At Macra’s recent AGM, I was honoured to be elected national chairperson by my fellow Macra members.

While becoming national chairperson was never the plan, I’m delighted to have the opportunity to give back to an organisation that has given me so much. But who am I? My name is Josephine and I’m a proud member of Callan Macra for almost 10 years.

While I have no doubt that my year as chairperson will be a busy one, I had no idea that my role would begin with an idea that I pitched to our president a few months ago.

While many of Macra’s 80th Anniversary celebrations this year mark the contributions of past and present members, as a secondary school teacher I was keen to include the future Macra members in the celebrations too.

The recent ‘Know Your Ag Science Quiz’ did exactly this.


The event, organised in association with IASTA and the UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science, brought almost 300 Fifth Year Agricultural Science students representing over 35 secondary schools to UCD’s Belfield campus for an exciting day of activities. Social media influencer Farmer Phil acted as quizmaster extraordinaire. Following the quiz, students toured the campus before returning for the big announcement. Building suspense, professor Tommy Boland of UCD addressed the students, encouraging them to become trailblazers on their own journeys of life. Macra president Elaine Houlihan outlined the many benefits of Macra membership, encouraging students to join their local clubs.


The time then came for Johnny Gleeson of IASTA to announce the successful teams. Results were so close that a tiebreaker was required to separate second and third place, with the Borris Vocational School teams going head to head. But it was Scoil Chonglais Baltinglass who were victorious. As part of their prize, Macra looks forward to welcoming the team and their classmates to the Macra tent during the National Ploughing Championships.

This year’s AGM highlighted Macra’s financial challenges. This hasn’t stopped us as an organisation supporting our members and clubs. Following such a successful day, I have no doubt that the future of Macra and the entire Agricultural Industry will be safe in the hands of these bright, enthusiastic young people.

Over the next year, I hope to continue leading the organisation with our president while helping to carry out events, just like this one to highlight all our organisation has to offer.