ASOI Committee

Members of the current committee (May 2014):

Grace O'Malley Chair
Senior Physiotherapist, Weight Management Service, The Children's University, Temple Street, Dublin

Grace is a Senior Physiotherapist working as part of the obesity management team at The Children’s University Hospital. Her clinical interests include: paediatric obesity assessment, treatment strategies and the impact of obesity on the neuro-musculoskeletal and cardio-metabolic health of the developing child. Her research interests include balance and coordination in paediatric obesity, the impact of sleep disorders, the pathophysiology of Type 2 Diabetes and the use of remote technologies and telemedicine in obesity prevention and management

 

Prof. Kevin Balanda Deputy Chair
Director of Research, Institute of Public Health in Ireland (IPH)

Kevin has over thirty years’ experience of applied public health research and policy development across the academic, government and semi-government sectors. He currently leads the Research (and Information) Team in the IPH which developed and manages the Obesity Hub. He is adjunct Professor of Public Health at University College Cork and Fellow of the UK Faculty of Public Health (FFPH).

 

Nadine McQuillan Secretary
Research Assistant, Institute of Public Health in Ireland

Nadine is a reseach assistant at the IPH working mainly on the Obesity Hub website and a number of other obesity related projects. She has a degree (BSc) in Public Heath and Health Promotion from UCC.

 

Karen Gaynor Membership Secretary
Dietitian, Diabetes and Weight Management Centre, St. Columcille's Hospital, Loughlinstown

Karen trained as a Dietitian at the University of Liverpool, and worked in the NHS for a number of years on community and hospital based weight management programmes before returning to Ireland to work at the Specialist Weight Management Service at St Columcille’s Hospital in Loughlinstown, Co Dublin. She has a special interest in behavioural approaches to support the management of chronic diseases, has completed advanced training in Motivational Interviewing (Stephen Rollnick-Cardiff) and Behaviour Change (University of Nottingham) and also provides training to other health professionals on this topic.

 

Dr. Colin Dunlevy Treasurer
Senior Physiotherapist, Diabetes and Weight Management Centre, St. Columcille's Hospital, Loughlinstown

Colin graduated from Trinity College Dublin (BSc (Physio)) in 2000. Postgraduate research was continued at Trinity and a PhD (Physio) was awarded in 2005. He has worked as a senior physiotherapist in weight management since 2008. He also works with underage international football and in private practice.

 

Dr. Jean O'Connell Research Officer
Endocrinoligist,The Obesity Group, St Vincent's University Hospital, Dublin

Jean is an endocrinologist and a member of the Obesity and Immunology Research Group in St Vincent’s University Hospital Dublin. She has also been a member of St Columcille’s Hospital multi-disciplinary weight management team for the last 10 years. Her primary research interest is the study of immune and metabolic effects of obesity and she recently completed a PhD thesis focused on the demographic and metabolic profiles of severely obese patients, and adipose tissue morphology and function in metabolically healthy and unhealthy obese patients undergoing bariatric surgery.

 

Dr. Mary Hannon-Fletcher Northern Ireland Representative
Head of School of Health Sciences, University of Ulster, Jordanstown

Mary’s research focuses on Human Nutrition observational, case-controlled and intervention studies in disease (clinical settings) and in healthy groups. Of particular interest is oxidative stress measured by blood levels of antioxidants and macromolecule damage (DNA, lipid and carbohydrate) in obesity, Type 1 diabetes, renal disease and healthy control groups. This research also focuses on dietary intake (using food diaries and FFQ) and the relationship between the intake of micro- and macronutrients and their effect on oxidative stress in health and disease. Previous work funded by the FAS focused on dietary intake in children and snacking, given the focus on the obesity epidemic, this research helped form policy and Mary was actively engaged with the DOH and their Fit Futures policy document publication. The final publication was presented at the NIORG meeting in Belfast in, where Mary was a member of the organizing committee and the Chair of the round table discussion.

 

Dr. Celine Murrin Education Officer
Lecturer, Public Health Nutrition, School of Public Health, Physiotherapy, and Sport Science, University College, Dublin

Celine has a BSc in Biochemistry from UCD, after which she completed a Masters in Human Nutrition, a Diploma in Health Promotion and a PhD in Public Health Nutrition. Her primary research interest is in child health and obesity with a particular focus on the role of maternal and familial influences through the lifecourse.

 

Dr. Paul Stewart Web Administrator
General Practitioner

Paul is a former G.P. currently working in community health. Paul is also a former Opinion contributor to Irish Medical Times and scope magazine.

 

Dr. John Mehegan Web Administrator
Senior Data Co-ordinator/Analyst, School of Public Health, Physiotherapy and Sport Science, University College Dublin

John is a data coordinator with the HRB Centre for Diet and Health Research. He works with several hospital clinics on the management and analysis of their research data, including the Weight Management Service, Loughlinstown, and on a variety of other population health cohort studies.

 

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