The directors and senior management of MKC Communications, Ciarán Conlon, Tim Kinsella, Laurie Mannix and Stephen O’Byrnes are among the most experienced professionals in the media and communications sectors and, along with other experienced staff, have advised on communications around some of the most high profile corporate and public sector developments in Ireland in recent years.
Tim is Managing Director of MKC Communications. Since the early 1990s, he has managed long term public relations and media relations programmes for a range of high profile multinational and indigenous client organisations. His expertise ranges across the corporate, financial, information technology, energy, media, research, transport, education and agri-business sectors.
Tim provides strategic communications advice to companies around issues ranging from corporate restructuring, industrial relations, insolvency (receiverships / examinerships) and market repositioning to expansion programmes and ongoing reputation management advising and assisting top level management in each instance.
He is skilled and experienced in crisis management techniques and provides communications training to senior executive teams in this area.
He and his team also provide full marketing and communications programmes to clients.
Tim is a Fellow of the Public Relations Institute of Ireland, a member of the Emergency Planning Society of Ireland and the National Union of Journalists. A Political Science and Philosophy Graduate of UCD, he has a Masters Degree in Business Studies, specialising in Management and Organisation Studies.
He was a Board member of the Public Relations Consultants Association from 2005 – 2009 and is a former chairman of the PRCA.
Ciarán is Director of Strategy and Public Policy with MKC. A former senior Government Adviser, he is a highly experienced public policy professional and strategist. Prior to joining MKC, he was Special Adviser to Minister Richard Bruton at the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation for the five year term of the last Government. While there, he was instrumental in the creation and development of the Action Plan for Jobs to drive the Government target of creating 100,000 new jobs (the Plan actually delivered a total of 150,000 jobs).
In his role he interacted at all levels of Government and across all departments and State agencies. From the first Action Plan launch in 2012 until the end of that administration in May, 2016, unemployment fell from over 15% to 8.4%. An OECD review of the Action Plan process described it as a “striking innovation in the Irish public policy context”.
Prior to the formation of the Fine Gael and Labour Government coalition in 2011, Ciarán was Communications Director for Fine Gael. In that role he also headed the Party’s press office and acted as spokesperson for the Party and Party leader Enda Kenny, T.D. Prior to the 2011 General Election he was appointed Director of Election Planning and Strategy for Fine Gael by the Party Leader. For that Election, Fine Gael’s most successful in its history, he conceived and developed the ‘5 Point Plan’ campaign platform and messaging structure.
During his time in Fine Gael he developed and managed multiple policy oriented campaigns and directed communications strategy for two general elections, two European elections, two local government elections, two EU treaty referenda and four by-elections. He previously worked as a public affairs and communications consultant and with Dublin Chamber of Commerce and after graduation in University College Dublin.
From Prosperous, Co. Kildare, Ciarán Conlon has a Master’s Degree in Economics from University College Dublin and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Geography from NUI Maynooth.
Laurie Mannix is one of Ireland’s most experienced PR practitioners with over twenty five years experience in Ireland’s public relations industry.
She advises the CEOs of some of Ireland’s leading multinational and indigenous companies, providing strategic insights in corporate communications and reputation management.
She has considerable expertise developing communications / corporate branding programmes to help clients achieve their business objectives. Her marketing background means she has a particularly keen insight into the role of public relations within the overall marketing mix.
Much of her work is in media relationship management. She also provides crisis management advice in relation to mergers & acquisitions, environmental / industrial accidents, closures / redundancies and community relations issues.
Laurie is a member of the Institute of Directors and a Fellow of the Public Relations Institute of Ireland. She is former chairman of the Public Relations Consultants Association (PRCA) which is the professional association of Ireland’s leading PR companies. In this role she led the industry’s response to Government proposals on the introduction of a Register of Lobbying.
Laurie is a board member of Acquired Brain Injury Ireland (ABI Ireland) the leading charity which provides residential and community support to those with an acquired brain injury and their families.
She holds a Bachelor of Business Studies (Marketing) degree from the University of Limerick.
Stephen O’Byrnes leads MKC Communications Political Lobbying (Public Affairs) team. He has extensive experience devising and implementing lobbying strategies for a wide range of clients over the past decade.
Stephen has unrivalled experience in public affairs, journalism and communications. He has worked in the political arena for over 20 years and has cultivated excellent relations with senior political personnel in all the main parties, Government and Opposition, as well as having first-class contacts across the Public Service.
Stephen spent 15 years as a journalist with the Irish Independent, where he was News Analysis Editor and Editorial Writer. He also worked in the Irish Press Group including as Political Reporter and Consumer Affairs Correspondent.
Subsequently, he worked as National Press Officer and Policy Director of the Progressive Democrats Party from 1986 to 1995, and was the Party’s Government Press Secretary in the 1989–1992 Coalition Government with Fianna Fail.
For the past 19 years, he has worked in Public Relations / Political Lobbying.
Stephen is a board member of the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (ISPCC) and Arthritis Ireland, and a former member of the RTE Authority. A native of Co. Limerick, he is a graduate in Modern Irish History from University College Dublin, and the author of a history of Fine Gael. He has also lectured on Business Environment and Public Affairs with the Public Relations Institute of Ireland.