George Hook in 2011
19 May 1941|
|Other names||The Alpha Male, Hooky, The Hooky Monster|
|Education||Rathmines College of Commerce, Dublin Institute of Technology|
|Occupation||Journalist and Radio Broadcaster|
|Height||1.90 m (6 ft 3 in) |
George Hook (born 19 May 1941) is an Irish broadcaster, journalist and rugby union pundit. He formerly hosted High Noon on the Irish radio station Newstalk and is a member of the popular sports media website, Pundit Arena.
He had a career as a rugby union coach and businessman, before becoming a rugby pundit on RTÉ Television in 1997. He has also made other TV appearances, such as judging on Jigs & Reels and coaching on Celebrity Bainisteoir.
Hook grew up in Cork in a Jewish family. He converted to Roman Catholicism and attended Presentation Brothers College, a rugby union stronghold. Subsequently, he attended Rathmines College of Commerce. On his proud Christian Brothers upbringing Hook commented that "I am proud that Presentation College accepted Jewish boys when the State system was closed to them".
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Hook has had a number of jobs, beginning as a temporary clerk for CIÉ, and later becoming a travelling salesman for the Burroughs Corporation (now Unisys). He ran a catering business for over twenty years. He coached London Irish and Connacht as well as the United States national team in the 1987 Rugby World Cup.
The Right Hook, Hook's radio show on Newstalk, is a popular late afternoon to early evening drive-time programme. His wife, "the lovely Ingrid", is regularly subjected to having her intimate details discussed and dissected on air by Hook.
Hook appears as a rugby pundit on RTÉ on a regular basis and appeared as a judge on RTÉ celebrity dancing show Jigs & Reels. He has also been parodied in The State of Us. In 2005, he published an autobiography, "Time Added On". The book described his years involved in business and the failure of this career path.
On 26 January 2014, Hook announced that he would retire from Newstalk in 2016 and television punditry after the 2015 Rugby World Cup but RTÉ lost the right for Irish broadcasting to TV3. On 13 February 2015, he reversed his decision to retire from television punditry. However, on 17 March the same year, Hook announced that he would retire from television punditry saying he would never watch the RTÉ rugby panel again.
The next day a magnitude 7.0 Mw earthquake struck Haiti. After the earthquake Hook was heard to say: "It is a godforsaken place. God has literally forsaken it." Following the January 2010 earthquake. Hook urged his radio listeners to donate money.
Hook is also the patron of Comber Foundation, an Irish charity working in Romania since 1991, of which his daughter Michelle McGill is a trustee. The charity provides homes in the community for adults with disabilities who grew up in institutions and orphanages
In 2010, as part of the Catholic Church's "Year for Priests" celebration, he contributed to a DVD, In Praise of Priests, featuring interviews with various people expressing admiration for their favourite priest.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 29 November 2014. Retrieved 23 November 2014.
- [dead link]
- "George Hook". Personally Speaking Bureau. Retrieved 24 June 2016.
- "Presentation Brothers College (PBC) School, Cork, Ireland - Activities - Talks / Lectures". Pbc-cork.ie. Retrieved 2017-08-09.
- "Radio 1 recovers lost listeners, ratings survey shows". Irishtimes.com. Retrieved 24 June 2016.
- Ni Bhraonain, Eimear (18 July 2012). "George's 'lovely Ingrid' wasn't easily hooked". Irish Independent. Independent News & Media. Archived from the original on 17 February 2013. Retrieved 18 July 2012.
- The Irish Times, "Irish charity to build houses in Haiti", Thursday, 15 January 2009
- Niamh Hennessy, Irish Examiner, "Hook urges volunteers to get building in Haiti", 13 January 2010.
- Irish Central "Irish connections run very deep to Haiti", 12 January 2010.
- Irish Independent, "Jason O'Brien: Godforsaken Haiti needs help now, more than ever", 14 January 2010.
- Irish Independent, "George hooks Haiti volunteers", 13 January 2010
- "Comber Foundation website" Archived 30 July 2010 at the Wayback Machine., "Comber Foundation", 2010
- "Builders giving up work to build homes for orphans", herald.ie, 2 March 2009.
- "The Right Hook". The Right Hook.
- "Failure of Church leaders to deal with abuse a "source of deep shame"". Donegal Democrat. Johnston Press. 18 August 2010. Archived from the original on 17 February 2013. Retrieved 18 August 2010.
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