Deputy Hayes has served as Chairperson of the Fine Gael Parliamentary Party since September 2002; he was re-elected in this capacity from September 2007 until March 2010. Deputy Hayes was returned to the 30th Dáil in May 2002, and in May 2007. He then served as the Fine Gael Deputy Spokesperson on the Environment, with Special Responsibility for Heritage and Rural Affairs. In July 2001 Tom Hayes was elected to represent Tipperary South Riding in Dáil Éireann. He was subsequently appointed Fine Gael Deputy Spokesperson on Agriculture & Food. Previous to that point, in 1997 he became a member of Seanad Éireann and acted as Fine Gael Seanad spokesperson on Agriculture. Tom Hayes began his career in politics when he was elected to Tipperary South Riding County Council in 1991.
Some other facts on Tom: Tom is married to Marian and has three sons. He is a drystock farmer. He is an avid GAA fan, he regularly attends Tipperary Hurling matches. Tom is a keen reader, he recently read The Governor by John Lonergan which he thoroughly enjoyed. He loves eating fish and his favourite is lemon sole.