Emily O’Reilly, a Nieman fellow in the class of 1988 and a member of the Nieman Advisory Board, has been elected as European Ombudsman by the European Parliament in Strasbourg. After a hard-fought three-month campaign, she was chosen for the position in a run-off with Dutch MEP Ria Oomen-Ruijten in the third round of voting.
When she assumes her new role in October, O’Reilly will investigate complaints from citizens in the European Union’s 28 member states about EU institutions in relation to poor administration. O’Reilly will be the third ombudsman since the office was created in 1994 and the first woman to hold the post.
An award-winning journalist, broadcaster and author, O’Reilly has served as Ireland’s Ombudsman since 2003. She was appointed by the Irish president and is currently serving her second six-year term.