An army officer who served Ireland in the Middle East and at the UN was today named as the new Chief of Staff of the Defence Forces.
Major-General Dermot Earley will be appointed as Chief of Staff to succeed Lieutenant-General Jim Sreenan who retires in June.
The Government confirmed it had given the green light for a formal appointment by the President, with Brigadier-General Pat O’Sullivan succeeding Major-General Earley as Deputy Chief of Staff.
General Earley, born in 1948, joined the Defence Forces as a cadet in 1965.
He completed the first Ranger Course in the Defence Forces which led to the establishment of special operations training and the formation of the Army Ranger Wing.
While he held a series of senior military posts within the Defence Forces, the officer has also taken on a number of high profile overseas assignments.
General Earley served in the Middle East from 1975-77 and in the Lebanon from 1982-83, while from 1987-91 he was the Deputy Military Advisor to the Secretary General of the United Nations at UN Headquarters in New York.
A GAA All-Star, General Earley played football for Roscommon for 20 years from 1965-85 winning a string of honours including five Connaught Senior medals.
The married father-of-six lists his interests as including all sports, current affairs, military history and reading.