Colleagues pay tribute after death of former Northern Ireland Housing Executive chief
The Northern Ireland Housing Executive (NIHE) last night paid tribute to its former chief executive Paddy McIntyre.
The Bangor man, who was in his late 60s, spent four decades in the world of public housing, beginning his career as a housing trainee with the Northern Ireland Housing Trust on 1971 at the height of the Troubles.
His long and distinguished career in housing culminated with his appointment as chief executive of the NIHE in 1999, a position he held until his retirement at 60 in 2010.
Current NIHE chief executive Clark Bailie said: "It is with great sadness that we learned of the death of colleague and former chief executive Paddy McIntyre.
"He will be a great loss to everyone who knew him.
"Our thoughts and deepest sympathies are with Paddy's family and friends at this very difficult time.
"Paddy will be recognised as a central figure in the success of the Housing Executive and in helping improve the lives of so many people.
"Paddy worked in the Housing Executive for over 40 years, often in very challenging times."
He added: "He was a leader in delivering social change through better housing and providing services to all the people and communities which we serve."
Former Social Development Minister Margaret Ritchie knew Mr McIntyre for many years. The former MP and SDLP party leader said he would be sorely missed.
"Paddy was a very hard-working person, who had a great passion for social housing - particularly for people in urgent housing need," she said.
He never forgot the principles of social justice - that the needs of the people come first.
He always put tenants' needs first.
"I want to offer my sympathies to Paddy's wife Catherine and to his children and family circle," Ms Ritchie said last night.
"I know he will be sorely missed."
Last night, Mr McIntyre's daughter Sinead opened her heart about the father she loved.
"We are just all heartbroken to be honest. But I would say he was just a wonderful person.
"Kind, funny, clever and generous - particularly with his time. He was a good man.
"For me personally he taught me to be tolerant, determined and to believe I could be whatever I wanted to be.
"He was a great dad, stepdad, grandad and friend to so many and we will all miss him more than words can say."
Chief executive of the Northern Ireland Federation of Housing Associations, Ben Collins added: “Paddy McIntyre was passionate about customer service and a strong believer in social housing. He was a big supporter of the housing association movement. For him the Housing Executive and housing associations were part of one housing family. Over many years he made a significant contribution to the sector and our thoughts are with his family at this time.”
A funeral service for Mr McIntyre will take place at S Clarke & Son Funeral Church, Bangor today at 11.00am followed by a private cremation on Monday.