15 — 18
November
2018

Jack Barry

Jack Barry

Panellist, Bloody Marys! A Brunchtime Debate

Jack Barry is a writer, stand up comedian and drug legalisation activist. He has written for Mock The Week, Vice, and has appeared on Radio 4, ITV2,  BBC 3, Channel 4 and Channel 5. He received critical acclaim for his show High Treason at the 2017 Edinburgh Fringe, which focussed on the subject of the War on Drugs. Before turning his attention to entertainment and drugs, Jack studied languages and a has a degree in Chinese and International Relations. 

Ray Bassett

Dr. Ray Bassett

Panellist, Eurotrashed

Dr Ray Bassett is a former senior diplomat at Ireland’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Dublin.  He served as the country’s Ambassador to Canada, Jamaica and the Bahamas 2010-2016.  Other diplomatic postings include Copenhagen, Canberra, Belfast (twice), London and Ottawa. Bassett was involved in the Good Friday Agreement as part of the Irish Government Talks Team and participated throughout the discussions, including the final session at Castle Buildings in Stormont. He was also Assistant Secretary General in Foreign Affairs in charge of the Passport Office, the welfare of Irish citizens abroad and relations with the Irish Diaspora. Dr Bassett, who worked as a scientist (biochemist) before entering the diplomatic service, has been a columnist on the Sunday Business Post and has contributed articles to the Newsletter (Belfast), Globe and Mail (Toronto), the Telegraph (UK), and a wide number of other publications. He is a senior research fellow at the British Think Tank, Policy Exchange and also works with the Politeia Think Tank.  He is a regular contributor to TV and radio shows in Dublin, Belfast and London. He has also separately published, “After Brexit, will Ireland be Next to leave?”; Brexit and the Border: Where Ireland’s True Interests Lie”; “Brexit – Options for the Irish border”;” The Commemoration, of the 1798 Insurrection, The Australian dimension”.

Abie Philbin Bowman

Abie Philbin Bowman

Chair, Bloody Marys! A Brunchtime Debate

Abie Philbin Bowman is a “hack of all trades” – broadcaster, writer and stand up.  His comedy debut “Jesus: The Guantanamo Years” sold out at the Edinburgh Fringe, toured three continents and was boycotted by the DUP.  He’s the only Western comedian stupid enough to have performed religious comedy in Pakistan, during a State of Emergency. The night Barack Obama was elected, Abie scooped CNN, the BBC and Reuters by interviewing the Ku Klux Klan, about the most humiliating defeat in their long and colourless history. His latest show, about becoming a father, after years of swearing he didn’t want children, sold out at the 2018 Dublin Fringe: “Don’t Kiss Me. I’m Irish… We’re Probably Related” will tour in 2019.

Sarah Carey

Sarah Carey

Chair, #MeToo

Sarah Carey is a communications consultant and former columnist for The Times (Irish Edition).  Her writing has appeared in The Sunday Independent, Sunday Times and The Irish Times. As a broadcaster she has presented and contributed to a range of current affairs shows on Irish television and radio including Newstalk, RTE and TV3. A History graduate of Trinity College, and Business graduate from UCD Sarah has a background in technology, working for both telecommunications and software companies. She lives down a cul de sac in County Meath with her husband and three children.

James Dellingpole

James Delingpole

Poles Apart: James Delingpole Live

As a journalist for the Sunday Telegraph and The Spectator, James Delingpole has expressed his thoughts on everything from politics to popular music, from school sports days to spliffs. If you’ve thought about it, he’s written about it. Delingpole has described himself “as a member of probably the most discriminated-against subsection in the whole of British society—the white, middle-aged, public-school-and-Oxbridge educated middle-class male.

Matthew Desmond

Matthew Desmond

Panellist, Evicted

Matthew Desmond is the Maurice P. During Professor of Sociology at Princeton University. After receiving his Ph.D. in 2010 from the University of Wisconsin at Madison, he joined the Harvard Society of Fellows as a Junior Fellow. He is the author of four books, including Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City (2016), which won the Pulitzer Prize, National Book Critics Circle Award, and Carnegie Medal, and PEN / John Kenneth Galbraith Award for Nonfiction. The principal investigator of The Eviction Lab, Desmond’s research focuses on poverty in America, city life, housing insecurity, public policy, racial inequality, and ethnography. He is the recipient of a MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship, the American Bar Association’s Silver Gavel Award, and the William Julius Wilson Early Career Award. A Contributing Writer for the New York Times Magazine, Desmond was listed in 2016 among the Politico 50, as one of “fifty people across the country who are most influencing the national political debate.”

