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The Venue

22 June 2017

Former EU Secretary General Catherine Day honoured by RDS

RDS Honorary Life Membership Awarded to the former highest office holder in the EU, Dubliner Catherine Day.

The EU has played a leading role in shaping and transforming Irish society since Ireland voted to join the EEC in 1972. Catherine Day’s prominent role in helping to shape the role of the EU was today honoured at a ceremony at the RDS (Thursday June 22). Catherine Day follows in the footsteps of luminaries such as Peter Sutherland, Seamus Heaney, Martin McAleese and many more who have been recognised with this award.

The RDS Honorary Life Membership was presented by RDS President Bernie Brennan.

Catherine Day was Secretary General of the EU Commission for ten years 2005-2015 and was the first woman and first Irish person to hold this position. She played a key role in dealing with the Eurozone crisis during the European Commission Presidency of Jose Manuel Barroso. Her time in office, both the ten years she served as Secretary General and the twenty six years in various roles at the commission prior to this, helped influence and shape the EU landscape. As the Commission’s most senior civil servant, and immediately prior to this as Deputy Director General for External Relations, she played a major role in the enlargement of the EU and helped build, plan and drive this development. She is currently a special adviser to the President of the Commission Jean Claude Juncker, is a member of the Strategic Council of the European Policy Centre in Brussels, and is Chair of the Governing Body of University College Cork.

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