Development & Alumni Relations Office 


18 July 2018

The former Managing Editor of RTÉ News, Declan McBennett, BA 1994, has taken up his new post as RTÉ Group Head of Sport where he will have responsibility for the national public service broadcaster’s entire sporting output and a team of 55.

The announcement was made at the end of April following an internal competition. Mr McBennett takes over from Ryle Nugent, who vacated the post after eight years in June.

Speaking at the time of his appointment Mr McBennett said: "I very much look forward to working with the RTÉ Sports team and with all of the sporting organisations RTÉ partners to ensure that quality coverage of our national teams and national games is delivered to the Irish audience.

“I’m delighted to be taking up the role as we head into a fantastic summer of sport with the GAA Championships, the 2018 FIFA World Cup and the European Championships 2018."

RTÉ Director of Content Jim Jennings commented: "Declan has always shown his absolute commitment to public service media with a proven track record in delivering quality and trusted content to the audience.

“In a fiercely competitive sports market, I have no doubt that Declan will lead the RTÉ Sport team to further develop and evolve the quality sports coverage that Irish audiences turn to their national public service broadcaster for."

A keen GAA player, during his time at Queen’s Declan McBennett played freshers football with the likes of football luminaries Anthony Tohill and Kieran McGeeney.

Mr McBennett, who has 19 years of experience across RTÉ – both in news and sport – started his career in Northern Sound Radio in County Monaghan. He spent two years as a reporter and subsequently chief reporter at Dublin’s leading commercial station FM104, before joining RTÉ in 1999. He spent seven years in the Belfast Office of RTÉ feeding into programmes such as Morning Ireland and News at One.

His move into RTÉ Sport came in 2007, where he would serve four and a half years as Sports Editor through the Beijing and London Olympics as well as eight All Ireland finals, Six Nations Championships, the FIFA World Cup 2010 and European Soccer Championships in 2012. That same year he switched codes again and became Editor of the RTÉ News online division and of the rolling News Channel, a position he held until his latest appointment.

The Irish broadcaster was the only one in the British Isles to bring viewers every match from the recent FIFA World Cup in Russia across a number of platforms including RTÉ 2, RTÉ Player and RTÉ News Now.

A father of four, Mr McBennett lives in South Armagh where the former Monaghan junior footballer of the year with his club Oram is still heavily involved in the GAA at club level.

General enquiries to Gerry Power, Communications Officer, Development and Alumni Relations Office (DARO), tel: +44 (0)28 9097 5321.


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