In October 2018 I was honoured to be appointed Government Chief Whip and Minister of State the Irish Language, the Gaeltacht and the Islands.
As Chief Whip I am responsible for the day-to-day running of Government business, in particular in the Dáil, and I am looking forward to the challenge that this new role brings.
As Minster of State at the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht I have responsibility for the Irish Language, the Gaeltacht and the Islands. The promotion of An Ghaeilge is a key responsibility and I will be working on the implementation of the Twenty Year Strategy on the Irish Language and on ways to increase the use and visibility of our first official language across the country.
As Minister I also have responsibility for the Islands and I will be working to ensure the sustainability of our island communities.
I was first elected to Dáil Éireann in 2011 and represent the constituency of Galway West and Mayo South which includes the City, Connemara, and areas from Clarinbridge and Oranmore through Claregalway to Annaghdown and Corrandulla.
From 2004 – 2011, I was a member of Galway County Council for the Connemara Electoral Area.
I live in Clydagh which is just outside of Moycullen. I attended St. Mary’s College in Galway City before attaining a primary degree and Master’s degree in Agricultural Science at NUI, Galway and UCD respectively.
For 11 years, I worked as an agri-environmental consultant with particular responsibility for the Rural Environmental Protection Scheme.
I have served as Minister of State at the Department of Rural and Community Development (July 2017 – October 2018) and at the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment (May 2016 – October 2018) and during the 31st Dáil on the Oireachtas Committee on Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, as Vice Chair of the Oireachtas Committee on European Union Affairs, and as Chairman of the Fine Gael Committee on Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.
Toghadh mé ar dtús chun Dáil Éireann i 2011 chun ionadaíocht a dhéanamh do Dháilcheantar na Gaillimhe Thiar agus Maigh Eo Theas a thógáil san áireamh an Chathair, Conamara, agus freisin ceantair ó Dhroichead an Chláirín agus Órán Mór agus ó Bhaile Chláir na Gaillimhe go dtí Eanach Dhúin agus Cor an Dola.
Ó 2004 – 2011, bhí mé i mo bhall de Chomhairle Chontae na Gaillimhe do Thoghcheantar Chonamara.
Tá mé i mo chónaí i Claídeach atá díreach taobh amuigh de Mhaigh Cuilinn. D’fhreastail mé ar Coláiste Mhuire i gCathair na Gaillimhe sular bhain mé amach bunchéim agus céim Máistreachta san Eolaíocht Talmhaíochta in OÉ, Gaillimh agus UCD faoi seach.
Ar feadh 11 bliain, d’oibrigh mé mar chomhairleoir talmhaíocht & timpeallachta le freagracht speisialta as an Scéim um Chaomhnú an Chomhshaoil faoin Tuath.
Mar Theachta Dála, bhí mé mar bhaill don Choiste Oireachtais um Poist, Fiontar agus Nuálaíochta, i mo Leas Chathaoirleach ar an gCoiste Oireachtais um Ghnóthaí an Aontais Eorpaigh agus mar Chathaoirleach ar an gCoiste Fhine Gael Ghnóthaí Ealaíon, Oidhreachta agus Gaeltachta.