Mark Forsyth

Mark Forsyth

Panellist, Bloody Marys! A Brunchtime Debate

Mark Forsyth is the author of A Short History of Drunkenness: How, why, where and when humankind have made merry from the Stone Age to the present. Born in London in 1977, Mark Forsyth was given a copy of the Oxford English Dictionary as a christening present and has never looked back. His book The Etymologicon was a Sunday Times Number One Bestseller and was followed by The Horologicon and The Elements of Eloquence. He has written A Christmas Cornucopia on the origins of Christmas traditions and A Short History of Drunkenness. His TED Talk ‘What’s a snollygoster?’ has had more than half a million views. He has also written a specially commissioned essay ‘The Unknown Unknown’ for Independent Booksellers Week and the introduction for the new edition of the Collins English Dictionary. He lives in London with his dictionaries, and blogs at blog.inkyfool.com.

Zoltan Istvan

Zoltan Istvan

Panellist, Science Friction

Zoltan Istvan is a libertarian futurist, a 2018 candidate for California Governor, and a world-recognized transhumanist. Zoltan began working in his 20s at National Geographic Channel as a journalist. Later, as a successful real estate entrepreneur, Zoltan developed properties nationally and internationally. He was also a director at a major wildlife nonprofit, WildAid. Zoltan’s public work has received hundreds of millions of views, much of it through his political and science activism. He was the 2016 presidential candidate for the Transhumanist Party and toured the country in the Immortality Bus. His award-winning science fiction novel The Transhumanist Wager was a Top 5 Amazon book. Zoltan has spoken at the World Bank, the World Economic Forum, Microsoft, Harvard and was the opening keynote at the Financial Times Camp Alphaville. He is a graduate of Columbia University, and lives in San Francisco with his physician wife and two young daughters. In a 5000-word feature on his work, The New York Times wrote Zoltan is “polite and charismatic” and has a “plausibly Presidential aura.”

Madeleina Kay

Madeleina Kay

Panellist, Eurotrashed 

Madeleina Kay is a British artist, writer, musician and political activist. Awarded ‘Young European of the Year 2018’, she is known to most as #EUsupergirl for her creative campaigning to Stop Brexit. Madeleina was the winner of the ‘Young Talent Prize’ in the ‘Great British Postcard Competition’ in September 2017. Madeleina was one of the winners of the EU Commission’s #EUinMyRegion blogging competition, in October 2017.

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Hermann Kelly

Panellist, Poles Apart: James Delingpole Live

President Irexit Freedom to Prosper. From the Bogside, Derry, raised in Donegal. Keen hurler and fisherman, likes poetry. Was a journalist for national papers for years. A committed national democrat and Eurosceptic he has been Director of Communications for the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy Group in the European Parliament for 9 years. Likes an intellectual tussle and a bit of fun. 

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Emmet Kirwan

Panellist, My Roots Are Showing

Emmet Kirwan Is an actor playwright and poet. He has been a feature of Irish theatre, film and television for over 15 years. He is a graduate of the Samuel Beckett Centre, Trinity College Dublin. His first full-length play, Dublin Oldschool has had a series of sell out runs at Project Arts centre, toured internationally and opened in the National Theatre in London in January 2017. Emmet adapter the script into a screen play has also been made into feature film directed by Dave Tynan and released in Irish cinemas in 2018 and is due to feature at the BFI film festival in October. He is also the recipient of The Stewart Parker trust major bursary award 2014 for Dublin Oldschool, Emmet and actor Ian Lloyd Anderson shared the best performer award for Tiger Dublin Fringe 2014 it was also nominated for the First Forth-night award and The Bewleys Little Gem award. He wrote and starred in the Irish Television comedy series Sarah and Steve for Accomplice Television and RTE, the Irish national broadcaster. His radio play ‘Wild West’ was broadcast on BBC radio 4 his poem Heartbreak which featured in the sell out production of Riot was made into an IFTA winning short film. Short Films include Escape Plans (Calipo films) Outside (Still Films). Other Plays include RIOT for This Is Pop Baby, Winner of best production Tiger Dublin Fringe 2016 Emmet was also nominated as best performer The show is currently running internationally. 

