CIRI Admissions and Registration Board


The CIRI Admissions and Registration Board (CARB) was established in September 2023. It is made up of a chairperson and 10 ordinary members, who encompass a broad range of disciplines and expertise to meet specified criteria. The CARB Chair and members were officially appointed by the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage.

The CARB is independent in the performance of its functions. It will:

  • establish registration categories
  • approve recommendations of registrants to the register and
  • oversee regulations on qualifications, competence and skills required for CIRI registration.

CIRI Admissions and Registration Board

Paul Forde – Chair

Consultant – DBFL Consulting Engineers Ltd.

Paul Forde was appointed as Chair of the CIRI Admissions and Registration Board (CARB) in September 2023. He has been practicing as a consulting engineer for over 40 years. On graduating from UCD he was employed by the firm of Stanislaus Kenny & Partners. After a one-year break from the firm in 1980, when he worked for the consulting engineering practice of Phillips Barrett in Vancouver, Canada, he returned to Stanislaus Kenny & Partners in 1981 to work on the Wheatfield Prison project. This was one of the largest projects in the country at the time, valued at over £40 million. In 1982 Paul was made a partner in Stanislaus Kenny & Partners and took over full responsibility for the Wheatfield Prison project.

In 1987, along with 3 colleagues, Paul founded the practice of DBFL Consulting Engineers. As Director/Chairman Paul has led numerous landmark projects within the practice, including the award-winning Criminal Courts of Justice in Dublin city centre. Paul has developed extensive experience of developing and refurbishing a range of facilities within the Irish Prison Service and beyond.

In January 2013, Paul was appointed to the Pyrite Resolution Board by the Minister for the Environment, Community & Local Government and played an important role during its crucial formative stage. In 2022, Paul was appointed to Chair the “Expert Group on the Enhanced Defective Concrete Blocks Grant Scheme”, as requested by the Minister at the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage (DHLGH).

Paul was appointed as a member of the CIRI Admissions and Registration Board in 2015 (now VCR) and in 2022 was appointed to the position of Chair. Paul retired from DBFL Consulting Engineers on 1st September 2023.

Senior Lecturer – TU Dublin

Dr. Ciara Ahern is a chartered building services engineer, and senior lecturer of Building Engineering within the Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment in TU Dublin, having rotated out of the Head of Building Engineering role.

Ciara is an experienced academic, combined with having over 20 years’ industrial experience practicing as a consultant design engineer on residential and commercial building projects. Ciara holds a PhD in Building Engineering, an MSc. in Renewable Energy and Energy Management, a Diploma in Project Management, as well as a Diploma in Collaborative Building Information Modelling Technologies.

Ciara is a founder of the Irish Building Stock Observatory, established to provide a better understanding of the energy performance of the building sector through reliable, consistent and comparable data, and to share knowledge between those engaged in buildings and energy research, as well as society-at-large. Ciara is a member of the editorial board of the Energy and Buildings Journal and is actively engaged in buildings and energy research.

Dr. Ahern’s research, funded by Science Foundation Ireland, Enterprise Ireland and the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland, is often cited in national policy documents relating to the sector.

Architect and Project Manager – Head of Major Projects, OPW

Since graduating from TU Dublin School of Architecture, Edel has gained a wide range of experience primarily in the Office of Public Works. Her current role is Head of Major Projects, with responsibilities for a variety of new build and conservation projects, including office accommodation, garda stations, laboratories, museums, schools and cultural facilities. Major Projects delivers a programme of high-valued, complex, large scale, politically sensitive works to a high-quality standard for its clients and for the many public users who experience the buildings and the environments that it creates. She has an excellent performance record of delivering projects on time, within budget and to the highest standard and the recognition of RIAI and OPUS Architecture and Construction Awards validate the high quality of the projects.

Edel has a special interest in knowledge sharing and is an active contributor and presenter at the OGP Commercial Skill Academy Masterclasses, Tier 1 Practitioner Training and RIAI CPD Courses. She is a Member of the RIAI Council and has contributed to the most recent update to the RIAI Good Practice Guide. Edel is also a member of the RIAI Procurement Taskforce. Interested in all aspects of architectural education, acting as a RIAI Visiting Board Member, External Examiner for Professional Practice in Architecture, she has been involved in the OPW/RIAI Graduate Training Programme since its inception in 1999. Edel holds a professional Project Management qualification and represents OPW on cross-government and CIF boards.

Former SIPTU

Sylvester Cronin is a former full-time employee with SIPTU spanning 37 years
(from 1982 to 2019) in a range of different roles:

  • Industrial Engineering Officer
  • Safety and Health Adviser
  • Head of SIPTU College
  • General Manager of IDEAS Institute (a SIPTU owner company) dealing
    mainly with Workplace Innovation and European Projects.

Sylvester also served on the Board of the Health & Safety Authority (HSA) over 4 terms (12 years in total), as a trade union nominee and was Vice Chairperson for one of those terms. During his membership of the HSA Board, he was Chairperson of HSA’s Tripartite Construction Advisory Committee, which was crucially involved with the development of significant new Construction Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Regulations.

He is currently, and has been for a number of years, the Irish trade union’s representative on the European Union Commissions ‘Advisory Committee for Safety and Health’ (ACSH). This Tripartite Committee is the European Commission’s consultative mechanism for EU wide development of Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Legislation/Directives, etc.

