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Diamond Jim • Jason Miller

Montana’s Irish Town

A Tour With Teddy


August/September 2010 Canada $4.95 U.S.$3.95

The Annual Wall Street 50 Honoring the Irish in Finance

Bob McCann Interview by Kara Rota

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“Life isn’t all about money, but let's not be naïve.” 0

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August / September 2010 Vol. 25 No. 5


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40 The Vision of Bob McCann Kara Rota interviews our Wall Street 50 Leadership Award winner, CEO of UBS Wealth Management Americas, Robert J. McCann. 45 The Wall Street 50 Our thirteenth annual celebration of the best and the brightest Irish and Irish-American leaders in the financial industry. 68 The Pioneer of Wall Street John Kiernan, who gave Dow and Jones their start. By Aliah O’’Neill. 70 “Diamond Jim” Brady The charmed life of a businessman, financier and philanthropist of the Gilded Age. By Steven Mark Adelson.

74 Butte, America A new documentary reveals the immigrant history of Montana’’s mining town. By Kara Rota. 78 Remembering Jason Jason Miller, playwright, actor and friend, is remembered by Robert Curran. 84 From Diapers to Sports Stars The Donovan clan have some pretty interesting characters. By Aliah O’’Neill.


36 Ted Kennedy, History Buff As the first anniversary of Ted Kennedy’’s death approaches, Thomas Fleming recalls the late senator’’s passion for American history.

6 8 10 12 82 90 92 100 106

The First Word Readers Forum Contributors Hibernia Music Reviews Book Reviews Crossword Those We Lost Photo Album


87 Ulysses & Us James Flannery reviews Declan Kiberd’’s book. 88 The Mighty Quinn Ben and Quinn Bradlee have a new memoir and it’’s remarkable. By Niall O’’Dowd 94 Coming Home Maura Mulligan tells of retiring to Ireland, and discovering that she is more at home in New York. 96 Corner of Ireland Joe Dougherty shares his corner of Ireland in Mt. Holly, North Carolina. 98 Feasting with Angels Recipes to celebrate the Feast of Michaelmas. By Edythe Preet. 104 The Lost Children Ireland’’s mother and baby homes, and the children who were sent to the U.S. By Aliah O’’Neill.

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{the first word}

By Patricia Harty


““Two things that allowed me to succeed were that I came from a great family and I had education.”” – Bob McCann


t was an interesting experience, to say the least, following up on our issue commemorating the Great Hunger with one in which we profile Irish-American titans of Wall Street. In a way, those two words ““Famine”” & ““Finance”” could be seen as the bookends of the story of the Irish in America. Not that we claim that success in the financial world is the only indicator of Irish power, but ““let’’s not be naive,”” as Bob McCann puts it in another context. When you contrast the billions of dollars that our Wall Street 50 are responsible for, to the lack of material wealth that the early Irish settlers arrived in America with, it certainly is an achievement. Really, when you look at Irish history, it’’s amazing that we survived at all, let alone prospered. Like the Native Americans we were rounded up and marched across our own country to ““reservations”” (the barren land of the western seaboard) under Cromwell’’s ““to hell or Connaught”” campaign. Like the African Americans we were sent as slaves to Barbados. We shared passage on slave ships, arriving in the New World as indentured servants, and headed south to work on plantations with slaves purchased at auction on the wharfs in New York. And all of that happened before the cataclysmic Famine of the 1840s, which as readers point out, would more aptly be labeled genocide, when one in eight of our population died. Of course, the Irish were coming to America in pre-Famine times too; one-third of George Washington’’s army were Irish (read Tom Fleming’’s wonderful piece in this issue). And on this past Independence Day, I happened to speak to Charles Carroll, a direct descendant of Charles Carroll, the only Catholic to sign the Declaration of Independence. (Charles the signer’’s grandfather had been dispossessed of his lands in Tipperary during Cromwellian times.) But it was the Famine immigrants, so many in such a short time, who became the cement on which the legacy of Irish America is built. And they got off to a rough start. Their first home in America was often a slum dwelling. ““In the predominantly Irish Fifth Ward of Providence, Rhode Island, in 6 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010

Founding Publisher: Niall O’Dowd PHOTO: KIT DE FEVER

From Famine to Finance

Mortas Cine Pride In Our Heritage

1850 an average of nearly nine persons, 1.82 families were packed into one or two-room dwellings; in New York City almost 30,000 people, primarily Irish, lived below ground level in cellars often flooded with rainwater and raw sewage,”” William Shannon wrote in The American Irish. Yet, as Orestes Brownson predicted in his Quarterly Review (c.1840s), ““Out of those narrow lanes, blind courts, dirty streets, damp cellars, and suffocating garrets will come forth some of the noblest sons of our country, whom she will delight to own and honor.”” For those who headed out of the cities in search of opportunity, it was a hard slog (read Kara Rota’’s piece about mining in Montana). How is it then, after such brutal colonization and starvation, and a poor start in America, we emerged a people with a distinct culture intact, and, if this issue is any indication, an impressive number of high achievers in our midst? If it doesn’’t kill you, it will make you stronger, my mother was fond of saying, and what the Irish endured made them feisty, determined and proud. It was that fury that fueled their survival and propelled them forward, or so I believe. Generations of resistance made for great fighters, whether it was agitating for better wages and conditions in the mining and railroad camps, or fighting in America’’s wars. Irish fighting men have been awarded more Medals of Honor than any other ethnic group in U.S. military history. And let’’s not forget the women. Of 600 nuns serving as nurses during the Civil War, 53 percent were Irish-born. Today, our Wall Street 50 honorees and others in the financial industry have one hell of a fight of a different kind to take on. The nation’’s economy rests in their hands. If, as history shows, great leadership is born out of human experience, we have nothing to worry about. Brian Moynihan, keynote speaker at our 2009 Wall Street 50, said it best: ““It is going to be hard work and it’’s going to be challenging. But when we look to the task ahead, we can take solace, it is clearly not as hard as our ancestors’’ task was to leave Ireland and establish a new life. In addition, we have another benefit to help our efforts IA –– their determination is in our blood.””

Co-Founder/Editor-in-Chief: Patricia Harty Vice President of Marketing: Kate Overbeck Director of Special Projects: Turlough McConnell Art Director: Marian Fairweather Assistant Editor: Kara Rota Copy Editor: John Anderson Advertising & Events Coordinator: Kerman Patel Financial Controller: Kevin M. Mangan Writers: Tara Dougherty Aliah O’Neill Anne Thompson Marketing Interns: Dianne Nora Russell Shernoff

IRISH AMERICA 875 Avenue of the Americas, Suite 2100, New York NY 10001 TEL: 212-725-2993 FAX: 212-244-3344

Subscriptions: 1-800-582-6642 E-MAIL: irishamag@aol.com WEB: http://www.irishamerica.com Mailing address: P.O. Box 1277, Bellmawr, NJ 08099 5277. Editorial office: 875 Sixth Avenue, Suite 2100, New York, NY 10001. Telephone: 212 725-2993. Fax: 212-244-3344 E-mail: Irishamag@aol.com. Subscription rate is $21.95 for one year. Subscription orders: 1-800-5826642. Subscription queries: 1-800582-6642, (212) 725-2993, ext. 16. Periodicals postage paid at New York and additional mailing offices. Postmaster please send address changes to Irish America Magazine, P.O. Box 1277, Bellmawr, NJ 08099-5277. IRISH AMERICA IS PRINTED IN THE U.S.A.



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readers forum


It is not poverty nor our lowly condition that bears so hardly on us, but that contempt in which we are held that is beyond our power or endurance.”

AN GORTA MÓR SPECIAL The special issue on the Great Famine (June/July 2010) is deeply moving for its breadth and depth. It provides wellresearched and compelling accounts of why so many left Ireland, the response of the British government and the experiences of those who arrived in America. I bought several extra copies to give to my relatives to better understand the migration experience of our ancestors from Co. Waterford in the 1840s. In his meditation on the Irish Hunger Memorial in New York City’’s Battery Park, historian Simon Schama wrote: ““But the grassy hill, a piece of the auld sod stripped of sentimentality but not of emotion, is also meant as a space for meditation: how could the greatest famine in 19th-century Europe have persisted in the backyard of the wealthiest empire in the world?”” (““A Patch of Earth,”” in The

New Yorker, August 19, 2002). I began to read your special issue the day after Prime Minister David Cameron apologized in the Parliament for the Bloody Sunday massacre of 1972 when 14 innocent people were killed in Londonderry, Northern Ireland. He laid the entire blame on the British army and said that the shootings were ““unjustified and unjustifiable.”” Someday the British government might add, ““The persistence of the Irish Famine in the 19th century was unjustified and unjustifiable.”” Robert F. Lyons Kennebunkport, Maine

FAMINE MEMORIALS President Mary McAleese, who just ended her 4-day trip to New York with her official Commemoration at the Irish Hunger Memorial in Battery Park City, captured the horrendous affect of the Irish Famine as ““a colossal heart-rending fault line in the story of Ireland.”” I cannot let the current issue of Irish America go without congratulating you on the wonderful presentation of the history of the Irish Famine, the arrival of

Why do the Irish accept the O.B.E.?


Britain’s Queen Elizabeth will visit Ireland in 2011, the first British monarch to do so since Ireland gained independence in 1921.


Why do wealthy Irish and very successful others accept O.B.E. [Order of the British Empire] awards? Some people view such as a modern version of “took the soup.” Is there a dichotomy Kenneth Tierney here?

Pleasantville, New York

those survivors to America who struggled again to build a new life for themselves and their families and especially the list of the Famine memorials across the U.S. and Canada. Every Irish-American household should have a copy of this issue to remind us all from where we came! Well done to you and your staff! Aine Sheridan Executive Producer The Adrian Flannelly Show New York, New York

CALL IT GENOCIDE The June/July 2010 issue of Irish America offered a compelling account of the starvation of the Irish people during the 19th century. However, some contributors referred to the cause of the national calamity as ““The Famine”” or ““The Great Hunger.”” When the English Secretary of the Treasury Charles Trevelyan described the catastrophe as ““the judgment of God who sent the calamity to teach the Irish a lesson,”” he did so with an eye fixed firmly on the future. For, if the reason for the catastrophic effects of the potato failure could be assigned to an act of God then he and his administration would be absolved of all responsibility. The use of words like ““hunger”” and ““famine”” to describe what happened diminishes the the story of those who died. Such an approach is understandable when one thinks of Trevelyan, but absolutely mystifying when one thinks of writers reviewing the catastrophe for Irish America. Genocide is the word that should be kept in mind, and used, when the subject of the mass starvation of our people comes to mind: for that, quite simply, is what it was: Genocide! Brian Breathnach, Victoria, British Columbia Canada



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THE “TWO BOATERS” Your June/July issue is a moving, dramatic, impactful remembrance of all Famine sufferers. Wonderful job! On a much smaller scale than Grosse Île, a small island [Partridge Island] off the coast of St. John, New Brunswick had similar experiences. No one was allowed ashore until approved, my great-greatgrandmother among them. There were 15,000 English settlers in St. John in 1847 when 15,000 Irish arrived from their exhausting passage over the next three years. There is still a large Irish population throughout New Brunswick. Many who came through Canada moved on to Boston, my ancestors on my mother’’s side among them. My father called that side of the family ““two boaters,”” which was not a complimentary term since it was more expensive for the Irish to come directly to the U.S. The Canadian government had no restrictions on how many you could pack on an individual boat. My congratulations to Irish America magazine for reinforcing our memories and keeping our heritage alive. Joe Leary Irish American Partnership, Boston, Massachusetts

THE COURAGE IT TOOK! I am grateful to Irish America for enlightening me in regards to the circumstances that brought my dad’’s family to America. What courage they must have had to cross a huge ocean and into a strange land not knowing what lay ahead of them. There was no going back to the land they loved –– a love that was passed down to my dad, even though he was born in America. He in turn passed it down to me. Ireland always seemed like a magical place to me. I can remember how my dad enjoyed talking with someone with an Irish accent. He would really ““come to life”” when he would do that. I only wish I could have known my Irish grandfather. I heard so many stories about him. Thanks to your magazine, I can now understand how terrible things must have been to cause so many people to leave such a beautiful land. My mother’’s family migrated from Norway and I have never known the circumstances surrounding their move. My mother and her siblings were born in America, but they didn’’t speak English until they went to school.

I only wish there was a Norwegian America magazine that would cover the topic of their immigration to America. I keep rereading the stories in this issue of your magazine. How heartbreaking some of those stories are. Thank you for helping me to understand why things transpired as they did. I only wish my dad was still alive to read your magazine with me. Mary Lou Albrecht Altoona, Wisconsin


my Mayo parents, who had grown up around Famine survivors, always told me that if someone died, the old people would then say ““Ach, Fear na Gortha (the Hunger Man) got him.”” Hugh C. Murray, MD Seattle, Washington

THE IRISH IN MICHIGAN I read the article ““Touring Irish America”” [April/May issue] and it appears that the writer bypassed Michigan. I would like to give you some information on Irish immigrants who were very influential in Michigan in the 19th century. In Northern Michigan we have the following counties: Antrim, Clare, Roscommon and Wexford. We also have the following communities: Boyne City, Boyne Falls, Waterford and Milford. The neighborhood in Detroit where the Irish originally settled in the mid-1800s is still known as Corktown. In your article about the Famine memorials in America [June/July issue], the An Gorta Mor Memorial at St Joseph’’s Shrine near Brooklyn, Michigan is in an area

Mr. Cosgrove’’s excellent letter in your admirable ““Famine”” issue, about the very mixed implications of the term ““Scots Irish,”” reminds us of how infected that term had become with the usual ““postcolonial cringe”” and self-hatred, and the Irish version of that, Shoneenism, which resulted. I doubt that the younger generations remember or understand this in all its intensity. When my Mayo mother died, my aunt wrote me to include the vivid line, ““Thank God she lived to see the day when we were no longer slaves.”” On one misguided occasion, when I had recommended to them the TV production of The Irish R.M., ““narrowback”” that I am, they tried dutifully but could not continue to watch it, with its recall of the aroma of the Anglo-Irish boot upon the Irish neck. And a formidable Cork aunt by marriage, at the other end of the self-hating spectrum, would also always reply ““The British Isles,”” Irish immigrant in when asked where she had children Lansing, Michigan been born, for which I tend- in 1864 ed to scorn her until I known as the Irish Hills. became old enough to understand how My mother’’s ancestors settled in much cultural pressure had been applied Parnell (located in Gratton Township to make the word ““Ireland”” unspeakable northeast of Grand Rapids in Kent to her, as to many other ““West Brits.”” County). The Catholic church in this In our Irish store we have posted on community, St. Patrick’’s, was established the bookcase a quote from Eoighin in 1844 and the current church building Ruadh Ó Súillebháin in 1780: was completed in 1878. In addition to the ““Ní hé an bochtanas is measa liom ná church, there was a general store there bheith síos go deo ach an tarcaisne a for many years for the farmers of Irish leanann é ná leitheasadh na leoin: It is descent. Many of my ancestors, includnot poverty nor our lowly condition that ing my grandparents and several of my bears so hardly on us, but that contempt aunts and uncles, are buried in the parish in which we are held that is beyond our cemetery. power or endurance.”” D.R. Lindner Permit me to add, in the spirit of Ann Arbor, Michigan remembrance of the Great Hunger, that AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010 IRISH AMERICA 9



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readers forum


WE ALL KNOW THE FACTS The current issue on the Great Hunger is a treasure! I know a lot of hard work and research went into its preparation and I just want to say ““kudos”” to all involved. I’’m so pleased that this tragic period in Irish history is no longer being called a famine. We all know the facts and I call it the attempted genocide of the Irish people. Keep up the good work. Kathleen Fearon Ridgewood, New Jersey

PRAISE Your recent issue is superb; so moving, so informative. I am sure you will receive many praiseworthy compliments. Your magazine is such a joy! Frank Collins E. Northport, New York

The current issue is an outstanding history that should be shared with every person of Irish blood. Dr. Thomas Tirney Doylestown AOH, Pennsylvania

I’’m writing to say how much pleasure I got from the April/May and June/July issues. I always read every single word of everything included in every issue. I enjoy it. But for the issues mentioned you outdid yourselves. Thanks to one and all! Go raibh maith agribh! Keep giving us those Irish recipes. A suggestion: include some vocabulary/ expressions in the Irish language.

