Lives in a rural area in South Kilkenny with his wife and children. Strong interest in Gaelic sports and has coached hurling and camogie teams at college and local community levels. Over 10 years development and relief field work experience in Africa (Tanzania 1985-89, Zambia 2001-3, Ethiopia 1984-5, Somalia 1992/1993 and Kenya 1990) . Has worked at a number of levels in agricultural and rural development from field extension worker to Country Programme Manager. Extensive experience in project planning and appraisal as well as capacity building with Irish Aid, OECD and international NGOs. Actively involved in local community development issues.