The DCU Alumni Emerging Leaders Programme | Steering Committee 2021/22

Katie Keogh

Katie Keogh, Programme Lead, DCU Doctoral Research Candidate and Community Volunteer

Katie Keogh, a native of Indianapolis (Indiana, USA), has lived in Ireland since 1998 pursuing a career devoted to developing communities and the Irish – American relationship, through innovation, education, and advocacy. She began her tenure in Ireland as Associate Director of the University of Notre Dame’s Ireland Programme. She later served as the Director of Strategic Partnerships, Alumni Relations and Events at the US Embassy in Dublin, and her most recent position was as Director of Special Projects for the American Chamber of Commerce Ireland where she spearheaded the establishment of their Emerging Leaders and Emerging FDI Programmes.  Her volunteer commitments include the Irish Girl Guides, the Rathfarnham Concert Band Society, as well as her local parish and school.  She is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame (BA, 1998) and University College Dublin (MA, 2000) and plans to begin her PhD in Government and Law at Dublin City University in 2021. She is married to Professor Dáire Keogh, President of Dublin City University, and they have four children. 

"By providing a platform for graduates from all five faculties to collaborate and learn, enhanced with opportunities for collisions with graduates from some of DCU’s key partnership universities - in particular Arizona State University and the University of Notre Dame - this programme nurtures and develops our next generation leaders which is critical to DCU’s mission to transform lives and societies."

Gay White

Gay White, DCU Alumni Council, Chartered Work & Organisational Psychologist


Gay White is a Chartered Work and Organisational Psychologist who runs her own HR Consultancy business. An experienced business and executive coach, Gay has over thirty years’ experience, gained through a variety of roles both in business and HR. She is an experienced lecturer and has lectured from diploma level to postgraduate programmes. Gay graduated from DCU through Oscail, (now DCU Connected) with a BA in Psychology and continued her studies with an MA in Organisational Psychology. More recently she completed an MA in Creative Writing in DCU, fulfilling a long held ambition. Gay is the Vice President of the Irish Institute of Training & Development (IITD), as well as a former director of the Public Relations Institute of Ireland and the Association for Coaching in Ireland. She is a Fellow of the IITD and the Institute of Banking. Married to Billy, Gay likes to write and paint in her spare time. She also enjoys getting back to nature and enjoys walking by the sea or in the local park.

"The relationship between a graduate and DCU can be a lifelong one; graduates remain a part of the DCU family. The Emerging Leaders programme enhances that relationship by supporting graduates, some years after they’ve left, who are transitioning into leadership positions, recognising that some will face challenges new to them."

Ross munnelly

Ross Munnelly, DCU Director of Alumni Relations & Acting Joint Head of Student Recruitment


Ross Munnelly was appointed the first Director of Alumni Relations at Dublin City University in July 2017. Over a 15 year period, Ross has worked in a number of roles at the university including Student Recruitment, the Careers Service and Head of Sports Development. He now manages the domestic and international engagement programme for over 84,000 Alumni worldwide. He is a four time graduate of DCU, some of his qualifications include an MSc in Education and Training (e-Learning), Graduate Diploma in Guidance and Counselling and most recently the Executive MBA. Ross is the National Secretary for the Irish Guidance Counsellor Association, Chairman of the Next Generation Leadership Programme for the Gaelic Players Association and PRO for his local GAA Club, Arles Kilcruise GFC. In addition to his role leading the Alumni Service, he is also Acting Joint Head of Student Recruitment at DCU.

"This programme is another example of our two way mutually supportive relationship with DCU graduates. The participants will develop their leadership skills over the coming months and in turn, they will volunteer and give back to the university through many more engagement opportunities. We are lucky to have such loyal alumni."

Leanne Hanafin

Leanne Hanafin, DCU Alumni Relations Officer


Leanne Hanafin graduated with a BA Communication Studies from DCU in 2019. Since then, she has worked in Alumni Relations, coordinating initiatives such as the DCU Alumni Emerging Leaders Programme, International Chapters and reunions. Leanne also has a big interest in communications and social media, therefore leading various digital projects, such as the Alumni Instagram Takeover and the Alumni Spotlight on both Business Owners and Global Graduates. Outside of her role in DCU, Leanne is also a radio broadcaster.

"Our Alumni Community is diverse, enthusiastic and dedicated to giving back to DCU. That is exactly what our 2021/22 Emerging Leaders represent. We are proud of what these graduates have achieved in their careers so far, and we are looking forward to assisting them in their leadership journeys and seeing their development over the course of the programme."