The ultimate governing body of the Gaelic Players Association is the National Executive Committee (NEC). The affairs of the Association are under the direction of the NEC. The NEC is elected by the members of the Association.
The NEC is comprised of a President, Chairman and Secretary, together with a minimum of 10 and maximum of 20 other members of the association. The Executive Officers have the power from time to time to co-opt to the NEC persons whose specific expertise and/or advice are deemed necessary for the better management of the GPA.
In furtherance of the GPA’s objectives it is necessary to engage in certain financial transactions and contractual arrangements. The most appropriate legal structure through which to conduct these financial and contractual arrangements is a limited company, the Gaelic Players Association DAC. The board of directors of this company is elected by the members of the NEC.
The Board of Directors has ultimate legal responsibility for this company and works to ensure good governance, with the help of its sub-committees. The NEC and the Board agree the overall strategic direction for the organisation. The Board members are responsible for the monitoring and implementation and oversight of the management of day-to-day operations of the organisation.
The organisation has sought to build on its existing governance model by conducting a formal governance review. The recommendations from this review have now been implemented and will ensure we remain well managed into the future. The company has also signed up to the voluntary Governance Code for Community, Voluntary and Charitable Organisations in Ireland.
Organisations are only as strong as their reputations and clearly stating to stakeholders that you adhere to the Governance Code substantially boosts our reputation, status and credibility as a high performing, ethically run and financially sound organisation. The main characteristics of organisations that sign up to the voluntary code is that the people who sit on the board focus solely on their governance and oversight role, delegating management and operational duties to the staff. There is a clear division between the governance role of the board and the management role of staff.
The Board currently comprises eight Non-Executive Directors. The Board’s Non-Executive Directors are drawn from diverse backgrounds in sport, business and other professions. They bring to the Board their significant Gaelic games experience, business acumen and organisational skills achieved in their respective fields to enhance and support the decision-making process.
There is a clear division of responsibility in the company, with the Board retaining control of major decisions under a formal schedule of matters reserved to the Board and the Chief Executive Officer being responsible for implementing policy within the authorities delegated to him by the Board. The role of Chairperson and Chief Executive Officer are separate and all directors are independent of the management of the company.
Board sub-committees are established for good governance under the code of practice as follows:
The role of this committee is primarily to provide oversight and assist the Board in overall financial management as well as advising the Board in determining whether they and the Management are discharging their respective responsibilities for financial planning, strategy, and monthly financial reporting.
The independent chairman of the GPA Finance Committee is John Glennon Managing Partner of RSM Ireland and the other members are GAA representative Micheál Carrigy, former Sligo player, Philip Greene, HSBC Bank and current Tipperary player Brian Mulvihill, Irelandia Investments.
This committee assists in monitoring the effectiveness in of the statutory financial reporting and audit process with our external independent Auditors Deloitte. The committee also monitor and review systems of internal control, and risk management as well as advising the Board in determining whether they and the Management are discharging their responsibilities for risk management, financial audit and internal controls appropriately.
The independent chairman of the GPA Audit & Risk Committee is Liam Twohig Business Partner RSM Ireland and the other members are Martin Kelly of Martin J, Kelly & Co Accountants, GPA Chairman Seamus Hickey and National Executive Member Tom Parsons.
This committee’s role is to assist the Board and executive management in setting the annual pay component of the annual budget. The committee establishes individual pay levels utilising the Hay methodology and benchmarked market rates. It will also advise on all matters in relation to employee contracts and succession planning.
The independent chairman of the GPA Remuneration People & Change Committee is Sean Murphy, Director of Employee Relations & Change at Aer Lingus, and the other members are GPA Board Chairman Fergus Clancy and Patricia Gordon Group, HR Business Partner CRH.
The GPA accounts are presented quarterly to the GAA for review and annually to GAA Central Council. GPA financial statements are independently audited and are also available on Companies Registration Office. Our annual report is also available for download on our website, which is a comprehensive and transparent report on the GPA’s activities and finances throughout the preceding year. Our Financial Statements are prepared in accordance with Financial Reporting Standards and our financial year runs from January to December.
In relation to lobbying activities we abide by the Code of Conduct for persons carrying on lobbying activities under the Regulation of Lobbying Act. The Code seeks to provide guidance to those lobbying on how to do so in an ethical and transparent way. It seeks to ensure that lobbying is conducted with honesty, integrity, and respect for the institutions and people being lobbied.