About the Team

Dr. Kenneth Germaine PhD


Ken has worked within entrepreneurship for more than 20 years both as an entrepreneur, business adviser, consultant, author and member of enterprise support organisations. He has worked with private-sector, public-sector and third-sector organisations to promote entrepreneurship. He has worked with all categories of entrepreneurship: micro enterprises and SME, social enterprise, minority entrepreneurs, women in business, travellers and youth enterprise. Ken has considerable experience in business incubation, business planning, network development and management. Ken’s PhD thesis was an examination of social enterprises in Ireland. He has also worked on several EU-funded enterprise-related projects as a partner or expert.
Apart from being Chairperson and a director of EPL, Ken is the founder of Germaine Business Planning (www.germaine.eu,com), his training and business advice practice and is a fellow and past-President of the Institute of Management Consultants and Advisers (Ireland). Ken holds a BA (Hons) in economics and politics and a MA in political science both from University College Dublin and a PhD in economic geography from Trinity College Dublin. Ken has written books on writing your own business plan and on selling and negotiating skills for entrepreneurs. Ken also writes the Start your own business blog (http://startyourownbusinessblog.wordpress.com).

John Kearns


John is the Chief Executive of Partas – Training & Enterprise. Partas has been involved in helping clients develop their entrepreneurial skills since 1984. Over the last many years they have been particularly innovative in specialised training for new and minority entrepreneurs. Partas also operates throughout Europe in promoting inclusive entrepreneurship, minority entrepreneurship, cross-border entrepreneurship and social entrepreneurship under various EU projects.
John’s qualifications are in financial services, where he was national sales manager for one of the largest financial services groups in the country. That career was interrupted by the explosive success of one of his many entrepreneurial sidelines when he conceived of and produced a concept album called ‘Faith of our Fathers’. In a matter of a few short weeks it became the fastest and largest selling album in Irish music history. From that he became an entrepreneur in the music business and has been responsible for some of the most successful recording and live events in Ireland over the last ten years achieving multi platinum status. The success of those projects also spread to the US and Australia where his they have enjoyed popular acclaim.
Since then John has fulfilled further ambitions by gaining a first-class MBA in Entrepreneurship and having a book published telling the story behind the Faith of our Fathers project – Extraordinary Venture. He also completed a project with Boston College looking at the development of micro-business in the US and Northern Ireland. He serves as an Economic Development representative with the South Dublin County Council and was formerly Chairman of the South Dublin County Enterprise Board.

Barbara Quinn


Barbara is a registered career and entrepreneurial coach and is a director of Synergie Ireland (www.synergie.ie) and T-Space (www.tspace.org) and is a non-executive director of both Partas and the Tallaght Trust Fund. Previously, Barbara was Managing Director of Contact Recruitment Ltd. For the past 5 years Barbara has focussed exclusively on working with organisations and individuals undergoing change. This has led to the development of two consulting companies focused on the centrality of the individual in the workplace and also their role in the strategic direction of organisations. The focus of the work has been on individual and group coaching for Leaders and Entrepreneurial coaching for those seeking to set up their own businesses. This coupled with fifteen years as M.D. of a recruitment company has given her an in depth understanding of business in the corporate market and an understanding of the importance of linking the needs of the individual with the corporate needs to ensure success.
Barbara holds a BA (Hons) in humanities, psychology and philosophy from Dublin City University and was originally a registered nurse. She holds diplomas in philosophy and psychology from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and holds a British Psychological Society Level A & B in Psychometric Assessment, is a Certified Practitioner in MBTI and a Licenced Career Coach, CCS London.