In a lavish White House ceremony this evening, Mary was awarded the Medal of Freedom - one of the highest civilian honours in the US - by President Barack Obama. She was one of 16 people being honored, including Senator Edward Kennedy and physicist Stephen Hawking.
In a statement from Dublin, Minister for Foreign Affairs Micheál Martin said the award was a fitting tribute to Mrs Robinson. "Throughout her career, in particular in her role as President of Ireland and as UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, and more recently through her work as founder of the Ethical Globalisation Initiative, Mary Robinson has been an outstanding advocate and champion for human rights and fairness for all. Irish people everywhere are very proud of her being honoured by this award and her many achievements during a distinguished career of advocacy," he added
Mrs. Robinson was Ireland's first female President and served from 1990 until 1997 and she also worked as a United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights for five years until 2002 where she earned a no-nonsense reputation often taking to task the core members of the UN Security Council itself.
Well done Mary - keep fighting the good fight.
p.s. HDEO will be back in full post-holiday swing from 24th of August.