Alice Leahy

Alice Leahy

Panellist, Bloody Marys! A Brunchtime Debate

Alice Leahy is Director of Services of the Alice Leahy Trust. She was Co-Founder & Director of TRUST from 1975 – December 2015. The Alice Leahy Trust remains a non-judgemental, befriending, social and health service for people who are homeless. Former Chairperson of the Sentence Review Group, former Irish Human Rights Commissioner and former member Board of Management, Lusk Campus, Oberstown. Alice’s most recent book, Wasting Time with People? inspired by her experience working with the outsiders in our society and the importance of making time for others, was included in the non fiction best sellers list.  She is also a commentator, broadcaster and lecturer.

Lorraine Clifford

Lorraine Clifford Lee

Panellist, The Mother Load 

Lorraine lives in Donabate with her husband John and two children. She is a solicitor and runs her own legal practice. North County Dublin is a wonderful and beautiful place to live and raise a family. Lorraine believes that we need to create a country where hard working families can thrive; where entrepreneurs are encouraged and supported; where public services are prioritised and invested in; where the sick and elderly are respected and taken care of and where people can feel safe and secure in their own homes. Lorraine’s priorities include affordable quality childcare, tackling crime and anti-social behaviour, increased investment in quality family housing, creating a sustainable health system, job creation,  better infrastructure and public transport, protecting the environment and developing tourism.

Sonya Lennon

Sonya Lennon

Chair, The Mother Load

Sonya Lennon has thirty years’ experience in the fashion industry. Designer, Broadcaster, and businesswoman, Sonya is a multi-award winning Social Entrepreneur, having founded global not for profit initiative Dress for Success in Ireland seven years ago. Through her work, she has campaigned for equality in the workplace for women by addressing the Gender pay & opportunity Gap. A passionate supporter of Irish Design, Sonya sat on the board of DCCoI for six years and has grown her own clothing brand Lennon Courtney, which now sells into thirty countries. Sonya is a founding board member of LIFT, Leading Ireland’s Future Together.

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Gerd Leonhard

Panellist, Science Friction

Gerd Leonhard is a futurist and influential author. He is the co-author of the best-selling book ‘The Future of Music’ and the author of 5 other books including ‘The Humanity Challenge’ (June 2016). Gerd’s background is in the music business; in 1985 he won Berklee College’s ‘Quincy Jones Award’ and subsequently spent 12 years working as a professional guitarist, composer and producer. He then caught the Internet-bug and became a digital music & media entrepreneur, serving as Founder/CEO of several Internet startups, based in San Francisco. In 2002, following the .com meltdown and the 9/11 crisis, Gerd returned to Europe and discovered his new calling as a futurist. Gerd is also the host of the web-TV series TheFutureShow and the CEO of TheFuturesAgency, a global network of over 30 leading futurists.

Karlin Lillington

Karlin Lillington

Chair, Science Friction

Karlin is a journalist and columnist with the Irish Times focusing on technology, with a special interest in the political, social, business and cultural aspects of information and communication technologies. She has been a contributor to a wide range of Irish and international publications, including The Guardian, New Scientist, Wired.com, Salon.com, Red Herring, The Scientist and The Sunday Times. She holds a PhD from Trinity College.

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Suzanne Lynch

Suzanne Lynch

Chair, Trumpism

Suzanne Lynch is the Irish Times’ American correspondent based in Washington. Formerly Brussels correspondent and a financial journalist with the Irish Times, she also worked as an arts journalist in Ireland and the UK. She holds a doctorate in English Literature from Cambridge University.

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Grainne Maguire

Panellist, Eurotrashed

Gráinne Maguire is an award-winning stand-up comedian and comedy writer. Her show this year “I Forgive You; Please Like Me” was a critical rave and was nominated for BroadwayWorld Best Stand Up Show. She appears regularly on Dave’s UnSpun with Matt Forde and Radio 4’s The Now Show. She hosts satirical podcast “Changing Politics” and writes for Channel 4’s The Last Leg and 8/10 Cats.

Mango

Mango

Panellist, My Roots Are Showing

Mango is a Dublin artist best known for his musical work as part of Mango x MathMan and also his spoken word poetry.

Darren McGarvey

Darren McGarvey

Panellist, My Roots Are Showing

Darren McGarvey, aka LOKI, is a writer, performer, community activist and columnist. His book Poverty Safari, has recently won the prestigious Orwell Prize, is described by Irvine Welsh as, “an intellectual and spiritual rehab manual for the progressive left,” and McGarvey’s views are being sought on everything from BBC Question Time to The Guardian and rapper-in-residence at Police Scotland’s Violence Reduction Unit.  Join Darren and the Presiding Officer to discuss the “industry of deprivation”; how to achieve political representation for the unrepresented and working-class masculinity in the 21st century, as explored in McGarvey’s new album Trigger Warning. Join us for an energising mental-flossing from one of Scotland’s most inspiring commentators.