Kara Rota, the assistant editor of Irish America, interviewed UBS’’s Bob McCann for this issue’’s Wall Street 50 cover story. Previous interviews for Irish America have included Brendan Fraser, Coco Rocha, and Ed Begley, Jr. Kara maintains a blog on IrishCentral.com which has been translated into multiple languages online. She has a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College, lives in Manhattan and is working on her first novel.

Veteran newspaper reporter Robert Curran is the recipient of numerous awards and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize for his stories about abuse of disabled patients at a state hospital in Pennsylvania. He is also the author of the best-selling book The Haunted, which was made into a movie by Fox. He is pictured here with Jason Miller, about whom he writes in this issue.

Pierre Rochon, Cornwall, Ontario, Canada

DATING THE TITANIC In the April/May issue you note that Michael (Dowd) ““...was booked on the Titanic in 1914.”” The June/July issue had the correct year of 1912, although the port of call was Queenstown in those pre-independence years, not Cobh. W. E. Phoenix, Roanoke, Virginia

Write to us Send a fax (212-244-3344), e-mail (irishamag@aol.com) or mail (Letters, Irish America Magazine, 875 Avenue of the Americas, Suite 2100, New York, NY 10001). Letters should include the writer’’s full name and address and phone number and may be edited for clarity and space. 10 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010

Thomas Fleming is a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and the author of over forty nonfiction and fiction titles, including Liberty! The American Revolution, companion to the PBS series, Washington’’s Secret War: The Hidden History of Valley Forge, and The Officers’’ Wives. It’’s been 50 years since Thomas Fleming wrote Now We Are Enemies: The Story of Bunker Hill. An anniversary edition has just been issued.

Steven M. Adelson has written for numerous magaznes including Financial History Magazine, The Writer, Blue Murder Magazine, and The Arizona Daily News. He has lectured on research techniques for authors at The University of Arizona, Pima Community College, and is currently preparing a book based on his research techniques for writers and is at work on a novel called Naked Greed.



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{hibernia happenings} By Kara Rota

The McDonald Family Tradition


n July 12, 1986, when his wife Patricia was pregnant with their son Conor, NYPD officer Steven McDonald was shot by a 15year-old bicycle thief while on plainclothes patrol in Central Park. Paralyzed by the shooting, Steven was promoted to detective but subsisted with the help of a ventilator and wheelchair. Now his son Conor, 23, is following in his father’’s path as a member of the latest Police Academy class. After volunteering in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina and working at Steven and Conor a Denver shelter for runaways and McDonald. abused youth following his graduation from Boston College last May, Conor felt that he ““couldn’’t go back to a regular job”” and had been inspired by his father’’s activism and life of public service. ““My life changed before I was even born,”” said Conor. ““When my dad got shot in ’’86, there was a lot of love that the city gave my family. I just felt compelled to do this.”” Steven and Patricia, who is the mayor of Malverne, Long Island, are proud of their son’’s decision.


RUSSIAN SPIES USE IRISH ALIASES On June 27, ten individuals in Yonkers, New York, Boston and northern Virginia were arrested as part of a Russian espionage ring that had been investigated by the F.B.I. for at least seven years. Three members of the spy ring used Irish names and false Irish passports, including one who went by the alias Richard Murphy. This February, he traveled to Rome to pick up an Irish passport bearing the name Eunan Gerard Doherty, then flew to Moscow and returned March 3 with a laptop that he passed on to another Russian agent in New York. His wife Cynthia Murphy and Tracey Foley were the other Irish aliases used by Russian spies who lived as suburban Americans until their arrest.

Britain’s Apology

he much anticipated Saville Report was released by the Lord Saville, the report’’s head author and a retired U.K. British government on June 15, leading to an official Supreme Court judge, added, ““What happened on Bloody apology from British Prime Minister David Cameron Sunday strengthened the Provisional IRA, increased to victims of the British Army’’s actions on Sunday, January Nationalist resentment and hostility towards the army and 30, 1972, when 13 protesters were killed and 29 exacerbated the violent conflict of the years that injured on a civil rights march in Derry, Ireland. followed. Bloody Sunday was a tragedy for the A fourteenth died later of injuries sustained. bereaved and the wounded, and a catastrophe The Saville Report plainly blamed the British for the people of Northern Ireland.”” The £191 soldiers for the deaths, reading, ““The firing by million report included 30 million words of tessoldiers ... on Bloody Sunday caused the deaths timonies and took 12 years to complete. of 13 people and injury to a similar number, Over 38 years later, Cameron said, ““What none of whom was posing a threat of causing happened on Bloody Sunday was both unjustideath or serious injury. fied and unjustifiable. The families of those who ““The immediate responsibility for the deaths died should not have had to live with the pain and injuries on Bloody Sunday lies with those and hurt of that day –– and with a lifetime of loss. members of Support Company whose unjustifi... Some members of our Armed Forces acted able firing was the cause of those deaths and wrongly. The government is ultimately responinjuries …… Despite the contrary evidence given sible for the conduct of the armed forces. by soldiers, we have concluded that none of British Prime Minister ““It’’s not for politicians to talk in terms of David Cameron them fired in response to attacks or threatened murder or unlawful killing. You don’’t defend attacks by nail or petrol bombers.”” The Saville Report disparthe army by defending the indefensible or hiding from the aged the claims of the earlier Army-commissioned Widgery truth. It is clear that the events of Bloody Sunday were in no Report, which blamed protestors’’ violence for the bloodshed. way justified.””




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Controversy Over Famine Letters MCDOWELL’S UNEXPECTED WIN Graeme McDowell, who began playing golf at age 8 in his native Northern Ireland, won the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach this June. He grew up in the small town of Portrush, and always loved the game. His win was unexpected as he beat out favorites Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson to become the first European winner of the U.S. Open in 40 years. “I was pretty nervous on the 18th tee,” said McDowell. “I woke up [this morning] feeling amazing and saw the trophy there in the corner of the room and it was just amazing. It hasn’t left my sight since.”

Kennedys Honored

The late Senator Edward Kennedy was honored in Ireland by the new Centre for Conflict Intervention at National University in Maynooth, for his role in the Northern Ireland peace process. Ireland’’s Tipperary Peace Convention also awarded its annual international peace prize, the Tipperary International Peace Award, jointly to the senator and his sister Ambassador Jean Kennedy Smith.

Burial at Arlington


n a WWI battle near Jaulny, France on Sept. 16, 1918, 26-year-old private Thomas Costello was killed in an artillery barrage, buried in an unmarked grave and pronounced missing in action. His remains were found four years ago by French nationals. On July 12, Costello was laid to rest with full military honors at Arlington National Cemetery. Michael Frisbie of Stockton Spring, Maine, Costello’’s nephew and only living blood relative, attended the services with his wife and daughter, who recently graduated from Air Force boot camp. ““A long time has passed and I never really knew him, but we’’re all very proud of my uncle,”” said Frisbie.


n our last issue, we reported on a collection of original letters written during the time of the Irish Famine, which were scheduled to be auctioned at Adam’’s auction house in Dublin. The day before the auction, on May 18, Adam’’s had been approached by Thomas Pakenham, the earl of Longford and one of the foremost landlords of the Famine era. Pakenham brought to the auction house’’s attention the fact that 150 lots included in the sale were reported stolen over 20 years ago. Pakenham claimed that an employee at Tullynally Castle, his family estate in Westmeath, stole boxes of the letters and sold them to Desmond Norton, a retired professor at University College Dublin, who, unaware of their suspect origins, used the archives for academic research and then consigned them to Adam’’s for auction. There had been serious interest from collectors in both Ireland and America in the Famine letters for auction, and the sale of the 182 lots not included in the Pakenham controversy continued, but out of confusion over cancellation only some 20 bidders attended. The night before the auction, Adam’’s stated that the letters would be withdrawn from auction and given as a full collection to ““an important archive”” in Ireland. They are currently at Tullynally Castle, which has a 300year-old library. In relation to the stolen letters, Adam’’s stated, ““You couldn’’t think of a more legitimate vendor [than Desmond Norton]. He even wrote a book about the papers, in which he mentioned the original theft. We acted with great speed when we were informed of the problem.””




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{hibernia happenings}

Census Launched Online PHOTO: JAMES HIGGINS

The Irish National Archives of Ireland have launched the online availability of Ireland’’s 1901 and 1911 censuses, allowing amateur genealogists and all those interested in researching their family history to unearth information on individuals in each county under surname and name searches, as well as seeking information by literacy status, occupation, religious affiliation, specified illnesses and Irish language proficiency.

Niall Gibbons, CEO Tourism Ireland; Consul General Niall Burgess; Minister Mary Hanafin; Catriona Crowe, Head of Special Projects with Ireland’s National Archives; and Joe Byrne, EVP Tourism Ireland, gather outside the Irish Consulate on Park Ave. in New York before the launch of Ireland’s 1901 and 1911 censuses online in the U.S.

Hayes Named Alumnus of the Year


andy Hayes, third-generation Irish American and one of Irish America’’s Top 100 in 2005, has been named the Alumnus of the Year of San Francisco State University. A revolutionary environmentalist and Academy Award-winning filmmaker, Hayes was honored at the university’’s 109th commencement ceremony on May 22. Hayes was born in West Virginia and spent his childhood in the central Florida swamps, where his passion for the environment formed. He graduated from Bowling Green University and then moved to San Francisco, where he earned a masters’’ degree in environmental planning from San Francisco State. Hayes won an Academy Award for best student documentary in 1983, for his thesis film The Four Corners: A National Sacrifice Area. The film explored the sociocultural and environmental impacts of energy development in the American Southwest, and criticized the Reagan administration’’s environmental policies. In 1985, Hayes founded Rainforest Action Network (RAN), a nonprofit dedicated to environmental activism and cham-

The Irish Management Institute in partnership with the Irish Development Agency has launched research into patterns of certain psychological and cultural competencies among the Irish, compared with international norms. A study of 117 Irish executives and entrepreneurs showed a substantial trend towards what is considered right-brained thinking, which includes intuition, the ability to make seemingly unrelated connections and a tolerance for ambiguity. This latter attribute, which allows individuals to hold incongruent ideas and achieve big-picture thinking, is ideal for entrepreneurial enterprise. The research, validated by the Oxford Psychologist’s Press, is based on a variety of psychological tests.



pioning the rights of the inhabitants of the world’’s rainforests through education and direct-action campaigns. In 1992, Hayes attended a Los Angeles meeting of environmental leaders and pitched a 500-year plan to stop deforestation. Among its many victories, RAN has successfully pressured Burger King to stop sourcing meat from Central America, which caused deforestation, and convinced Home Depot to stop stocking wood products from endangered forests. Hayes spent ten years on San Francisco’’s advisory commission on the environment and served as sustainability director for the city of Oakland, CA. Since July 2008, he has been U.S. Director of the World Future Council, a Germany-based multinational group working to implement long-term policies for sustainability and a cleaner environment. San Francisco State University President Robert A. Corrigan said, ““Randy Hayes has been a tireless champion for environmentalism, sustainability and responsible business practices throughout his career. His advocacy has ensured that future generations will inherit a cleaner, more just world.””



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{hibernia happenings}

St. Peter’s Cathedral in Belfast

DONOVAN’S GOAL The U.S. celebrated a huge World Cup victory over Algeria on June 23. Landon Donovan scored the only goal of the game, saving the American team from elimination and sending them into the second round. After ninety minutes of impressive performance by Algeria’s goalkeeper, Donovan scored a rebound goal with 195 seconds to spare. The game had been fraught with frustration for the American team, as U.S. player Clint Dempsey had a goal disallowed on a questionable offside call in the first half. “We embody what Americans are about,” said Donovan. “We can moan about it or we can get on with it. And we kept going and we believe.” While Spain were the ultimate winners of the World Cup, the Americans proved they know how to play ball. Clint Dempsey and Landon Donovan.

Mother Teresa’s Legacy of Light his August 26 marks what would have been Mother Teresa’’s 100th birthday, and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn was disappointed in Empire State Building owner Anthony Melkin’’s refusal to light the top of the skyscraper blue and white in commemoration. Melkin explained that he avoids political and religious commemorations in the lighting of the building for various occasions. St. Peter’’s Cathedral, the only Catholic Church in Belfast, will display the blue and white lights in Mother Teresa’’s honor. After Christine Quinn referenced the issue at the New York/New Belfast Conference at Fordham University on June 9, Máirtín Ó Muilleoir, managing director of the Belfast Media Group, passed the message on to the owner of the St. Patrick Cathedral. ““We’’re inspired that the great city of Belfast is answering the call to honor the life of Mother Teresa,”” Quinn said. ““However, right here in midtown Manhattan, the Empire State Building can’’t seem to hear that a growing number of New Yorkers want a day of community service and a night of blue and white lights. That’’s why we in the Council are inviting all New Yorkers on August 26th, to light up their own windows, homes, businesses in blue and white as a tribute to her. If you can’’t light up your home then we ask that you take part of that morning, afternoon, or evening and give back to those who are less fortunate. We ask that New Yorkers consider spending some time that day volunteering at a soup kitchen, mentor a young person, visit a senior center or sign up at the City’’s volunteer website where you’’ll find many, many places in NYC where you can participate. Lighting up the Empire State Building as a tribute to her would be great. But honoring such an inspiring woman does not have to be limited to a single building.””



