Kilkenny native Anne-Marie Butler has started her role as the new head of the Teagasc education programme.
Her main duty will be to deliver the education programme through the agriculture and horticulture colleges, Teagasc education centres and collaborations with the universities and institutes of technology.
Butler graduated with a first-class honours in agricultural science from University College Dublin (UCD). Previous to this, she worked with Ulster Bank as senior agriculture manager and relationship director.
Having won the Hussey Prize for agriculture, she went on to obtain a PhD from UCD where she completed her doctorate research at Moorepark, under the Teagasc Walsh Fellowship programme.
In her early career she returned to her alma mater where she was a lecturer in farm business management at the UCD School of Agriculture. Butler was also a research supervisor for Teagasc Walsh Fellowship postgraduate students.
Hailing from a tillage farm in Freshford in north Kilkenny, Anne-Marie Butler is a former president of the Agricultural Science Association (ASA), and was recently appointed honorary president 2021/2022 of the Irish Agricultural Science Teachers Association (IASTA).
A very exciting time
Speaking following her appointment Dr Butler said: “It’s a very exciting time in education, as we seek to prepare and develop the farmers, horticulturalists, foresters and equine students for a modern and dynamic agri-food sector.
“In particular, equipping them with the knowledge to meet and address the economic, environmental and social sustainability challenges facing the sector.
“It’s also exciting as Teagasc has embraced the rapid transformation to digital delivery models, blended with traditional practical skills training.”
Congratulating Dr Butler on her appointment, head of the Teagasc Knowledge Transfer Directorate Dr Stan Lalor said: “I look forward to working with Anne-Marie and welcome her as our new head of education. Anne-Marie brings a wealth of experience having worked in Ulster Bank as senior agriculture manager, and prior to that in UCD as lecturer in farm business management. I wish her every success in her leadership of the Teagasc Education programme into the future.”
Dr Lalor concluded by acknowledging the contribution of Tony Pettit, who retired as head of education earlier this summer, and thanked him for his long service to Teagasc along with his many achievements during his career.