Trinity pays tribute to Dr Peter Sutherland

Posted on: 08 January 2018

It is with great sadness that the College community has learned of the death of Dr Peter Sutherland who had a long standing relationship with Trinity College Dublin.

During his long and distinguished career, Dr Sutherland held many influential senior positions such as chairman of Goldman Sachs International, Attorney General of Ireland, EC Commissioner responsible for Competition Policy, and UN Special Representative for Migration and Development.

Peter Sutherland was a generous benefactor to the University, most notably for the creation of the Institute for International Integration Studies (IIIS) The Sutherland Centre, which has now evolved into Trinity College Dublin’s newly launched Trinity Research in Social Sciences (TRiSS) initiative in addition to funding of the Grattan Scholarship on Migration.

He spearheaded the education initiative, now known as the Erasmus Exchange Programme, over 30 years ago while he was European Commissioner for education.

In July 1996, Peter Sutherland was conferred with an honorary doctorate of Laws (LLD) by Trinity College Dublin. He delivered the Trinity Henry Grattan Lecture in the Irish Embassy in London in 2014 with the theme of the challenges on EU migration. He was an adjunct Professor of Economics at Trinity and served as a member of the Board of Trinity Foundation.

His name appears in the "Benefactors through the Centuries" Roll of Honour – names of benefactors who made substantial gifts to Trinity which are embossed permanently on the frieze beneath the ceiling of the grand entrance to the Dining Hall.

Peter Sutherland held many senior positions including Chairman of the London School of Economics, Chairman of BP plc, Chairman of Allied Irish Banks, Director General of GATT and subsequently the WTO on its creation. He served on the Board of Directors of The Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc and was associated with, amongst others, the following organisations: Trilateral Commission Honorary Chairman and the World Economic Forum.

He was a Member of the Royal Irish Academy and Consultor for the Administration of the Patrimony of the Holy See. He received an Honorary Knighthood in the United Kingdom in 2004 for his services for international relations and a Papal Knighthood in 2008. He was also decorated by the following States: France, Spain, Belgium, Portugal, New Zealand, Brazil, Morocco. In addition he has received the Rockefeller prize for global leadership and the Gold Medal of the European Parliament.

Trinity wishes to extend its condolences to his wife, family and wide circle of friends.