After retirement from full-time employment with SIPTU, Sylvester was a Safe Pass Tutor and now undertakes Safe Pass Monitor/Mentor roles.

He holds a BSc in Occupational Safety and Health Management from UCD and occasionally lectures in UCD on OSH courses.

Consulting Engineer

Richard Crowe graduated from University College Dublin in 1975 in Civil Engineering and following that undertook research for the postgraduate degree of M. Eng. Sc. His career since graduation has been spent in consulting engineering in Ireland and overseas, where he worked in the US, Europe, Africa and the Middle East. From 1998 to January 2021, he was Managing Director of Nicholas O’Dwyer Ltd., with an overall brief for strategic business development, delivery of projects and furthering technical expertise.

During Richard’s career he has had wide ranging experience of the management, design, and contract administration of civil engineering infrastructure projects in the transportation, water and power sectors.

He was President of the Association of Consulting Engineers of Ireland (ACEI) 2016-2017 and now represents ACEI on the NSAI Construction Standards Consultative Committee.

Richard is a Fellow of Engineers Ireland where he is the Chair of the Membership and Qualifications Board. Previously he chaired the Board of Examiners and the Editorial Board of the Engineers’ Journal for that institution.

Managing Director – Tritech Group

Joe joined Tritech Engineering in 2003 as Managing Director and shareholder. He holds a Building Services Degree and is a member of Engineers Ireland. He has served as President of MEBSCA and M&ECA and as a member of the Executive Council of the CIF. He has 25 years’ experience in delivering major projects across all sectors of the industry, notably in pharmaceutical, medical devices, commercial, healthcare, and residential developments.

Joe effectively leads a dedicated professional team in the strategic management of the company. He is particularly noted for his positivity, integrity, and dependability. He is passionate about people and technology and how equally important these two are in propelling any business forward.

Construction Director – MKN Property Group

Brian Mc Keon holds the position of Construction Director for MKN Property Group, a second-generation family business, involved in residential construction and property development, since 1996. He has delivered over 3,000 homes in Dublin on a mix of infill and greenfield sites and is an industry leader in the use of modern methods of construction and the use of sustainable design and technology.

Brian has been, and remains, an active member of the IHBA (Irish Home Builders Association) and the Construction Industry Federation (CIF) since 2001. He served as IHBA Chairman between 2011 and 2013 and was a member of the CIF Executive Board from 2011 to 2021. He was a board member of BRAB (Building Regulations Advisory Body) for 3 years and sat on the committee tasked with developing BCAR, representing the CIF on both. He is currently a board member and Chairman of Homebond and one of the founding board members of CIRI. Brian is also a member of several CIF committees dealing with the building regulations and utilities.

Managing Director – Clancy Construction

John O’Shaughnessy is the managing director of Clancy Construction, a national building contractor with offices in Tipperary, Dublin and Cork and a workforce of 150 full-time staff. He has vast experience in delivering complex building projects for both public and private sectors, in areas of residential, healthcare, commercial, industrial and hospitality. John holds a master’s degree in business administration (MBA), a law degree (LL.B Hons), a Project Management Professional (PMP) Dip in construction site management and is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Builders (FCIOB). John is an associated member of the Chartered institute of Arbitrators (ACIOB) and is the current Chairperson of the Southeast Branch of the MBAAI.

John is also a member of the National Executive Body of the Construction Industry Federation (CIF), a Past President of the Master Builder Contractors Association of Ireland (MBCA), and is the current Chairperson of the CIF, Registration of Builders, Building Regulations, Planning & Development and the Education, Training, and skills CIF Sub-Committees. John is a Past President of Thurles Chamber of Commerce and is the current Chairperson of the board of management for Thurles Presentation Secondary School.

Director – Construction, Quality and Green Skills – SOLAS

A graduate of both the University College Cork and National College of Ireland, David Smith is the Director of Construction, Quality and Green Skills in SOLAS, the Further Education and Training Authority. David has over 30+ years of senior operational management experience amassed across Defence, Utilities, Pharmaceutical and Aviation industries.

In his current role, David has responsibility for Safe Pass, CSCS, QSCS, Quality operations and for implementing key actions from various Government directives including Housing for All, the Climate Action Plan and Skills for Zero Carbon. David has also responsibility for establishing the Construction Licensing Authority which will regulate and provide a statutory basis for all construction training in Ireland.

Director – Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI)

Gwendolyn is Director of Regulation for the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI). As Director for the last 8 years and Head of Regulation for 4 years prior to that, she has responsibility for the strategic direction and management of the SCSI’s regulatory functions, in compliance with the SCSI rules and standards for Chartered Surveyors.

The SCSI is the appointed registration body for the protected titles “Building Surveyor” and “Quantity Surveyor”. Gwendolyn has held the position of Registrar for the last 6 years, providing strategic leadership, direction and governance of the SCSI’s statutory functions, in compliance with the Building Control Act (BCA), 2007.

She plays a key decision-making role in the SCSI member disciplinary process, with authority to monitor, investigate and sanction members for breaches of rules of conduct and CPD.

With experience in the property, land and construction sector, Gwendolyn has extensive knowledge and a clear understanding of its regulatory landscape in Ireland. Her work with global regulatory bodies, such as the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and the European Association of Estate Professions (CEPI), has broadened her knowledge of the global regulatory landscape in the sector.

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