Claire McGing

Claire McGing

Panellist, The Mother Load

Claire McGing researches and teaches in the Social Sciences Institute and the Department of Geography at Maynooth University, County Kildare. She has published widely on gender, elections and politics, with particular research interests in candidate recruitment and electoral gender quotas. Claire is currently the Maynooth University’s Athena SWAN Project Officer, a project which seeks to advance gender equality and intersectionality in higher education institutions. She is a regular media commentator on Irish politics and gender politics.

Larissa Nolan

Larissa Nolan

Panellist, Trumpism

Larissa Nolan is a journalist and commentator. She started working as a reporter in national newspapers at 19, going on to work in the Sunday World and the Sunday Independent, and later as crime correspondent of the Irish Mail on Sunday. Larissa now works mostly with the Sunday Times, where she is a regular columnist on cultural politics.  She is an outspoken critic of victimhood culture, modern feminism and the #MeToo movement. She is a regular contributor on radio and television talk shows and public debating panels and is a weekly music expert on Matt Cooper’s Last Word show on Today FM. From Blessington, Co Wicklow, she lives in Dublin city centre with her son. She is a campaigner for the homeless and a local advocate for those caught up in the housing crisis.

Ian O'Doherty

Ian O’Doherty

Panellist, Poles Apart: James Delingpole Live

Ian O’Doherty is a columnist with the Irish Independent and the Irish Daily Star. He is a regular guest on RTE and Newstalk. No, he still hasn’t written that book that people keep asking him about.

Stephen Rea

Stephen Rea

Panellist, An Emancipation Proclamation

Stephen Rea has appeared in films such as V for Vendetta, Michael Collins, Interview with the Vampire and Breakfast on Pluto. Rea was nominated for an Academy Award for his lead performance as Fergus in the 1992 film The Crying Game. He has during later years had important roles in the Hugo Blick TV series The Shadow Line and The Honourable Woman, for which he won a BAFTA Award.

Mark Reckless

Mark Reckless

Panellist, Eurotrashed

Mark Reckless has campaigned all his adult life for the UK to leave the European Union. In October 2012, Mark defeated the then UK coalition government for the first time in a parliamentary vote, with a motion requiring a real terms reduction in the EU budget. This was delivered, saving UK taxpayers billions of pounds, and within three months the Prime Minister agreed to a referendum on EU membership. In the autumn of 2014, Mark left the Conservative party and joined UKIP. He stood down from his seat in the UK Parliament to seek the endorsement of his constituents and was re-elected in a by-election. Before politics, Mark worked as UK Economist for the investment bank S.G. Warburg (now part of UBS). He was rated top three by clients on the Extel and Institutional Investor surveys. Mark later worked as a management consultant. In 2007 he was called to the Bar. In 2009 he qualified as a solicitor with Hebert Smith LLP, having spent time as Judicial Assistant to the Vice-President of the Court of Appeal. Having fought for the Medway constituency seat in 2001 and 2005, Mark was elected as Conservative MP for Rochester and Strood in 2010. He also served as a Medway Councillor and a member of the Kent Police Authority. Mark was elected to the National Assembly for Wales in May 2016. In April 2017, Mark left UKIP and joined the Conservative group in the Assembly.

Lynn Ruane

Lynn Ruane

Panellist, The Mother Load

Lynn Ruane is an independent senator serving in Seanad Éireann. She grew up on a local authority estate in Killinarden, Tallaght and left school as a single mother at the age of fifteen. She later returned to education studying Philosophy, Political Science, Sociology and Economics. During her time there she ran for the presidency of the college’s students’ union on a platform of equality, access and inclusion and was elected, becoming the first female president in a decade and the first mature student president since the 1990s. Her presidency was marked by a focus on equality of access to education and promotion of a culture of activism within the student body. She was elected to the Seanad in 2015 and has been a passionate and vocal defender of education, a voice for the underrepresented and a challenger of inequality in all its forms.

