Executive Committee

The APAI is run by some of Ireland’s top Administration Professionals, who endeavour to highlight the important work of administrative professionals in Ireland

We work with our partner ZoomIn to give Administrators an outlet to join us at four networking events throughout the year as well as encouragement to attend the yearly Executive PA forum.

The purpose is to educate our members and those working in roles of PA/EAs, Administrators, Office Managers on tips and tricks to help them be successful in the role they hold. Also, we want to encourage companies, colleagues and managers in Ireland to see the role held by Administrators as one that is of great purpose to a business and should be seen as a key role.

We also feel that it’s important to network and prevent administration professionals working in isolation.

Niamh Smithers – ExCo Chair

Niamh is an agile, energetic, and relentlessly focused experienced executive assistant, with a background in top companies such as Sky, eir, Ulster Bank, AON and currently Senior Executive Assistant to the COO of eShopWorld. Her passion during her career as an EA has been delivering premier-level support to senior executives, being at the centre of corporate decision-making and operations. Niamh gets significant job satisfaction from working in high-pressure and high-standard environments, working in close collaboration with C-level executives to help them achieve their vision for a business. Niamh is genuinely passionate about her career as an EA and the integral role EAs play in supporting the commercial success of an organisation. This has included advocating for the profession, where  she has shown tenacity in being actively involved as a speaker at the Executive PA forum, being a member of several panels as well as a member of the APAI. Niamh was a finalist in the Pitman Super Achievers PA of the Year 2017 and PA Life Magazine – PA of Year 2020.

Rachel Clancy – ExCo Secretary

Rachel is an Executive Assistant with over 4 years’ experience in the global tech industry. She has supported Directors, VPs, C-Suite level Execs and their teams in Dublin and across International in various areas of business – namely HR, Marketing, Finance, Product and Sales. She currently works in a Global Tech Company in Dublin supporting the VP, Sales, EMEA. Having started a new role during the pandemic, Rachel is yet to meet anyone she works with in real life! Rachel is a logical, proactive and positive admin professional. She loves working as an EA as it is always exciting, challenging and educational. She is most passionate about people and is excited as an active member of the APAI ExCo, to help to bring our Admin Community closer together. We have a great opportunity to network with and learn from like-minded peers. #Teamworkmakesthedreamwork.

Allyson Ng – ExCo Treasurer

Allyson has more than 15 years’ experience working as a senior level Executive Assistant. Currently working within Financial Services, over the years she has had the opportunity of experiencing a wide variety of industries, organisations and individuals and has had to gain, tailor and hone a wide range of knowledge and skills from project and event management to accounting, web design and plumbing (don’t ask!!).  She is a passionate believer in the power of networking, coaching, mentoring and continuing professional development being key to enabling people to bring out the best in themselves especially for those working within administration and support roles who can often feel isolated and not ‘part of a team’. She is a qualified Personal, Leadership and Executive Coach and a member of the European Mentoring and Coaching Council (EMCC), she works with a wide range of clients in the areas of: Mental Health and Wellbeing, Cognitive Behavioural Coaching, Change and transformation, Conflict – managing conflict & Leadership and managing people skills. She is extremely proud of the work that the APAI have accomplished so far in advocating for administration professionals and is excited to be part of the journey going forward

Stacey Chubb – ExCo PRO

Stacey has over 9 years’ experience working as an EA across the globe. Stacey is an agile leader with a passion for mentoring and coaching people. Kicking off her EA career while living in New Zealand, She has worked in multiple sectors including Education, Construction and most recently the Tech Industry. Stacey is a highly organised and confident individual with an enthusiastic and proactive approach to work. She is super passionate about the EA profession and a strong advocate in promoting the admin profession to highlight the impact we all have. Stacey is new to the APAI Committee this year (2021) and is looking forward to getting to know our members and support where needed. She believes we have a fantastic resource of EAs/Pas/Admin professionals right under our nose within the APAI and hopes to encourage others to share tips and tricks that could help us all and create a collaborative online community.