Irish Americans Earn Emmy Nods

he 62nd Primetime Emmy Award nominations have been announced, with plenty of Irish-American representation. We’’re rooting for 30 Rock’’s Alec Baldwin as outstanding lead actor in a comedy series. The Tonight Show with then-host Conan O’’Brien was nominated in the best variety series category. ““Congrats to my staff on four Emmy nominations. This bodes well for the future of The Tonight Show With Conan O’’Brien,”” he Tweeted with tongue in cheek. Recently wed Jane Lynch nabbed a nomination for her role in Glee, while Regis Philbin received one for Live with Regis and Kelly in the talk show category. Terry O’’Quinn was nominated as an outstanding supporting actor in a drama for his work as John Locke in Lost, and the crowd-pleasing Neil Patrick Harris will be considered for outstanding guest actor in a comedy series for his cameo in Glee. HBO’’s Pacific ran away with the most nominations, at 24, while AMC’’s drama Mad Men, starring Irish American John Slattery and Richard Harris’’s son Jared Harris, scored 17 nominations. The Primetime Emmys will take place August 29 on NBC, hosted by Jimmy Fallon. Jimmy Fallon




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{ hibernia }



The Many Faces of


aureen O’’Hara has celebrated many milestones in her life and career in films. Now in the 21st century, she prepares to celebrate her 90th birthday on August 17. One can’’t help but wonder if she could have imagined in her wildest dreams that her image would be gracing a technology called ““cyberspace”” –– that people would be chatting about her on Facebook or that she’’d have a website visited by thousands of fans from all over the world. I can still see her back in 1999 in the dining room of the Glengarriff Golf Club. I was just a first-time tourist to Ireland but in a different capacity than Flame of Araby, 1951 (Universal).

most. I was the editor and designer of Maureen’’s official website here in the U.S. and had begun working with her in 1995. Now I was seeing her as Lady President of the golf club. Maureen O’’Hara was back from America and was about to begin her duties as sponsor of this annual tournament by presenting trophies to the winners. I have found in my research and 16year association with her that she was so multi-faceted that her image kept changing, yet magically remained always the same. Years ago one writer described her 18 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010

TOP: Maureen’s fondest memory is that of her late husband, famed pilot, Gen. Charles F. Blair. ABOVE: Behind the scenes in 1957 of Wings of Eagles with John Wayne. Duke is obviously telling Maureen a funny story. They were great friends and Maureen admits that Charles Blair and John Wayne, along with her father, Charles FitzSimons, were the most important men in her life.

as having the beauty of a child in a woman’’s body. Her very being is that of a woman whose life experience embraces so many things: a heritage of Irish talent and beauty, a glamorous movie career, world travel, the romance of finally finding the true love of her life, and a sundry of interests and good works. Maureen has received many honors

Maureen at the 1999 New York City St. Patrick’s Day parade, as Grand Marshal.

and awards in her 90 years, and has played many roles in films. However, in real life it was the role of wife to Capt. Charles Blair she cherished most. I came to know the ““Mrs. Blair”” side of Maureen after about 10 years of research on Gen. Blair’’s aeronautic career. To Maureen,



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Maureen O’Hara Charlie Blair was the star. Charles Blair was the real-life hero that Duke Wayne was on the screen, and just as perfect for Maureen (only as her husband in real life). Blair had been a senior pilot for Pan American World Airways for 29 years, including 10 years with American Overseas Airlines (which merged with Pan Am) and was one of the most honored flyers in history. Even more perfect was the fact that Charles Blair and Duke Wayne became good friends, and had one major thing in common (aside from their love of the game of chess): they both loved Maureen. Duke and Maureen made five films together and Maureen came to be the preferred on-screen love interest for the legendary Duke. Off screen Duke and Maureen did love one another, but as dear and beloved friends,

more like brother and sister. After Blair’’s tragic death in a plane crash in 1978, Maureen did her share of crying and then did what was typical of Maureen. She gathered her wits about her and went on, working diligently to further Gen. Blair’’s interests in aeronautics. For a few years after the loss of Charles Blair, Maureen continued to manage their commuter airline service in the Caribbean. In that capacity Maureen became the first woman ever to manage a scheduled airline (which she later sold). Another cherished milestone for Maureen was in 1999 when she walked down 5th Avenue as Grand Marshal of the St. Patrick’’s Day Parade in New York City. She was then age 78 and proudly kept pace with everyone as she listened to throngs of people on the

On May 24, New York’s Origin Theatre held a benefit showcase hosted by Mutual of America. Since its inception in 2002, when George Heslin founded the theatre company, Origin has premiered the work of 35 European playwrights in America, furthering its goal of bringing the best international theatre to viewers in New York.The showcase included an evening of performances by playwrights such as Mark O’Rowe and Enda Walsh. Pictured left to right are NYC Council Speaker Christine Quinn, George Heslin, and Origin board member Antonia Reilly. – KR

parade route echo their affection: ““We love you, Maureen!”” Yes, they will always love Maureen O’’Hara. She represents both Ireland and America……and women of the world in the best possible way. She has done so for over 60 years. But in that incredible face I see so much more. The woman I saw sitting endless hours signing autographs for devoted fans here in America, and the woman I saw in Ireland are one and the same. As a hopeless romantic I choose to think of her travelling the world with Charles Blair, the love of her life. That would probably have been her IA best movie of all. – June Parker Beck, editor/designer, Maureen O’Hara Magazine http://www.moharamagazine.com

Oscar-winning actress Anjelica Huston, who spent part of her formative years in Co. Galway with her father, director John Huston, was in Dublin June 2 to launch the Yeats Season at the National Library of Ireland. She’s pictured with the Irish Minister for Tourism, Culture and Sport, Mary Hanafin.The tribute to the Irish writer William Butler Yeats lasts for the month of June. – The Irish Voice AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010 IRISH AMERICA 19



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{ irish eye on hollywood}

By Tom Deignan

All of Liam Neeson’s fans know that the ed mini-series about the Camelot clan, Ballymena-born actor has a stature that can be which is due to hit TV screens next year. described as commanding, perhaps even presThe mini-series has already generated conidential. It should come as no surprise, then, troversy, in part because it is produced by that Neeson is slated to play not one but two veteran 24 writer and producer Joel Surnow, American presidents in upcoming films. whose Republican political leanings don’’t Director Lee Daniels, who shot to fame by fit well with the famously liberal Kennedys. directing the harrowing Precious, is working In fact, some Kennedy supporters have on his next project, entitled Selma. The film is started a web site dedicated to either stopa historical epic about the 1960s civil rights ping the series or correcting what they view struggles in the U.S. as misrepresentations of the truth. But thus At the center of that movement, of course, far, the Kennedy mini-series has continued was Martin Luther King as well as President shooting on schedule. Lyndon Baines Johnson. When Selma hits theaters next year, Neeson will be on the big Jason O’Mara will appear in The Kennedy mini-series is just one item in screen portraying LBJ, the lanky Texan who the upcoming Terra Nova. what turns out to be a busy TV season for shocked political observers when he took on Irish and Irish-American talent. Dublin actor Jason O’Mara will be appearing in the Fox network’’s civil rights as a cause. David Oyelowo will portray Martin upcoming series Terra Nova. One thing that seems clear Luther King. about O’’Mara is that he does not like the present day. Meanwhile, rewinding back a century or so, Neeson is O’’Mara previously appeared in the critically praised but also slated to play Abraham Lincoln in a film produced by short-lived ABC series Life on Mars alongside Harvey Steven Spielberg and based on the book Team of Rivals by Keitel and Michael Imperioli. In Terra Nova, O’’Mara will Irish-American historian Doris Kearns Goodwin. Whether go to the future, playing a dad in the year 2149. His planet or not the Team of Rivals film will ever make it to the big is crumbling so he must travel back in time with his family screen, however, remains unclear. Industry insiders have to help ancient colonists rebuild civilization from the said the film is stuck in so-called ““development hell”” ground up. because of script problems. ““We really hope to do this at Terra Nova producer Brannon Braga has said, ““We’’ve some point,”” Dreamworks’’ executive Marvin Levy has said, thought of Jason O’’Mara as something of an archetype ... He adding that Lincoln ““is still the most admired president in has an everyman quality to him, but there’’s something danthe United States.”” Even if it gets the go-ahead, Neeson will gerous underneath.”” Terra Nova will begin shooting this not get to work on this Lincoln project until sometime after summer and is expected to debut in this year. early 2011. Kenneth Branagh is another Irish Jeremy Irons in actor who has portrayed an Also expected in early 2011 is the The Borgias. American president, having played highly anticipated cable series from Franklin Delano Roosevelt a few Irish director extraordinaire Neil Jordan, The Borgias. Starring years back in the HBO mini-series Jeremy Irons and Joanne Warm Springs. Well, Branagh has Whalley, among others, Showtime some lighter fare coming to screens will air at least 10 episodes of the next spring. He will direct Anthony Hopkins and Natalie Portman in series, which chronicles the powerthe comic book action film Thor, set house clan of Renaissance Italy. for release in May 2011. Thor ““Having blazed a trail with the chronicles the adventures of an award-winning The Tudors, we ancient warrior whose weapon of wanted to continue to offer our choice is the hammer, and who is audience a period drama as wicked, sent from the past to the present to witty, and utterly compelling –– and save mankind. that’’s what The Borgias will be,”” said Showtime exec Roger Finally, speaking of presidents one Greenblatt. ““I can guarantee you’’ve more time, Greg Kinnear will be never seen a family quite like this portraying JFK and Katie Holmes before …… The directorial mastery of will be playing Jackie O. in the Neil Jordan …… will make The History Channel’’s highly anticipatBorgias unlike anything else on tel20 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010



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evision.”” Jordan, best known for films such as The Crying Game and The Brave One, recently completed the film Ondine, with Colin Farrell, which should be available on DVD soon. Jordan has also been linked to producing a bigscreen version of Coraline author Neil Gaiman’’s novel The Graveyard Book. Boston native Colm Feore (whose parents were Irishborn) will also appear in The Borgias. ““I am going to play [Rodrigo Borgia’’s] nemesis Cardinal Giuliano Della Rovere,”” Feore said recently, adding that the show ““is going to be classy and stylish with a lot of good people.”” Feore will also appear in the aforementioned Thor directed by Kenneth Branagh and is working on a new movie entitled French Immersion, to be directed by Kevin Tierney.

title comes from a dangerous route used to move supplies, a so-called Main Supply Route, or MSR. Military personnel traditionally name such routes after sports teams and this one just happened to be named after Notre Dame’’s famous Fighting Irish. Route Irish does, however, have an Irish link. The mother of screenwriter Paul Laverty (who also scripted The Wind That Shakes the Barley, My Name Is Joe and other Loach flicks) was born in Ireland. Route Irish was well received at Cannes and will be hitting art house theaters in the U.S. and U.K. later this year or early next.

Some final notes on the television side of things: look for Jerry O’Connell (Stand By Me, Jerry Maguire) starring alongside Jim Belushi in the CBS drama The Defenders. Also in the fall, Maura Tierney (ER, Rescue Me) will return to TV

(after battling cancer) in the ABC legal drama The Whole Truth. If you can’’t wait until the fall for such Irish-American drama, then check out the third season of Army Wives on Lifetime, featuring the Irish-American duo Kim Delaney and Brigid Brannagh. Above: Michael Fassbender in Centurion. Left: Kim Delaney and Brigid Brannagh in Army Wives.

Two actors with strong links to Ireland –– Dominic West and Michael Fassbender –– will

appear in the August 2010 swords-and-sandals flick Centurion. Set during the glory days of the Roman Empire, 117 AD, the film is about the empire’’s inability to conquer the warrior tribes of what would become Great Britain. Fassbender (whose mother was born in Kerry) appeared in Hunger as well as Inglourious Basterds, while West (who married an Irish girl and attended college in Ireland) became famous for playing rebel Irish-American cop Jimmy McNulty on The Wire. Fassbender (who appeared in the June 2010 flick Jonah Hex alongside Josh Brolin) will also appear in the latest big screen version of Jane Eyre, set for a 2011 release. Ken Loach is no stranger to Irish cinema. The acclaimed director of such British indie classics as My Name Is Joe and Ladybird Ladybird also caused a stir with his much-heralded movie of the Irish Civil War The Wind That Shakes the Barley. Loach had what might seem to be yet another Irish flick at this year’’s Cannes Film Festival entitled Route Irish. For the record, however, Route Irish is about the Iraq War. The

Finally, for those of you attempting to keep track of the busy Colin Farrell these days, good luck! He is slated to begin working alongside Eric Bana in By Virtue Fall and is also working on Horrible Bosses, Fright Night and David IA Cronenberg’’s Cosmopolis. AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010 IRISH AMERICA 21

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{hibernia} BLOODY SUNDAY:

A Personal Odyssey In this 2003 clip from Irish America’s archives, actor James Nesbitt talks with Patricia Harty about his role in Bloody Sunday, the movie which won numerous awards, including the British Independent Film Best Actor award for Nesbitt.


here was some element of, ““Oh, Christ, I almost wish I hadn’’t read this,”” Nesbitt recalls, ““because having read [the script for Bloody Sunday] I couldn’’t walk away from it.”” In the movie, which portrays what happened on January 30, 1972 when members of the British Army fired upon unarmed civil rights marchers in Derry, Nesbitt takes on the role of Ivan Cooper, a shirt-factory manager and local politician who was involved in the civil rights movement. Nesbitt, like Cooper, is a Protestant, and in accepting the role he knew there was a chance that he would be seen in his own community as ““going over to the other side.”” Indeed, he received death threats as well as praise for his performance. ““I think Protestants have walked away from it for years,”” he said. ““No one wanted to own Bloody Sunday. As [producer] Jim Sheridan said, ‘‘The Irish don’’t forget and the English don’’t want to remember it.’’”” Nesbitt grew up the son of a schoolteacher in rural County Antrim, near Ballymena, the only boy with three older sisters. His family is very proud of their Protestant culture, but he says that his father is ““an egalitarian.”” In fact, as a youngster Nesbitt was a boy soprano and his father used to take him to sing at Irish Feiseanna (festivals). He also took piano lessons in the local convent. Despite his own exposure to Irish ““Catholic”” culture, he said there was ““a great sense of denial about what was going on”” in the province. ““The reality of life in Northern Ireland,”” said Nesbitt, who was only six years old when Bloody Sunday happened, ““is that if you were Protestant you learned British


history and if you were Catholic you learned Irish history in school.”” The movie was a rite of passage for him –– a growing up. ““I come from a generation in Northern Ireland where we sort of didn’’t want to acknowledge the Troubles in our country. I was almost shamed by it when I read the script, and I couldn’’t not do the movie.”” And so began what Nesbitt describes as an extraordinary journey, one that became much more than movie making. ““It was a personal odyssey,”” he says. ““I felt I was making a film about my country, a country that I love and was trying to make sense of. It made me see for the first time why all these terrible things have happened.”” He described the shoot as ““an emotionally wrenching experience,”” but said his respect for British director Paul Greengrass saw him through. Greengrass was the first journalist to film inside the Maze Prison while covering the hunger strikes in 1981. He had read Don Mullan’’s Eyewitness Bloody Sunday and decided that he, as a British person, had an obligation to explore this side of modern British/Irish history. Nesbitt felt the obligation too, but he admits that he couldn’’t have undertaken the project without the support of his wife and parents, who while wishing he was doing a movie about ““some of the terrible atrocities that have been visited on Protestants,”” supported his decision to take on the role. ““I said, ‘‘Trust me, I believe in it. It’’s an important thing for me to do.’’”” On a professional level, Nesbitt says that he came away from the movie with a newfound respect for his craft. ““It was thrilling and moving and so hard, but so validating,”” he said. ““At the end, I walked away from it and thought, ‘‘I can see where

this job [of being an actor] does have some worth.’’ I couldn’’t pretend that acting was just this thing that I didn’’t take too seriously anymore,”” he said. ““It required constantly living in the moment. We had to be able to put ourselves down in 1972 and be able to cope with everything.”” Greengrass forced Nesbitt to look at the daily rushes to show him when he was in the moment and when he wasn’’t. ““We improvised a lot. You know, improvising political dialogue is not easy. For instance, on the back of the civil rights lorry, you didn’’t know until the moment what was going to happen. People shouted different things at me, and I had to respond. And I had to do so much research [in order to respond properly.] I read a lot of the evidence that had been amassed on Bloody Sunday.”” Nesbitt also sought out the families of those who had been shot, having first familiarized himself with as much personal information as he could about the victims. He went and met Ivan Cooper, whose spirit was broken after Bloody Sunday, which marked the end of the civil rights movement and a move towards the IRA’’s violent opposition to British rule. Nesbitt’’s hope is that the movie will help the healing process in Northern Ireland. ““All my adult life, there was the Troubles. That was the backdrop of my life. Bloody Sunday was an opportunity to be involved in something that could be a part of the peace process in Northern Ireland. ““So many great steps have been made now. There’’s still a long way to go, but the very thing that Ivan Cooper marched for along with those 20,000 people 30 years ago, is exactly what we’’re standing for now –– inclusion and civil rights. Paul Greengrass once said to me, ‘‘If Bloody Sunday can be a pebble in the wall of peace, we’’ll feel that we’’ve achieved IA something.’’””



