Prof. Frank O’Mara has begun his new role as director of Teagasc today (Friday, October 1).

The appointment was made by the Teagasc Authority in July with the consent of the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue.

Prof. O’Mara is an agricultural scientist and sustainable livestock systems specialist, with over 30 years’ experience in technical and senior managerial capacities in agri-food research, education and development institutions.

O’Mara and Teagasc

Since 2009, Frank O’Mara has been the director of research with Teagasc, leading the Research Directorate.

According to the advisory body, under his leadership, the number of peer-reviewed publications has increased from 258 in 2008, to 726 in 2020.

Teagasc said that this has ensured that its research has had a major impact on the agri-food sector and government policy over the last decade, supported by national and EU funding, and has facilitated the growth in the Walsh Scholarship programme.

Frank O’Mara

Director of Teagasc, Frank O’Mara

Frank O’Mara qualified with a bachelors degree in agricultural science from University College Dublin (UCD) in 1987.

He won the McGuickian medal, and the Hussey Prize for agricultural economics in his final year.

He went on to obtain a PhD from UCD in 1993, completing his doctorate research at Teagasc Moorepark.

In his early career, he was a senior lecturer, associate professor and researcher in UCD for 10 years, specialising in animal nutrition and animal production.

Congratulating Prof. O’Mara on his appointment, chairman of Teagasc, Liam Herlihy, said: “I look forward to working with Frank as director of Teagasc.

“He has a particular interest in sustainable agriculture and food systems, and I am confident he will successfully lead Teagasc through the changes required to assist Irish farmers and the agri-food sector to meet the environmental, economic and social challenges facing the sector.

“I would like to thank Prof. Gerry Boyle for his leadership of the organisation as director over the last 14 years. Living now in Co. Carlow, Prof. O’Mara is a native of Lisronagh in Co. Tipperary.”