First Fortnight Seeks an experienced and dynamic CEO

access_time 4 minutes
person by Edel
create 08 March 2021

About First Fortnight

First Fortnight’s purpose is to challenge mental health stigma and promote mental health wellbeing nationally through art and culture.  First Fortnight operates in Ireland benefiting the general public and artists who participate in its annual festival of arts events.  In addition, the organisation provides creative therapies to homeless and vulnerable communities experiencing mental health difficulties in Ireland.

Founded in 2009 by David Keegan and JP Swaine, First Fortnight celebrated its 10th mental health arts festival in 2021.  Over the last twelve years First Fortnight has made the first two weeks of each year synonymous with challenging mental health stigma and has achieved a significant public profile.  The organisation is in receipt of core funding from the HSE’s National Office of Suicide Prevention and benefits from a broad suite of funding from across arts and mental health agencies.  First Fortnight is now at a unique phase in its development and seeks to recruit a Chief Executive Officer to lead the organisation through this next phase of consolidation and sustainable growth.

Organisational Structure

First Fortnight is a charity and a Company Limited by Guarantee, governed by a voluntary Board of Directors / Trustees.  First Fortnight undertakes two core activities in fulfilling its mission.  The CEO is supported in their role by the Chief Operations Officer who manages all aspects of festival programme and delivery and by the Therapeutic Services Manager who manages the Centre for Creative Therapies. The CEO is supported by a Governance and Finance Manager who looks after finance, company secretary duties, contracts, policies and compliance.

Position Summary

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) will work with the Board of Directors to further the charity’s core objective in challenging mental health stigma and will assist the Board in leading the organisation through the next phase of its development.  The CEO is responsible for both the strategic and operational management of the company. The CEO will ensure that the organisation’s activities are focused on its mission and objectives and that activities are focused on delivering First Fortnight’s strategic plan as set out by the Board.


Application Process

Please submit:

• Letter of Application telling us why you would like to lead First Fortnight in challenging mental health stigma. Outline how you meet the person specification, detailing the qualities and experience you bring to the role

• Your CV with contact details of two referees

Applications should be submitted by email only to Tríona Ní Dhuibhir, Company Secretary,

Application Deadline

Monday 12th April at 12.00 noon

Application Process

• Shortlisting of candidates will be conducted by a nominated sub-group of the First Fortnight Board plus an independent external expert

• First interviews will take place Thursday 6th and Friday 7th May

• Second interviews will take place Thursday 13th May

Interviews will take place, in Dublin’s city centre, guidelines allowing. Should face to face interviews not be feasible due to Covid-19 restrictions, First Fortnight may ask candidates to interview via a virtual platform.


For full job listing and info, please see the First Fortnight CEO Candidate Information Pack here. 


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