Bio - Veterinary, Research and Life ...

Life began on a dairy farm in the west of Ireland on the Atlantic coast. Outdoor activities have been an important part of my life. I work on the farm, built barns, repaired tractors in between fishing off the 120 ft cliffs for pollack and mackerel. I remember spending many happy Sundays sailing in the Shannon estuary. I later learned to scuba dive where I saw the sea which I love so much from underneath. The sensation of floating weightless mid water over a shear drop in the crystal clear Irish waters is an experience of a life time. Lately I have taken a shine to hill walking.

Professional and Academic life

Becoming a veterinarian was a natural step having been around animals all my life and at 18 I entered the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine in University College Dublin, Ireland for the first time. I graduated with an honours degree in 2000.

I went on to practice as an intern and resident in Large animal Clinical Studies in the Veterinary Hospital and see practice in the field, all of which I enjoyed greatly. The it was the intellectual stimulation of research that fired me up the most. Inspire by Professor Dan Collins and by a talk given by Professor Dale Hancock in 2001 I went on to purse a PhD in veterinary public health and food safety. Having worked closely with both the beef and pork industries, I believe that the farm-to-fork policy in food safety has huge potential. It has the potential to focus on one of the sources of contamination limiting the load of zoonotic pathogen for potential contamination of food. Thus reducing the risk of VTEC, Salmonella, Campylobacter spp. infections for the consumer.

I have the the opportunity to work in virology in the National Reference Laboratory for African and Classical Swine Fever, Bluetongue and Avian Influenza and to participate in EU meeting on Swine Fever. I have also lead field investigation on PMWS and PRRS.