Speaker BiosWho is speaking at the IUSA Conference 2023
Mr Fergus Finlay
Fergus Finlay has recently retired after 13 years as CEO of Barnardos, Ireland’s largest children’s charity. For around twenty years prior to that he was employed as Senior Adviser to the Labour Party, serving in three Governments and working for the Party in opposition. He was one of the drafters of the Downing Street Declaration and was centrally involved in the election of President Mary Robinson in 1990. He also served for three years as a Director of Wilson Hartnell Public Relations. He is the author of four best-selling books.
He has been a life-long campaigner for the rights of people with disabilities, and is currently chair of a government task force to implement a comprehensive employment strategy for people with disabilities. For ten years he has also worked as Chair of the Dolphin House Regeneration Board, which is overseeing one of the largest regenerations in the city. He is also Chair of Lakers in Bray, a highly successful club and service provider for young people and adults with an intellectual disability, and is now being rebuilt after a serious fire. He broadcasts regularly on radio and television, and contributes a weekly column to the Irish Examiner. Fergus Finlay was awarded a Human Rights Award by the French Embassy in Dublin in 2013 to recognise the work of Barnardos with Ireland’s children. He was also honoured by UCC as an Outstanding Alumnus in 2016.
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