The country’s first press ombudsman has officially retired and described the role as one of the most rewarding of his distinguished career.
John Horgan was appointed to the newly created role of press regulator in 2007 and, since then, he has pioneered the development of the oversight process.
Prof Horgan said it was important for his office to work on behalf of those who had genuine complaints while also promoting good journalism which continues to play a crucial role in society.
“Working with serious journalists whom I know and respect, on behalf of the Irish public, and with the objective of promoting best practice in journalism and providing real redress for complainants, has been one of the most rewarding experience of my professional life,” said Prof Horgan.
“Good journalism is now more important than ever. Irish life would be immeasurably poorer without it. I am sure that my successor, Peter Feeney, shares these ideals and will carry on the good work.”
Prof Horgan announced his retirement earlier this year and he will be replaced by Peter Feeney, who was RTÉ’s head of broadcast compliance and previously the editor of its current affairs schedule on television.
Prof Horgan began working for the Evening Press in 1962 and later with the Irish Times in the areas of religious affairs, education and as a foreign correspondent. He was subsequently a member of the Seanad, was elected to the Dáil, and the European Parliament under the Labour Party flag.
He became professor of journalism at Dublin City University in 1983 and remains one of the leading academics in study of Irish media.
Mr Horgan will take up a position as visiting scholar at Boston College from September to December, a position which was taken up by former president Mary McAleese last year.
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