Opinion Columnists

Tuesday 25 September 2018

A life noted for a sense of fairness and integrity

Maurice Hayes, who died yesterday, was measured in pursuit of peace in Ireland, writes Jody Corcoran

PAINTING: Celebrated Co Down-based artist Colin Davidson recently completed this portrait of Maurice Hayes, which was presented to the former senator and his family just a few weeks ago
PAINTING: Celebrated Co Down-based artist Colin Davidson recently completed this portrait of Maurice Hayes, which was presented to the former senator and his family just a few weeks ago
Jody Corcoran

Jody Corcoran

Maurice Hayes, whose death has occurred aged 90, was a writer, author and commentator, twice appointed by the Taoiseach as an Independent nominee to Seanad Eireann, who was noted as an even-handed observer and a man whose temperament, integrity and sense of fairness marked him out as an astute contributor to major policy initiatives and public life in Ireland.

A former and the first Catholic Northern Ireland Ombudsman, Dr Hayes, who completed a PhD in English at the Queen's University of Belfast, was a career-long civil servant in Northern Ireland, where he was Permanent Secretary of the Department of Health and Social Services. Having taught at St Patrick's Grammar School, he first entered the Northern Ireland civil service when he succeeded his father as Town Clerk in Downpatrick in his native Co Down.

After retirement, he lived a full public life which reflected his varied interests in the worlds of academia, politics, journalism and sport.

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