Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Coláiste Ríoga na Máinleá in Éirinn

18-06-2007 James Earl Carter, 39th President of the United States awarded Honorary Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland

18 June 2007

Monday, 18th June 2007: The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) awarded the 39thPresident of the United States, James Earl Carter with an Honorary Fellowship when he visited the College today. President Carter, accompanied by his wife Roslynn, was awarded the Fellowship in recognition of his tireless work in promoting peace, health and democracy throughout the world. 

President Carter receives his Fellowship from RCSI President Gerald C O'Sullivan

Carter was born in 1924, in Plains, Georgia and in 1977 was elected the 39th President of the United States. He sought to make the United States a force for peace in the world, and made the promotion of human rights a centerpiece of his foreign policy.His presidency was marked by significant achievements including the negotiation of the Panama Canal treaties, the Camp David Accords and the treaty of peace between Egypt and Israel.

Since leaving office, President Carter has become a champion for human rights, a spokesperson for democracy, a best-selling author and a traveling ambassador of peace, resolving international disputes and helping to monitor elections in newly emerging democracies. He has served as an international mediator in North Korea, Haiti, Bosnia, Venezuela, and elsewhere, and has worked to focus world attention on epidemics in Africa. 

President Carter addresses guests at RCSI

He and his wife Rosalynn founded the Carter Centre in 1986 which has become an important arena for the advancement of human rights and the alleviation of poverty and suffering. The centre promotes democracy, mediates in conflicts, and monitors the electoral process in support of free and fair elections. The centre also works to improve global health through the control and eradication of diseases such as Guinea worm disease, malaria, and trachoma. 

President Carter and his wife Rosalynn are greeted by RCSI President Gerald O'Sullivan

In 2002, his commitment to peace, democracy and economic and social development throughout the world was recognised with the Nobel Peace Prize.

RCSI President Prof. Gerald O’Sullivan said “President Carter’s tireless campaign for peace, human rights and democracy has persisted through his courage, conviction and determination. By bestowing on him our highest award of Honorary Fellowship, we are recognising his dedication to eradicating disease, poverty and torture throughout the world – aims which we at RCSI share”. 

Since 1990, honorary fellowships have been conferred by RCSI on, amongst others, Uachtaráin na hEireann Mary McAleese and Mary Robinson; Dr. Garrett Fitzgerald; Nelson Mandela; Seamus Heaney, Senator George Mitchell ,Seamus Mallon and  Bob Geldof.