Breda O'Brien (born in 1962) is an Irish teacher and columnist, writing a weekly column for The Irish Times. O'Brien is a frequent spokesperson for Catholic based views of political issues such as opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage. She founded the Irish chapter of Feminists for Life in 1992.
Early life and education
Born in Dungarvan, County Waterford, O'Brien was educated at the Convent of Mercy, Dungarvan and later at the Mater Dei Institute of Education, Dublin. In 1987 she was awarded a diploma in audio visual production from the Crex Avex, Lyon, France. In 1988, she was awarded a diploma in video production from Lumen Video Production School, Dallas, Texas.
O'Brien taught at Muckross Park College, a public Catholic girls' school, between 1983 and 1987. She later returned to this post in 1992, and has remained there since. She has worked as a video producer and communications trainer in the Catholic Communications Centre (founded by the Irish Catholic Bishops' Conference), Booterstown, Dublin from 1988 to 1991. She worked as a researcher for RTÉ from 1991 to 1992. Her career as a columnist began with The Sunday Business Post from 1997 to 2000 and continued with The Irish Times.
O'Brien is a patron of the Iona Institute, a conservative Catholic pressure group, and appears regularly in the Irish media as a contributor, supporting the teachings of the Catholic Church. In her Irish Times column, she has expressed her opposition to abortion in all circumstances, including rape, incest and fatal foetal abnormality, and to same-sex marriage, but does not now oppose civil partnership.
- Bourke, Angela, ed. (2002). The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing: Irish Women's Writing and Traditions, Volume 5. NYU Press. ISBN 9780814799079.
- O'Brien, Breda (5 May 2008). "It is better to avoid making hijab a major issue". The Irish Times (Dublin: The Irish Times). Retrieved 7 May 2009.
- Personnel And Patrons, the Iona Institute, retrieved 10 April 2009
- O'Brien, Breda (2012). "Despite some awful dilemmas, abortion is not an option". The Irish Times (Dublin: The Irish Times). Retrieved 16 April 2013.
- Ryan, Órla (22 January 2014). "‘Should we allow mothers to marry their daughters?’". TheJournal.ie. Retrieved 16 February 2015.
- Finucane, Marian (22 February 2014). "Breda O'Brien - interviewed on the Marian Finucane Show". RTÉ Radio 1. Retrieved 16 February 2015.