About the Awardees

Mary Henry M.A., M.D. (1963)

There is hardly a day when Mary Henry does not appear on Trinity campus. Thoroughly dedicated to her alma mater, Mary is currently Chair of the TCD Association and Trust and Trinity Foundation board member. Cheerful, enthusiastic and full of energy, she is committed to public service.

Continuing the family tradition - Mary's father's cousin, Dr Robert James Rowlette, also a doctor, served in Dáil and as a TCD Senator - Mary went on to represent Trinity College as an Independent Senator in Seanad Eireann from 1993 to 2007. Whilst in Seanad, Mary was especially passionate about medical and social issues. She focuses on improving health care, especially for women, and on encouraging women doctors to continue their professional careers.

Always ready to help and highly respected, Mary sits on several other prestigious boards in the healthcare sector, including the boards of the Rotunda and Peamount hospitals.

A strong believer in the justice system, Mary served as the first Chairperson of the Irish Penal Reform Trust and serves on the Commission for Restorative Justice. She is also Patron of One Family, the organisation for lone parents and their families.

Áine Lawlor B.A. (1982)

Those of us who start our mornings with RTE know Áine from Morning Ireland, which she co-presents. One of the station's most seasoned broadcasters, Áine is a recognised and authoritative voice.

Áine joined RTE in 1984 as a trainee journalist, working on a number of radio and television programmes before becoming a reporter/presenter in 1988. She has worked on The Pat Kenny Show, Today at 5, RTE 2fm News and a variety of television programmes, including The Nature of Things, Tuesday File and as narrator for the highly-acclaimed series on clerical sexual abuse in Irish institutions, States of Fear. Áine joined the Morning Ireland, the flagship morning news programme, in 1996.

Áine's interest in current affairs was helped by her experiences as a student in Trinity. While at the University, Áine was actively engaged in student life and was President of the Students' Union. She has maintained strong ties to TCD, and is married to fellow Trinity graduate Ian Wilson B.A. (1983).

Barry O'Callaghan LL.B. (1991)

One of Ireland's most successful international entrepreneurs, Barry O'Callaghan, is Chairman and largest shareholder of Education Media and Publishing Group (EMPG).

On graduating with a law degree from Trinity, Barry was an investment banker for nine years working in London, New York and Hong Kong initially with Morgan Stanley and latterly as a Director of the Equity Capital Markets division of Credit Suisse. In 1999 he became CEO of Riverdeep, which under his leadership became a leading global publisher of interactive products for the education industry with major operations in the US, Ireland, UK, China and the Middle East. Barry took the company public on the NASDAQ and Irish Stock Exchanges in 2000. Barry managed the subsequent acquisition and integration of seven leading educational companies including Edmark, The Learning Company and Broderbund. Through an LBO in 2003, Barry became the majority shareholder of Riverdeep, which merged with Houghton Mifflin and Harcourt in the second and fourth largest transactions in Irish corporate history to create the largest school publisher in the world with an enterprise value of $110 billion.

The company publishes a comprehensive set of educational solutions, ranging from research-based textbook programmes to instructional technology to standards-based assessments for elementary and secondary schools and colleges. It also publishes reference works and books for adults and young readers.

William Trevor B.A., Litt.D. (h.c.) (1950)

William Trevor is one of Ireland's most prolific writers and a master storyteller. In a writing career spanning forty years he has written thirty books. Graduating from Trinity with a degree in history, he worked as a teacher, a copywriter and was a sculptor before becoming a fiction writer.

William Trevor is author of several collections of short stories, which include The Day We Got Drunk on Cake (1967), The Ballroom of Romance (1972), Angels at the Ritz (1975) and Beyond the Pale (1981). His early novels include The Old Boys (1964), winner of the Hawthornden Prize. The Children of Dynmouth (1976) and Fools of Fortune (1983) both won the Whitbread Novel Award, and Felicia's Journey (1994) won the Whitbread Book of the Year and was made into an acclaimed film by Atom Egoyan.

The Hill Bachelors (2000), a collection of short stories, won both the PEN/Macmillan Silver Pen Award for Short Stories and the Irish Times Irish Literature Prize for Fiction in 2001. The Story of Lucy Gault (2002) was short listed for the Man Booker Prize for Fiction.

Among his many honours, William Trevor was awarded an honorary KBE in 2002 for his services to literature and the Bob Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award in Irish Literature in 2008.