The Pensions Authority

The Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton, T.D. signed the commencement order with effect from 7 March 2014 for the Pensions Authority as provided for under the Social Welfare and Pensions (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 2013.

The Pensions Authority consists of an independent chair appointed by the Minister for Social Protection and two ordinary members.

  • David Begg

    Mr David Begg (Chairperson)

    Dr. David Begg was appointed Chairman of the Pensions Authority in 2016. He is a former Secretary General of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions and was CEO of Concern Worldwide from 1997 to 2001. He has served on the boards of a number of public and private sector bodies including the Central Bank, Aer Lingus and the Irish Times Trust. He is currently Chairman of the Mater Misericordiae and Children’s University Hospital group and of Barnardos children’s charity. He holds master’s degrees in International Relations and Theology from DCU and a PhD in Sociology from Maynooth University. He is adjunct professor at the Maynooth University Institute of Social Sciences.

  • Michael J. McGrath

    Mr Michael McGrath

    Assistant Secretary General, Department of Finance
    (Representative of the Minister for Finance)

    Mr. McGrath was appointed a member of the Pensions Authority in February 2020. Since September 2017, Michael has responsibility for the development of domestic and EU/International policy and legislation in relation to financial services (including insurance and pensions, funds, financial markets and anti-money laundering policy). He also has management responsibility for the Department’s internal Legal Unit. He was seconded to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as Ireland’s Alternate Executive Director of the IMF Board (2014-2017). Before that, he was the A/Sec. of the EU & International Division for a 2-year period and between 2007 and 2012 he was the A/Sec. with responsibility for the Economics & Budget Division. He previously served on the National Economic and Social Council, the National Statistics Board, and a range of senior EU economic and fiscal committees. He is currently the Vice-Chair of the EU Financial Services Committee.  He holds a BA (economics and sociological & political studies) from UCG, an MA (economics) from UCD, an MSc (taxation) from DCU and a post-Graduate Higher Diploma (Statistics) from TCD.

  • Ms Deirdre Shanley

    Assistant Secretary, Department of Social Protection

    Deirdre was appointed a member of the Pensions Authority in March 2024. Deirdre has responsibility for Control Operations in the Department of Social Protection. She previously had the role of Chief Financial Officer in the Department and has also served on the Management Board of the Department of Education as Head of Schools Division. She holds a Batchelor of Commerce, an MA in Public Management, an MA in Innovation Management and a Professional Diploma in Business Finance.