Wexford-born diplomat Colum Hatchell is travelling to South America this coming weekend to take up duty as the new Irish Ambassador to Chile, Ecuador and Peru.
The Ambassador Designate who attended the Faythe School as a young boy, is due to present his credentials to the President of Chile Gabriel Boric Font next week.
A son of Wexford town native George Hatchell and his Cork-born wife Carmel, he is moving to Chile with his wife Stefanie Sowinski and their children Cillian (7) and Aoife (4) and will be based in the capital Santiago.
Colum (44) was born in Wexford and lived locally until the age of eight when the family relocated to Cork after his former Telecom employee father George transferred to the company’s training department in Cork in 1987.
After secondary school, he graduated from University College Cork with a BA in EU History and Politics and later studied for an MA in EU Politics at the College of Europe in Bruges.
His first job in 2002 was as an analyst with the European Green Party at the European Parliament in Brussels and the following year he took up a job as a Government Relations Consultant for the fast food company McDonalds Europe in Brussels.
He joined the Department of Foreign Affairs as Third Secretary in September 2005 becoming Deputy Head of Mission at the Embassy of Ireland in Riyadh in Saudi Arabia a year later.
In 2008 he joined the Permanent Representation of Ireland to the EU, moving to the Strategy and Performance Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) in 2011 and the following year, he was appointed Deputy Head of Mission at the Irish Embassy in Kampala in Uganda.
He became the Consulate General Of Ireland in San Francisco in June 2015 and two years later, he rose to First Secretary in the Permanent Representation of Ireland to the EU before joining the Human Resources Division of the MFA as Deputy Director in 2021 and last year he became Director of the Corporate Services Division.
The South American posting is Colum’s first appointment as Irish Ambassador and his family are immensely proud of him, according to his father George.
“We are very proud of him. It is something he always wanted. His mother can remember Colum declaring one time as a teenager -’I’m going to be diplomat’.
The new Ambassador has a sister Niamh, who is a primary school teacher in Cork and a brother Ruairí who works with Nike in Singapore.
Source : Independent.ie