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Women Honored at Concern Luncheon


he annual Women of Concern Awards Luncheon, held this year on June 21st at the Hilton Hotel in New York, recognizes women who are leaders in humanitarianism and fundraising for causes such as AIDS, breast cancer, child poverty and education. This year, Women of Concern honored two women who have devoted much of their time and business to fundraising efforts: Fern Mallis, president of Fern Mallis, LLC and creator of Fashion Week, and Amanda Rose, founder of the social media-based fundraising effort Twestival. The luncheon also highlighted the work being done by Concern in 28 countries, including Haiti where the people continue to live in a state of emergency. After opening remarks by chairman Tom Moran expressing ongoing thanks for support from the Concern family, Elke Leidel, country director for Haiti, gave a stirring speech about the experience of being in Haiti when the earthquake occurred and the ongoing struggle of its people, specifically the mothers and children. Though Concern has already been in Haiti for 16 years, their efforts have been strengthened immensely in the wake of the disaster –– almost immediately, 24 nutrition centers were erected to treat the malnourished and injured, and Concern was able to treat 8,000 children. Leidel also spoke encouragingly of the Tabarre Issa camp in Port-au-Prince, managed and designed by Concern Worldwide. The camp, opened on April 17, offers makeshift housing in the form of tents to 3,000 people, in addition to latrines, clean water, food, health centers and peaceful, safe areas for children where they can play and learn. ““What keeps me going is the people of Port-au-Prince –– their resilience, their resourcefulness, their will to move on,”” said Leidel, who made no secret of the emotional toll of humanitarian work. With one million people still displaced in Haiti, Concern’’s relief efforts remain crucial.


TOP: Tom Moran of Concern with honorees Amanda Rose, Fern Mallis, Natalie Morales, and Siobhan Walsh. LEFT: Maeve O’Malley with Susan Finucane.

Women of Concern, which chooses honorees each year who have made an impact through humanitarian and charitable work, highlights the efforts of Concern Worldwide to support women and their children by providing food, shelter, healthcare and education. According to a UNESCO study from 2009, women make up more than 66 percent of the world’’s 776 million adults who lack basic literacy skills. Concern focuses on breaking the cycle of poverty by supplying women with job training and literacy programs as well as small business loans. With hundreds of thousands of mothers dying due to pregnancy-related causes and equal amounts of children dying in infancy due to easily treatable diseases such as diarrhea or malaria, Concern has also made maternal and child health a focus of its work and its education. This year’’s honorees, introduced by NBC Today correspondent Natalie Morales, have both employed their business savvy to fundraise for several causes. Fern Mallis, the recipient of the Woman of the Year Leadership Award, is well known in the fashion industry as the creator of Fashion Week. During her long and



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(L to R): Jimmy Garland, Ed Kenney, Joan Carroll, Fr. Jack Finucane (Aengus’ brother), Frances O’Keefe, and Tom Moran celebrate the life of Fr. Aengus Finucane.

varied career in the fashion world, Mallis has used her influence to organize several charity events and organizations, starting with DIFFA, Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS. She is the creator of Fashion Targets Breast Cancer, which raised more than $80 million worldwide for hundreds of breast cancer organizations. She has also helped raised over $8 million for AIDS charities through the fundraiser 7th on Sale. Mallis recently launched her own fashion consulting company, Fern Mallis LLC, after working with IMG Fashion for nine years. Amanda Rose, who was honored with the Woman of the Year Humanitarian Award, is the founder of Twestival, an international, volunteer-driven effort that uses social media like Twitter to raise money for worthy causes. She is also the founder of Connect the Dots Foundation, an organization that works with nonprofits and other startups to integrate causes on and offline. Her innovative use of social media has led to Twestival raising over $1.2 million in just over a year for 137 causes. The funds raised by Twestival Global in 2010 will go towards bringing education to thousands of children through Concern programs. Amanda has a background in event coordination and advertising, but has expanded her interest in nonprofit causes by advising a number of organizations including charity: water, Comic Relief, MTV Staying Alive Foundation and Live Earth. Both honorees were awarded with statues carved by Irish artists out of 4,500-year-old bog oak. Executive director Siobhan Walsh closed the ceremony with thanks for ongoing support and a reminder that the work is far from over. ““This event is about balancing the scales a little bit to the people who are the most vulnerable in the world, the women and children born into lives of poverty,”” she said. Concern Worldwide has begun building transitional housing in Haiti to replace the tents, providing mothers the incredible IA relief of knowing their children have shelter. –– Aliah O’’Neill

Fr. Jack Finucane, Susan Finucane (Aengus’ niece), Tom Moran.

Father Finucane Remembered


n September, Mutual of America celebrated the life of Father Aengus Finucane, who passed away on October 6, 2009. Fr. Aengus acted as CEO of Concern from 1981 to 1997, helped to establish Concern Worldwide U.S. in the mid-90s, and served as honorary president from then on, working closely with Tom Moran, who became chairman of Concern Worldwide U.S. and extended the organization in New York and Chicago. Finucane developed relationships with many Irish-American philanthropists and advocated for the cause of providing humanitarian aid to the poor on a local, national and international scale. In his memory, Chairman Tom Moran said, “Aengus worked tirelessly to alleviate hunger and suffering. He helped us to recognize our responsibility, to share our resources with those less fortunate. He inspired us with his love for the poor and underprivileged, and it was life-changing for many of us to work for, and visit, Concern’s programs of which he spoke with such passion.” – KR




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President McAleese Visits New York


n May 20, Irish President Mary McAleese arrived in New York for a four-day visit to commemorate the Irish Famine of the 1840s, strengthen links throughout the IrishAmerican community, and promote economic networking between Ireland and the U.S. She opened the visiting Quinnipiac University Collection of

Program; Kevin Farrell, Irish Government special envoy for hunger; Kalongo Chitengi, Self Help Africa Zambia country director; Angela O’’Neill De Guilio, regional director of Concern; and Selim Jahan, director of poverty practice for the U.N. Development Program. Roger Thurow, senior fellow at the Chicago Council on

Left: McAleese with Quinnipiac president John Lahey. Right: McAleese with Irish Life Science 50 honoree James Watson, who earned the 1962 Nobel Prize for his co-discovery of DNA.

Great Hunger Art at the Consulate General of Ireland, and on May 20 joined the Irish Voice newspaper in honoring the Irish Life Science 50 there. The following day, after visiting students at Brooklyn’’s PS 197 to talk with them about Ireland’’s Great Famine, which they are learning about as part of the New York school curriculum, the president opened a panel discussion on ““Hunger in the 21st Century: Ireland and the Fight Against Famine.”” The event was organized by Concern Worldwide and Self Help Africa, and distinguished speakers included Helen Clark, administrator of the U.N. Development 26 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010

Global Affairs, moderated the panel. The discussion focused on utilizing lessons from the Great Hunger in Ireland to stop worldwide hunger today. President McAleese delivered the commencement address on May 22 at Fordham University in the Bronx and received an honorary degree. In her commencement speech, she drew heavily on the legacy of the Irish Famine: ““In 1846, as the first of one million people died from starvation in Ireland, a time that we remember particularly in this week, when we call to mind at a national level, international level, a time known as ‘‘An Gorta Mor,’’

the Great Hunger, but also known in Ireland as the Great Starvation, a young French Jesuit, Henri du Merle, arrived here at Fordham. He arrived just as Fordham received its character and the Jesuit community was beginning to settle in. At the same time, back in Ireland, Famine was taking hold. It would change our history forever; it

would also change the history of the United States. Within a very short few years, a quarter of the population of Ireland would be either dead or forced to emigrate, and they would arrive here in New York, in tattered rags and in poor health, to start life again.”” On May 23, the President concluded her trip by attending a ceremony at Congregation Shearith Israel to acknowledge the contributions of Jews in New York to Irish Famine relief. Later that day, after attending a mass held by Archbishop Timothy Dolan at St. Patrick’’s Cathedral, she commemorated the Great Hunger at the Irish Hunger IA Memorial in Battery Park City. –– Kara Rota

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Most Influential Women

50 of the most influential Irish-American women in the country were honored by the Irish Voice newspaper at the third annual event, held at the Consulate General of Ireland on Park Avenue in New York on July 12. Photos by Nuala Purcell.



2 7






9 1) Ambassador Anne Anderson, Lara Marlowe, honoree Elizabeth Frawley Bagley, Vaughan Bagley. 2) Danny Moloney, NYC Council Speaker Christine Quinn, NYC Council Member Melissa Mark-Viverito, Gerry Flynn. 3) Jacqueline Cleary, Loretta Brennan Glucksman, Tara McCabe, honoree Kathleen McCabe. 4) Honoree Sarah McEneaney. 5) Honoree Joanne Gillespie, honoree Maureen Gillespie, Ed Gillespie. 6) Honoree Katherine Curley. 7) Honoree Darrah Carr. 8) Murphy McVey, John Rhatigan, honoree Lynn Rhatigan McVey, Pat Robinson, Maureen Firth. 9) Speaker Quinn, Taoiseach Brian Cowen, Irish Voice founding publisher Niall O'Dowd. 10) Honoree Christie Calahan, Maureen Sullivan, honoree Tara Sullivan. 28 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010




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Dutch Author Wins IMPAC Award


he Twin, a first novel by Gerbrand Bakker, was announced as the 2010 winner of the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. The 100,000-euro prize is the largest prize offered for a single novel, 25,000 euros of which will go to the novel’’s translator, David Colmer. The Twin is the story of a man who takes on his brother’’s role working on the family farm when the twin is killed in a car accident. The Twin, nominated by libraries in Amsterdam, The Hague, Utrecht, and Eindhoven, won over 155 other books nominated by 163 public libraries in 43 countries. The shortlist of eight novels included In Zodiac Light by Robert Edric, Home by Marilynne Robinson, Settlement by Christoph Hein, God’’s Own Country by Ross Raisin, The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barberry, The Believers by Zoe Heller and Netherland by Irish Joseph O’’Neill. The IMPAC award receives nominations from worldwide public libraries and is judged by an international panel of five, chaired by Hon. Eugene R. Sullivan. The award is managed by Dublin City Libraries on behalf of Dublin City Council and sponsored by international management productivity company IMPAC. ““Gerbrand Bakker joins a long list of eminent novelists to win this award,”” said Lord Mayor and Patron of the Award, Cllr. Emer Costello, ““and having a novel in translation as the winner means that this Cllr. Emer Costello, Lord Mayor of Dublin, beautifully written Dutch novel will come David Colmer, and Eileen Hendrick. to the attention of readers worldwide, who might otherwise never have come across it. Dublin City Council and IMPAC are extremely proud that the IMPAC Dublin Award has grown into one of the highlights, not only of the Irish, but also of the international literary calendar.”” –– Kara Rota

Irish Flautist Honored by NEA


rish flute player Mike Rafferty received a national heritage fellowship award in folk and traditional arts from the National Endowment for the Arts on June 25. From Ballinakill, East Galway, Mike Rafferty grew up on a 12-acre farm where he inherited his musical skills from his father, who played flute and uilleann pipes. Rafferty emigrated to the U.S. in 1949 and has reached the pinnacle of Irish traditional music in America. His latest recording, with fiddler Willie Kelly and Donal Clancy, is called ““The New Broom.”” ““The National Heritage Fellowships are a wonderful opportunity for us to celebrate and draw attention to


the many cultural traditions and artistic genres that are alive and thriving in the United States,”” said Barry Bergey, NEA director of Folk and Traditional Arts. ““This year’’s awardees have dedicated many hours of their lives to not only perfecting their art forms, but also ensuring they will endure for generations to come.”” Representing eight states, the nine recipients of national heritage fellowship awards were chosen for their artistic excellence and their efforts to conserve America’’s cultures for future generations. Each award includes twentyfive thousand dollars. IA –– Kara Rota

O’Brien Elected to Kennedy Board


onan O’Brien,TV talk show host and comedian, has been elected to the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation Board of Directors. The foundation provides financial support, staffing and creative resources to the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, conducting numerous educational and public service activities throughout the year. John B. Adams, Adrienne Arsht, Blake Jordan, Clive F. Palmer and Ronald L. Sargent were also named to the board. O’Brien has won several Emmy and Writer’s Guild of America Awards for his work writing for Saturday Night Live as well as for his late-night talk show Late Night with Conan O’Brien. A roller coaster year for O’Brien, in January of this year after a brief stint as the host of The Tonight Show, O’Brien was ousted after a controversial move by NBC to return the show to the hands of Jay Leno. O’Brien embarked on a nationwide comedy tour, which was met with resounding success. He is expected to return to television as a late-night host on cable network TBS this year. Originally from Brookline, Massachusetts, where President Kennedy was born and raised, O’Brien was raised in an Irish Catholic family of six children in the Boston suburb.The Kennedy Library and Museum is located in the Dorchester neighborhood of Boston and provides the community with countless research resources and primary documents pertaining to the Kennedys’ political legacy and family history. – Tara Dougherty



