Global Leadership Team

The Global Leadership Team consists of senior executives of the company who make decisions on strategy, investment and direction.

Jason Hawkins

Chief Executive Officer

Jason has been the Chief Executive Officer of Carbery Group since January 2018. Originally from Tralee, Co Kerry, Jason’s previous role was Chief Operating Officer with Dairy Farmers of America (DFA), where he had responsibility for the organisation’s global ingredients business. DFA is a leading global dairy co-operative, based in Kansas, USA.

Prior to DFA, Jason had a long and distinguished career with Kerry Group, which he joined as a graduate accountant in 1999, after completing his business degree at the Institute of Technology Tralee. For most of his career, Jason has lived and worked in the United States, holding several leadership positions within the Taste & Nutrition division of Kerry Group, where he was responsible for the vision, strategy and growth of several of Kerry’s businesses in the region. Jason is a qualified accountant with the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA).

Liam Hughes

Chief Financial Officer

Liam Hughes is Group Chief Financial Officer and Executive Director for Carbery Group, taking up the role in July 2023. Originally from Fermoy in North Cork, Ireland, Liam has worked globally throughout his career in senior finance and business leadership positions, including as President of Taste Europe at Kerry Group. Liam has a wealth of financial and commercial experience, and a successful track record for driving growth and delivering large transformation initiatives. He has lived and worked globally, including in the US.

Sarah Abbott

Chief People Officer

Sarah is the Group Chief People Officer for Carbery Group. Her role is focused on driving our people strategy across the group, working to further align our business strategies with a comprehensive global people strategy. She joined Carbery in January 2021.

Originally from a farming background in West Cork, Sarah has worked globally throughout her career, having had a front row seat at some extraordinary talent transformations in several major corporations including Dell, EMC and Apple. Prior to this, Sarah was involved in talent initiatives at Musgraves Ireland, Ernst & Young and Morgan McKinley. Sarah has extensive experience of leading high performing teams internationally and brings a deep understanding of different cultures and how to work effectively across complex organisational structures. Most recently, Sarah has run her own successful HR consultancy practice.

Rod Sowders

CEO of Synergy Flavours Americas

Roderick is President and CEO of Synergy Flavors Americas, having joined Synergy (then U.S. Flavors & Fragrances) as CEO in 2003 after the business was acquired by Carbery Group. During his leadership, the company has grown dramatically through strong focus on customer needs, innovation and strategic focus. During his tenure, Synergy has completed and integrated a number of acquisitions in the US and Latin America. In addition to serving on the Board of Directors for Synergy, he serves on the Leadership Team for the Carbery Group, working to create and implement strategies across the Group.

Rod has more than 25 years of experience in the food and specialty chemical industries. Prior to joining Synergy, he spent 5 years as an officer of Sensient Technologies North America, most recently serving as VP/GM for the Flavors Division. Prior to that he had spent 13 years with Monsanto. He holds an MBA from Emory University and a BS in Mechanical Engineering from South Dakota School of Mines and Technology.

Anthony O’Callaghan

Chief Information Officer

Anthony is a seasoned IT professional with close to 20 years of successful IT experience spanning a number of industries. In his role as CIO Anthony is responsible for all digital operations across the Carbery Group globally and leading digital transformation towards a single group model.

Prior to his appointment to the CIO role within Carbery in January 2020, Anthony held various roles in companies such as Flex, Johnson Controls and Tyco and was responsible for functions such as IT Operations, Global Implementations, Global Data Analytics, Supply Chain Solutions, Commercial Sales Operations and PMO servicing both internal and external customers across the globe. Anthony is based out of our Ballineen facility in Ireland.

Sebastiano Pagano

CEO of Synergy Europe and Asia

Sebastiano Pagano joined our business in late 2020 as Chief Executive of Carbery Group in Asia. Sebastiano is based in Bangkok and works closely with the commercial teams in Asia and in Ireland to provide seamless service to our customers in Asia across our Dairy, Nutrition and Taste Divisions. Asia is a major focus and priority area for Carbery Group, with a growing customer base. Sebastiano’s appointment recognises the importance of the Asia Pacific region in our strategic decision-making.

Sebastiano has been working in the food and beverage industry for more than 30 years, with experience working across Europe, North America and Asia. He started his career with Nestle, then moved to the flavour industry with Firmenich for 14 years, where he held senior leadership positions in Europe as well as in Japan and Korea. He most recently worked with Kerry and was responsible for their Taste business in APMEA (APAC/ Middle East/Africa).

Meet the Board

The Board of Carbery is made up of representatives  from the four co-ops that own the company, and representatives of our farmer shareholders.

Cormac O’Keeffe

Lisavaird Co-op Chairman, Carbery Chairman

Vincent O’Donovan

Bandon Co-op Chairman, Carbery Vice-Chairman

Gerard Brickley

Bandon Co-op CEO, Carbery board member

Seamus Daly

Drinagh Co-op CEO, Carbery board member

Peter Fleming

Barryroe Co-op Chairman, Carbery board member

Martin Dineen

Lisavaird Co-op CEO, Carbery board member

Peadar Murphy

Barryroe Co-op CEO, Carbery board member

Donal McCarthy

Drinagh Co-op Chairman, Carbery board member

Raymond Collins

Drinagh Co-op Vice Chair, Carbery board member