Nadine

Nadine O’Regan

Chair, My Roots Are Showing

Nadine O’Regan is Arts Editor with the Sunday Business Post and a columnist and feature writer with the same newspaper. She is also an award-winning broadcaster, most notably for her radio programme Songs in the Key of Life, presented on Today FM and TXFM. A regular contributor to shows on television and radio, you can find Nadine on Twitter by going to twitter.com/nadineoregan

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Ailbhe Smyth

Panellist, #MeToo 

Ailbhe Smyth is a long-time activist and campaigner on feminist, LGBT and other social issues. She was centrally involved in the marriage equality referendum campaign in 2015, and was Co-Director of the Together for Yes campaign to repeal the 8th Amendment in 2018. She co-founded and convenes the Coalition to Repeal the Eighth Amendment.  Ailbhe is the former head of Women’s Studies at UCD and has published widely on feminism, politics and culture.

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Kate Smurthwaite

Host, Laughing Matters

Kate Smurthwaite is a left-wing, feminist, atheist, polyamorous comedian and activist. She performs stand-up comedy all over the UK and around the world. She writes for publications from Cosmopolitan to both The Guardian and The Independent and is a writer for the BBC Three political comedy show The Revolution Will Be Televised and the UK’s leading political satire show Have I Got News For You? 

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Robert Swope 

Panellist, Trumpism

Nashville Metro Councilman Robert Swope is a Public servant, CEO, President, Executive Producer, Producer, Director, Editor, Writer and Performer who has garnered innumerable accolades in the music world. Within the Public Service and Political arena, Swope was the Tennessee State Director for the 2016 Donald Trump for President presidential campaign after serving as the Tennessee Deputy State Director during the Primary elections.  During the 2016 Presidential Primaries, Swope was Deputy Director of Tennessee, winning 94 out of 95 counties. He was named State Director of Tennessee in August 2016. He has been awarded Nashville Chamber of Commerce Volunteer of the Year twice (2005 & 2006), the Metro Police Community Service Award (2015) and contributes to his community of Nashville, TN on a regular ongoing basis. In his spare time, Swope builds and races Corvettes. Robert has been married to his lovely wife Regina for 15 years, and shares their home with their Lhaso-Apso named Bentley. 

Clara Rose Thornton

Clara Rose Thornton

Panellist, Trumpism

Panellist, An Emancipation Proclamation

Clara Rose Thornton is a spoken word artist, culture journalist, event organiser, and RTÉ radio and television broadcaster. Her work focuses on the arts and their intersection with social justice, identity politics, history, and place. She is a multiple slam poetry champion, including a three-time Dublin/Leinster Poetry Slam Champion. RTÉ radio programmes to which Clara Rose frequently contributes include “The Ryan Tubridy Show”, “The History Show”, and “Arena”. She was instrumental in founding the inaugural Black History Month Ireland in 2014, and toured the country as the observance’s headlining performer. She performs her provocative spoken word at festivals and venues across Europe and North America. Her print cultural criticism is published internationally, including in the Irish Independent and the Irish Times. Clara Rose is Chicago-born (and proud), New-York-simmered, Dublin-dwelling.

Anthony Warner

Anthony Warner

Panellist, Bloody Marys! A Brunchtime Debate

Anthony Warner is a professional chef, blogger and author of The Angry Chef, a Guardian Best Food Book of the Year and winner in Health and Lifestyle category at the inaugural Hearst Big Book Awards. He writes the ‘Angry Chef’ column for The Sunday Times and regularly contributes to New Scientist and The Pool. In 2017, he was named on the Telegraph’s Food Power List of tastemakers changing the way we eat and drink. He lives in Nottinghamshire, blogs at angry-chef.com and you can follow him @One_Angry_Chef.

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Ella Whelan

Panellist, #MeToo

Ella Whelan is a journalist and author of What Women Want: Fun, Freedom and an End to Feminism. She was the assistant editor at spiked and host of the spiked podcast between 2015-2018.

Jennifer Willis

Jennifer Willis

Host, Pulling Through – A Survivor’s Story

Jennifer Willis is a member of the music group The Willis Family. Emerging in 2014 as participants on NBC’s ‘America’s Got Talent’ the Tennessee-based Willis Clan was introduced as 12 singing and dancing siblings with ages ranging from 3 to 22. In 2015, they landed their own reality show on US channel TLC entitled ‘The Willis Family’. That world was to come crashing down just two years later, when in 2016 patriarch Toby Willis was investigated by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation for years of incestuous sexual abuse against underage family members. He subsequently pleaded guilty to four counts of child rape last year and was sentenced to 40 years in prison. Jennifer wants to encourage people who identify with their experience to seek out professional help or even just confidantes who will listen. “You can live beyond any traumatic experience and you can live a life that is full of joy and peace and just happiness”. 

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