Meet our food champions...

Thérèse McDermott

Visitors experience food as an integral part of their overall visitor experience. Food experiences are enhanced by the people associated with the food, by the surroundings, and by the real stories of expertise and tradition attaching to and embellishing it. The very best memories are often made around the dining table.

Therese McDermott

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Thérèse McDermott

Portrait of Therese McDermottMobiliser, Facilitator, Organiser | Dungarvan, Waterford

The West Waterford Festival of Food, which has taken place annually in Dungarvan since 2008, was one of the first community food festivals to be established in Ireland and one that was looked to as a model for many others. One of the driving forces behind it from day one was Thérèse McDermott.

Thérèse was brought on board to set up the festival in year one because of her business and marketing acumen, her ability to get people on board, to make things happen and to get things done. She remained as the festivals chief executive until 2013.

The West Waterford Festival of Food was the first initiative that really championed Waterford’s wonderful array of food producers and businesses, “It waved the flag for the food stories of West Waterford, in a unique way at the time”. But it also did much more than that. Through was a very conscious decision to engage with everyone, it brought an entire community together.

Thérèse was successful in leveraging support from across the community and business sector and the event, “successful beyond expectation”, was built on “people power”. The festival attracts participation from some of the biggest names in Ireland’s food landscape and is a destination event for food lovers.

Now working with community groups and SMEs to provide marketing consultancy, training and project management through her company HandsOnEvents, she continues to raise the profile of food in the region at every opportunity.

Thérèse sees food as an integral part of the overall tourism and cultural experience and, as such, it has a place in everything she does.