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O’Neill and Curry Shine in Kisses Kisses


hen director Lance Daly conceptualized the new Irish film Kisses, Shane Curry and Kelly O’’Neill must have been just the rough-aroundthe-edges street urchins he had in mind. Both breakthrough performances give raw emotion to Daly’’s story of a tenyear-old boy and eleven-year-old girl living next door to one another on the fringes of Dublin. Kylie is one of six siblings whose harried mother is oblivious to her traumas, while Dylan withstands his hatred of an abusive father and the loss of a brother who ran away two years ago in silence and tough apathy. The asthma inhaler he sucks on in moments so terrifying its uselessness is palpable belies an underlying vulnerability. After Dylan intervenes when a fight between his parents becomes physical, he and Kylie run away from home, aided by a foreign dredger captain who gives them a lift into the city and teaches them about the great Bob Dylan, with whom our young

hero shares more than a name. Their whirlwind adventure begins in ecstatic freedom, as Kylie’’s funds buy them light-up wheelie sneakers and new clothes, but nightfall promises the terrors that come with precociously claimed adulthood. The film is nothing less than beautiful to watch, with subtle transitions from black and white to color and long, drawn-out sequences accompanied by a soundtrack more than able to support the cinematography. Kisses was awarded best picture in Galway and Foyle and was selected for Locarno, Telluride, Toronto and London film festivals. Daly won best director at the 2009 IFTA, where Kisses earned 7 nominations. Kisses opened in New York July 16, with select other cities to follow. –– Kara Rota

Irish Repertory Theatre’s Brigadoon Benefit


n June 14, the Irish Repertory Theatre presented a concert version of the Lerner and Loewe musical Brigadoon as its annual benefit gala. A one-night performance, the cast included Melissa Errico, Jason Danieley, Christine Ebersole, Len Cariou, AJ Shively, Don Stephenson and Ciaran Sheehan. Hosted by Tony Award winning actor Matthew Broderick and Jonathan Cake, the 22nd annual benefit was a resounding success.The show was directed by Charlotte Moore, with choreography by Barry McNabb and musical direction by Mark Hartman. Brigadoon, according to Irish Rep, “tells the story of a mysterious Scottish village that appears through the mist for one day every hundred years.When two cynical and jaded New Yorkers stumble across the ‘Bridge O’Doon,’ entering the village on the very day of its once-a-century appearance, they are seduced by its charm and astonished by its story. A love story strong enough to re-arrange time and space ensues when one of the strangers has to choose between returning to the life he left behind and a life with his love in Brigadoon.” – Kara Rota


Left: The cast of Brigadoon. Top: Jonathan Cake, Charlotte Moore, Matthew Broderick and Irish Rep co-founder Ciaran O’Reilly. Above: Matthew Broderick and Jonathan Cake, the hosts of the evening. 32 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010



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Quote Unquote

““My great-great-grandparents came from Cavan and Leitrim in the mid-19th century, desperately joining hundreds of thousands of other emaciated Irish fleeing the anguish of the Famine. These starving, onestep-away-from cadavers arrived in America with nothing, nothing of earthly value, but with a heavenly treasure to be sure –– a glimmer of faith, a sparkle of hope, the whisper of a prayer. And they built the Catholic Church in the U.S. And this boy, thanks to Dolans, Sheerins, Murrays, Troys, and Hogans, was brought to a baptismal font in Maplewood, Missouri, in the winter of 1950, and was raised by parents who had the faith in their DNA, traceable to turf in Cavan and Leitrim, and who, while far from ‘‘shi-ite Catholics,’’ took that faith sincerely and seriously, and taught me to do likewise. To those who claim that the problem is that, as a matter of fact, church teaching is too holy, too aloof, too distant, too out of touch, I say the problem is hardly church teaching but lack of fidelity to it.”” – Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York speaking at Maynooth University in Ireland on May 27. – The Irish Voice

[Moynihan] was appalled by a British official who belittled the famine in Biafra because the rate of ‘malnutrition’ was only 5 or 10 percentage points above the normal rate. “I really did feel I was talking to Sir Charles Trevelyan 122 years ago, assuming all was well in Connaught, that the new potato crop was coming along nicely, and that in any event the Irish always were a bit disorganized.” – Excerpt from remarks of Daniel Patrick Moynihan, counselor and assistant to the president for urban affairs from January 1969 through December 1970 and a future senator from New York, in 90,000 pages of letters and memorandums recently released by the Nixon Presidential Library. – The New York Times

““He’’s going to find a very divided church. On the one side, he’’ll find those who are still very resistant to change and unwilling to acknowledge the extent of a very clear and deliberate coverup, and on the other side he’’ll find those who are significant reformers.’’’’ – Colm O’Gorman, an Irish clergy sex abuse victim and the founder of the organization One in Four, on Boston Archbishop Sean P. O’Malley’s visit to Ireland, appointed by Pope Benedict XVI to investigate the handling of sex abuse cases in the Dublin Archdiocese. – The Boston Globe

“When the president needs to pick up the phone and call someone on national security, that someone is Denis.” – Foreign policy expert Brian Katulis on Denis McDonough, the National Security Council’s chief of staff. – The New York Times 34 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010

““I conclude with an invitation for all of us to view our immigrant peoples no longer as strangers or statistics, but to see and hear them as real, flesh-and-blood human beings –– neighbors, family members –– whose lives are adversely affected every day that our leaders fail to enact just and fair immigration reform.”” – Cardinal Roger Mahony on Arizona’s immigration legislation, from an address given at Fordham University on May 3 and excerpted in America magazine.

““We don’’t yet really know the physical and psychological impact of being slaves to technology. We just know that technology is a narcotic. We’’re living in the clouds, in a force field, so afraid of being disconnected and plunged into a world of silence and stillness that even if scientists told us our computers would make our arms fall off, we’’d probably keep typing.”” – Maureen Dowd on San Francisco’s new cellphone radiation legislation introduced by mayor Gavin Newsom. – The New York Times



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Ted Kennedy, As the first anniversary of Ted Kennedy’s death approaches, Thomas Fleming recalls the late senator’s fascination with American history and his desire to share that love with America’s children and his own family.


“Is there anyone you’d like to dedicate this book to?” The voice on the telephone was my publisher, David Kane, president of American History Press. He was about to start printing copies of the 50th anniversary edition of the book that made me an historian, Now We Are Enemies: The Story of Bunker Hill. For a moment I was back a half century, reading letters and diaries at the Massachusetts Historical Society, talking to people who had ancestors in this battle, which had made the American Revolution and independence possible. I was writing the first book on Bunker Hill in almost 100 years. Two World Wars had overshadowed the story of the 36 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010

nation’’s founding. It had become a shadowy mix of myths and glittering phrases, unattached to the realities the men of 1775 had confronted. I had been determined to change that grossly deficient mindset. To a considerable extent I succeeded. Now We Are Enemies had been glowingly reviewed in over sixty newspapers and magazines. The Chicago Sunday Tribune gave it the front page of its book review. It was a main selection of the Literary Guild and Reader’’s Digest condensed it, winning the attention of an estimated 40 million readers. Suddenly I had an answer to my publisher’’s question. ““I want to dedicate it to Senator Ted Kennedy.”” I could sense David Kane’’s surprise.

He was aware of the senator’’s recent death, of course. But he did not realize Mr. Kennedy was part of a dimension of this book that was intimately linked with my identity as an Irish-American writer. In my mind, I was back six years now –– in 2004. I was picking up the telephone to hear a woman asking me a question: ““Do you have a few minutes to talk to Senator Kennedy?”” ““Of course,”” I said. In ten seconds the senator’’s wonderful baritone, tinged with a rich Boston accent, was on the line. ““Tom? David McCullough says you know more about the American Revolution than anyone else in the country. Would you like to take me and my wife and thirty or forty other Kennedys around Philadelphia and



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History Buff

Above: The City Tavern, one of Philadelphia’s historic sites. Left: Independence Hall on Chestnut Street between 5th and 6th Streets in Philadelphia. Opposite page: Senator Edward Kennedy and his family visiting Independence Hall on April 3, 2004.


out to Valley Forge?”” The senator explained why he was doing this. As a boy, his grandfather John ““Honey Fitz”” Fitzgerald, the former mayor of Boston, used to take him around the city, from Old North Church to Faneuil Hall to Paul Revere’’s house, and out to Bunker Hill where a soaring granite obelisk commemorated the battle. Honey Fitz filled young Teddy’’s head with stories about the men and women who had made each place important. The senator had never forgotten the experience. Now he was the senior Kennedy and he was trying to pass on this tradition to the next generation. For more than a decade, he had been taking the family on these ““history-trips.”” I told the senator how my interest in the Revolution had begun in Boston, with my book on Bunker Hill. I added how amazed I had been to discover that there were some 400 Irish Americans at Bunker Hill. Until I made this discovery, I had thought of the Revolution as a struggle between two groups of Englishmen. I added that my four grandparents were born in Ireland. ““Now I know I’’ve found the right guy!”” Ted said. A month later, I met Caroline Kennedy and her three children in Philadelphia’’s 30th Street Station. We chatted for an hour or so about their interest in American history while waiting for the other Kennedys to arrive on a bus from Washington, D.C. I had read the collection of great American speeches that Caroline had edited —— a superb piece of historical research, with vivid prose on every page. Several of the best speeches were by her Uncle Ted. The senator and his wife soon arrived, along with the senator’’s two sisters Eunice and Jean, and Ethel Kennedy with many of her grandchildren. We toured Independence Hall while I told stories about the Continental Congress and their struggle to find the courage to declare independence. I gave stumpy, eloquent John Adams credit for supplying a lot of

that courage. I portrayed a Thomas Jefferson so anxious about his wife’’s refusal to answer his letters that he almost went home and abandoned his rendezvous with history. I told how Jefferson’’s great manifesto was read to the people on July 9, 1776 in the yard of the Philadelphia State House by Colonel John Nixon, son of Irish-born Richard Nixon. I could see that the name Nixon made Senator Kennedy uneasy. ““Tom,”” he said. ““Maybe you should point out those were good Nixons.”” Though we were deep in the 18th century, the senator was still the senior spokesman of the Democratic Party.

We had lunch at the City Tavern, another historic site. Before the food was served I gave a talk, ““Yankee Doodle with a Brogue,”” about the Irish in the American Revolution. Everyone was amazed and delighted to learn that an estimated thirtythree percent of George Washington’’s army was Irish. I told them about Commodore John Barry, ““father of the American Navy,”” who was from County Wexford. I discussed at length one of my favorite characters, Charles Thomson, the secretary of the Continental Congress and close friend of Ben Franklin. Born in County Derry, Thomson was known as ““the Sam Adams of Philadelphia.”” When Parliament passed its first attempt to tax the Americans, the Stamp Act of 1765, a discouraged Franklin wrote Thomson from London that ““the sun of AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010 IRISH AMERICA 37



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liberty is set, and Americans must light the lamps of industry and economy.”” Thomson replied: ““Be assured that we shall light torches of a very different sort.”” I added stories about the Irish at Bunker Hill, focusing on Colonel John Stark and his New Hampshire regiment, which had Irish names by the dozen on their muster list. Stark changed the course of American history by foreseeing the British plan —— to attack along the Mystic River beach and assault the Bunker Hill fort from the rear. If they had succeeded, the Revolution would have collapsed. Stark put two hundred of his best sharpshooters behind an improvised stone wall on the beach and cut this ““flying column”” to pieces. The dismayed British were forced to resort to a costly frontal assault on the fort and the men behind a rail fence at its base. After lunch we boarded our bus for a visit to Valley Forge. On the way, I talked about the importance of George Washington and his regular army. They were the soldiers who had won the war. When the struggle began, Congress thought they could rely on militia —— amateur soldiers called from their homes for a few months’’ service. But they were often intimidated by Britain’’s professional soldiers, backed by cannon and cavalry. Soon the militia grew reluctant to serve. I told how the New Jersey militia had been called out in 1776 when Washington and his soldiers were retreating after their 38 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010

Above: Valley Forge Bunker, the site of the camp of the American Continental Army over the winter of 1777–1778 in the American Revolutionary War. Left: Senator Kennedy and City Tavern chef proprietor Walter Staib.

defeats in and around New York City. Only one thousand out of 17 thousand men on the state’’s muster rolls had responded. The reason, Washington saw, was ““the want of a regular army to look the enemy in the face.”” Keeping regular American army in the war became the centerpiece of his strategy. At Valley Forge, I had arranged for the younger Kennedys to be allowed to pick up and examine muskets and other artifacts at the Visitors Center. The boys had a marvelous time imagining themselves sniping at redcoats. I told how grim life had been at Valley Forge in 1778 —— food had run short, uniforms and shoes had deteriorated. Over 300 officers had resigned and 2,000 men deserted to the British army, which was living in relative comfort in nearby Philadelphia. But the ordeal had a marvelously happy ending —— the arrival of the news that Ben Franklin had signed a treaty of alliance with France, making the most powerful

nation in Europe our ally. I told how an ecstatic Marquis de Lafayette had rushed to Washington’’s headquarters when he heard the news and kissed the startled commander in chief on both cheeks. On the bus back to Philadelphia, Senator Kennedy was in a jovial mood. He told me how much they all had enjoyed the day. Then, with a twinkle in his eyes, he asked: ““Tom, I have a question about those sixteen thousand militia guys in New Jersey who didn’’t turn out in 1776 —— they were all Republicans, right?”” That was an easy question for an historian who had grown up with a father and grandfather who never voted anything but the straight Democratic ticket. ““Senator,”” I said. ““I didn’’t realize you’’d been doing such deep research. Of course they were!”” It was the perfect IrishAmerican ending to a day I would never forget. I sat down at my computer and e-mailed the dedication of Now We Are Enemies to American History Press: ““In memory of Senator Edward Kennedy, my favorite Bostonian and a fellow admirer of America’’s Revolutionary IA heritage.””



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The Vision of Bob

McCann It’s been said that the role of a leader in the new economy is to create a vision for your organization and make that vision a reality. Bob McCann of UBS talks about life, the importance of community and family, and what his vision for the future holds.

