Business Tourism Event - September 2022



Registration & Coffee on arrival


Educational Workshop


Greg Carew – AIPCO Facilitator


Future Proofing Our Businesses & Ourselves
Jack Owens, Fáilte Ireland & Meet in Ireland


Case Study: Dalata Hotels ESG Programme
Conal O’Neill & Patrice Lennon, Dalata Hotel Group


How We Can Deliver Net Zero Events
Rob Rankin, Sustainable Travel Ireland – Vagabond Tours


Inspiring A Sustainable, Low-Carbon & Inclusive Society Where Everyone Thrives
Bernadette Phelan, Business in the Community Ireland


Practical Key Tips To Enhance Your Future
Panel Discussion with Speakers


Reception, hosted in conjunction with Clayton Hotel Cardiff Lane

Speaker Bios

Greg Carew
AIPCO Facilitator

An established event professional, Greg has over 12 years experience in the Conference & Events industry and has been a member of the team in Abbey since January 2015. Greg prides himself on hard-work, diligent research and attention to detail, ensuring that each of these elements form the basis of the proposals and bids he prepares on a daily basis.

As a qualified Digital Event Strategist, Greg has a particular interest in how technology can enhance the delegate experience and on all aspects of meeting design. In recent years, Greg has contributed to education, training and interviews with organisations such as IAPCO, PCMA and EventsAir.

Jack Owens
International Association Conferences
Fáilte Ireland & Meet in Ireland

Having graduated with a degree in International Languages, Jack has been working with Fáilte Ireland’s Meet in Ireland team in Dublin since 2018, supporting conference ambassadors to bid for international conferences to come to Ireland.

Outside of work, one of Jack’s biggest passions is mental health awareness advocacy. Having previously struggled with mental health in his early 20s, he joined an industry renowned for stress and set about challenging the stigma of weakness associated with speaking about mental health. With the aim of investigating the delegate benefits of wellness in the conference space, as well as highlighting the stress MICE professionals can face, Jack conducted a research project with the ICCA UK & Ireland Chapter members. Drawing from this research and through sharing his own personal story, he has created a talk for event industry professionals on normalising the conversation surrounding mental health in our industry.

More recent accolades include winning ICCA UK and Ireland Millenials competition 2019, being named in PCMA’s 20 in Their Twenties class of 2021, November Workplace Ambassador and sitting on the PCMA EMEA Advisory board.



Dalata Hotel Group plc is Ireland’s largest hotel operator with a growing presence in the UK. The company currently operates 49 hotels across Ireland and the UK with 10,500 rooms under the Maldron and Clayton hotel brands and has a further 8 hotels under construction with 1,500 pipeline of rooms.

Conal O’Neill
Dalata Hotel Group General Manager
Regional Ireland & Partners

In his role as Group General Manager, Conal heads up operations for some 16 hotels in regional Ireland under the Clayton and Maldron brands. He also chairs the “Environment Steering Group” at Dalata which in turn reports into the company board level ESG Committee. The “Environment Steering Group” acts as an umbrella group for all activities across the company aimed at reducing impact on the environment.

Conal is a fellow of the Irish Hospitality Institute, an Hotel Management Graduate of GMIT and previously worked at Ion Equity and Jurys Doyle Hotel Group plc both in Ireland and the UK.

Patrice Lennon
Dalata Hotel Group Director of Sales

In her role as Group Director of Sales, Patrice heads up the group & hotel sales function across all regions of Ireland, UK & more recently Dusseldorf. 

She previously held the role of Sales & Marketing Manager of the Clayton Hotel Cardiff Lane from its opening in 2005. 

Prior to this she worked with Jurys Doyle Hotel Group Plc and Radisson Hotels Ireland holding management positions within Sales & Marketing.  Patrice is a graduate of Dublin Institute of Technology and UCD.

Rob Rankin
Sustainable Travel Ireland – Vagabond Tours

Rob is the founder and owner Vagabond tours – Ireland’s leading small group tour operator and one of most respected brands in Irish tourism. The company has achieved many firsts in irish tourism, in terms of innovation, product development and marketing. Vagabond has also won many awards and is the only irish company to be chosen as one of National Geographic Traveller’s ‘50 Tours of a Lifetime’. 

Rob is also recognised as a practical and dedicated voice for sustainable tourism in Ireland, not only through the actions of Vagabond, but as the owner of Sustainable Travel Ireland (STI), which trains and certifies Irish tourism businesses according to their GSTC recognised criteria. Although he certainly wouldn’t claim to be an expert…

Outside of his day jobs, Rob also wears a few other hats. From 2020-2022 he was the President of the ITOA (Incoming Tour Operators Association), was the co-founder and founding chairman of the IAAT (Ireland’s Association of Adventure Tourism) and sits on many leading industry working groups and committees.

Bernadette Phelan
Head of Advisory Services – Business in the Community Ireland

As Head of Advisory Services, Bernadette sits on the Management Team of BITCI, the Irish business network for responsible business. She leads and designs BITCI’s corporate advisory services in responsible and sustainable business, working with over 100 corporate members. Within her role, Bernadette is responsible for the CEO Leaders’ Group on Sustainability which drives innovation, collaboration and standard setting within sustainability for business. She represents BITCI in a range of forums including the Department of Business, Enterprise & Innovation’s CSR Stakeholder Forum and Sustainability Expert Working Group of Chartered Accountants Ireland.

Bernadette has a comprehensive background in sustainable development having designed and managed a range of strategic economic and social initiatives.  Prior to joining, Bernadette managed EU funded business programmes in the renewable energy sector. She has expertise in building partnership initiatives and policy development given roles in the Western Development Commission and the Kilkenny LEADER Partnership Company.  She holds a Masters in Science from UCD, a BA (mod) in Economics and Geography from TCD and an Advanced Certificate in Renewable Energy from LIT.

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