Catherine Heaney

Independent Chair and Strategic Consultant, Ireland


Catherine Heaney is a strategic communications and leadership specialist with 25 years’ experience.  She is based in Ireland.

She founded DHR Communications in 2004, a company she now acts as honorary chair for.  She has led influential, public-interest campaigns in the cultural heritage, human rights, regulatory, health and education sectors.     

Under her leadership, DHR Communications was recognised for its CSR programme in successive national CSR awards in Ireland.  She was appointed as Chairperson of the Irish Government’s Forum on Corporate Social Responsibility and has led on the implementation and reporting of Ireland’s most recent CSR action plan.

Catherine has considerable non-executive leadership experience. She recently chaired the board of the National Museum of Ireland, and she is the chairperson of the Citizens Information Board. Outside of the statutory sector, she is chairperson of the One in Four charity.

Catherine studied journalism at the undergraduate level and criminology at the postgraduate level at TUI Dublin.  She holds an MPhil in Public History and Cultural Heritage from Trinity College Dublin.  Her area of research lies in the use of cultural heritage practices in supporting the ‘just transition’ of industrialized landscapes.

Catherine undertakes continuous professional development.  She is a graduate of the prestigious Global Strategic Communications Programme at Columbia University in New York; she  has a level-five QQI in employment law; she has undertaken several short programmes in corporate governance; and she completed a CPD programme in Sustainable Green Organisations at Trinity College Dublin.  In 2023, Catherine was a participant in the Advanced Management and Senior Leadership Programme at the Said Business School, Oxford University.

Outside of her professional interests, Catherine is an outdoor enthusiast, enjoying cycling, hiking, distance running and gardening.  She has a special interest in vernacular culture.  She is an Irish language speaker and an advocate of the Irish cannon of literature.