Irish Water announces appointment of Niall Gleeson as new CEO

07 January 2022

Niall Gleeson has been appointed new Chief Executive Officer of Irish Water, the utility responsible for providing public water and wastewater services throughout Ireland.

Mr Gleeson joined Irish Water as managing director in August 2019 and, since then, has led the organisation in the supply of water and wastewater services to households and businesses and the delivery of significant improvements to water infrastructure across the country.

He takes up the newly-created role of CEO as Irish Water moves forward with the process of separating from the parent group Ervia to become a standalone, publicly owned and regulated utility. 

Welcoming the announcement, Ervia Chairman Tony Keohane said, “On behalf of the Ervia Board I congratulate Niall Gleeson on his appointment as CEO. Since joining Irish Water, Niall has made an enormous contribution to our organisation, leading his team in the delivery of Irish Water’s many priorities including significant capital investment projects which have created a step change in the provision of safe, clean drinking water and the return of wastewater safely to the environment. Over the last two years, he has also been instrumental in driving Irish Water’s safety, sustainability and employee engagement strategies and this year led the organisation in securing the provision of an historic €1.1 billion in capital funding to develop Ireland’s critical water and wastewater infrastructure.”

Niall Gleeson said, “I am delighted to be taking up the role of CEO at this exciting time in the evolution of Irish Water as we move towards becoming a standalone, publicly-owned utility. We are now at a real turning point in our history as the organisation responsible for the delivery of Ireland’s water and wastewater services. The work we do every day is essential in order to safeguard the health of our customers, protect the environment and support sustainable housing and development across the country. The size and scale of the challenge is significant but we are committed to continuing to develop a water services utility that will benefit the people of Ireland.

Ervia CEO Cathal Marley added, “I wish Niall Gleeson every success in his new role as Irish Water CEO. Niall brings a wealth of expertise in engineering, business and leadership, and I am confident that he and his executive team will continue to set the highest standards in the delivery of Ireland’s water and wastewater services.”

Mr Gleeson was appointed by the Board of Ervia following a public recruitment process and approved by the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage, Darragh O’Brien TD. He will initially report to the Ervia CEO Cathal Marley and, following legal separation of Irish Water from Ervia, will report to the Chair of the standalone Irish Water Board.

Prior to joining Irish Water in 2019, Mr Gleeson held a number of senior leadership roles with world-leading infrastructure companies, including Shanahan Engineering, Veolia Ireland and Alstom Ltd. A native of Dublin, he holds a degree in engineering from DIT Bolton St, Dublin.