Our Mission

The Irish Institute of Sport Surfaces is dedicated to promoting and implementing the professional development of people who maintain and manage sport surfaces in Ireland. We are the only organisation in Ireland who have dedicated voluntarily to sit on the QQI awards review team to design and write new QQI Training awards for Greenkeepers and Grounds people both Professional and Volunteers in Ireland. We are dedicated to providing Independent Consultancy advisory services for all sport surfaces, both in their Construction and when maintenance problems arise. The Institute will also strive to encourage, develop and include people from all streams of society in Ireland who are dedicated in pursuing a career in Sport Surface management.

Government Sports Minister O’Donovan presents the SSE League of Ireland Pitch of the Year Award 2016 at Aviva Stadium

Left to Right Pat O’Sullivan, Bill Collins George Lee Donal Kearney Minister O’Donovan presents to Mick Murphy Colm Ryan Ian Buckley Greenday Environmental Sponsor.

Croke Park Groundsman Education day Organising committee Back row Clive Jeffers Donal Kearney Gary Thompson Damien McDonagh Front Row Vinny Byrne Noel Connolly Noel Connolly Peter Bouvard.

Donal Kearney presenting FAI Pitch of the Year Award to UCD Brian Mullins Head of UCD Sport Alongside are Colman Warde sponsor, UCD David Warde and Brian Barnes Greenkeeper Independent Industry representative.

Company Overview

The Irish Institute of Sport Surfaces are widely supported by the Sport Surface Industry in Ireland. The demand for an Irish based and owned organisation has been the catalyst for the establishment of the Irish Institute.

Our Industry Advisory panel consists of those with many years of experience and qualifications in the Irish Sport Surface Industry.

They have been enrolled to the Irish Institute of Sport Surfaces to provide the industry in Ireland direction and advice, in providing the needs of the industry in Ireland. The standard and quality of training courses is approved by them, to ensure the industry is been served well.

Its Managing Director Mr. Donal Kearney is accredited with a Post graduate Diploma in Environmental Engineering from Trinity College Dublin Ireland, an MSc in Sports Surface Soil Engineering from Cranfield University UK, a BSc in Turf Science & Golf Course Management from the University of Essex UK and a Diploma of Sportsturf Management and a Certificate of Greenkeeping from Teagasc in Ireland.

Donal brings to the role an extensive background of golf course construction and maintenance and turfgrass expertise. His job roles in the sports turf sectors began at apprentice level right up to management on some of the finest golf courses in Ireland, the UK and in the USA. His hands on practical experience complements his technical knowledge gained at University, and as Regional Advisor for the Institute of Groundsmanship in Ireland. Donal has designed and specified many Sport Surfaces both Natural grass and Synthetic Surfaces for all Sports including Golf, Football (GAA Soccer & Rugby), Tennis Athletics and Horseracing.

Leinster GAA Sheamus Howlin with Terry McShea and Donal Kearney, of the Irish Institute of Sports Surfaces launching the Irish Institute of Sports Surfaces Club Playing Surface of the Year in association with Leinster GAA.

Mr. Terence Mc Shea is the golf course superintendent at Bundoran Golf Course. Terence has been a member of the GCSAI since 1989 and held the position of President from 2001 to 2003.

He obtained a certificate in agriculture from St. Patricks College, Monaghan in 1982. He went on to study farm management before starting work in Bundoran in 1985 and has been there since. He became superintendent in 1989 whilst studying at the National Botanic Gardens for Phase 1 and 2 City and Guilds Greenkeeping and Sportsturf Management. He also obtained a certificate in Phase 3 City and Guilds and is currently studying for a certificate in golf club management at Kinsealy. He is currently studying a degree course in Greenmount College in Antrim.

Terence has a great deal of experience of maintaining this well known links golf course with a small budget and 2 staff. He also advises on pitch development and maintenance with Sport Northern Ireland.

Patrick Mulhall graduated from the Dublin Institute of Technology in 2003 with a First Class Honours Bachelor of Structural Engineering Degree. In 2004 he graduated from the University of Dublin, Trinity College with a Master’s Degree in Civil Engineering. As a Consultant Engineer Patrick has been responsible for structural and civil engineering design and design management of residential and commercial developments up to €40,000,000 in value.

In 2009 Patrick graduated from the University of Dublin, Trinity College with a Postgraduate Diploma in Health & Safety in Construction. This enables Patrick to provide Expert PSDP & PSCS Services.

Patrick is a member of Engineers Ireland; The Institution for Occupational Safety & Health; and a Graduate Member of The Institution of Structural Engineers. Patrick is also a member of the Republic of Ireland Institution of Structural Engineers Regional Group Committee.

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