Lesley Berber – ExCo PRO

Lesley has over 30 years’ experience working as a PA In both London and Dublin.  Lesley has supported a wide variety of CEOs and Senior Executives during this time, within a broad range of sectors, including IT, Financial Services, Fund Management, Property, Accounting and Engineering to name but a few.  Lesley took a short diversion during this time, to create an award-winning baby product (Babypotz), which she later sold to a fellow Mumtrepreneur. Lesley currently supports an entrepreneurial CEO at Nostra, an IT Managed Services business.  Lesley has never been afraid of change and she moved to this new role during the middle of the pandemic. Lesley truly loves being a PA and likes nothing more than working for an interesting Executive, where she can use all the skills which she has gained over the years.  Lesley feels at home in her support role and believes passionately that trust on either side is central to an exceptional Executive/PA relationship. Lesley is new to the APAI Committee this year and hopes that she can help bring some new ideas to what she believes is a wonderful growing group of likeminded PAs and EAs, who need each other’s support more than they realise.

Louise Ward – ExCo Membership Officer

Louise has over 17 years experience working in Market Research in London and Dublin in various roles but mainly Field Project Management. During an extended career break to raise her family she gained experience of committees by establishing a community Toddler group and held roles of Treasurer and Chair in a community playgroup. With four small children and whilst childminding two others she enrolled in DCU on a distance-learning module to gain her BA.Returning primarily to Market Research and then with a very positive temping experience as part of the Failte Ireland Digital Transformation team,she is now back on her original career path working as Operations Executive with a small dedicated team.
Finding the APAI whilst temping, she enjoys networking, sharing of skills, ideas and knowledge and professional development (and is a LinkedIn learner and fan!). A new committee member she is ‘in awe’ of the more experienced members. Really just in it for the social, some how she has found herself volunteering as secretary and is hoping she meets all the expectations!

Irene Coughlan – ExCo Membership Officer

Irene currently holds the position of Executive Assistant with Coca-Cola Europe, encompassing support for the Europe Operating Unit Leadership, while holding the executive position on the Finance Leadership team. Irene has over 12 years’ experience in the Coca-Cola System covering  executive administration, facilities/office management & event organization, starting off her career with Coca-Cola as an Account Manager in CPS in Athy, before moving to the Local Irish Franchise Team and then to support the Group Leadership in 2019. Prior to her position at Coca-Cola, Irene worked as Warehouse/Supply Chain Manager for Folen’s Publisher and previously held roles in Audit Compliance as well as Customer Service, HR, and Payroll with one of Ireland’s leading retail chains.

Connie Larkin – ExCo Project Lead

Connie is an Executive Assistant to the CEO in Oyster Capital Partners, an Irish private equity firm, specialising in providing early stage venture capital to software, energy technology, IT, property and healthcare sector. Connie previously supported her CEO when he was Senior Tax Partner at Farrell Grant Sparks and moved with him when appointed as CEO at inception of Oyster in 2000.Connie has always enjoyed the administrative role, previously employed in Primark Company Head Office supporting all levels of management at store and office level with main responsibility of collating and producing sales reports for company board of directors. Volunteering is Connie’s other passion. From age 15 she has been involved as a member, leader and supporter within Scouting and NYCI at local and national levels, SVP Retail and presently Director with YCW Ireland.

Fiona Kelly and Aisling Kelly (ZoomIn and The Executive PA Forum) – Event Management Partners

ZoomIn founded The Executive PA Forum Ireland  in 2010. At the time they realised there was a strong need for a conference, and for workshops and networking events for Ireland’s E.As/P.As and Office Support professionals. They prepare today’s Executive and Personal Assistant for tomorrow’s world and deliver content that enables the group to perform better in their roles, adding to their commercial knowledge and improving their existing professional and personal skill set. Fiona acts as the events and sponsorship partner for the APAI and is proud to see the Association go from strength to strength since its inception at the 2014 Executive PA Forum. Aisling organises the in-person and now virtual events for the Association and its members.