The Annual John M. Kelly Memorial Lecture

The UCD Sutherland School of Law is delighted to announce that The Hon. Mr. Justice Donal O’Donnell will deliver The Annual John M. Kelly Annual Lecture on May 5th, 2016.




Date:                                     Thursday May 5th, 2016 


Time:                                     6pm                       Tea/Coffee

                                                6.30pm                 Lecture

7.30pm                 Drinks Reception


All are welcome to attend and while there is no charge for this event however we request that you register in advance by emailing: by April 28th


The Hon. Mr. Justice Donal O'Donnell, Judge of the Supreme Court

Mr. Justice Donal O'Donnell was born in Belfast and educated at St Mary's C.B.S., University College Dublin (B.C.L.), King's Inns (B.L.) and the University of Virginia (LL.M).  After graduating in UCD he was engaged as a tutor in the School of Law.

In 1982, he was called to the Irish Bar, commenced practice in 1983 and was called to the Bar of Northern Ireland in 1989.  He took silk in 1995 and has practised in all Courts in Ireland, in the European Court of Justice (ECJ) and the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR). While at the Bar he published articles in the Northern Ireland Legal Quarterly (NILQ), Judicial Studies Institute Journal (JSIJ), and Bar Review.

Mr Justice O'Donnell was a member of the Law Reform Commission from 2005 -2012. He became a Bencher of the Kings Inns in 2009 and in 2010 was appointed to the Supreme Court direct from the Bar where is the senior ordinary judge.  


John M. Kelly (1931-1991)

John M. Kelly was born in Dublin and educated at Glenstal Abbey, UCD, Heidelberg University, Oxford University and the King’s Inns. He studied a number of law courses and qualified as a barrister. He was a fellow and a lecturer at Trinity College Oxford from 1961-65; Professor of Roman Law and Jurisprudence at UCD from 1965; and also edited The Irish Jurist from 1966-73. 

As an expert in constitutional law, he had various law publications including: Fundamental Rights in Irish Law, Constituting Roman Litigation, Studies in Civil Jurisprudence of the Roman Republic and The Irish Constitution. John Kelly was elected to Seanad Eireann in 1969 and subsequently served as TD for Dublin South from 1973 - 1989, when he retired from politics. He served as a Junior Minister in the 70s and subsequently as Attorney General, acting Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Trade and Tourism.

John M. Kelly died suddenly on January 24, 1991 aged 59 years.