About Hugh

First off....this really isn't about me.

This is about what kind of country I'd like to live in and the kind of leadership I don't see. Maybe you're looking for it too. Maybe you could be it.

I'll tell you about me further down on the page but - again - I'm not the point. Ireland is the point.

Meantime, the buttons below link to sub-pages where I explain some more "political" perspectives.

So.....me. I'm Irish, from Kilkenny and a bit from Cork. My parents were both school teachers. My father taught me Latin for 5 years, which was actually pretty good. He was a good teacher.

I did Mechanical Engineering in college in Dublin in the late 80s and went off in the 90s to work in the offshore oil industry with Shell (they were a respectable company back then!)

My first job title was "Explosion Protection Engineer", which was kinda cool. I spent 9 years in the oil business, living and working in various parts of the UK and The Netherlands, with frequent trips to the USA and Africa.

I worked mostly as a Subsea Engineer on offshore oil developments.

Then I quit the industry in 1999 did an MBA at INSEAD in France. It's one of the world's top business schools and I graduated on the Dean's List.

Piper Alpha on fire.

in 2000 I moved to Barcelona and lived there until late 2008. I mostly worked in consulting, and also got married and had three kids.

I did projects all over the world; India, Thailand, the Netherlands, Portugal, the Philippines... I spend a couple of years in Hewlett-Packard outside Barcelona, then founded a startup that won a couple of European innovation awards and cost us all a lot of money. Ah well.

I was lucky to get offered a job in Google in Dublin so came home to Ireland with a Dutch wife and Spanish kids. To Ireland. In late 2008. Timing, eh!

The election in 2011 came around and when Fintan O'Toole and David McWilliams and that mob finally didn't run, I found myself compelled to stand up and do something....to do anything. Some people did actually vote for me. (Thanks for that.) But I'd started too late and didn't have a clue how to run a campaign.

Here's a nice article about O'Toole and McWilliams. I guess I "put up" and didn't "shut up". It wasn't a great success.

After all of that, in 2012 I left Google and tried to write a book about innovation.

Turns out I'm not great at writing books on innovation so in 2013 I got back into business and have done a number of fascinating projects and roles in the intervening years. I'd still rather like to write that book.

I like reading about history and technology. I sail and kitesurf. I'm a bit of a geek. I cycle places if I can. I'm married with children.

A few years ago I decided I had to get fit so did that too.

You can read about those all those things here and here.

Workwise it's been mostly in startups for the last couple of years.

Anyway, I'm a reasonably smart international guy with lots of experience from around the world. I know a lot of people like me. Like many of them I'm also a bit of an odd fish by now, hence the header image.

So what am I? I'm a guy who:

  • has been around and who knows a few things.

  • will tell the truth as best I can.

  • is horrified by what the main parties have been up to over recent decades and who are horrified by what SF might do.

  • believes that there is a huge latent frustration out there - among young and old alike.

Piper Alpha image from Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Piper_Alpha