WHERE IT BEGAN
From a young age, Gemma was an organiser and curious about everything. She loved learning how things worked and to better understand them. She read books by the dozen (as evidenced by her library today!) and learned as much as she could every time a topic grabbed her interest. It was no surprise that her education originally focused on science. That was the beginning.
Gemma completed a degree in general science, specialising in Botany, from Trinity College Dublin in 2004 and later achieved a Masters with Distinction in Environmental Archaeology from Queens University Belfast.
This education was invaluable in learning scientific thinking and logical methods, data management (ie. mastering excel sheets, except for pivot tables!) and with developing a level of critical, strategic thinking that was to constantly serve her well in the events world. The latter is what propelled her to make the change to events. It was the proverbial lightbulb moment.
STARTING A CAREER
After gaining a postgraduate qualification in Event Management in early 2007, Gemma’s events career began in the leading global agri-business company, Alltech, owned by top entrepreneur Pearse Lyons. As European Events & Tradeshow Manager, and later Corporate Event Manager, she was responsible for the delivery and oversight of hundreds of local, Irish, European and global conferences, lecture tours, sponsorship activations and events for the company over an 8 year period.
Having gained experience managing the 1,600 space hospitality plan for Alltech as title sponsor of the World Equestrian Games in Kentucky, USA in 2010, from 2011-2014 she was a team lead on their activation for the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Normandy 2014, France. Living in beautiful Caen, she created and executed the guest services, accommodation, event and hospitality portfolio plans for 1,500 people over a 3 week period.
STARTING A BUSINESS
Following working with Alltech and later international events agency CWT Meetings & Events, in a business development and operations role, Gemma started Freestyle Events in 2015. What ensued was the opportunity to work on a great variety of events, including the Alltech Craft Brews & Food Fair and 2018 World Para-Swimming Allianz European Championships.
Freestyle was the natural choice as a name. It was the freedom to say that for each event she worked on, all bets were off. Every idea could be entertained until the final distilled plan truly represented what the client wanted and needed. It also represented how the business would work. Freestyle Events has a trusted Freestyle Network of professionals who support any event and by extension support micro and small businesses in Ireland.
Flexibility + Creativity + Experience + Excellence = A formula for success.
Her aim, and now Freestyle’s aim, is to provide a flexible event management solution to SME’s, associations and other clients who would benefit from professional support to get the most out their investment for their business and their team.
BEHIND THE SCENES
Gemma continues to be an organiser (including a love of decluttering) and to have a curious mind. She happily lives in North Co. Wexford and is grateful every day to have a home, family, friends (and plants, and books) that she loves.
email@example.com | +353 (0)83 0657 500 | Work nationwide and internationally | Also available for training and speaking opportunities.
Member: Wexford Chamber of Commerce | Member: Women in Business Network – Ireland (Vicar St. Kilkenny Group)