Listening to the concerns of the people and working to ensure a safe city that embraces multiculturalism, that anti-social behaviour is stamped out, and infrastructure projects such as the Galway City Outer Bypass are progressed, are just some of the ways Galway’s newest city councillor Michelle Murphy hopes to make a difference.
Addressing the Galway City Council chamber on Monday night, Cllr Murphy described her co-option to the seat left vacant by the now Senator Hildegarde Naughton as a “wonderful honour” adding she wished to represent the west ward by acting as a “vital link for the community” and as a leader in identifying opportunities for change. The councillor, who was selected by Fine Gael to fill the vacant seat, spoke of how her role will be to lobby for change, to show the unique selling points of Galway, and called on a united approach to ensure the city is at the forefront of attracting foreign direct investment.
With her husband Ralph and two sons Aaron and Eoin looking on from the gallery, Cllr Murphy told the chamber, “I look forward to representing the people of Galway.”
It was Fine Gael colleague and City mayor Pádraig Conneely who formally nominated cllr Murphy adding that she is “enthusiastic and committed to representing the people of the city, enhancing the amenities and facilities, and lobbying for change to bring more economic prosperity to the city and region overall”.
Cllr Frank Fahy seconded the nomination, adding that Mrs Murphy is an “excellent candidate” who is “well capable of doing the job” and will make an excellent representative of Salthill and Knocknacarra.
Fianna Fáil, Labour, and Independant councillors then wished Cllr Murphy well in her new role and city manager Brendan McGrath extended his congratulations, pledging the co-operation of the council.
Originally from north Galway, Cllr Murphy has been heavily involved with organisations based in the city of Galway for the past 20 years. She joined Collin McNicholas Recruitment and HR Services Group in Galway in 2000 before being promoted to western regional manager in 2007. In this role Cllr Murphy acted as the point of contact for recruitment and HR needs for multinational, SME, and public sector organisations, as well as working closely with start-up companies seeking to set up up in the western region.
Cllr Murphy has a BA in Personnel Management accreditated with the CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel Management ) and completed a MSc. in Strategic Human Resource Management with Sheffield Hallam University. Through her studies she was awarded Fellow membership of the CIPD and elected chairperson of the CIPD western region from 2005 to 2007 - during this time she represented the western region on the national executive. She was also elected onto the Galway Chamber of Commerce council in 2005 and held a council role for three consecutive years. In recent years Cllr Murphy has been heavily involved in the Business and Professional Women’s Association (BPW ) in Galway and was elected as president of BPW Tuam in January 2011, taking a second term in office in 2012 - she currently serves as the national PRO for BPW Ireland.
At Monday’s meeting Cllr Murphy was also appointed to vacant positions on the Galway and Roscommon Education and Training Board, the Galway Salthill Fáilte Ltd, the Galway City Council Transport Infrastructure SPC, and the Galway City Council Environment SPC.