Former President of Ireland Mary McAleese
Former President of Ireland, Mary McAleese, to be honoured with TK Whitaker Award for Outstanding Contribution to Public Life.
Established in 2016, with the support of the Whitaker family, the TK Whitaker Award for Outstanding Contribution to Public Life recognises Irish and international social and political leaders who have been exemplary in their contribution to public life. Previous recipients of the award were President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins in December 2016, and Former Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD in 2017.
TK Whitaker’s life and Award
Senator and former Governor of the Central Bank, Dr Ken Whitaker was one of Ireland’s most outstanding public servants, whose 1958 Economic Development report led to Ireland’s First Programme for Economic Expansion, which opened Ireland to both global trade and inward investment. His impact on Ireland has been immense and to honour this, the TK Whitaker Award for Outstanding Contribution to Public Life similarly honours Irish and international leaders and their contribution to public life.
Some notable achievements in Dr Whitaker’s life include helping to establish the Institute of Public Administration and introducing a public sector university scholarship system. During the 1960s Dr Whitaker spearheaded Ireland’s path to joining the European Economic Community, leading delegations to European capitals, and meeting privately in 1967 with Charles De Gaulle.
Mary McAleese honoured for ongoing and influential work across many areas
Former President of Ireland, Mary McAleese is being honoured due not only to her work for Ireland as President but since then her campaign for change during the 2015 Marriage Equality referendum, her revolutionary ideals for the future of the Catholic Church, and her continued advocacy of women’s rights internationally amongst many other achievements.
President McAleese, a member of the Irish bar, served two terms as President of Ireland. Called to the Northern Irish bar in 1974, in 1975 she succeeded Mary Robinson as Reid Professor of Criminal Law, Criminology and Penology in Trinity College, Dublin and in 1987 was appointed Director of the Institute of Professional Legal Studies at Queen’s University. She was awarded the The American Ireland Fund Humanitarian Award in 2007, and elected an honorary fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2012, amongst other honours.
The Business & Finance Awards
The Business & Finance Awards in association with KPMG have a long history of recognising, honouring and hosting some of the most outstanding leaders in business, politics and society, including former US President Bill Clinton, Sir John Major, former President of Ireland Mary Robinson, Kofi Annan, Senator George Mitchell, Brian Moynihan and Sir Bob Geldof.
In addition to the TK Whitaker Award, the 2018 Business & Finance Awards will present the inaugural Sutherland Leadership Award to the 11th President of the European Commission José Manuel Barroso. The Sutherland Leadership Award was established, with the cooperation of the Sutherland family, to honour one of Ireland’s and Europe’s greatest global business leaders Peter Sutherland.
This year’s Business & Finance Awards in association with KPMG will take place at the Convention Centre Dublin on Thursday, 13th December 2018 in the company of 1200 business, political and social leaders.