We are the Ireland Chapter of the International Coaching Federation, the global organisation dedicated to excellence in coaching

Professional Coach Thomas Leonard started the International Coaching Federation (ICF) as the International Coach Federation in 1995 as a non-profit organisation for fellow coaches to support each other and grow the profession. The following year, a president was appointed and a board of directors established. The first ICF Chapter was established, and by May 1996, there were more than 60 ICF Chapters worldwide.

With more than 35,000 professional personal and business coaches representing more than 143 countries, the ICF is the voice of the global coaching profession. ICF Ireland is a Chartered Chapter and plays an active role in helping our members to develop their coaching by putting on regular events, providing timely communications and creating regional networking opportunities.

Our Chapter is run according to the following Byelaws

2020 Team

Michael Stafford

Michael Stafford, ACC – President

Michael is an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) working towards Professional Coach Certification (PCC) with the International Coaching Federation. He currently volunteers as the Director of Strategy & Events on the ICF Ireland Chapter.

Michael is the owner of The Chapter Coach Training and Consultancy Services Limited. A one-stop-shop for HR, L&D Consultancy and Coaching. His current list of corporate clients are in the areas of Personal Effectiveness, Team engagement, Emotional Intelligence, Coaching as Leaders, Mentoring, Mindfulness, Motivating Teams and Team Development.

“I work with my personal coaching clients to celebrate and embrace change, with the belief that they will find the best within themselves once they are comfortable with being uncomfortable. My clients walk away with a renewed sense of purpose and a sustainable growth journey.” 

Michael has extensive corporate experience in both private and public sectors, with over 20 years’ experience in the HR and Business field in particular HR, Learning and Development and Health and Safety, in Europe and North America. He is married to his husband John and they live in North Dublin. He has a particular interest in Mental Health and works with Aware as a Support Line volunteer. He is passionate about giving back and works with the unemployed to assist those in finding careers. He was a guest speaker at Job Expos in Dublin and Cork on career advice. 

Paula O’Kelly

Paula O’Kelly – Vice President

Paula has almost 30 years’ experience in Health and Social Care in a variety of roles. She specialises in learning and development. She currently holds a senior and executive role in HSC Leadership centre, having worked with the organisation since 1997.

A BA Honours graduate with a Masters in Public Administration, Paula takes the lead for leadership and team development including coaching. She works closely with her clients to deliver their organisational development plans that include senior leadership development programmes, team effectiveness initiatives, developing and implementing coaching strategies and leading and facilitating quality improvement projects delivering real change and improving patient care.

Due to her HR background and skillset, Paula is often requested to undertake organisational and service reviews. From a personal development perspective, Paula is a qualified executive coach and supervisor and works with individuals and teams in these roles.

Irene Harris

Irene Harris, ACC – Director of Membership

Irene is an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) working towards Professional Coach Certification (PCC) with the International Coaching Federation (ICF) with over 20 years’ experience in Human Resources. She also holds a MA in Learning and teaching. Irene is a skilled trainer and facilitator and is a trained Coach Mentor and Coach Supervisor.

Irene was the Nominating Coach for the prestigious 2018 global ICF Prism Award Winner (Health Service Executive).

Irene strongly believes coaching can make a positive difference to our personal and professional lives. Coaching is a key element of her work in the public sector. She also coaches in a voluntary capacity.

Brian Armstrong

Brian Armstrong – Director of PR & Marketing

Brian Armstrong has 30 years executive and business experience working with Global Blue Chip media companies including CNN, The BBC and Siemens in a variety of roles. He understands the challenges that executives, entrepreneurs, professionals, project managers and businesses face.

Leaning on this wealth of real experience, underpinned by professional training, Brian brings a passion for Executive and Leadership Coaching to help and support clients in unlocking their potential and maximising their performance. His style involves helping clients build awareness of themselves and others with the intention of gaining clarity about their objectives and moving them toward action at the same time creating behaviours for growth, confidence and fun.

Eileen Jameson

Eileen Jameson – Director of Learning & Development

Eileen is the Director of Coaching with WJP -Wuite Jameson Partners Ltd, a company she created in 2019 together with her husband.  Over her long career, it became evident to her that many everyday conflicts are reduced when individuals feel appreciated and healthy and are enabled to use their potential to add value for themselves, their team and their environment.

Similarly in a business context, that the daily challenge of management is facilitated through recognition and use of team members strengths, cultural potential and constant nurturing of emotional intelligence. WJP helps individuals, teams and executives to unlock their full potential, improving their performance and wellbeing through harmonious positive action.

Eileen is passionate about learning and development, for herself and her stakeholders, aiming to provide impact through top performance and results, continuous improvement and positive adaptation to the changing global context.  Eileen certified as an executive coach with TPC Leadership and the European Mentoring and Coaching Council (EMCC) in 2015 and is an active member of both the EMCC and the International Coaching Federation (ICF).

A firm believer that change comes from within, she holds specialized coaching qualifications in Marshall Goldsmith Stakeholder Coaching; Marshall Goldsmith Global Leadership of Future psychometric testing, Daniel Goleman Emotional Intelligence Coaching and psychometric testing and is also certified in career coaching. Eileen is currently expanding her skill set by qualifying as a health and nutrition coach with the Irish Institute of Health and Nutrition (IINH). Her work with teams is influenced by concepts from Patrick Lencioni and Gary Chapman.

Hermann Borchers

Hermann Borchers – Director of Events

Hermann brings nearly 20 years of business experience in multiple roles, brands and countries to his challenging and dynamic coaching work. He has worked with sellers and executives focusing on building cognitive agility, collaborative and engaging capabilities, empowerment of individuals and teams, communication and resilience.

