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Rembering Dr Mary Redmond, founder of The Wheel

Conor Phelan              April 13, 2015

Everyone at BHP Insurances would like to express their heartfelt sadness at the death of Dr Mary Redmond, founder of The Wheel, who died on 6th April. We would also like to extend our deepest sympathies to her husband, son, family and friends.

Dr Redmond was well known for her social entrepreneurship. In 1999, having previously been associated with a number of charities, she established The Wheel, the support and representative body connecting community and voluntary organisations and charities across Ireland. Her vision of a network that would encompass the entire community, voluntary and not-for-profit sector, has led to The Wheel becoming the resource centre and forum that it is today.

She set up the Irish Hospice Foundation in 1985, when the long illness of her late father brought her attention to the shortage of hospice space. The Hospice Foundation is now the leader of the voluntary sector in hospice care. CEO Sharon Foley described Dr Redmond as “an inspirational and visionary leader and one of the founders of the hospice movement in Ireland”.

Having begun teaching law at UCD when she was 19 years old, Dr Redmond studied at both Cambridge and Oxford universities and was conferred with a Doctor in Laws (LL.D) by chancellor Mary Robinson in Trinity College in 2014.

In the corporate world, she was a deputy governor of the Bank of Ireland, a member of the board of Smurfit, a member of the RTÉ Authority, a director of Campbell Bewleys and a board member of Royal Liver Insurance. She also served consecutive terms on the Labour Relations Commission.

In 2013, Dr Redmond published The Pink Ribbon Path, detailing her journey living with cancer, and last December wrote a children’s book called Marlena The Fairy Princess – Making Friends.

She made a great contribution to the community, voluntary and not-for-profit sector in Ireland and her legacy will remain for years to come. May she rest in peace.

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