Solas chief executive to head Higher Education Authority

Paul O’Toole, chief executive of Solas, is to head the Higher Education Authority.

The chief executive of Solas, the State body with responsibility for further education and training, has been appointed as the new head of the Higher Education Authority (HEA).

Paul O’Toole takes over the authority from Dr Graham Love, who resigned amid claims within the agency that it was being “micromanaged” by the Department of Education.

Mr O’Toole was appointed as chief executive of Solas on its establishment in October 2013.

It took over the functions of Fás, the State training agency, which was dissolved following a series of spending scandals.

Mr O’Toole is a former chief executive of Tourism Ireland and general manager of Bord Fáilte.

The HEA has responsibility for a sector which has suffered from underinvestment over the last decade.