In an already complex business environment, many leaders find it challenging to cope with increasing pace and unpredictability of change. At the same time, they are expected to be visionary, adaptive, innovative, collaborative and engaging as well as drive, increase and deliver results. For many companies, the root cause of this change is disruption fuelled by the digitisation of products, processes and business models.

Hermann focuses on change and on Agile Leaders who want to be successful in disruptive environments – e.g. digital disruption. Agile Leaders are humble, adaptable, visionary and engaged. These are not skills leaders can master as subject master expertise in client relationship building and sales. Hermann uses Coaching to exhibit three key behaviours of Agile Leaders – hyperawareness, informed decision-making and fast execution – to ensure the leaders can navigate disruptive environments.

In Hermann’s past 7 years of coaching sellers, he supports junior, senior and digital sellers in IT. In his past 4 years of coaching executives, he has mainly worked with entrepreneur executives in retail, manufacturing and IT. He also coaches C-Level managers in the charity sector.

Hermann is accredited in coaching, design thinking and creative leadership models that his coaching incorporates the values and standards of the organisations he is working for.

Elaine Rogers

Elaine Rogers – Virtual Support

Elaine is a virtual support professional, providing technical and administrative support to the board and members of ICF Ireland Chapter. She is an IT graduate who completed her Coaching training in Ireland in 2008. She blends her soft and hard skills to provide support for her clients and maintain an understanding of the coaching industry.

Having run her own training and coaching business in Ireland for many years, Elaine has relocated to France to pursue her personal and professional goals.


The Chapter was set up in 2003 by founding President Pemo Theodore.  We celebrated our tenth anniversary in 2012. To mark this occasion, one of our members Emer Doyle, PCC, created a birthday video outlining key moments for the Chapter:

Chapter Presidents

2003/4 Pemo Theodore
2004/5 Andy Harte
2005/6 Tom Hatton
2007/8/9 Monica Ross and John Reid
2010/11 Alasdar Browne
President terms changed to align with ICF Global
2012 Lily Murphy
2013 Mary O’Rafferty
2014 Mary Anna Wright
2015 Clodagh Swanson
2016 Eoin McCabe
2017 Eilish McKeown
2018 Orla Carolan and Siobhan Boucher
2019 Orla Carolan and Siobhan Boucher

2020 Michael Stafford

Our Vision – Values, Vision & Strategy

Our mission is shared with ICF Global, which exists to lead the global advancement of the coaching profession. Following the stellar work and efforts of previous boards, we continue with the vision that ICF Ireland is recognised as a leading voice of coaching in Ireland. We are committed to advancing the science and practice of coaching. We work with the ICF definition of coaching, which is: To partner with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximise their personal and professional potential.

This vision continues to be supported by the GIVE Proposal.

Growth – to increase our membership levels, our financial security and presence in Ireland to promote Coaching Circles and sponsorship and the use of Advocates.

Influence – to be a credible Chapter of a global organisation, to be an influential voice in Ireland’s coaching community and strengthen our presence on the island of Ireland.

Value – to ensure members maximise the value of their membership by offering events that are linked to CCEUs (Core Competency Education Units).

Excellence – to raise the standard of coaching through CPD and accreditation of our members through the promotion of credentialling. 

This new focus reflects our evolving priorities and relationship with ICF Global and our members both north and south of the Border. This speaks clearly to our vision and will help amplify our voice.

In summary, the three pillars of our work are:


  • Deliver a Gala Awards evening every two years that celebrates coaching in Ireland.
  • Create a calendar of events, master classes and AGM that support our members and deepen our sponsors’ knowledge and impact of coaching.
  • Ensure events are linked to CCEUs.
  • Support regional group meetings and encourage the development of new groups, in particular, Coaching Circles.
  • Establish and Support Pro Bono Initiatives.


  • Hire a Virtual Assistant to assist with the day-to-day running of the chapter. This also provides support for new board members and continuity for the chapter year on year.
  • Use social media to encourage connection and discussion amongst Chapter members and encourage new members to join.
  • Annual member survey to evaluate members’ needs.
  • Support for credentialling and CPD.
  • Build links with other coaching bodies (EMCC) and partner with organisations that promote coaching.


  • Regular updates from the Chapter.
  • Implement our communications strategy to overcome barriers to the growth of the profession and the opportunity to increase awareness of coaching.
  • Increase understanding of the benefits of coaching.
  • Raise the profile of ICF Ireland through activity through partnering with Corporations.
  • Demonstrate the benefits of credentialling and what it offers for coaches, organisations and individuals.

In addition to working according to ethical guidelines, the board is committed to developing and growing the profile of the ICF Ireland. We are passionate about the profession of coaching. In our role as coaches in service of humanity flourishing, we are seeking ways to support local communities in Ireland. To this end, we are developing an outreach initiative supporting peace and reconciliation work which will show the power of coaching for change.

Please take some time to reflect on this vision and contact us with any feedback and suggestions. Our primary aim is to serve you, our members, and strengthen the profession that we are all a part of.

Our strategy

The ICF Ireland board has a strategic plan to help realise the vision set out above. This plan sets out objectives for the period 2018-2020. It has four main goals:

Goal 1
ICF Ireland focuses on an all-Ireland approach incorporating our members in all provinces with events focusing on CCEUs held across the Country.

Goal 2
ICF Ireland is recognised as a leading voice of quality coaching in Ireland and increase its partnership opportunities with Sponsors.

Goal 3
Members are engaged with, benefit from and value their membership. Increase new members and membership retention.

Goal 4
ICF Actively engage and support members in appropriate CPD and events. Increase accreditation levels.

Within each main goal are smaller milestones that the board will focus on over this period.