“Life isn’t all about money, but let's not be naïve.”


itting with Bob McCann in his impressive office in Weehawken, New Jersey, facing a panoramic view of the Hudson and the New York skyline, it’’s hard to argue with this statement. The chief executive officer of UBS Wealth Management Americas (WMA) and a member of the group executive board of UBS AG, McCann has a résumé that would intimidate many established professionals, not to mention a recent college graduate with a ballpoint pen and a Dictaphone. This considered, I’’m amazed at how down-to-earth Bob McCann is. When he walks into a room, you’’re put at ease. Our photographer, Kit DeFever, mentioned his surprise when McCann greeted a security guard by name, and the guard called him Bob. He’’s straightforward and open when discussing his views, political or philosophical, and downright tender when he talks about his two daughters, 20 and 22, and their hopes for


the future. He is deeply committed to his philanthropic work and speaks passionately about his focus on education. Before taking his current post at UBS, McCann spent twenty-six years at Merrill Lynch, where he was most recently vice chairman of Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc., and president of Global Wealth Management. When I speak with him on July 6, it’’s the 28th anniversary of when he began working on Wall Street. ““It was a Tuesday in 1982,”” McCann remembers. ““When I came to New York, I started to hear more about the Irish community, started having more interest ... A couple of my aunts have indicated that we were a family that didn’’t talk a lot about our Irish heritage. When I pressed [family members] on that, it seems to be the conclusion that it was a family where it was thought, ‘‘We’’re now American.’’ So I can tell you that growing




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up, my Irish ancestry wasn’’t mentioned a lot or talked much about. ““My involvement in Ireland didn’’t really start until 1997, 1998, and it started for the most New York of all reasons. It was about business. A friend of mine [and fellow Wall Street 50 honoree] Kip Condron asked me to buy a table at The American Ireland Fund dinner in New York, and I did because he was a friend and a good client. But through that, I started to develop friendships in the Irish-American community, with Loretta Brennan Glucksman and [Ambassador] Dan Rooney, who’’s from my hometown of Pittsburgh.”” McCann’’s great-great-grandfather came to Scotland from outside of Belfast around 1850. Family research suggests that he heard of work in Western Pennsylvania when mills were being built in Pittsburgh, and immigrated to America. It wasn’’t until the mid-90s that McCann visited Ireland on a golfing trip. ““I remember it perfectly. It sounds like

it’’s out of a travelogue or something, but what I remember first is just how green it was. It really does strike you. I had no idea. From the sky, I remember wanting to understand all the walls that were up and what they represented. I couldn’’t get over the value, in a host of ways, an Irishman puts on owning property.”” Through his involvement in The American Ireland Fund since 1998, McCann has found an excellent outlet for his philanthropic focus on education and intercultural communication. ““At one board meeting for the Ireland Fund, they made a comment that religious prejudice shows up in people as young as six. It became clear to me after I did a little bit more research that we have to get the kids young. So one year that I was the honoree at The American Ireland Fund dinner in New York, I wanted the pro42 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010

ceeds of the dinner to go towards educational activities. It was great; it was the biggest dinner we ever had and we raised $4 million. We built a grade school in the North dedicated to integrated education. I’’m just fascinated with the topic of integrated education because to me, it hits on all the things I care about. It touches on education and it also touches on understanding differences and learning to appreciate differences. ““Through another contact that I had at another time of my life, I met Gary Knell, the president and CEO of the Sesame Workshop. Having two children, I

TOP: Dan Rooney giving Bob McCann the award as Honoree of the 2006 American Ireland Fund dinner, which raised $4 million. ABOVE: With First Minister Robinson and Deputy Minister McGuinness at Stormont Castle in June. LEFT: Golfing in Ireland at the Waterville Golf Links with his brother Brian.

remember Sesame Street being on TV in our house all the time, and I found out through Gary that it’’s a lot more than just keeping your kids entertained; it’’s about education. Sesame Street had been in about 106 different countries but they never could crack Northern Ireland. So I introduced Gary to Loretta Brennan Glucksman [Chairman of AIF] and we thought that that could be a good project. We filmed 20 episodes of Sesame Street in Northern Ireland. They created two Muppets in addition to the ones that are more well-known, a Catholic and a Protestant Muppet, and they tell stories of understanding and respect and forgiveness through the Muppets to the kids. It’’s good stuff.”” A member of the executive committee of the board of directors of The American Ireland Fund, McCann is also involved with the Northern Ireland Mentorship Programme, along with U.S. Economic Envoy to Northern Ireland Declan Kelly. The Programme aims to develop Northern Ireland’’s promising future business leaders and entrepreneurs while strengthening the links between Northern Ireland and U.S. business. ““I have a lot of respect for Declan. He’’s likeable, he’’s smart, he’’s energetic. He

and Dan Rooney, and [President] Mary McAleese’’s husband, Martin, started talking about the need for programs that would give people focus, show people that the world is a big place and there’’s a way to be –– I don’’t want to say a way out,



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because that sounds like the only alternative is to leave, but the world’’s a big place and there are opportunities out there, and you can go off and learn and then come back to Ireland. Although I’’ve spent more of my time in the last year or so working on issues in the North, I care about all of Ireland. I kind of sit silent when people from the North position themselves as a better place for business than the South. I don’’t disagree, but they know how I feel and how I feel is that I want to see all of Ireland succeed. I thought that we could create an opportunity for successful young people who have shown potential to come to the U.S. and work for a great company with the idea and commitment that they would go back, whether they start their own company or work at a big one. And I also think that if we pick the right 30 people, they’’ll all touch other people’’s lives.”” McCann’’s philanthropic work in America is similarly focused on empowering young people to thrive. ““I always say the two things that really have allowed me to succeed were that I came from a great family and I had education,”” he says. ““I can’’t do anything about somebody’’s family, but I can try to make it possible for them to access education.”” At his own alma mater, Bethany College, McCann has founded the McCann Learning Center and the McCann Investment Fund, as well as serving as vice chairman of the board of trustees and as chair of the college’’s investment committee. The learning center provides support for students with learning disabilities or other difficulties, and the investment fund is based on a course that McCann took in graduate school, at Texas Christian University, which involved managing actual money in the stock market. He is also a member of the advisory board of the No Greater Sacrifice Foundation, which funds the education of children of military personnel who have been wounded or killed. ““I was never in the military, but I've come to develop a very healthy respect for military people and the sacrifices that they make. To me it’’s not about politics, it’’s not a statement about how I feel about this war or any other.”” With the amount of time Bob McCann spends on philanthropic pursuits, it’’s stunning to recall that he expends the majority of his energy heading a top investment company in what is still a try-

ing economic time for our nation. ““The economy is better than it was a year ago, but I think it’’s still fragile,”” he says. ““I think it’’s going to be a long, slow recovery and there are going to be fits and starts in this recovery. The last three years have been very hard on people in all kinds of ways and I think their confidence has been shaken. Their confidence in the U.S. economy, their confidence in our place in the world, how they invest and where they invest.”” McCann, a selfdescribed pragmatist, exercises a delicate balance of optimism and specific criticism in most of his views. ““I think we’’re going to come through it; I still believe in this country powerfully. The very same things that have allowed us to succeed

way. We have to earn back the trust of our clients, of our employees, of our shareholders, because, let’’s face it, we let some people down. We have to earn that back. And I think the firms that do earn it back will be the firms that will have a competitive advantage into the next 1020 years. Because it’’s a challenging time, but progress is being made and there’’s more to be made in the future.”” It’’s clear that McCann refuses to see institutions, from Wall Street to the American government to the Catholic Church, as faceless and uncontrollable beings to be blamed for America’’s challenges. He believes that good leadership by individuals in positions of power can overcome the most daunting of issues on

We could create an opportunity for young people who have shown potential to come to the U.S. and work for a great company with the idea that they would go back and touch other people’s lives. for the two hundred and thirty-four years we’’ve been here; those qualities are still in place but we’’re being tested in a way that we haven’’t been in quite some time, at the same time that we’’re fighting two wars, so the country is being challenged in a host of different ways. ““I think financial regulatory reform was necessary; it was appropriate. The process to get here at times has been too politically charged. I don’’t like to see people trying to divide and conquer; you can’’t have financial regulation that’’s driven by popular politics at the time. …… I think it’’s also important to note that in the end, regulatory reform will always have gaps. What fills the gaps is leadership. It comes down to running the companies, running the institutions in the United States, behaving and leading in the right way. Regulation will tell you what you can and can’’t do, but leadership answers the question of what you should do. And what we need right now in the industry that I’’m in, I would argue in big business period, we need leaders that are going to step up and lead in an honorable

large and small scales. Some of this philosophy comes from his two years under the mentorship of David Komansky, former chairman and CEO of Merrill Lynch who grew up in a family of Russian Jewish immigrants and Irish Catholics. ““There was a time in my life when I was trying to decide what direction to go. I was 33 years old. I’’d been a trader up until that point in my life, and I loved it, I loved the action, I loved the markets. I had taken on some management responsibilities. I was a producing manager, and my definition of managing at the time was that I yelled louder than other people on the trading floor. Komansky worked with me over a two-year period and he helped me cross the bridge from being a producer, but one largely responsible for myself, to being a leader and an executive and being responsible for other people, and the joy and frustration that can come from that…… I lost my temper on the trading floor, and he said, ‘‘Leadership is a privilege, not your right.’’ I think all of us have to remember that people don’’t have to follow, so we need to treat people in a AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010 IRISH AMERICA 43



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way that they want to follow, and to create a vision for them to want to follow. Then we also need to explain to them where they tie into that. ““One thing that we have to fix, and we have to fix this quickly: big institutions have failed us. It isn’’t just companies. Government leaders have failed, sports stars have failed. I’’m Roman Catholic; the Catholic Church has failed people. Wall Street, big banks –– organizations that are an important part of the cultural fabric –– have failed people. Whether it’’s how the pope leads or how the president leads, when people are given positions of responsibility and influence, whether you are a professional athlete or you’’re running a business …… People turned their children over to the church and the church violated that trust. People put their money in banks and we violated their trust as an industry, and we’’ve got to fix that. We’’ve got to do the right thing.”” For McCann, doing the right thing in his industry means empowering clients to reengage in their financial planning and restoring their confidence in investments. His vision for working towards this goal is personal, and probably at odds with how many consumers imagine the priorities of investment agencies. ““I think the

biggest thing we can do is taking the time to really get to know our clients and understand them,”” he says. ““Clients don’’t want to be sold products. Clients want somebody who can sit with them in a room and get to know them inside and out, talk with them and figure out their hopes, their dreams, their fears. And then work with them to come up with a game plan for them as to how they’’re going to live their life and how they’’re going to invest their money. You know, many decisions in life have a financial element. Life isn’’t all about money, but let’’s not be naive. To make many of the big decisions in life that you want to make, you have to be aware and understand what your financial position is. …… the mistake that you make as an industry is when we sell people things. I’’ve always felt that products are just the building blocks that we use. What we’’re really trying to do for a client is get them in a position where they understand what they have, they understand the risk of everything they own, that there’’s a game plan with the client, with the client involved with the financial advisors to execute it. ““I have a saying that I use here internally, that most big decisions are made at the kitchen table. My kitchen table is bigger

than the one I grew up with. But the fundamental act of sitting down as a family to talk and decide things is still happening. And I think the best financial advisors in the world have a seat at the clients’’ kitchen table. Sometimes it’’s in a kitchen, sometimes it’’s in a boardroom, sometimes it's in a restaurant, but it’’s a position of trust that they hold you to. We need to do that all the time and we need to have more people do it. People had a life-changing experience in the last couple years. They thought they were in a certain place in life financially and then all of a sudden the markets and the world changed and they were in a very different place than they had been. It’’s very important that we understand that trauma and the impact that it had on people, and help them reengage. Because you can’’t put your head in the sand and just walk away. A lot of people quit opening their statements, quit being willing to make decisions, and as a human being I understand that. But it’’s our job as an industry, it’’s our job here at UBS to help people start to reengage, and that’’s what we’’re doing.”” With his personal approach, determination to bridge differences and fervor for learning, Bob McCann seems like the IA kind of leader we need.



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I R I S H A M E R I C A’ S A N N U A L






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his, our Thirteenth Annual Wall Street 50, is a celebration of the best and the brightest Irish Americans and Irish-born who demonstrate standout success in the financial industry. From Chicago to New Jersey, Boston to California, to New York’s Wall Street itself, America’s financial companies and business executives have pressed through the climb towards economic recovery with dedication, enthusiasm and expertise.The Irish have a long tradition as survivors, which has served many of our honorees well in moving forward. In 2010’s Wall Street 50, we welcome new Irish and Irish-American faces and cheer on those past honorees who have been longtime friends of Irish America. Our keynote speaker, CEO of UBS Wealth Management Americas Bob McCann, shared with us his vision of leadership and how it affects his philanthropic

50 “I feel I understand what it means to be Irish, as I was raised – which is to work hard, stay humble, value education and friends, be respectful and have fun at what you do. …Any small success I have enjoyed in my professional career is directly because of my parents and their raising me to understand and respect my history as an Irishman.” - Sean Kelly, Eaton Vance

pursuits as well as his corporate achievements. We congratulate this year’s Wall Street 50, and offer a special word of thanks to our sponsor and co-host of this year’s Wall Street 50 dinner, Invest Northern Ireland, and also thank Titanic Quarter for their support. - Mortas Cine

“The Walsh family motto ‘Transfixus sed non mortuus’ – ‘pierced but not dead’ – grounds me with a sense of determination, shared history, shared commitment and values and a shared sense of humor!” - Vincent Walsh, KPMG LLP

Ancestral Links:




16% 22%


Counties of Origin: Cork Mayo Kerry Dublin Limerick Roscommon


University College Dublin Trinity College Fordham University Texas Christian University St. John’s University



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Michael Brewster

Shelaghmichael Brown

Michael Brewster joined Credit Suisse Private Banking USA as a managing director in 2008 and has spent the past 18 years managing investments for high net worth and institutional clients. He is a registered investment advisor who analyzes, reviews and invests for the MB Value/Growth and MB Strategic Dividend & Income Portfolios. Michael is on the Enterprise Ireland Financial Services and Shannon Development Advisory Boards (Irish Government Business Development Agencies) and the board of the Irish in Business Network. He was one of Barron’’s Top 1000 Advisors in 2010 and one of The Irish Echo’’s Top 40 under 40 in 2008. Born in Ireland, Michael graduated from Athlone Institute of Technology in Ireland with a higher diploma in management finance and earned his BS from Thomas Edison State College with a degree in business administration. His father’’s family comes from Co. Fermanagh; his mother’’s family, the Hegartys, is from Co. Longford. A member of the Ireland U.S. Council, Michael lives in New York with his wife, Margaret.

Shelaghmichael Brown is a senior executive vice president and head of retail banking for BBVA Compass. In 2009, she was recognized by U.S. Banker as one of the Top 25 Most Powerful Women in Banking. Before joining BBVA Compass in 2007, she was president of Rediclinic, Inc. and prior to that, CEO of Telecheck International. She started her financial services career at Morgan Guaranty, a predecessor of J.P. Morgan Chase and went on to spend 25 years at J.P. Morgan Chase. Shelaghmichael is a board member of the Consumer Bankers Association, a board member of CanCare and a graduate of the American Leadership Forum. She earned her BA from Wheaton College and her MBA from the University of Chicago. A second generation Irish American, she has roots in Tipperary on her father’’s side and Kilorglin on her mother's side. She is married and has five children.

BBVA Compass

Credit Suisse

Charles Carey CME Group

Charles Carey has served as vice chairman of CME Group since July 2007. Previously, he served as chairman of the Chicago Board of Trade and as a member of the CBOT board of directors for eleven years in various roles, including vice chairman, first vice chairman and full member director. In addition to playing a leading role in the CME/CBOT merger to form CME Group, Charlie spearheaded the transformation of CBOT, a member-run institution for more than 155 years, into a for-profit, NYSE-listed public company in 2005. Charlie has received a number of civic, industry and community service awards, including the Ellis Island Medal of Honor from the National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations Foundation and the Gold Medallion Award from the International Visitors Center of Chicago. He is president of the Chicagoland Sports Hall of Fame, an organization that provides scholarships for underprivileged youths. A lifelong resident of Chicago whose great-grandfather was born in Ireland, Charlie received a BA in business administration from Western Illinois University. 48 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2010


Mary Ann Callahan

Depository Trust & Clearing Corp. Mary Ann Callahan, managing director of global relations and development at DTCC, has cultivated DTCC’’s strategic business relationships and alliances for over 20 years. As president of the Americas’’ Central Securities Depositories Association since 2007, she leads a regional forum of 25 national market infrastructures in business developments worldwide. She was head of DTCC’’s London office for four years, and last year, Global Custodian magazine named her to its 20th anniversary hall of fame as a financial industry ““legend.”” A third-generation Irish American, Mary Ann earned a BA at Manhattanville College and an MBA in finance at NYU’’s Stern School of Business. Her maternal grandfather, whose parents emigrated from Dublin, served with the Fighting 69th during WWI. During her childhood, her grandfather marched each year with his Irish-heritage regiment at the front of New York’’s St. Patrick's Day Parade. Her paternal greatgrandparents hailed from Mayo. Regularly in touch with Invest Northern Ireland’’s U.S. team, Mary Ann is also a supporter of International Center in New York and Covenant House.

