William David Trimble, Baron Trimble (born 15 October 1944) is a British politician who was the first First Minister of Northern Ireland from 1998 to 2002, and the Leader of the Ulster Unionist Party from 1995 to 2005. He was also the Member of Parliament for Upper Bann from 1990 to 2005 and the Member of the Legislative Assembly for Upper Bann from 1998 to 2007. In 2006, he was made a life peer in the House of Lords and a year later left the UUP to join the Conservative Party.
Trimble began his career as a Professor of Law at Queen's University Belfast in the 1970s, during which time he began to get involved with the paramilitary-linked Vanguard Progressive Unionist Party. He was elected to the Northern Ireland Constitutional Convention in 1975, and joined the UUP in 1978 after the VPUP disbanded. Remaining at Queen's University, he continued his academic career until being elected as the MP for Upper Bann in 1990. Just five years later, he was unexpectedly elected as the Leader of the UUP. He played a key role in the negotiations that led to the Good Friday Agreement in 1998, and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize jointly with John Hume that year for his efforts. He was later elected to become the first First Minister of Northern Ireland, although his tenure was turbulent and frequently interrupted by disagreements over the extent of Provisional Irish Republican Army decommissioning.
After being defeated at the 2005 general election, Trimble resigned the leadership of the UUP soon afterwards. In June 2006, he accepted a life peerage in the House of Lords, taking the title of Baron Trimble of Lisnagarvey in the County of Antrim. He did not stand again for the Assembly, which finally reconvened in 2007, instead leaving the UUP to join the Conservative Party.
June 4, 2010