common Purpose.

A proud Leitrim woman, Margaret attended Marymount College (post primary school) in Carrick on Shannon, and joined the civil service when she left school. Her first post was as a clerical assistant and since then she has worked her way to the top of the Public Appointments Service, becoming the first internal Chief Executive Officer in the organisation in 22 years.

A champion of a strong public sector ethos, Margaret is committed to a public service that is equal, diverse and inclusive.


Michelle Noone

Head of Senior & Executive Recruitment

Michelle Noone

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Michelle is the Head of Senior & Executive Recruitment at the Public Appointments Service (PAS), which takes care of the appointments process for Chairpersons and Non-Executive Directors to the boards of state agencies as well as senior competitions. Prior to joining in 2014, Michelle worked as an Executive Search Manager in KPMG providing recruitment services to clients in PLCs, Irish indigenous and SMEs across a variety of industry sectors. She started her career in Human Resources with PricewaterhouseCoopers in Paris.



Niall Leavy

Head of Market Engagement

Niall Leavy

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Niall oversees the development and positioning of Equality, Diversity & Inclusion and Marketing & Communications. He holds a psychology degree from UCD, an MSc in Occupational Psychology from Queens University Belfast, and Executive Coaching qualifications from UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School. Niall’s resume encompasses; recruitment and assessment in the UK Ministry of Defence and Cabinet Office, The Public Appointments Service and the Central Bank of Ireland. He currently splits his career time developing as a professional visual artist.



Sandra Cairns

Head of Talent Acquisition for the civil service

sandra cairns

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Sandra joined the Public Appointments Service in 1998, where she is responsible for driving best practices in recruitment and identify high quality candidates for diverse roles across the civil service. Sandra ensures consistently high standards of service delivery which considers the evolving requirements of clients and candidates in a competitive environment. Prior to this, Sandra worked in the Dept of Defence, Dept of Social Protection and the Central Statistics Office. She also holds a BA. in Human Resource Management and a Masters in Economic Science (Policy Analysis).



Catherine Dobbins

Head of Corporate Services

Catherine Dobbins

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Catherine Dobbins is Head of Corporate Services with the Public Appointments Service (PAS). She is a long serving civil servant and has held a number of roles in the Public Appointments Service, in both recruitment & selection and corporate services. Catherine is currently responsible for the areas of People & Culture, Finance, and Compliance & Corporate Governance an she is the Secretary to the Board of PAS. Catherine holds a Masters in Psychology and International Law and a post-graduate Certificate in Corporate Governance.



Aoife Lyons

Senior Psychologist - Assessment Services

Aoife Lyons

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Aoife Lyons is the Senior Psychologist and Head of Assessment Services in the Public Appointments Service. A key part of her role is putting in place effective, efficient, and best practice assessment measures to select the best possible candidates for our clients. Aoife is a Chartered Work and Organisational Psychologist, who completed her master’s degree in the University of Manchester. Aoife also worked in Consultancy with a large Recruitment Test provider for a number of years prior to joining the Public Appointments Service in 2002.



Rosemarie O'Mahony

Head of Digital Transformation, Strategy & Innovation

rosemarie omahony

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Rosemarie is the Head of Digital Transformation, Strategy and Innovation at the Public Appointments Service. Rosemarie and her team promote the potential for digital solutions and new ways of working to improve how services are delivered to and experienced by our customers. Rosemarie is certified in HR Management, holds an honours degree in Computer Science from Trinity College Dublin, a Masters in Project Management from the University of Limerick and is a graduate of Common Purpose.



Sinead Coleman

Head of Talent Acquisition for the public service

sinead coleman

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Sinéad Coleman is the Head of Talent Acquisition since November 2022. Prior to this role, Sinéad held the position of Head of Professional and Technical Recruitment within the Public Appointments Service. Sinead also worked for several years with CPL/Microsoft in a HR role directly prior to joining the Public Appointments Service in 2014. Sinéad holds a business degree from Trinity College Dublin and has a master’s in human resource management from the UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School.



Eimear O’Connor

Head of Recruitment Operations & Service Delivery

eimear oconnor

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Eimear is responsible for maintaining and optimising the operations recruitment activity of the Public Appointments Services. Prior to joining the civil service in 2021, Eimear worked in Semi-State and University organisations in roles covering areas such as Operations, Facilities, HR and Change Management. Eimear holds a BA in English and Greek and Roman Civilisation Studies and MA In American Studies from UCD and completed a MSc in Work and Organisational Behaviour in DCU in 2019.



Fiona Morgan

Head of People & Culture

Fiona Morgan

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Fiona joined the civil service in 2018 as HR Manager with the OPW, before moving to PAS in 2023. As Head of People & Culture, Fiona is responsible for embedding people practices that support the organisation to make the Public Appointments Service an employer of choice. Prior to this role, Fiona worked in senior management roles in the private and NGO sectors. Fiona holds a Masters in HR Management and is currently undertaking a Professional Diploma in Organisational Behaviour.





Meet our Board

The Current Board of PAS is as follows:

  • Mr. Tom Moran,
    Chairperson
  • Ms. Mary Connaughton
    CIPD Ireland Director
  • Ms. Yvonne Cooke,
    Acting Executive Director of Human Resources and People Development, An Garda Síochána
  • Ms. Fiona Quinn,
    Assistant Secretary, Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage
  • Ms. Margaret McCabe,
    CEO, Public Appointments Service
  • Mr Colin Menton,
    Assistant Secretary, Department of Pubic Expenditure, NDP Delivery and Reform
  • Ms Anne Marie Hoey,
    National Director HR, HSE