The Irish Congress of Trade Unions announced on Wednesday (21st January), that SIPTU Vice President, Patricia King, is to succeed outgoing General Secretary David Begg, when he steps down in March. Patricia will be the first woman General Secretary in the 121-year history of Congress. SIPTU General President, Jack O’Connor, said: “SIPTU would like to offer our warmest congratulations to Patricia King on her appointment. She is one of the most experienced and skilled trade union representatives in the country. “We wish her every success as she assumes one of the most important and difficult roles in the trade union movement and we look forward to continuing to work with her in the interests of union members and working people generally.” Left political leaders also offered their congratulations to King. Leader of the Labour Party and Tánaiste, Joan Burton, said: “The appointment of a woman to the most senior trade union post in the country is a landmark and progressive development. It is a greatly positive step for those of us who wish to see more women taking up positions of leadership in Ireland.” Sinn Féin President, Gerry Adams, welcomed the appointment adding that King was assuming her new role “at a difficult time for workers and a particularly challenging time for the trade union movement in Ireland.” King has represented workers in all areas of the economy, in both the public and private sectors. Patricia was a key negotiator in both the Croke Park and Haddington Road agreements and played a leading role in the Irish Ferries dispute. For more click below SIPTU congratulates Patricia King on appointment as Congress General Secretary