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Universities honour philanthropist Chuck Feeney

Resource type: News

RTE News Ireland | [ View Original Source (opens in new window) ]

A conferring ceremony is under way in Dublin Castle this afternoon to honour the Founder of Atlantic Philanthropies Chuck Feeney.

Universities from across the island of Ireland are jointly conferring him with an Honorary Doctorate of Laws.

It is the first time ever that all of the universities have come together to bestow such an honour on an individual.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny, Minister for Education and Skills Ruairi Quinn and the heads of all the main Irish universities have gathered at Dublin Castle to honour what they described as Mr Feeney’s remarkable contribution to Irish society.

Introducing Mr Feeney this afternoon, Science Foundation Chair Dr Patrick Fottrell said that since 1989 Mr Feeney has donated almost €800m to Irish universities.

He said that over €1.25bn has also been donated to projects across the island.

He said that Atlantic Philanthropies has been exceptionally generous to the island of Ireland and paid tribute to Mr Feeney’s philosophy of “giving while living”.

He also lauded his important role in creating peace across the island of Ireland.

Speaking from France this morning, Founding President of the University of Limerick Dr Ed Walsh said that while Mr Feeney’s importance is obvious through the extraordinary amount of money he contributed to the country, perhaps as significant or more significant is the role he played behind the scenes in the peace process.