Email: info@vulcanconsulting.eu    |    Dublin Tel: +353 1 960 2270    |    Brussels Tel: +32 (0) 2 791 75 76

Our Team

LUCINDA
CREIGHTON
CEO

PAUL
BRADFORD
CHAIRMAN

IAN
FAHEY
DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS

SEAN KLEIN
DIRECTOR OF STRATEGIC COMMUNICATIONS

ELIZABETH
KRAHULECZ
HEAD OF BRUSSELS OFFICE

PASCAL
KOENIG
SENIOR ACCOUNT MANAGER

DANIEL
O’DOWD
ACCOUNT MANAGER

JOSH
BYRNE
SERIOR ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE

JACK
KIELY
ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE

EMILY
O’NEILL
ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE

Xabier
PINILLA
ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE

ANN
KELLY
SPECIAL ADVISOR

BRIAN PURCELL
SPECIAL ADVISOR – COMMUNICATIONS

JAN
NEMEC
SPECIAL ADVISER

RORY
MONTGOMERY
SPECIAL ADVISOR

AVRIL
DOYLE
SPECIAL ADVISOR

WILLIAM
ECHIKSON
SPECIAL ADVISOR

ROBERT
O’REILLY
STRATEGIC COUNSEL

MICHAEL
D’ARCY
SPECIAL ADVISOR

CATHERINE
BENT
SPECIAL ADVISOR

UNA
O’DWYER
SPECIAL ADVISOR

DEIRDRE
LEE
EXECUTIVE OFFICE MANAGER

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Lucinda Creighton

Lucinda Creighton CEO of Vulcan Consulting Ltd, is a barrister, qualified New York attorney, former Irish Minister for European Affairs and Member of the Irish Parliament. As Minister for European Affairs she represented Ireland in key negotiations on Ireland’s EU/IMF bailout, leading to a reduction in interest rates and the extension of Ireland’s repayment schedules. She has extensive knowledge of the EU bureaucratic infrastructure and regulatory system.

As CEO of Vulcan Consulting, she works closely with CEOs and senior management teams to assist them in understanding and navigating the political, policy and decision-making environment in Europe and Ireland. A regular keynote speaker at industry sponsored events and roundtables, Creighton also advises firms on political engagement. Since June 2016 she has worked with several corporate clients on Brexit contingency planning, particularly in the fields of banking and asset management. She is in high demand in the United States and across Europe to speak at conferences and to provide in-depth briefings on EU and Irish political and regulatory changes.

During Ireland’s Presidency of the Council of European Union, Creighton led negotiations with 28 Member States on the €960 billion EU Budget, as well as representing the continent in bilateral trade discussions in the United States, leading to the start of formal TTIP negotiations. She was also involved in the negotiations between the Commission, Council and Parliament on the MiFID II Regulatory Framework.

She also served for three years as Vice President of the European People’s Party (EPP) alongside a number of EU Commissioners and other Ministers.

Lucinda maintains a deep interest and expertise in Foreign Policy issues. She is an Advisory Board member of the Washington DC based International Republican Institute (IRI) as well as being an active Council member of the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR). The ECFR comprises many former and serving Prime Ministers, Ministers, EU Commissioners and leading academics.

Email: lucinda@vulcanconsulting.eu

PAUL BRADFORD

Paul Bradford is Chairman of Vulcan Consulting and leads our stakeholder engagement service for clients in Dublin. Paul was a long-serving member of both the Upper and Lower Houses of the Irish Parliament (Senate and Dáil). Paul represented the East Cork both at national level, and at local county council level. He served as Chairman of the British Irish Inter-parliamentary group in the run up to the signing of the historic Good Friday Agreement. Paul also represented the Irish Parliament on the Council of Europe. He was Opposition Chief Whip for the Fine Gael party under the leadership of Michael Noonan, the recently retired Irish Finance minister. Paul served as Shadow Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries, and was a member of the Oireachtas Committee on Agriculture and the Marine.

Ian Fahey

ian fahey senior account manager

Ian works as Account Director in our Irish Office. He joined Vulcan Consulting following a six-year career within both the Irish and European Parliaments. He was appointed as one of the youngest Special Advisors to the Government in the history of the State – as an advisor to the Attorney General of Ireland. He previously worked as a Parliamentary Assistant for a Minister of State and for a Member of the European Parliament. A Business & Law Graduate of University College Dublin, he has an extensive understanding of the Irish legislative system – as well as the Irish policy landscape across a variety of sectors.

Ian also serves as a director of the Ireland-United States Alumni Association, a network of U.S. State Department Irish-exchange programmes, which seeks to develop the next generation of leaders to promote and maintain Irish-U.S. relations.

