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IJPP Obituaries

Tom O’Connor*

Dear Reader,

We regret to record the deaths of two distinguished public servants who were members of our editorial boards, Kevin Murphy on 6 March 2012 and Richard Haslam on 8 April 2012.

A career civil servant, Kevin Murphy was educated at Synge Street Christian Brothers School, Dublin. Having served in the Departments of Industry and Commerce and Finance he moved to the Department of the Public Service on its establishment in 1973, becoming Secretary-General in 1983. When that Department’s functions were transferred to Finance in 1987 he was appointed Secretary-General, Public Service Management and Development at the Department of Finance. He subsequently embraced a contrasting challenge when appointed Ombudsman in November 1994 with the added responsibilities of Information Commissioner from April 1998. He discharged those new responsibilities with characteristic diligence, always determined to ensure that, in the administration of public policy, the interests of the public were scrupulously analysed and protected.

Richard (Dick) Haslam was educated at St Colman’s College Fermoy, Co. Cork obtaining a B.Comm. at University College Cork in 1951. He began his career as a local government official at Cork County Council in 1946, became Town Clerk at Youghal in 1954, Cork City Accountant 1958, Secretary to Limerick County Council in 1963, Assistant County Manager, Cork County Council in 1966 and ultimately County Manager in Limerick from 1970 to 1988. Meantime he continued his intense interest in public administration, lecturing part-time at University College Cork from 1962 and becoming head of the Department of Public Administration (now Government) in 1988.

His commitment to public service extended to many other spheres. For example he was a member of the Board of the College of Mary Immaculate in Limerick, Chairman of the former Marymount Hospice and a member of various Committees of Inquiry, notably the Barrington Committee on Local Government Reorganisation and Reform (1991). Above all he was a passionate advocate of a vibrant system of local government and a trenchant critic of creeping centralisation.

Solas na bhflaitheas don mbeirt acu.