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Appointment of new chief of staff of the defence forces

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  • Appointment of new chief of staff of the defence forces

    P R E S S R E L E A S E

    The Government this morning has accepted the recommendation of the Minister for Defence Mr. Tony Killeen, T.D., to nominate Major General Sean McCann for appointment by the President as Chief of Staff of the Defence Forces. He will succeed the current Chief of Staff, Lieutenant-General Dermot Earley, who will retire on 13th June 2010.
    Minister Killeen said “I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Major General McCann on his new appointment and I look forward to working closely with him in the future.”

    The Minister added “I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Lieutenant-General Dermot Earley for his truly remarkable contribution to public life. On behalf of the Government, I would like to wish him well in his retirement and to thank him for his hard work and commitment over many years of service in the Defence Forces. The leadership, professionalism and dedication shown by him has brought great honour on the Defence Forces and on this nation as a whole.”

    Ends 9th June 2010

    Issued by Department of Defence Press Office
    (01) 804 2108 or (087) 234 0397.

    Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

  • #2
    Major General Sean McCann is nominated as new Defence Forces Chief of Staff
    Wednesday 09 June, 2010

    Major General Sean McCann has today been nominated by Government as the Chief of Staff of the Defence Forces. Major General McCann will take up his appointment on June 13th when the current Chief of Staff, Lieutenant General Dermot Earley retires from the organisation. Reacting to his appointment, Major General McCann said:

    "I am both proud and honoured to be nominated as Chief of Staff of the Defence Forces, an organisation with a long and proud tradition of service to the state. I intend to ensure that the organisation continues to develop the skills and capabilities necessary to meet the increasingly complex challenges of the security environment both at home and overseas. I also look forward to leading an organisation which maintains the highest standards of professionalism, and upholds our core values of loyalty, discipline and devotion to duty in whatever tasks are assigned to us by Government.

    I would like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to Lieutenant General Dermot Earley, the outgoing Chief of Staff, who retires due to ill health after 44 years service. He has made an enormous contribution to the Defence Forces and to the state during his long and distinguished career. On behalf of the Defence Forces, I would like to extend my best wishes to General Earley and his family."

    Major General McCann, who is 59 years of age, enlisted in the Defence Forces as an Officer Cadet in 1970. Following commissioning as an Officer in 1972, he served in various Cavalry units in Plunkett Barracks. He instructed in the Military College in both the Infantry School and the Command and Staff School. In more recent years he was Chief Instructor in the United Nations Training School in the Military College. Formerly Director of Cavalry and Commandant of the Combat Support College, he has also seen service in Defence Forces Headquarters as Personal Staff Officer to the Chief of Staff and as a Staff Officer in Operations Section. He was Director of Operations at Defence Forces Headquarters in 2007, and subsequently held the appointment of General Officer Commanding (GOC) the Defence Forces Training Centre (DFTC) from 2008 to 2009. He has been The Deputy Chief of Staff, Operations since 2009, with responsibility for all operational activities of the Defence Forces.

    Major General McCann has extensive overseas experience. He served with the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) in 1981 and 1987. He was Senior Operations Officer with the United Nations Iraq Kuwait Observer Mission (UNIKOM) in 1991. He served in Sarajevo with the European Union Monitoring Mission (EUMM) in 2000; and in 2002 he was Chief of Observer Group Lebanon (OGL), part of the United Nations Truce Supervisory Organisation (UNTSO). In 2003 he was appointed Chief Operations Officer with UNTSO.

    Major General McCann lives in Newbridge, Co. Kildare. He was born in Cork in 1950, and grew up in Tipperary where he was educated in Thurles CBS and in Cistercian College Roscrea. He is a graduate of University College Galway and of the United States Command and General Staff College. He is married to Frances and they have two sons, one of whom is currently serving in the Defence Forces.

    Press Officer: Comdt. Neil Nolan 01 8042687 : 087 2482130

    e-mail: Press Officer web:

    Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.