Email: ianfahey@vulcanconsulting.eu

SEAN KLEIN

Sean Klein

Sean Klein is the Director of Strategic Communications at Vulcan Consulting.  He is a former BBC journalist, with twenty years’ experience at the UK’s national broadcaster.  He reported for radio and television – and edited news programmes.  Sean covered presidential and parliamentary elections in many parts of the world including the USA, Germany, France, and Zimbabwe.  He also worked on the BBC’s coverage of 9/11; the death of Pope John Paul II; and the Asian tsunami.

Sean was also the BBC’s Europe Bureaux Editor (Brussels Bureau Chief), responsible for a large editorial and technical team, covering a wide range of news stories across the EU.  During more than 10 years in Brussels for the BBC he gained high-level insight into the European Union’s policy and decision-making processes, as well as seeing at close quarters how EU policies play out across many EU member states.

For the last ten years, Sean has been working as a conference moderator, media coach and communications strategy advisor (including crisis management) for high-level clients across Europe.  Sean works in 3 languages.

Sean is also currently researching a book on the war-time history of the Balkans – and can occasionally be found in a small London venue, singing with a small male-voice ensemble.

Email: seanklein@vulcanconsulting.eu

ELIZABETH KRAHULECZ

elizabeth krahulecz head of brussels office

Elizabeth Krahulecz is the Head of the Brussels Office at Vulcan Consulting. A former diplomat, Elizabeth is well known for her extensive network of relationships across high levels of government, EU institutions, politics, business and non-profits. She works with clients to advance their objectives by providing strategic advice and connections needed to position their issues for success. Her diverse experience provides a unique viewpoint that cuts to the core of legislative and political issues.

Elizabeth has extensive (15+ years) public and private sector experience in the fields of regulatory and public policy issues and management. She served as an economic diplomat for 4 years to the Court of St James’, London, and was the Chair of several negotiations on behalf of the Hungarian Presidency of the Council of the EU in 2011. She was a senior executive at EY in London and Brussels for over 10 years, where she was Director of EMEIA Regulatory and Public Policy and Associate Partner, Head of EMEIA Public Policy in the Brussels office. She has gained experience in developing, executing, coordinating global, regional and local public policy strategies and activities including stakeholder engagement, creating efficient and sustainable narratives and in-depth analysis in a wide range of policy areas including financial services, ESG, sustainability, financial and non-financial reporting, AML, tax, talent, technology, Fintech and D&I.

Elizabeth has considerable experience building positive and scalable policy solutions, driving awareness raising with stakeholders, advancing policy objectives and building supportive alliances. She has managed effective engagement with EU Institutions, legislators, supervisors, business groups, professional bodies, investors, academics, and other stakeholders. She has expertise in creating and successfully promoting thought leadership pieces and has been involved in issues and reputation management and integrated strategic communication programs.

Elizabeth has one daughter and enjoys yoga, nature, art and coffee and . Elizabeth is passionate about volunteering and supporting D&I, victims’ rights and refugees through concrete actions, raising awareness and driving policy discussions around these topics to ensure they remain high on the policy agenda.

Email: elizabethkrahulecz@vulcanconsulting.eu

PASCAL KOENIG

pascal koenig senior account manager

Pascal is a Senior Account Manager at Vulcan Consulting where he works on Financial Services, FinTech and Technology policy. He also manages our energy and environment portfolio in Brussels. Pascal has gained extensive experience in advising companies in navigating the Irish and European Public Affairs landscape. Prior to joining Vulcan Consulting, Pascal managed the Public Affairs and Communications for the Irish Exporters Association where he was responsible for all policy and government relations aspects, including on transport, international trade and Brexit. At Ecommerce Europe, he oversaw the online payments and digital innovations practice of Ecommerce Europe, the association representing the European e-commerce industry, working extensively on the Payment Services Directive 2 (PSD2), instant, digital, and retail payments. Pascal has also worked on a broad range of energy, environment, and sustainability issues at the EU level, closely working on the EU’s Circular Economy and European Green Deal packages.

Pascal holds a Master of Economic Science in European Public Affairs and Law from UCD, Dublin.

Daniel O’Dowd

daniel o'dowd account executive

Daniel is an Account Manager in the Dublin Office, supporting clients across a number of sectors including housing and transport. He has garnered extensive legislative and policy experience, having previously served as a Parliamentary Advisor in the Irish Parliament and having acted as a political advisor to both local and national election campaigns in the Republic of Ireland, United Kingdom, and Northern Ireland. A Bachelor of Laws Graduate from Maynooth University, Daniel has considerable knowledge of the Irish legislative process and political environment across a multiplicity of sectors.

