A Taoiseach in waiting: Micheál Martin's journey from Turners Cross to Dáil Eireann 

A Taoiseach in waiting: Micheál Martin's journey from Turners Cross to Dáil Eireann 

Fianna Fáil leader Micheal Martin TD during Government talks
at Government buildings on Merrion Street Dublin.
Photo:Gareth Chaney/Collins

BORN and raised in the city, Micheál Martin is poised to become the first Cork Taoiseach since Jack Lynch.

Martin was born in Turners Cross to Lana Corbett and Paddy Martin, an ex-Irish international boxer and former CIE worker.

He attended the local Scoil Chríost Rí and later Coláiste Chríost Rí, before embarking on an Arts degree at University College Cork.

After completing a Master of Arts thesis in Political History, he decided to pursue a career as a secondary school teacher and took a post in St. Kieran’s College on Camden Quay in the city.

Fianna Fáil leader Micheal Martin TD during Government talksat Government buildings on Merrion Street Dublin.Photo:Gareth Chaney/Collins
Fianna Fáil leader Micheal Martin TD during Government talksat Government buildings on Merrion Street Dublin.Photo:Gareth Chaney/Collins

However, during his time at UCC, the Cork man developed a keen interest in politics, and in 1985 he took his first steps into local politics when he was elected to the then Cork Corporation.

Three years later, in 1988 he became a member of the Fianna Fáil National Executive.

The now Cork South Central TD was first elected to the Dail in 1989 and served as Lord Mayor of Cork City from 1992 to 1993 before the dual mandate was abolished.

During his time at Dáil Eireann, the Cork South Central TD has served on the Fianna Fáil front bench and in four cabinet posts.

In 1997, Micheál Martin became Minister for Education, before moving onto the Department of Health in 2000 where he served as the Minister for Health until 2004.

It was during his time at the Department of Health that Micheál Martin introduced the workplace smoking ban.

Leader of Fianna Fáil Micheal Martin TD leaving Government Buildings this afternoon after Government Formation talks . Photo: Sam Boal/Rollingnews.ie
Leader of Fianna Fáil Micheal Martin TD leaving Government Buildings this afternoon after Government Formation talks . Photo: Sam Boal/Rollingnews.ie

He held the position of Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment from 2004 to 2008 and served as Minister for Foreign Affairs from 2008 to 2011.

While Martin did not enter politics until years after Cork’s first Taoiseach Jack Lynch had resigned from the position and as leader of Fianna Fáil, Lynch was a longstanding friend of Martin's late father and a man who Micheál Martin met with on many occasions over the years.

In his personal life, Micheál Martin is married to Mary O’Shea and they live in Ballinlough, just minutes from where the man likely to be the next leader of the Government was born.

He is also known to be a keen supporter of Nemo Rangers and Cork GAA.

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