Christopher Condron AXA Financial

Christopher M. ““Kip”” Condron is president, CEO and a director of AXA Financial, Inc. He is chairman of the board, president and CEO of AXA Financial’’s principal insurance subsidiary, AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company, and is responsible for AllianceBernstein Corporation, AXA Financial’’s asset management affiliate. At AXA Group, AXA Financial’’s parent company, Kip is global head of life & savings and health businesses and a member of the Management Committee. Before joining AXA Financial in 2001, Kip was president and COO of Mellon Financial Corp., and chairman and CEO of The Dreyfus Corp. A native of Scranton, PA, Kip earned a BA in business from the University of Scranton, where he serves as chairman of its board of directors and a trustee. Kip is a director of The American Ireland Fund and treasurer and chairman of its executive committee, and a director on the board of the American Council of Life Insurers. Married with three children, Kip is a third-generation Irish American with roots in counties Donegal and Cork.

John Daly

Goldman Sachs John Daly is co-head of the Industrial and Natural Resources Financing Group sector and head of the INR sector in Equity Capital Markets New York. He joined the firm’’s global finance team in 1989. John became a managing director in 1998 and a partner in 2000. After a three-year period in Hong Kong as co-head of Capital Markets, Asia ex-Japan, John returned to New York in his current role in late 2003. Before moving to Hong Kong, he had responsibility for Energy and Power transactions in the Equity Capital Markets Group in NY. John worked for four years in the Corporate Finance Group in the investment banking division before his transfer to ECM. Prior to joining the firm, John was a manufacturing engineer with GE. John is a member of the Trinity College Dublin Foundation Board, the Trinity School of Business Advisory Board and the Financial Services Advisory Board of Enterprise Ireland. He earned an MBA from Wharton, a BAI in engineering, and a BA in mathematics from the University of Dublin, Trinity College. A Dublin native, John lives in New York City and is married with four children.



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David Dempsey • Bentley Associates

David Dempsey, who has over 28 years of experience as an international investment banker specializing in private equity, mergers and acquisitions, is a managing director at Bentley Associates L.P. in New York. Prior to joining Bentley, David worked with a number of banks in New York and London, on the merger and acquisition and corporate finance sides and also with a major management consulting firm. He began his career at the Chase Bank in London after completing his term as secretary general of AIESEC International in Brussels, and also serves as the director of The New Ireland Fund, Inc., a closed-end diversified investment company with 80 percent of its assets in a portfolio of Irish securities. David is on the advisory board of Enterprise Ireland and is also the founder of the China Investment Group, LLC. David grew up in Dublin and earned a BCom from University College Dublin and his MBA from Fordham. He has served as a visiting professional at NYU, and is a commercial pilot and master flight instructor in his spare time. David lives in New York with his wife Deborah and their daughter.

Terrence Duffy

Mary Erdoes

Terrence A. Duffy has been executive chairman of CME Group since 2007. Previously, he was chairman of the board of CME and CME Holdings since 2002 and executive chairman since 2006. In 2002, Terry was appointed by President Bush to serve on a National Saver Summit on Retirement Savings. He was also appointed by President Bush and confirmed by the U.S. Senate in 2003 to the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board. Terry currently serves on the board of directors of World Business Chicago, the board of trustees of Saint Xavier University, and the regional advisory board of The American Ireland Fund and is cochair of the Mayo Clinic Greater Chicago Leadership Council. He is chairman of the NYMEX Foundation and vice chairman of the CME Group Foundation. A third-generation Irish American, Terry attended the University of WisconsinWhitewater. In 2007, he received a Doctor of Humane Letters from DePaul University.

Mary Callahan Erdoes is the CEO of J.P. Morgan’’s Asset Management line of business. She is a member of J.P. Morgan Chase & Co.’’s Executive and Operating Committees. Mary joined J.P. Morgan in 1996 as head of fixed income for highnet-worth individuals, foundations and endowments. Following the J.P. Morgan/Chase merger in 2000, she assumed responsibility for the global suite of investment solutions and investment strategy for private banking clients worldwide. In 2005, Mary was named CEO of J.P. Morgan’’s Private Bank. In 2008, she became chairman and CEO of Global Wealth Management at J.P. Morgan. Mary is a graduate of Georgetown (BS) and Harvard Business School (MBA). She is a member of the board of directors of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF. In 2009, Forbes named Mary one of ““The 100 Most Powerful Women in the World,”” and U.S. Banker listed her among the 25 Most Powerful Women in Banking. An Illinois native, Mary is a fourthgeneration Irish American. Her great-grandparents emigrated from counties Cork on her father’’s side and Tipperary on her mother’’s. Mary lives in New York City with her husband and three daughters.

CME Group

J.P. Morgan



Craig Donohue

John Duffy

Craig S. Donohue has served as CEO of CME Group and its predecessor company, CME Holdings Inc. since 2004. In 2010, Craig was selected as one of the 50 best-performing CEOs in the world by the Harvard Business Review. In 2009, Craig was named to Institutional Investor’’s Power 50 list of the World’’s Most Influential People in Finance. He is a member of the Wall Street Journal’’s CEO council and serves on the steering committee for its Future of Finance Initiative. Craig is chairman of the board of directors of the Council for Economic Education and chairman of the Executives’’ Club of Chicago. He holds an MBA degree from Northwestern’’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management, a JD degree from John Marshall Law School, an ML degree in financial services regulation from IIT ChicagoKent College of Law and a BA degree in political science and history from Drake University. Craig is a third-generation Irish American with roots in County Cork. He lives in Northbrook, Illinois, with his wife and their three children.

John Duffy has been chairman and chief executive officer of Keefe, Bruyette & Woods since 2001 and has been with the firm for over 30 years. In 2006, Investment Dealers’’ Digest named John its 2006 ““Middle Market Banker of the Year.”” Prior to taking this position, he served as the firm’’s president and co-CEO since 1999. From 1990 to 1999, he was executive vice president in charge of KBW’’s investment banking department. Before joining KBW in 1978, John was a vice president at Standard & Poor’’s in charge of ratings for depository institutions. John is on the board of trustees of the Michael Smurfit Graduate School of Business, University College Dublin, and Saint Michael’’s College in Vermont. He also serves on the board of trustees for The Ursuline School in New Rochelle, New York and is a trustee of Cardinal Hayes High School in the Bronx. John received his BA in economics from the City College of New York and attended the Bernard Baruch Graduate Program of the City University of New York.

CME Group


Michael Farrell • MetLife

Executive vice president for U.S. distribution at MetLife, Michael K. Farrell has over 34 years of experience in the financial services industry. Michael is responsible for leading MetLife’’s U.S. sales organization that provides products and services to millions of individuals and over 60,000 employers across the U.S., including over 90 of the top one hundred FORTUNE 500® companies. The division provides employee benefit and retirement solutions, insurance and other financial services. Michael joined MetLife in 2001 and has held a number of senior-level positions. Prior to becoming head of U.S. Business sales in 2009, Michael was in charge of all aspects of MetLife’’s market-leading annuity business. He also played an integral role in the integration of Travelers Life & Annuity and CitiStreet Associates into MetLife in 2005. Before joining MetLife, Michael was president of Michael K. Farrell Associates, Inc. Last year, Michael received the Annie Moore award from the Irish American Cultural Institute. A graduate of Fairleigh Dickinson University, he is a board member of the Boys and Girls Club Life Camp and was named New Jersey’’s Irishman of the Year in 2005.



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Ryan Fennelly RBC Capital

Ryan Fennelly is a director on The U.S. Treasury Trading Desk at RBC Capital Markets, the investment-banking arm of Canada's biggest lender, the Royal Bank of Canada. Born and raised in New York, Ryan is a graduate of Cornell University with a BS in applied economics & business management. Ryan was previously the head U.S. agency trader at Credit Suisse Securities. Ryan is a second-generation Irish American whose maternal grandparents came from Kerry and whose father’’s grandparents emigrated from Kilkenny. Ryan is an avid golfer and makes annual trips to the emerald isle. Ryan appreciates his Irish heritage and work ethic and uses it to instill hard work and discipline in everyday life. He says, ““I can remember my grandmother who was proud to be an Irish American Catholic. My mother named me Ryan Patrick after my grandfather. She taught me to be a God-fearing, loyal citizen who respects country and his fellow man.”” Ryan currently lives with his wife, Helen, and their three children in Rockville Centre, New York.

Gregory Fleming

Morgan Stanley Gregory J. Fleming has been the president of Morgan Stanley Investment Management, including Merchant Banking, since February 2010. He is responsible for Global Research and is a member of the Operating Committee. Gregory was president and COO of Merrill Lynch from June 2007 to 2009. From 2003 to 2007, he was executive vice president and co-president of Merrill’’s Global Markets and Investment Banking Group. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a director of Colgate University and a member of the board of advisors for the Yale Law School Center for the Study of Corporate Law. He is a Phi Beta Kappa, summa cum laude graduate in economics from Colgate and received his JD from Yale Law School. Gregory is a fourth-generation Irish American with roots in Co. Longford on his mother’’s side. He and his wife Melissa have three children, Andrea, Charlotte and Rory.

Robert Golden Prudential Financial

Robert Golden joined Prudential in 1976 and is now executive vice president of Prudential Financial. Under his leadership, Prudential founded a technology and call center in Donegal with 700 employees. Bob, who earned his BS and MBA from Fordham University, serves as first vice chair and director of HeartShare Human Services of New York, a nonprofit organization for children in need. In 2000, he received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. In 2001, he was named Man of the Year by Catholic Charities of Brooklyn and by the New York Aquarium. In 2002, Bob was named Man of the Year by Catholic Big Brothers, and in 2006 was named a Distinguished Irish American by New York City Comptroller William Thompson. In 2010, he received the first Spirit of Xaverian Award from his alma mater, Xaverian High School. Bob is a Knight of St. Gregory, a Knight of Malta and a Knight of Grand Cross of the Holy Sepulchre. A third-generation Irish American with roots in Co. Mayo, Bob is a member of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick, the Ancient Order of Hibernians and the St. Patrick Society of Brooklyn. He and his wife Maureen live in Staten Island with their two children, Katie and Bobby.



Robert Garrett • KPMG

Bob Garrett serves as the New York office managing partner for KPMG LLP. As managing partner, Bob is responsible for overseeing the delivery of high-quality client service, driving cross-functional quality growth efforts, attracting and retaining key resources, and representing the firm and the New York office in the marketplace and community. Bob was named to this position in November 2009. Prior to that he served as the Business Unit Partner in Charge of the New York Financial Services Audit practice. He has over 23 years of client service experience within the financial services industry and has served many of KPMG’’s largest financial services. He is a member of several organizations including the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick, Cardinal’’s Committee for Charity and the American Ireland Fund. Bob is a second-generation Irish American with roots in County Mayo on his father’’s side. Of his Irish ancestry he says, ““My Irish heritage provides me with a solid foundation on how I choose to live my life. A foundation built on family, hard work, community, faith, and laughter.”” Bob has two children, Robert and Alexandra, and lives with his wife Trina in New Jersey.

John Harrison Sovereign Bank

John T. Harrison currently serves as the corporate banking market president for Sovereign Bank, a division of Banco Santander, with responsibility for middle market banking throughout the state of New Jersey. John joined Sovereign in 2004 as regional executive for the bank’’s Mid-Jersey commercial market. Before joining Sovereign, he had been managing director of Commerce Bank’’s Institutional Middle Market group. Before that he was senior vice president and senior relationship manager at Fleet Boston. John earned a bachelor’’s degree in accounting at St. John’’s University and has also completed numerous training programs including advanced credit skills. He holds a Strategic Financial Analyst designation and was also co-chairman of Sovereign’’s Mid-Jersey Advisory Board. John resides in Jackson, New Jersey, with his wife Maureen and three children. In the community, John coaches youth basketball.

“My parents, who emigrated to the U.S. from counties Meath and Roscommon, built their lives on the principles of hard work and perseverance. They instilled in their children the importance of education and service to others. Loyalty to friends and family are always at the heart of the Irish tradition.” – Rosemary McDuffee, Bank of America



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Karen Higgins-Carter GE Asset Management

Karen Higgins-Carter is the chief information officer for GE Asset Management. In this capacity, she oversees the operations and enhancement of all GEAM IT systems. Karen was hired as an IT strategy leader at General Electric Capital Services in 1998. In 1999, she joined GE Consumer Finance responsible for all IT project delivery for GE's U.S. private label credit card clients. Most recently, Karen led IT operations for GE Commercial Finance with a specific focus on IT security, disaster recovery and continuous improvement in system availability and performance. Prior to GE, Karen was a manager at Andersen Consulting (now Accenture) in New York. While at Andersen, she specialized in application development to support emerging broadband services in the telecommunications industry. Karen earned a BS in Mechanical Engineering and a BA degree with a major in economics from Lafayette College. She is a fourthgeneration Irish American with roots in County Cork.

Denis Kelleher

Sean Kelleher

Denis Kelleher is founder and CEO of Wall Street Access. Since 1981, Wall Street Access has combined an independent, entrepreneurial culture with a powerful platform to build and operate a diverse set of successful financial services businesses. Denis began his career in 1958 as a messenger with Merrill Lynch, where he rose dramatically through the company ranks until 1969 when he founded Ruane Cunniff and its Sequoia Fund. In 1981 he founded Wall Street Access. Denis, a native of Co. Kerry, is a graduate of St. John's University, where he currently serves as a member of the board of trustees, previously serving as chairman of the board for eight years. Denis is director of The New Ireland Fund, member of the board of trustees of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and a member of the Staten Island Foundation. He was proud to be recognized with the Ellis Island Medal of Honor in 1995. In 2005, Denis was Grand Marshal of the St. Patrick’’s Day Parade in NYC. He lives on Staten Island with his wife Carol. They have three children and eight grandchildren.

As managing director of Wall Street Access, the financial services organization founded by his father Denis Kelleher, Sean has helped guide the firm through successful ventures in online brokerage, institutional research and trading and asset management. In 1992, Sean joined the firm as a clerk and now manages a team of more than 50 analysts, traders and salespeople. A graduate of Wagner College, Sean now serves on the college’’s alumni board and finance committee. He also serves as co-chairman of the Staten Island Film Festival, is co-founder of the Gerry Red Wilson Foundation to support spinal meningitis research, and is a member of the Board of Directors for Camp Good Grief of Staten Island and the Staten Island Zoo. Sean, who spent the summers of his youth in Ireland, working the bog, says the catalysts behind his love for Irish culture are his family and playing Gaelic football in his father's village in County Kerry. He lives on Staten Island, New York with his wife Wendy and their three children, Maggie, Jack and Denis.