JOSH BYRNE

Josh Byrne

Josh is an Account Executive working as part of the Dublin team. He has previously worked on the in-house legal team of a large multinational fintech company based in Ireland. Josh holds a Bachelor’s degree in Law from University College Dublin and possesses a keen understanding of the Irish legal and legislative systems. During college, Josh contributed to the campus newspaper’s political section, writing primarily about US affairs.

JACK KIELY

jack kiely

A graduate of BSc Government & Political Science in University College Cork, Jack has experience in working in both American politics and Irish public affairs. An alum of the Washington Ireland Programme, Jack interned in the office of Democratic Congressman Brendan Boyle on Capitol Hill in the summer of 2022. In this role, he attended a range of hearings on behalf of the office, dealt with constituent matters in Philadelphia and gave tours of Capitol Hill to visiting constituents. Jack also chaired a speaker session at the Irish Mission to the United Nations in New York City during Ireland’s time as a member of the UN’s Security Council.

After graduating, Jack began working for a public relations and public affairs firm in Dublin, where he was exposed to a broad range of clients with extensive public affairs and communications requirements.

Emily O’Neill

emily o neill

Emily is a Graduate Trainee at our Dublin office. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Sociology from Trinity College Dublin and a Master’s degree in European History, Politics, and Society from Columbia University.

Before joining Vulcan, Emily gained experience as a Research Assistant to European Parliament Administrator, Francesco Ronchi, at Columbia University GSAS on a project focused on improving EU democracy support; and currently acts as a writer for the European Studies Review.

IAN O’CONNOR

Ian O Connor

Ian is a Graduate Trainee in the Brussels Office. Before joining Vulcan, he gained significant experience in the security and defence sector. He previously worked as a Research Intern at the Bundeswehr Command & Staff College; and currently acts as Managing Editor for the Azure Forum Strategic Insights blog.

ANN KELLY

ann kelly special advisor

Ann has built up a wealth of experience in the field of public affairs consultancy, having previously worked with the European Commission in Brussels in the area of SMEs and in Dublin on industrial relations policy and social partnership. She has extensive experience working with multinational companies in the areas of food and drink; healthcare; transport; renewable energy and the environment. Ann was Director of Understanding Europe, a company providing EU training for professionals and lectured in Communications at Dublin City University, Ireland. Ann holds a postgraduate degree in European Affairs from the College of Europe, Bruges, Belgium and in Sustainable Development Policy from Blekinge Institute, Sweden.

Brian Purcell

brian purcell

Brian is a communications and media relations specialist that has proven skill in devising and implementing bespoke and strategic communications services across a diverse range of industries and sectors. He works closely with and counsels CEOs and their C-suite teams to lead and drive strategic communications plans and has earned a strong reputation in precisely planning and implementing corporate, public affairs, public information, stakeholder targeting, media relations, crisis management, trade and consumer communication programmes that support client objectives.

Brian has also extensive broadcasting experience having hosted programmes and documentaries on radio and business podcasting as well as participating

Jan Nemec

Jan Nemec

Jan is a former senior diplomat and civil servant who started his career working for the Czech Ministry of Transport on the accession of the Czech Republic to the EU. As the EU Department Director, he helped bringing the Czech transport sector into the EU. He then moved to Brussels to serve as a transport attaché at the Czech Permanent Representation to the EU.

During the 2009 Czech Presidency of the Council, he chaired the Land Transport Working Party, successfully concluding amongst others the legislative package on access to the market and profession in road transport.

In 2012, Jan joined the International Road Transport Union (IRU), where he was Deputy Head of the Brussels office, responsible for social affairs, road safety and infrastructure issues and later represented Czech and Slovak Associations of road transport operators as their Permanent Representative to the EU.

Adding the industry portfolio to his area of expertise, Jan returned to the Permanent Representation between 2021 – 2023 as industry attaché. During the second Czech Council Presidency he chaired the Working Party on Industry where he was leading the policy work on semiconductors. Jan successfully negotiated the EU Chips Act while also working on other industry files and coordinating the transport, digital and energy files.

Jan is an experienced EU advocacy executive with special focus on transport and industry building on public administration and industry background. He has an extensive network of contacts amongst EU institutions, governmental representatives, industry associations, companies, enforcement professionals, trade unions and media.

Rory Montgomery

Rory Montgomery

Rory Montgomery was an officer of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade from 1983 to 2019, also serving on secondment to the Department of the Taoiseach. After a range of initial assignments at home and abroad, he was part of the team which negotiated the Good Friday Agreement. He subsequently worked on the negotiation and ratification of the Nice and Lisbon Treaties, and was the Department’s Political Director from 2005-09.

