Taking advantage of the spin-off from the London Olympic Games of 2012 and next year’s Volvo Ocean Race should be uppermost in the minds of Galway businesses, according to the newly-elected president of Galway Chamber.
At this week’s meeting of the Council of Galway Chamber, new president Paul Shelly took over the chain of office from outgoing president Peter Allen and outlined his priorities for his tenure of office.
He outlined the current economic situation facing chamber members and concurred with the speakers at the recent Chamber Financial Seminar when they talked about challenge and the opportunities that could be taken from those challenges.
“‘In adversity there is opportunity. We will come out of this recession, but it is how we effectively manage our way in the downturn. There are difficult challenges and decisions to be made. This holds true for Government, national and local, as well as for business,” he said.
Mr Shelly set out his priorities for his presidency with the overarching function of Galway Chamber being to lobby on behalf of its members to achieve the priorities of its members in this uncertain climate, including the development of infrastructure, maximising the benefits of the Volvo Ocean Race Galway Stopover; assessing how Galway and the west can benefit from the proximity of the 2012 London Olympics; the control of commercial rates;
and the emphasis on shopping locally.
He spoke on each of the issues outlined and also of the four new committees he has set up to look after these and other areas. They will join existing committees of the chamber including the Traffic and Transportation Forum, the Asset Management Committee and the Volvo Ocean Race Stopover 2009 committee.
Paul Shelly has been a partner in Ernst & Young Chartered Accountants for 26 years, having first moved to Galway with Reynolds McCarron (a predecessor firm of EY ) from his native Dublin. He is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland. His passion has always been helping entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses.
He is a B Comm Graduate of University College Dublin and obtained a Masters in Business Administration (MBA ) from National University of Ireland, Galway. He is also a member of the Institute of Tax in Ireland.
Paul has led an active life outside of business and has been President of Galway Salthill Rotary Club, a vice president of Galwegians RFC, a director of Galway United and is currently a youth coach with Galwegians. Paul is a keen sportsman having played gaelic, soccer, rugby, and golf to varying degrees of success. He has a love of politics with an aim of making Galway a better place to live and work.
As an elected council member of Galway Chamber, Paul has been Treasurer and Chairman of the Asset Management Committee which oversees its subsidiaries, Galway Airport, and Galway Technology Centre (GTC ) in the IDA Business Park, Mervue. He is also a director of the GTC.
Paul is married to Marie T and they have three children, John, Frank, and Christina.