Arthritis Ireland appoints new CEO

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Grainne O'LearyArthritis Ireland has announced the appointment of Gráinne O’Leary as its new chief executive officer.

Ms O’Leary was head of services with the organisation since 2004 and has worked as a senior manager in the non-profit and healthcare sector for the past 20 years.

She developed and implemented Arthritis Ireland’s suite of patient support services, including the Stanford University self-management programme, a national helpline and a national physical activity programme in partnership with the Irish Society for Chartered Physiotherapists.

She also developed a broad range of relationships across the healthcare arena, including with corporate partners and funders, healthcare professionals, the HSE and related agencies, professional bodies, academia, government officials and other patient groups.

Commenting on the appointment, John O’Flynn, president of Arthritis Ireland, said: “We are delighted that Gráinne will lead the organisation through the next exciting phase of our development, in particular delivering upon the new strategic plan which will be launched in the coming months.

“Over the past 14 years, Gráinne has been at the core of the organisation’s strategic development and growth into one of the foremost patient support groups in Ireland. She has consistently put people living with arthritis at the heart of what we do, and that focus will continue to be our compass.”

Speaking on the announcement of her appointment, Gráinne O’Leary said: “I am delighted to have been appointed CEO of Arthritis Ireland, and I very much look forward to working with the board, staff and volunteers in delivering upon our strategic objectives.

“There are one million people in Ireland living with arthritis and this number is set to increase over the coming years. We are working to ensure that every person living with arthritis is supported to live a full and active life, having access to appropriate health services and treatments.”

A graduate of economics and business studies from Trinity College Dublin, Ms O’Leary also holds a master’s degree in environmental resource management from UCD. She is a board member of the Disability Federation of Ireland.

Arthritis Ireland, founded in 1980, is a national health charity that provides people with arthritis with self-management tools and supports to ease the physical pain and social isolation caused by arthritis. The organisation invests in research to increase understanding of the causes of the disease, while working towards finding a cure.

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