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FAI Chief Operating Officer Rea Walshe Retains Role In Executive Restructure

FAI Chief Operating Officer Rea Walshe Retains Role In Executive Restructure
By Sean Meehan Updated

FAI COO Rea Walshe has retained her role in an executive shake-up designed to restructure the FAI executive board.

Furthermore, Mark Scanlon will become the new League of Ireland director following an internal application process. Scanlon was formerly the FAI's National Co-ordinator for Schools and Third Level Football. It was a role which was linked to current Deputy Interim CEO Niall Quinn, although the former Ireland international did not apply for the job. Also, Commercial and Marketing Director Mark Russell will remain in a tweaked version of his current role, with Grassroots Director Ger McDermott receiving a promotion.

Walshe effectively interviewed for her own job, with just one other applicant going for the role.

Walshe has undertaken several senior governance jobs in her tenure with the association, with plenty coming under the leadership of John Delaney. The Irish Independent have reported that Walshe had given Delaney personal legal advice, receiving €2,500 in the process, in order to assist in defamation cases against media outlets. Such actions are in breach of Law Society rules and go against corporate governance practice.

In her time at the FAI, Walshe has been the organisation's Head of Legal and Licensing and Corporate Affairs and Licensing Director, as well as her current role. In addition, Walshe also occupied the role of Interim CEO in the aftermath of allegations surrounding Delaney.

Mark Scanlon's appointment as League of Ireland Director has been met with raised eyebrows amongst certain sections of the national league. The application process was internal, with clubs wondering why it wasn't opened to external candidates. The League of Ireland Director role was previously held by Fran Gavin before it was subsequently morphed into the Competitions Director role.

Scanlon will now be tasked with driving league strategy, with the previous number of months earmarked by conflict between clubs regarding the resumption of the League of Ireland season.


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