United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres announced on 31 October 2018 the appointment of Nóirín O'Sullivan of Ireland as the Assistant Secretary-General for Safety and Security. Ms. O’Sullivan succeeds Fadzai Gwaradzimba of Zimbabwe, to whom the Secretary-General is grateful for her commitment and dedicated service to the Organization.
As deputy to the Under-Secretary-General for Safety and Security (USG/DSS), the Assistant Secretary-General will be responsible for the day-to-day overall management of the Department and supporting the USG in the overall leadership and management of the Department.
Ms. O’Sullivan has over 36 years of experience in the international law enforcement and security environment, and most recently held the position of Garda Commissioner of An Garda Síochána in Ireland. Prior to that, she was the Interim Acting Commissioner of An Garda Síochána, responsible for advising the Minister of Justice and the Government of Ireland on all matters pertaining to national security and policing. Ms. O’Sullivan began her career with An Garda Síochána in Ireland in June 1981 and progressed through the ranks, holding various operational and managerial positions since then.
Ms. O’Sullivan brings to the role her extensive experience in international safety and security management, strategic management and leadership. She is a leader in partnership building, leading teams and able to manage complexity and to drive strategic change. She also brings an in-depth knowledge of international security, crisis management, strategic and institutional leadership and gender issues to the position.
Born in Ireland in 1960, Ms. O’Sullivan holds a Master of Business Studies (MBS) in Strategic Management and Planning from the Michael Smurfit School of Business, University College Dublin and a Bachelor of Arts in Police Management by Garda College and University of Limerick. She holds an Honorary Doctorate of Laws from the University of Ulster.
Ms. O’Sullivan is married and has three sons.