Former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has been appointed the new Chancellor of Queen’s University Belfast.
Mrs Clinton will take up the largely ceremonial role immediately and will serve for five years.
The former First Lady succeeds Dr Tom Moran, who passed away last year, and becomes the first woman to take up the post.
Accepting the position, Mrs Clinton said it is a “great privilege” to be named Chancellor of Queen’s, a place she has “great fondness” for.
“The university is making waves internationally for its research and impact and I am proud to be an ambassador and help grow its reputation for excellence,” she added.
Mrs Clinton has a long history with Northern Ireland, first visiting in November 1995 with her husband, President Bill Clinton.
In 2018 she received an honorary degree from Queen’s and a new scholarship was set up in her name for post-graduate study in politics, human rights and peacebuilding.
Mr Stephen Prenter, Pro-Chancellor, and Chair of Senate, the university’s governing body, said: “I am delighted that Queen’s has chosen Hillary Clinton to be its new Chancellor.
“Secretary Clinton has made a considerable contribution to Northern Ireland and as an internationally recognised leader will be an incredible advocate for Queen’s and an inspirational role model for the Queen’s community.”
As Chancellor, Mrs Clinton will preside over graduation ceremonies and act as an ambassador for Queen’s abroad.
She will also act as an advisor to the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Ian Greer, and senior management.
South Belfast MP Claire Hanna welcomed the appointment, describing it as a “positive reflection on Queen’s University and Northern Ireland”.
“Secretary Clinton has made a considerable contribution to Northern Ireland and as an internationally recognised leader will be a very fine advocate for Queen’s and an inspirational role model for the student and alumni community,” she added.
“Secretary Clinton has a long-standing relationship with Belfast, spanning decades. This new role is an extension of her long-standing commitment to people in Belfast and across the North. As local MP, I look forward to supporting Chancellor Clinton, Professor Ian Greer and their colleagues across QUB.”