Belfast Telegraph

Meet the Northern Ireland people making debut in Who's Who prestigious guide

Alison Millar
Alison Millar
The Dean of Belfast Archdeacon Stephen Forde
James "Jay" Piggot
Orfhlaith Begley

By Dick Barton and Adrian Rutherford

The Dean of Belfast and Northern Ireland's newest MP are among nine people from here added to the latest edition of Who's Who.

Stephen Forde and Orfhlaith Begley join the likes of Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin and Pope Francis in the pages of the 2019 encyclopaedia of global influencers.

The book contains around 34,000 autobiographical entries of some of the most famous, powerful and significant people in the world.

It has been published annually since 1849 and entry - by invitation only - is considered a significant achievement.

A total of 700 new names are in the 2019 edition, published on Monday. The nine from Northern Ireland are drawn from a wide variety of backgrounds, including politics, the legal profession and education.

Among them is the Very Rev Forde, who was installed as the 14th Dean of Belfast earlier this year.

He said: "I am very pleased as this is a recognition of the place that the Dean of Belfast has in the City of Belfast.

"It is an unexpected honour for my name to be listed along with other such important people."

Ms Begley was selected as Sinn Fein MP for West Tyrone in a by-election in May caused by the resignation of Barry McElduff.

Alison Millar, the Lord-Lieutenant of Co Londonderry, also makes a first appearance in the book.

Three of the nine entries are from the legal world.

Caroline Haughey QC is a Newry-born barrister based in London, and daughter of the late Eddie Haughey, later Lord Ballyedmond. He was one of Northern Ireland's richest people, with an estimated £650m fortune, when he was killed in a helicopter crash in 2014.

Belfast-born judge Diane Campbell, a London-based barrister who this year was appointed as a circuit judge, is also included.

So too is Caroline Carberry QC, who was born in Co Armagh and is now a London-based Recorder and barrister.

From the world of agriculture is Graeme Cooke, deputy Chief Veterinary Officer at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, who is from Co Fermanagh.

James "Jay" Piggot (inset left), the Belfast-born headmaster of Epsom College in Surrey, also features, as does Patrick "Paddy" Lillis, the Belfast-born general secretary of the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers (USDAW).

Who's Who has been published since 1849, and entries include judges, civil servants, politicians and notable figures from academia, sport and the arts. Each entry is written by the subject and based on a questionnaire. Entries typically include names, dates of birth, career details, club memberships, education and professional qualifications.

Inclusion carries a considerable level of prestige. The Wall Street Journal has said that an entry in Who's Who "really puts the stamp of eminence on a modern British life".

Once someone is included in Who's Who, he or she remains in it for life. So, for example, MPs are not removed even when they leave Parliament.

Intriguingly, the 7th Earl of Lucan is still listed in the book, even though he has been missing since 1974 and was declared legally dead in 1999.

After death, entries are transferred to Who's Who's sister publication, Who Was Who.

The 2019 edition of Who's Who will be published by A & C Black on Monday, priced at £325

Belfast Telegraph


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