She will be the official stand-in at meetings of the ECB’s key policy-setting governing council when Philip Lane — who was appointed to the top job as governor late last year — is unable to attend.
Ms Donnery, who first joined the bank 20 years ago, will serve as one of two deputy governors, succeeds Stefan Gerlach who stepped down in December.
A former registrar of Credit Unions, she also in the past held the posts of head of consumer information and head of consumer protection, as well as representing the bank on committees at the ECB and the European Banking Authority.
She has been the Central Bank’s alternate member of the supervisory board of the Single Supervisory Mechanism and chair of the ECB’s high-level group on non-performing loans.
Her new job makes her responsible for central banking functions, including economics, financial operations and resolution, and corporate affairs, the central bank said.
“Sharon’s breadth of experience combined with her European experience will serve her well as deputy governor,” Mr Lane said.