Monday, 20 March 2017, Dublin – Music Generation has announced the appointment of Leo Blennerhassett as Chairperson of the Board of Directors. A former Managing Director of Accenture Ireland, Leo is currently Chairperson of the Board of RSA Insurance Ireland Ltd. Previously Leo was also an adjunct lecturer on the MBA programme at Trinity College Dublin and a member of the Advisory Board of the Business School.
Welcoming the announcement, U2’s The Edge commented: ‘Leo has been a constant and active supporter of our common cause to bring music education to children and young people throughout Ireland. We are delighted that he has agreed to take on the role of Chairman and continue the work to make Music Generation a national movement.’
National Director of Music Generation Rosaleen Molloy said: ‘I am delighted that Leo has been appointed as Chairperson of the Board of Music Generation. Leo brings a wealth of experience and expertise to the organisation, particularly in the areas of management, leadership and strategic planning. As a member of the Board since 2010, Leo has already made an enormous contribution to Music Generation during an important period of development. We very much look forward to working with him in this new capacity as we embark on an exciting phase of expansion.’
On his appointment, Leo Blennerhassett said: ‘I am delighted to continue my work on the Board of Music Generation and to take up this new role as Chairperson. The achievements of the programme during its first phase have been nothing short of remarkable. The ground-breaking approach to public-private partnership that the organisation models has paved the way for further growth while ensuring sustainability, enabling positive outcomes for children and young people through music. I look forward to collaborating with my fellow Board members, the Executive of Music Generation, the programme’s philanthropic donors, the Department of Education and Skills and Local Music Education Partnerships to advance the shared vision of the organisation.’
Music Generation is Ireland’s National Music Education Programme, initiated by Music Network and co-funded by U2, The Ireland Funds, the Department of Education and Skills and Local Music Education Partnerships. Currently established in 12 areas of Ireland, the programme provides high-quality, subsidised performance music education to more than 38,000 children and young people annually who would not otherwise have the choice of access or the chance to participate. Since its formation Music Generation has created more than 330 employment opportunities, mainly for musicians who deliver over 99 different programmes in 680 tuition centres. Music Generation focuses on performance music education – that is vocal and instrumental tuition, encompassing all music genres and all types of instruments and vocal styles, from ukulele groups to rock bands, choirs, orchestras, composers’ clubs, rock schools, hip hop squads, traditional Irish music ensembles, rap groups, song-writing sessions and more.
Aoife Lucey (Communications Manager, Music Generation)
+353 1 475 8454 / +353 85 741 5171
NOTES TO EDITORS
BIOGRAPHY: Leo Blennerhassett
An honours Business Studies graduate of Trinity College Dublin, Leo Blennerhassett is a management consultant. A former Managing Director of Accenture Ireland, he led the the company’s Irish business from 1997–2005, a period in which the company’s employment increased from 300 to 1,500 and which saw a fivefold increase in profitability and a doubling of service lines. This was also a period of substantial change in the global organisation with the establishment of Accenture, transitioning from a partnership to an ultimately global IPO. Leo was a member of the Global Leadership Council and the leadership training faculty for new executives. He has also held a number of European leadership positions as a senior executive in the Financial Services Consulting Operating Group.
Leo is a former adjunct lecturer on the MBA programme at Trinity College Dublin and a former member of the Advisory Board of the Business School. He also provides strategic planning and operating model advice to a large Irish charity. He is the Chairman of RSA Insurance Ireland Ltd and was a member of Music Network’s Board of Director until March 2017.
ABOUT MUSIC GENERATION
Music Generation is Ireland’s National Music Education Programme which transforms the lives of children and young people through access to high-quality, subsidised performance music education. Initiated by Music Network, Music Generation is co-funded by U2, The Ireland Funds, the Department of Education and Skills and Local Music Education Partnerships.
Music Generation believes in every child and young person’s musical potential and their innate artistry, that it is every child and young person’s right to have the choice of access and the chance to participate as a musical citizen and that music doesn’t just change lives, it transforms lives. The programme focuses on performance music education – that is vocal and instrumental tuition, encompassing all music genres and all types of instruments and vocal styles, delivered by skilled professional musicians interacting in an inspirational way with children and young people.
The first phase of Music Generation was made possible by a €7m philanthropic donation from U2 (€5m) and The Ireland Funds (€2m) which was gifted to progress the implementation of Music Network’s Feasibility Study for a National System of Local Music Education Services. This philanthropic donation was the largest ever philanthropic donation to music education in Ireland in the history of the State.
Currently Music Generation Local Music Education Partnerships (MEPs) are established in 12 areas of the country: Carlow, Clare, Cork City, Laois, Limerick City, Louth, Mayo, Offaly/Westmeath, Sligo, South Dublin and Wicklow. These programmes, formed during Phase 1 of Music Generation, are co-funded by Government through the Department of Education and Skills (DES) and matched on a 50/50 basis by funding generated by MEPs, ensuring a long-term and lasting outcome from U2 and The Ireland Funds’ philanthropic giving.
Phase 2 of Music Generation has been initiated through further philanthropic donations from U2 and The Ireland Funds which will enable the expansion of the programme into new areas of the country over the next five years. The Department of Education and Skills has pledged its commitment to sustaining matched funding for Phase 2 into the future, from 2020.