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Hugo McNeill Bio

I graduated from Trinity in 1981 with a BA in Economics and subsequently did a Diploma in Anglo Irish literature in 1982. I was elected a Foundation Scholar in 1979. I also studied Economics at the University of Oxford.

I have had an extensive involvement with Trinity both during my student days but more importantly this involvement has carried on in subsequent times as outlined below and remains extensive to the present day.

During my time in Trinity, I captained the rugby club (DUFC) in 1981 and also played on the winning Collingwood (Intervarsity Soccer Cup) in 1979. I represented Ireland in rugby between 1981 and 1988, winning two championships and also represented the British and Irish Lions in 1983 on the tour to New Zealand. I captained Oxford while studying there in 1983. I am currently a Sports Ambassador for Trinity.

I have worked in international business for over thirty years with the Boston Consulting Group and Goldman Sachs in New York, Hong Kong, London and Dublin. From 2000 up until 2020 we advised and financed major Irish companies to help them grow, create employment and be successful on the international stage. 

I have always combined my business career with a passion for social justice.
I have been working extensively for many years with the Trinity Centre for People with Intellectual Disabilities, a remarkable programme that is best-in-class internationally and helps transform the lives of some of our most vulnerable citizens and their families. We have grown from having 4 leading Irish companies in 2016 who take on our students to over 40 today. The potential is enormous and I am so proud to be centrally involved in both what has been achieved to date and what is yet to come. We are determined to take this successful model around the country and share our experience with other third level institutions and potential business partners.  

When at Trinity I supported the Anti-Apartheid group by refusing to play with the Irish Rugby team on their 1981 tour of South Africa due to the Apartheid regime at the time. I was subsequently invited to meet President Nelson Mandela during his visit to Ireland in 1990. I helped set up the third world charity GOAL in Trinity and went on to do the same in the UK.

I have been involved in North-South and British Irish relations for over forty years through the Ireland Funds, Co Operation Ireland and my current role as Chair of the British Irish Association. In 1996 following the IRA bombing of Canary Wharf I organised a Peace International which brought the world’s leading rugby players to fill what is now the Aviva Stadium to support those working for peace in Ireland.

I am currently on the Committee of the Trinity Trust and Association.

I am asking Trinity graduates to support my work in disability inclusion, business and north-south relations by voting Hugo MacNeill #1.