*Chief Supt Aileen Magner will head up the Clare/Tipperary Garda Division. 

CLARE has its fifth Chief Superintendent in the space of four years following another reshuffle in An Garda Síochána.

Aileen Magner made history this week as the first female Chief Superintendent to serve in the amalgamated Clare/Tipperary Garda Division. Her appointment became effective on Monday. This makes her the fifth Chief Supt in the county in 1,637 days or 53 months.

Colm O’Sullivan’s time as Chief Superintendent of the now merged Clare and Tipperary Garda Divisions ended on Monday.

Cork native O’Sullivan became the first-ever Chief Supt of the amalgamated Garda Divisions which brought Clare and Tipperary together. He was appointed in October 2022. Formerly a Superintendent in Ennistymon, in 2015 he became regional officer at the Risk, Compliance and Continuous Improvement Office in Cork.

O’Sullivan is expected to be based out of Thurles in his new role as Regional Chief Superintendent for the Southern Region of An Garda Síochána but is likely that he will be carry a lot of work while located in his native county. The vacancy arose following the appointment of Garda Chief Superintendent Brian Sugrue, a native of Cloughjordan, to the Garda Training College in Templemore. Joining Chief Supt Sugrue in the Garda College is former Superintendent Kieran Ruane, he had formerly worked as a Detective Inspector in Ennis.

Replacing O’Sullivan at the head of the Clare and Tipperary Garda Divisions is Kilfinane native, Aileen Magner. A former Superintendent in Newcastle West and Henry Street in Co Limerick, she was promoted to Chief Superintendent in the Dublin Metropolitan Region, in July.

After graduating with a BA in History and English from the University of Galway, she started in Templemore Garda College at the age of twenty one. Since she was sixteen, Aileen wanted to be a Garda, her mother’s first cousin, the late Denis Corkery was a former sergeant and was very supportive of her desire to join the police force.

Upon finishing in Templemore, she spent nine years stationed in Westport before working for a year in Cyprus with the United Police Force, she then moved to Mallow where she became a sergeant.

Work as a sergeant saw her based in Cobh and Fermoy before her appointment as sergeant in charge in Charleville in late 2009. On her transfer to Killarney, Aileen was promoted to Inspector and then returned to the Mallow District which resulted in her appointment as Superintendent. She transferred to the former Newcastle West District in March 2019 and then onto Henry Street in Limerick City in September 2022.

Further studies completed by the mother of two include a postgrad in Serious Crime Investigation, Master of Arts in Serious Crime Investigations, qualifications in Human Rights Law, as well as a Postgrad in Leadership in Policing.

Current Chief Supt of the Kerry Garda Division, Padraic Powell had been on course to succeed O’Sullivan but this decision was rowed back on. He had been one of the lead investigators in the so-called ‘Mr Moonlight’ murder case in Tipperary.

Changes to the ranks of An Garda Síochána have left Shannon without an Inspector. Insp Paul Slattery has moved from Shannon to Henry Street and his post remains vacant.

Speaking to The Clare Echo, Clare TD, Cathal Crowe (FF) welcomed the appointment of Chief Supt Magner. “I’ve heard many positive things about Aileen and I know that rank and file Gardaí see her as a very positive influence and someone who knows how to appropriately exercise her leadership role in the organisation”.

He continued, “From an elected representatives point of view it is important that we have ongoing engagement with senior Gardaí in the Division, at a time when Garda numbers are depleted and resources are very much over-stretched, it is important that TDs are fully aware of the situation on the ground so we can fight for better resources in our county”.

Deputy Crowe was hopeful the imbalance of Superintendent allocations in the Division would be revised. Of the six Superintendents in the Clare and Tipperary Garda Division, five of them are located in the Premier County. “I would love to see Chief Supt Magner look at the geographical imbalance of leadership within the Division, I know that the Superintendent positions were determined a few years ago but I don’t believe that all situations should remain static, I hope this could be fluid and subject to some change, certainly going forward Commissioner Drew Harris needs to better cognisance of the immense geography of the Clare/Tipperary Division. I look forward to Chief Supt Magner being a positive force in the Division and I know she will work well with Supt John Ryan and all of the serving Gardaí, I look forward to engaging with her at our next Joint Policing Committee in the early Spring”.

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Subscribe for just €3 per month

If you’re here, you care about County Clare. So do we. Did you rely on us for Covid-19 updates, follow our election coverage, or visit The Clare Echo every week for breaking news and sport? The Clare Echo invests in local journalism and we want to safeguard its future in our county. By becoming a subscriber you are supporting what we do, will receive access to all our premium articles and a better experience, while helping us improve our offering to you. Subscribe to clareecho.ie and get the first six months for just €3 a month (less than 75c per week), and thereafter €8 per month. Cancel anytime, limited time offer. T&Cs Apply. www.clareecho.ie.

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