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Ruairí Quinn

Ruairí Quinn (b.1946), Irish politician, former leader of the Labour Party (1997-2002).

Ruairí Quinn was born on 2 April 1946. He was educated at Blackrock College, University College Dublin and School of Ekistics in Athens. He became an architect with Dublin Corporation in 1971. He became a partner in an architecture firm between 1973 and 1982. In 1976 he was appointed to Seanad Éireann. The following year he was elected a Labour TD for a Dublin constituency. From 1981-1982 he served in Seanad Éireann again. He was re-elected as TD in 1982.

In 1982 he became Minister of State at the Department of the Environment. Between 1983 and 1986 he served as Minister for Labour. From 1986-1987 he was appointed Minister for the Public service. In 1989 he became deputy leader of the Labour Party. he was director of elections for Mary Robinson's successful Presidential election campaign. In the Fianna Fáil-Labour coalition government of 1993/1994 Quinn became Minister for Enterprise and Employment. The following year he became Minister for Finance in the Fine Gael-Irish Labour Party|Labour Coalition government.

In 1997 Dick Spring retired as leader of the Labour Party. Ruairí Quinn became the new leader. In 1999 the Labour Party and Democratic Left merged. Prionsias de Rossa of the latter party became president, while Quinn remained as leader of the party. In 2002 Quinn retired as Labour leader, being replaced by Pat Rabbitte. He is still a TD for his Dublin constituency.