Donegal disability advocate Nikki Bradley has been formally introduced as the Taoiseach’s nominee to the Seanad.

Ms Bradley takes the seat vacated by Regina Doherty who was elected as an MEP in June.

The Milford woman said she will be promoting disability awareness in Leinster House.

“There are so many things that I have been doing over the years to advocate on behalf of people with disabilities and their families, and I feel like today is the day that I can really put my money where my mouth is and hopefully make some serious change for people like me that have lived with disability for a number of years,” Ms Bradley said.

Nikki Bradley receives Taoiseach’s nomination to Seanad. Picture by Fergal Phillips released on behalf of Fine Gael.

Taoiseach Simon Harris said: “I’m really honoured today to be appointing Nikki Bradley today to Seanad Eireann as a Taoiseach’s Nominee.

“I’ve been in awe of her work as a disability advocate and an advocate for empowerment for a long number of years.

“I know she’s going to make a real difference in terms of speaking up and speaking out in Seanad Eireann, campaigning on a number of issues.

“I promised I wanted to prioritise disability issues, it’s really important that we reflect that in the appointments we make in politics.”

Ms Bradley is to take over the position from Regina Doherty, who was elected to the European Parliament.
Picture by Fergal Phillips released on behalf of Fine Gael.

Ms Bradley is a cancer survivor who was left permanently damaged by treatment for a rare form of bone cancer at the age of sixteen. In February 2022, she underwent rotationplasty surgery to amputate her hip and thigh and is now a prosthesis user.

She is the founder of ‘Fighting Fit For Ewing’s’ awareness charity and is an ambassador for Active Disability Ireland, The Disabled Drivers Association and the Donegal-based No Barriers Foundation.

Her motivational speaking career is built on inspiring others to follow in her footsteps to conquer their own challenges, just as she has. She has been a permanent crutch user since 2012, and in that time she climbed glaciers in Iceland, abseiled off Fanad Lighthouse in north Donegal and completed the infamous Fan Dance 24km march across the highest mountain in the Brecon Beacons in Wales. In July 2018, Nikki became the first crutch user to climb four Irish mountains on crutches in less than 32 hours.