Marian Finucane, 69, Dies; Influential Voice in Irish Radio

Marian Finucane, 69, Dies; Influential Voice in Irish Radio


After a short spell in architecture, she switched to working for the state-owned Radio Teilifis Eireann, then the country’s only licensed radio station, as a continuity announcer, delivering information between programs. She was still considered relatively inexperienced when, at 29, she was chosen to present the new “Women Today” program with a team of young, mainly female producers and researchers.

From her early successes in women’s programming, she went on to present “Liveline,” a prime time call-in show, which grew out of “Women Today” and remains a national institution. She left that program in 1999 and went on to present “The Marian Finucane Show,” first in a morning slot and then, starting in 2005, on weekends. She was host of the show at her death.

The program, attracting the largest weekend listenership of any in Ireland, served as a guide to the thinking of mainstream politicians, journalists and academics on such issues as economic austerity after the financial crash of 2008. To much of the public she was known simply as “Marian.”

Ms. Finucane married a fellow architect, Larry Granville, in 1974; they were divorced five years later. She later had a relationship with John Clarke, a farmer, with whom she had two children, Jack and Sinead, and whom she married in 2015.

She is survived by her husband; their son, Jack; three stepsons, Jocelyn, Neil and Timothy; two sisters, Therese Hassett and Dorothy Colgan; and two brothers, Noel and Tomas Finucane. Her daughter, Sinead, died of leukemia in 1990 at age 8.

After Sinead’s death, Ms. Finucane became involved with hospice work in Ireland, and she and Mr. Clarke founded a charity to work with AIDS patients, including orphans, in South Africa.



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