Press Release: The DRCC Board announce departure of CEO Ellen O’Malley Dunlop & arrival of Noeline Blackwell
Thursday, January 28th, 2016
“Together I think we have made a difference”
CHAMPION OF VICTIMS OF RAPE AND SEXUAL ABUSE STEPS DOWN FROM DRCC POST
The Board of the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre today announced the departure of Chief Executive Officer, Ellen O’Malley Dunlop, who will step down from her post in mid March.
Ann Marie Gill, Chairperson of the Board of DRCC said: “The Board has accepted Ellen’s decision with great regret, after 10 years of dedicated service and achievement and wishes her every success. Ellen joined the DRCC at a time when the issue of violence against women still remained poorly acknowledged and resourced, and when the DRCC itself faced significant challenges. Her incredible work with us has made a considerable contribution to changes on both counts.” In particular Ms Gill highlighted Ms O’Malley Dunlop’s work as a champion of victims of rape and sexual abuse and their right to justice and excellent services; “an unyielding advocate for the implementation of the recommendations of the SAVI Report(Sexual Abuse and Violence in Ireland: McGee et al 2002)and as an exceptional leader of the DRCC team.”
Commenting on her decade as CEO, Ellen O’Malley Dunlop said that public awareness and political commitment had increased as the atrocities of rape and sexual abuse emerged. She said that “In particular, following the publication of the Ryan, Murphy and Cloyne reports, the unavoidable evidence of the horrible realities led to change, in particular the Referendum on including the Rights of the Child in our Constitution but at the same time progress has been hugely limited by the savage cuts that all services have experienced during the recession.”
As she steps down within weeks of the publication of the Government’s Second National Strategy on the Prevention of Domestic, Sexual and Gender Based Violence, which she broadly welcomes, she looks forward to it being both implemented and resourced properly, particularly as Rape Crisis Centres around the country are recording increases in the number of victims accessing their services.
“It has been a privilege to have been able to do this work and enormously rewarding to see the changes since I took up my role.” Ms O’Malley Dunlop commented. “There is now a much more cohesive, and shared, view and understanding of the appalling crimes that are rape and sexual abuse and slowly, as a State, we are working on prevention, continued awareness raising and acknowledging the need for services to victims and ensuring that justice is delivered.”
As she moves on, Ms O’Malley Dunlop thanked colleagues, saying that she has been fortunate to work with great people on the Board and with the management, staff and volunteers of the DRCC, and with partners in services and agencies right around the country. “Together I think we have made a difference,” Ms O’Malley Dunlop added.
Ms Gill wished Ms O’Malley Dunlop well as she embarks on a new part of her life and in particular in seeking election to Seanad Eireann. “I am pleased that Ellen has taken this step, knowing just how important it is that people with her exceptional experience, knowledge and strong voice are willing to seek election to both the Dail and Seanad. We wish her every success.”
The Board has appointed Ms Noeline Blackwell as incoming CEO. Ms Blackwell has made a significant and lasting contribution to the development of FLAC in her 10 years as Director General. Ms Gill concluded “We look forward to working with Ms Blackwell and to her bringing her expertise and exceptional skills, particularly in the area of advocacy, to the next stage of development of the work of the DRCC.”
For further information please contact:
Ann Marie Gill, Chairperson of DRCC