GSOC welcomes appointment of Judge Rory MacCabe as new Chair

20 Jan 2022

Judge Rory MacCabe

The Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (GSOC) has today (Thursday 20 January 2022) welcomed the appointment  of Judge Rory MacCabe as its new member and Chairperson.

Judge MacCabe brings with him a wealth of experience in both legal and public sector leadership, and will be a valuable addition to the Commission.

GSOC Commissioners Ms Emily Logan and Mr Hugh Hume, along with GSOC’s staff, look forward to working with Judge MacCabe during what will be a period of transformation and change for GSOC, and for Ireland’s broader policing accountability infrastructure.



Under the Garda Síochána Act 2005, the Commission is made up of three members, one of whom is Chairperson. They are appointed by the President following nomination by government and resolutions in houses of the Oireachtas.

GSOC’s outgoing Chairperson, Ms Justice Mary Ellen Ring, completed her term in December 2021. GSOC’s other two Commissioners, Ms Emily Logan and Mr Hugh Hume, were appointed in February 2021.

The process for the selection and appointment of the new Chairperson was coordinated by the Department of Justice. For detail see Departmental press releases HERE and HERE.

Judge Rory MacCabe was called to the Bar in 1984 and admitted to the Inner Bar in 1999. He was appointed to the Circuit Court in 2007, and to the High Court in January 2022.  Prior to joining the Bar he was a civil servant.

Judge MacCabe’s term will be of three years’ duration, or until the functions of GSOC are transferred to the new Garda Ombudsman institution envisaged under the draft Policing, Security and Community Safety Bill.

Policing, Security and Community Safety Bill

  • The heads of the Policing, Security and Community Safety Bill were published in April 2021, and are available HERE.
  • The broad-ranging heads of bill seeks to address some of the key recommendations of the Commission on the Future of Policing, amongst which was the expansion of the powers, independence and remit of the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission.
  • This will include the restructuring of GSOC’s leadership structure away from a three-person ‘Commission’, to an Ombudsman and Deputy Ombudsman structure.
  • On 4 December 2021, GSOC published detailed observations and commentary on the draft legislation. This is available on the GSOC website HERE