NALA Board Members

NALA's Board meets nine times a year and is made up of the following 13 members:

Officers of the Board

Trevor Moore, Chairperson
Trevor is an accomplished manager in the education sector. He is general manager of North Wall Community Training Centre which provides training opportunities to early school leavers. Trevor also lectures at the National College of Ireland in all aspects of management including leadership, change management, strategic management and corporate governance. Trevor has a degree in Business Studies from Dublin City University (DCU) and he also has a MSc (Master of Science) in Education & Training Management from DCU.

Thomas McManus, Treasurer
Thomas began his career with the Ryan Hotel Group where he became group marketing director and general manager of the London Ryan Hotel. From 1981 to 2008 he worked for Johnson & Johnson where he was marketing director and sales & marketing director. He was also managing director of Johnson & Johnson in Portugal and the UK. He later became area director for Western Europe and then international vice president for Europe, Africa and Middle East Consumer Businesses. Thomas has a degree in commerce from UCD and a higher diploma from Maynooth University. He also has a MBA (Masters of Business Administration) from UCD and a LLM (Masters in Law) from Trinity College. He is also chairperson of the Jobstown Assisting Drug Dependency service.

Sonia Weafer, Secretary
Sonia is a senior regulator with the Central Bank of Ireland since 2006. Before this she worked as a fund accountant within the funds industry in Ireland. She is a licentiate of the Compliance Officers of Ireland and a member of the Institute of Bankers. She holds a BA (Bachelor of Arts) in Accounting and Human Resource Management from the National College of Ireland and is currently studying towards an MBS (Master in Business Studies) in Business Practice with the Irish Management Institute. Sonia joined the Board of NALA in December 2012 and became company secretary in 2015. Sonia is also a member of the Board of Rockford Manor Secondary School since 2014.

Members of the Board

Liam Ahearn
Liam went back to adult education classes as a student in the 1970s. He later became involved with the Tipperary Education and Training Board (ETB) and was chairperson of their Adult Education Committee. Through his involvement with the ETB he regularly attended NALA’s Annual General Meeting (AGM). He joined NALA’s Board in 2016.

Pat Ayton
Pat has been involved in adult literacy since 1980 when she completed tutor training with the City of Dublin Adult Literacy Service. She worked as a volunteer tutor and later as a group tutor, delivering classes in literacy and numeracy in Colaiste Dhulaigh , Coolock. In May 1991 Pat was appointed Adult Literacy Organiser on a fulltime basis, with responsibility for adult literacy provision for the greater Coolock/Darndale area. She continued in that role until November 2016, when she took early retirement from the City of Dublin Education and Training Board ( CDETB), in order to pursue other things. Pat holds a BSc in Education and Training and an MSc in Education and Training Management from DCU. Pat has lectured on the Education and Training degree programme in DCU. She has been committed to adult literacy and improving services offered to adults returning to education in order to improve their skills and their life chances for 36 years. On retirement her passion has not waned at all and it is for that reason that she continues to be actively involved in NALA.  

Mary Bambrick
Mary is a literacy and numeracy tutor with the City of Dublin Education and Training Board (CDETB), and a member of the NALA Board since 2014. She is a commerce graduate of University College Dublin. She has worked in supply chain roles with LM Ericsson, the Irish Dairy Board and Vodafone Ireland. She also lectured in Carlow IT. Having taken a step back from business to raise her family, Mary returned to the world of education as a voluntary tutor with CDETB. She continues to volunteer as well as giving classes in literacy and numeracy in Coláiste Dhúlaigh in Dublin.

Louise Canavan
Louise is Communications Officer with the Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland (PSI), the pharmacy regulator, whose role is to ensure public health and safety by setting standards for pharmacists and pharmacies. Louise has worked with the PSI since 2012 where she began engaging with NALA in order to promote plain English principles across the organisation. She has also had a role in meeting the PSI’s corporate governance responsibilities. She holds a Masters in Public and Political Communications and a Corporate Law degree.

Denis Foley
Councillor Denis Foley has been a full-time politician since 1979 when he was elected to Muinebheag (Bagenalstown) Town Council. He was elected to Carlow County Council in 1999 and served as joint chairperson of both bodies several times. His other roles have included joint chairperson of Carlow Education and Training Board, officer of the Educational Training Board of Ireland and executive member of INVOLVE (Young Travellers Association). He is also chairperson of the Board of Mhuinebheag Vocational School and is on the Board of VISUAL, a multidisciplinary arts centre in Carlow Town.

Nuala Glanton
Nuala volunteered as an adult literacy tutor in Leytonstone in East London in 1994. She then returned to college and trained as a teacher. She found that teaching at primary and secondary level did not provide the same fulfilment as working with adults and in 2000 she was appointed as an Adult Literacy Organiser in Cork. She is now Adult Education Officer with Cork Education and Training Board. Nuala has a BA (Bachelor of Arts) in English and Philosophy and a Masters in Women’s Studies. She joined NALA’s Board in 2013.

Maria O'Gorman
Maria O'Gorman is from Listowel in County Kerry. For many years she worked as an accountant for a manufacturing company. She does a lot of work in the adult education sector and represents adult learners on a variety of committees and she is on the board of Kerry ETB. Maria is also on the board of Irish Rural Link, which is the national network representing rural communities.

Lee Mitchell
Lee Mitchell is a student at Bray adult learning centre. Lee is also on NALA's student subcommittee and he has helped raise awareness of adult literacy at numerous events over the last few years including our student days and at the ploughing championships.

Ann Nicholas
Ann is a student at Shannon adult education centre. She returned to education five years ago because she wanted help to get the healthcare qualifications that were necessary to continue working as a caregiver. Ann has done several media interviews in Clare to promote adult education and she also spoke at NALA's family learning conference in 2016.

Sandra Nicholson
Sandra is the Human Resources Manager for the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland (RCPI). Sandra has a BA (Bachelor of Arts) in Industrial Relations & Personnel Management from the National College of Ireland, a diploma in Professional Coaching from the Irish Coaching Institute and a Certificate in Health and Safety from IBEC and University College Dublin. Prior to working in the RCPI, Sandra worked with C&F Automotive, Rehab Care, Associated Hardware Ltd, United Drug and Intel. 

Olive Phelan
Olive returned to adult education in 2007 when she attended classes in Jobstown in Tallaght. In 2009 she took part in NALA's Written Off, a fly-on-the-wall, television series that followed adults who returned to learning, and showed the benefits it had on their lives.Following this Olive joined NALA's student subcommittee and in 2015 she joined the Board.