He served as Irish Permanent Representative to the European Union from 2009-13, a period dominated by the euro crisis. In 2013 he led the Brussels end of the successful Irish EU Presidency, during which he chaired the committee of EU Ambassadors (Coreper). After a year as Irish Ambassador to France, he returned to Dublin as Second Secretary General at the Department of the Taoiseach, and as Enda Kenny’s EU Sherpa. From 2016-19 he was Second Secretary General at the Department of Foreign Affairs, with responsibility for EU affairs, in particular Brexit.

Rory Montgomery is a graduate of Trinity College Dublin, from which he also holds an MBA.

Avril Doyle

avril doyle

Avril Doyle has over 35 years of experience as an elected public representative at local, national and international level. She is a former Mayor of Wexford and at national level served as a member of the Irish Parliament, Senator and Minister in successive Irish governments. Avril spent 10 years as an MEP in the EPP group as Leader of the Irish Delegation. A highly influential and reputable MEP, she served as a member of the Environment, Public Health and Consumer Affairs Committee; a member of the Agriculture and Food Committee and a member of the Industry Research and Energy Committee. She is a member of the Institute for International and European Affairs (IIEA), The Royal Dublin Society (RDS) and an associate member of the British Veterinary Association.

WILLIAM ECHIKSON

William Echikson

Bill is an experienced Brussels-based digital policy specialist and previously worked for six and a half years at Google running their corporate communications for Europe, Middle East and Africa. Mr. Echikson began his career as a foreign correspondent in Europe for a series of US publications including the Christian Science Monitor, Wall Street Journal, Fortune and BusinessWeek. From 2001 until 2007, he served as Brussels Bureau Chief for Dow Jones. He is a leading Brussels-based expert on digital policy and serves as Associate Senior Fellow and Director of the Digital Forum at the Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS) in Brussels.

Robert O’Reilly

Robert O Reilly

Robert is the Strategic Counsel at Vulcan Consulting. He is a legal and public affairs specialist with over 10 years’ experience. Robert joined Vulcan Consulting from Cicero Group where he was Director of the firm’s Dublin office and advised a number of the world’s largest banks, insurance firms and asset managers on Brexit, UK – Irish relations and Irish – EU engagement. Robert’s recent experience includes 3 years as a business, political-economy and trade policy advisor in the British Embassy Dublin. He is a practicing barrister specialising in commercial law and has previously gained significant experience as a legal and regulatory consultant to US multinationals establishing EU operations in Ireland.

Michael D’Arcy

Michael D Arcy

Michael has been involved in public affairs, regulatory and policy research for almost four decades and brings a wealth experience to clients. His EU and global roles have included Public Affairs Director for International Express Carriers Conference, a member of committees Task Forces and user groups, and presenter, chair and facilitator of conferences, seminars and lectures. Michael has written extensively including: a seminal book on the cross-border business dimension of the Irish Peace Process; EU economic and enterprise policy; Transport & Ports; Telecommunications; Trade Facilitation and E-business.

Catherine Bent

catherine bent

Catherine is a Chartered Director with Non-Executive Directorships and since 2003 has been the Owner CB Consultancy, a Business Strategy, Marketing & Corporate Affairs firm with a client list of Irish & multinational companies. Previously Catherine was the Marketing, Corporate Affairs & Management Team Director at Mars Ireland and has wide experience of Ireland’s FMCG/Food & Beverage Industries. Catherine has lectured in the Irish Management Institute, Dublin City University, the Dublin Institute of Technology and mentors in Trinity College and the UCD Smurfit School of Business.

Una O’Dwyer

Una O Dwyer

Una is a Senior Fellow of the European Institute of Public Administration (EIPA) on whose behalf she regularly delivers training courses on EU decision-making to officials and its Member States. Una is also Vice-President of the Irish think-tank, the Institute for International and European Affairs (IIEA). She spent 23 years in the SG of the European Commission, responsible for relations with the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers in general and the EU decision-making procedures. Prior to that, Una was a diplomat in the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs for 16 years from Ireland’s accession to the EEC in 1973 onwards, serving in the directorates for Press Relations and EU Political Cooperation and Multilateral Development Cooperation.

Deirdre Lee

deirdre lee

Deirdre is the Executive Office Manager at Vulcan Consulting and works very closely with our CEO. Deirdre has considerable experience in negotiating, managing client relationships and project management. Prior to joining Vulcan Consulting Deirdre has over 10 years’ experience working in the retail sector for BWG Foods as Trading Manager and before that as a Buyer with Superquinn. Deirdre has BA International in Economics and Italian from UCD and a Diploma in Business Studies from NUI Galway.