Chairman of the Fitzpatrick Hotel Group, John Fitzpatrick, who operates two hotels in New York City, has received an honorary doctorate at Queen's University, in Belfast.

Norma Sinte, Director of Development and Alumni Relations at Queen’s presented Fitzpatrick with the doctorate said "Fitzpatrick Hotels became the first Irish owned hotel company to operate in the United States after John Fitzpatrick moved from Ireland to New York in the late 1980’s to expand the family business.

"As well as being an astute businessman, John is committed to charity work in the US and here in Ireland. Through a memorial fund set up in honor of his late parents, he has been instrumental in raising over €1.3 million for various charities, including the Corrymeela Community and Barretstown, an organization dedicated to bringing joy and comfort to children with cancer and other illnesses in Ireland.
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“In August 2008 John received an OBE in recognition of his exceptional contribution to peace and reconciliation in Northern Ireland and in 2010 he was named Irish American of the Year in recognition of his humanitarian and charitable commitments. I am delighted that today he can add an honorary degree from Queen’s to that list of accolades.”

Along with Fitzpatrick Ruth Dudley Edwards, the successful novelist and academic, also received an honorary doctorate for distinction in literature. Dudley Edwards is the prizewinning author of ten books on Irish and British history, a successful crime novelist and a regular media contributor.

John Fitzpatrick outside Queen's University