Committee Featured Image
Committee
Matt O' Keeffe Avatar

Matt O’ Keeffe, President of the All-Ireland Guild of Agricultural Journalists

Matt is editor of Irish Farmers Monthly (IFM) and was previously machinery editor with IFM. Matt also presents a weekly, hour-long farming programme on local radio, KCLR. He is a former president of Macra and is a partner in a milk production enterprise in Kilkenny. 

The Irish Guild is made up of two sections, each with its own committee. The Southern Section is primarily responsible for running local events for journalists and communicators in the Republic of Ireland, while the Northern Section's membership is primarily those based in Northern Ireland. The two also hold annual All-Ireland events together.

Southern Committee Northern Committee

Stella Meehan Avatar

Stella Meehan, Chairperson

Stella Meehan is currently editor of Agriland and has previously worked in the broadcasting, print and political sectors. She has a Masters in Journalism from NUI (National University of Ireland) Galway and a Bachelor of Arts degree in English, Sociology and Politics. She has lectured with the Irish Academy of Public Relations and mentored many of the younger journalists working in Irish media today. She comes from a farming and business background in Co. Galway and now lives in Co. Mayo.

Michelle Jordan Avatar

Michelle Jordan, Treasurer

Michelle Jordan is an agri-food communications executive with Bord Bia, specialising in farmer communications. Prior to joining Bord Bia in 2018, Michelle held a variety of roles in PR, media, events, retail and hospitality. From a farming background in east Galway, Michelle holds a degree in Culinary Entrepreneurship and a post graduate diploma in Global Business Development, both from TU Dublin. Outside of her guild role, Michelle is chair of the communications working group of the European Roundtable for Beef Sustainability.

Niall Madigan Avatar

Niall Madigan

Niall Madigan is the National Press Officer for the Irish Farmers Association (IFA), Ireland’s largest farm representative organisation with over 75,000 members.  He has worked closely with five IFA Presidents in advising on communications strategies for campaigns at national and European level. He joined the Guild of Agricultural Journalists in 2005 when he took up his role with IFA.   Niall served as Secretary to the Guild from 2012-2017.  From a farming background in Co Limerick, he worked as a broadcast journalist and current affairs presenter with Radio Kerry from 1997 to 2005.  He is a BA graduate from UCD where he studied Politics and Economics.

David Markey Avatar

David Markey

David Markey has served on the AgriGuild committee for many years. He is a former chair and president of the Guild, and a former World President of the IFAJ. David was awarded Honorary Life Membership of the Guild in 2015. He is the publisher of the Irish Farmers Monthly, which recently celebrated its 50th anniversary. 

Amy Forde Avatar

Amy Forde

Amy Forde is the news editor of the Irish Farmers Journal. From Annaghdown in Co. Galway, she has covered breaking news across the agricultural industry nationally and internationally. She held the position of chair of the southern section of the Guild from 2020 to 2023.

Aileen Barron Avatar

Aileen Barron

Aileen Barron is the managing director of Green Acre Marketing; a leading PR and marketing agency founded by Aileen in 2013. She has worked in the agri-business sector for over 20 years, is an Agribusiness and Marketing Graduate from Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (now ATU), a business graduate from Michael Smurfit Business School, University College Dublin (UCD) and also holds a diploma in Digital Marketing from the Irish Internet Association (IIA). Aileen has a wealth of experience in communications and through the diverse team in Green Acre Marketing works with many well-known national and international agri-businesses.

Kathleen O’Sullivan Avatar

Kathleen O’Sullivan

Kathleen O’Sullivan is a farming reporter with the Irish Examiner. She has worked as an agricultural journalist since she finished her journalism degree in 2020. She hails from a beef farm in Co Kerry, and continues to live in Munster.

Rachel White Avatar

Rachel White

Rachel White holds a Bachelors and Masters degree in animal science from University College Dublin (UCD). As Ireland marketing manager for animal nutrition company Alltech, Rachel coordinates campaigns and advertising for the company as well as events and media. Growing up on a dairy farm in Co. Cork, Rachel began her career with Ornua in Dublin and Dubai, before completing her masters in conjunction with Teagasc Moorepark. This led to a Fulbright Scholarship spent at the University of Florida, before returning to Cork with the Irish Holstein Friesian Association (IHFA).

Bernie Commins Avatar

Bernie Commins

Bernie Commins is deputy editor of IFP Media’s flagship title, Irish Farmers Monthly. She is also editor of Irishfood magazine, which is aimed at promoting Irish food and food producers to an export market in Europe and other key destinations. She is managing editor of the Irish Farm Machinery & Equipment Yearbook and is a contributing journalist and sub-editor across other IFP Media titles. She is a former editor of the Veterinary Ireland Journal and has previous professional experience in online agri-journalism and in local/regional newspapers. Outside of work, she is PRO for the organising committee of Darkness into Light - Marlay Park, and PRO for the Irish Cave Rescue Organisation, a national voluntary emergency service.

Rebeca McConnell Avatar

Rebecca McConnell, Chairperson

Rebecca McConnell runs a PR and social media consultancy, Purple Rain, which she established in 2011. After graduating with an Economics degree from Queen’s University, Belfast, she began her communications career in a leading Belfast PR agency in 2006 having developed an interest in PR volunteering with her local Young Farmers’ Club. In September 2017, she travelled to Switzerland for the IFAJ press trip to experience the Entlebuch Alpabfahrt and also represented the Guild at the ENAJ AGM in Italy in October 2022 as part of a low budget press tour of the Veneto region. She was secretary of the northern section of the AgriGuild from 2020 to 2023 before becoming chairperson. Rebecca lives in Rathfriland, Co. Down, not far from the picturesque Mourne Mountains, on a dairy farm.

Richard Halleron Avatar

Richard Halleron, Secretary

Richard Halleron is an agricultural chemist by background. He is a past chair of the Northern Ireland Institute of Agricultural Science and has also served as chair and president of the Guild of Agricultural Journalists in Northern Ireland. He is a news and tillage correspondent for Agriland Media as well as contributing to other farming publications.

Tom Morrow Avatar

Tom Morrow, Treasurer

Tom Morrow is northern correspondent with the Irish Farmers Journal, one of the foremost farming newspapers in Ireland. Earlier in his career he worked with the Milk Marketing Board for Northern Ireland and United Dairy Farmers looking after the farm services side of those businesses. The first step in his career was with Richardson’s Fertilisers. At Queens University, Belfast he studied agriculture and completed PhD in agricultural economics.

Rachel Martin Avatar

Rachel Martin, IFAJ Delegate

Rachel Martin specialises in writing about agri-business and dairying for digital farming news outlet Agriland Media. Previously, she worked as a news and business reporter at one of Northern Ireland’s biggest daily newspapers. In 2017, she was named one of IFAJ’s 10 Young Leaders in Agricultural Journalism and won a stipend towards the annual congress in South Africa. In 2019, she won the IFAJ/Caterpillar Ag-Tech Reporting Award and was runner-up for the same award in 2020. She has also taken part in the IFAJ Exposure-4-Development tour to Brazil and has previously held the role of secretary within the guild. During her time as secretary she ran the northern branch’s first-ever professional development conference. She currently sits on IFAJ's Education and Training Task Force.

Become a member
Working in agricultural media? Sign up to become a member of the AgriGuild today where you will have access to a network of peers and opportunities for recruitment, education and awards.