Wall Street Access

Wall Street Access



Adrian Jones

Joseph Jordan

Adrian Jones is a managing director in the Merchant Banking division of Goldman, Sachs & Co. in New York, where he is a member of the Global Investment Committee and is responsible for the firm’’s healthcare and consumer-related investing in the United States. Adrian grew up in Roscommon and served in the Irish Army from 1981 to 1989. Adrian earned a BA from UCG, an MA from UCD and an MBA from Harvard before joining Goldman Sachs in 1994. In addition to representing Goldman Sachs on a number of corporate boards, Adrian serves on the boards of Autism Speaks, The American Ireland Fund and the Galway University Foundation.

Joe Jordan is senior vice president of MetLife, responsible for global sales process strategies relating to enterprise life, annuities, long term care and disability income. He joined the company in 1988 and is an industryrenowned thought leader in behavioral economics, clientcentric tools, ethical selling and client advocacy. He founded the Insured Retirement Institute. Joe, who attended Fordham University where he is an Athletic Hall of Fame member for his achievements in football, is a Catholic Big Brother and has been a board member for 11 years. The Jordan family motto is ““Percussus Resurgo”” which means ““When stricken I will rise again.”” Joe, who is a secondgeneration Irish American with roots in Court Town Harbor, Co. Wexford on his father's side, says, ““I have always felt that this was a great motto to live by and to apply to my personal challenges. It is also a symbol of the Irish persona as the people have endured so much persecution and adversity over time. I was very proud of the Celtic Tiger and have complete faith that it will roar again.”” Joe, his wife Geraldine, and their two children live in New York City.

Goldman Sachs


Robert Kelly • BNY Mellon

Robert Kelly is chairman and CEO of The Bank of New York Mellon. He was named one of America’’s Best CEOs in 2009 by Institutional Investor magazine and a top 10 bank CEO in 2006 and 2007 by U.S. Banker magazine. Bob is chairman of the Financial Services Forum and president of the Federal Advisory Council of the Federal Reserve Board. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Financial Services Roundtable, the Institute of International Finance, and the Partnership for New York City. He is on the boards of trustees of Carnegie Mellon and St. Patrick’’s Cathedral, and is chancellor of St. Mary’’s University. The American Irish Historical Society named Bob as its 2010 Gold Medal recipient. Bob is a chartered accountant with an MBA and an honorary doctorate from Cass Business School, City University in London and a BA and honorary doctorate from St. Mary's University, Nova Scotia, Canada. His Irish roots are in Waterford. He says, ““When I celebrate my heritage, I’’m celebrating my ancestors and the community that supported them in creating a strong future for generations to come.”” He and his wife Rose have two children, Brad and Elise.



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Sean Kelly • Eaton Vance

Sean Kelly is a senior vice president, managing director and head of both the Sub-Advisory and Defined Contribution (Investment Only) businesses for Eaton Vance Distributors, Inc., the sales subsidiary of Boston-based Eaton Vance. Sean joined Eaton Vance in 2007 after serving as senior vice president and managing director of the subadvisory and DCIO businesses at Evergreen Investments. He is a firstgeneration Irish American on both sides. His father’’s family is from Roscommon Town, Co. Roscommon and his mother’’s family is from Athlone, Co. Westmeath. Sean visited Ireland each year from childhood to his late teens and says, ““I feel I understand what it means to be Irish, as I was raised, to work hard, stay humble, value education and friends, be respectful and have fun at what you do. Any small success I have enjoyed in my professional career is directly because of my parents and their raising me to understand and respect my history as an Irishman.”” Sean lives in Massachusetts with his wife and four children. He has a BA in business management from Bentley University and an MBA with a concentration in finance from the Carroll Graduate School of Management at Boston College.

Donald Keough Allen & Co.

Donald Keough is chairman of the board of Allen & Company Incorporated. He was elected to that position in 1993. Donald retired as president, COO and a director of The Coca-Cola Company in 1993, positions he held since 1981. His tenure with the company dates back to 1950. Donald currently serves on the boards of IAC/InterActive Corp, Global Yankee Holdings, Berkshire Hathaway Inc. and The Coca-Cola Company. Donald has served for many years as a member of the boards of McDonald’’s Corp., The Washington Post Co., H. J. Heinz Co. and The Home Depot. He is chairman emeritus of the Board of Trustees and a life trustee of the University of Notre Dame. Donald’’s many honors include honorary doctorates from the University of Notre Dame, his alma mater Creighton University, and Trinity University in Dublin. He received the University of Notre Dame’’s highest honor, the Laetare Medal, in 1993. Donald resides in Atlanta, Georgia with his wife, Marilyn. They have six children and eighteen grandchildren. Donald received honorary Irish citizenship in June 2007.

Sean Kilduff • UBS As senior vice president of investments at UBS Private Wealth Management, Sean T. Kilduff focuses on delivering customized solutions to high net worth individuals and families. He also serves as senior portfolio manager in the Portfolio Management Program concentrated on developing customized investment strategies that utilize strategic and tactical asset allocation models. Born and raised in New York, Sean is a graduate of St. John’’s University with a BS in finance. He began his career at Shearson Lehman Brothers and spent nine years at Morgan Stanley Global Wealth Management before moving his team and practice to UBS Private Wealth Management. Sean is a first-generation Irish American whose mother was born and raised in Dublin. His father’’s family is from Westmeath. He notes, ““Having visited my grandmother in Dublin often, Ireland became a big part of my life from an early age. As a result, I gained a true appreciation for the world famous warmth and incredible wit of the Irish people.”” Sean lives in Rockville Centre, New York with his wife Jean and their four children.



Shaun Kelly

Joseph Kenney

Shaun Kelly is vice chair - operations for KPMG LLP, responsible for forecasting and planning and monitoring the execution of the firm’’s financial plan. He is a member of the firm’’s management committee. Shaun was previously vice chair in charge of KPMG’’s U.S. Tax practice and regional head of the Americas Tax practice. Shaun grew up in Belfast, Northern Ireland, joined KPMG International’’s Irish member firm in Dublin in 1980 and transferred to the U.S. firm’’s San Francisco office in 1984. He was admitted to the U.S. partnership in 1999. Shaun earned a bachelor of commerce, first class honors from University College, Dublin. He is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland and a certified public accountant. Shaun is treasurer and member of the executive committee of Students in Free Enterprise. He is co-chair of KPMG’’s Disabilities Network and a member of KPMG's Diversity Advisory Board. Shaun lives in Connecticut with his wife Mary, who was born in Donegal, and their four children, two of whom were born in Belfast and two of whom were born in California.

Joe Kenney is the chief executive officer of J.P. Morgan’’s Private Wealth Management, responsible for overseeing one of the largest providers of wealth management services in the United States with more than $150 billion in client assets. Joe previously led Private Wealth Management’’s Investments Practice, responsible for implementation of investment strategy and solutions. Joe was a member of the Private Bank and Private Wealth Management Investment Committees and the Alternative Investment Committee. Prior to that, he was head of the West Coast’’s Investment Practice for J.P. Morgan’’s Private Bank. Joe joined J.P. Morgan in 1988, working in the Domestic Loan Syndication and Emerging Market Loan Swap Department and joined the Private Bank in February 1991. Joe received his BS from Saint Michael's College. He is a fourth-generation Irish American whose ancestors come from counties Cork and Roscommon. A native of New Jersey, Joe is married with three children, Sean, Grace and Owen.


J.P. Morgan

Patrick Lynch

Chicago Equity Partners Patrick C. Lynch is one of the founding partners and president of Chicago Equity Partners. He has been with the firm for over twenty years. Prior to joining Chicago Equity’’s predecessor firm, Bank of America, he held positions at Continental Bank and the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. Patrick earned a BA in finance from Loyola University of Chicago and an MBA from DePaul University. He holds the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation. He serves on the boards of Loyola University, the Joffrey Ballet, the regional board of The American Ireland Fund, the Catholic Education Foundation (Diocese of Joliet) and the Irish Fellowship Club of Chicago. Patrick is a first-generation Irish American on both sides. His mother is from Limerick and his father is from Kerry. Patrick says he has always been proud of his Irish heritage because ““the Irish people have always strived to improve their situation for the benefit of their family and the greater society.”” Patrick currently resides in Chicago with his wife, Carolyn. They have five sons.



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Brendan McDonagh

Rosemary McDuffee

Thomas Meagher, Jr.

Brendan McDonagh has been CEO of HSBC North America Holdings Inc., a subsidiary of HSBC Holdings plc, one of the world’’s largest banking and financial services organizations, since 2008. He is a group managing director for HSBC Holdings plc and a member of the HSBC group management board. Brendan joined HSBC Group in 1979 as an international manager. He transferred to the United States in 2002 to run the retail and commercial banking operations for HSBC Bank USA, N.A. Brendan is an associate of the Institute of Financial Services and a fellow of the Chartered Management Institute. Brendan is active with the Chicago regional board of The American Ireland Fund. Born in Dublin, Brendan received his BA and MA degrees from Trinity College, UCD and is on the advisory board of the Business School of Trinity College. He lives in the Chicago area with his wife Kenane and their two children. Note: Brendan will retire as CEO of HSBC North America Holdings as of July 31.

Rosemary McDuffee is currently a director and alternative investment specialist, responsible for leading specialist activities nationally within Bank of America’’s US Trust Division. Prior to joining the team in 2006, Rosemary was a vice president with Bank of America Securities Debt Capital Markets group, responsible for origination, structuring and syndication of multi-million dollar corporate debt financings. She has earned both the CFA and CAIA professional designations. A first-generation Irish American on both sides, Rosemary earned an MBA in finance and accounting from NYU’’s Stern School of Business and a BS in economics from Binghamton University. Rosemary’’s parents, who came to the U.S. from Cos. Meath and Roscommon, ““built their lives on the principles of hard work and perseverance. They instilled in their children the importance of education and service to others. Loyalty to friends and family are always at the heart of the Irish tradition.”” She and her husband Bill proudly pass on these values to their daughter, Madelyn, who was born on St. Patrick’’s Day.

As managing director and partner of Grosvenor Capital Management, L.P., which he joined in 2001, Thomas Meagher, Jr. shares responsibility for business development. From 1998 to 2001, Thomas served as a director with First Union National Bank. From 1995 through 1998, he was a director with The ServiceMaster Company. He was assistant to the Governor on economic affairs in the office of Governor Thompson and deputy director for the Illinois Housing Development Authority from 1982 to 1990. Thomas, who earned a BBA in marketing/management from Texas Christian University, is a member of the Economic Club of Chicago, the International Board of Visitors of Texas Christian University’’s Neeley School of Business, The American Ireland Fund board of directors and governing board and the board of Old St. Patrick’’s Church, Chicago. A fourth-generation Irish American, Thomas resides in Chicago with his wife, Diane, and son. In addition, he has two adult sons living in Chicago and Florida.



Bank of America

Grosvenor Capital Management



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Thomas Morris, Jr. • Aon Thomas V. Morris, Jr. is the Greater New York regional managing director of Aon Risk Services. Named after the Gaelic word meaning ““oneness,”” Aon has 36,000 employees in 500 offices, including ones located in Dublin, Shannon, Limerick, Cork and Mullingar. Prior to assuming his current job, Tom was the resident managing director for the New York office. Before that, he was a managing director and led the Account Executive Group in Greater New York. Tom's professional designations include Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) and Associate in Risk Management (ARM). He is affiliated with the National Association of Insurance Brokers as well as Insurance Brokers Association of New York. Tom started his career as a casualty underwriter with Continental Insurance following his active duty with the U.S. Army. Born in Brooklyn, New York, Tom received his BA in business administration from Rutgers and his MBA in management from Fordham University. He is a third-generation Irish American with roots in County Cork on his father’’s side and County Leitrim on his mother’’s side.

Anthony Murphy

Conor Murphy

Tony Murphy, who most recently served as CEO of HSBC Global Banking and Markets activities in the Americas, has extensive experience in wholesale and consumer financial services. He joined the HSBC Group in 1990 and has held general management, trading and risk management postings in the Americas and Europe. These included positions as CEO of HSBC Securities (USA) Inc. and Head of Strategy Implementation for HSBC North America Holdings. Prior to joining HSBC, Tony worked at Towers, Perrin, Forster and Crobsy, James Capel & Co. and Nomura International, based in London. Born in Ireland, Tony holds degrees from Trinity College, Dublin University, and a PhD in theoretical physics from Oxford University. He is a Fellow of the UK Institute of Actuaries. Tony left HSBC in June to pursue a variety of consulting and academic interests in wholesale and consumer financial services.

Conor Murphy is vice president and head of investor relations for MetLife, a role he undertook at the onset of the financial crisis. Previously, Conor was vice president and CFO-Investments. He joined MetLife in 2000 after seven years with PwC, where he served in the New York Financial Services Industry Practice. Prior to PwC, he spent five years with Grant Thornton LLP in Dublin, Ireland. In 2010 MetLife announced its acquisition of ALICO, which will create the largest insurance company by revenue in the world. In addition, Conor was named to Institutional Investor’’s 2010 All America Executive Team. Conor is a founding trustee of Cristo Rey New York High School and a past president of the Association of Chartered Accountants in the U.S. He is a member of the Massachusetts Society of CPAs and a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland. Conor is a native of Donegal, where the third generation of Murphys still runs the family store, Murphy of Ireland. He credits his good fortune to a love of reading that began on his mother’’s knee and the love of his wife, Ani, with whom he has two sons.





Brian Moynihan Bank of America

Brian T. Moynihan is president and CEO of Bank of America. He was elected by the board of directors and took office on January 1, 2010. Brian is a member of the BofA board of directors. Brian joined Bank of America in 2004 after the company’’s merger with FleetBoston Financial, serving as president of Global Wealth and Investment Management. He joined Fleet in 1993 as deputy general counsel. Brian is a graduate of Brown University and the University of Notre Dame Law School. He is on the boards of directors of YouthBuild Boston and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Boston. Brian is a former chairman of the Travelers Aid Society of Rhode Island and Providence Haitian Project, Inc. Brian lives in Massachusetts with his wife, Susan, and their three children. A fourth-generation Irish American whose ancestors emigrated from Ireland to upstate New York in the 1850s, Brian says, ““There’’s no sense of entitlement, no sense of placement, it's all a sense of you’’ve got to go out and work hard to get there……I think that’’s deeply embedded in the culture of the Irish, including the Irish who went around the world.””

Robert Mulholland • UBS

Robert E. Mulholland is the managing director and head of the Wealth Management Advisor Group for UBS Financial Services Inc. Robert was appointed in 2009 by Bob McCann and is a member of the executive committee. He joined UBS with 30 years of financial services experience, mainly at Merrill Lynch where he was most recently head of brokerage. In 1979, Robert joined Merrill Lynch as a financial advisor and steadily moved up, becoming senior vice president and co-head of Americas Region and Global Private Client from 2003 to 2005. Robert was a member of the executive committee of Merrill Lynch Global Private Client from 2001 to 2005 and a member of the operating committee of Merrill Lynch and Co. from 2002 to 2005. From 2005 to 2009, he was chairman and president of Sound Securities. A third-generation Irish American with roots in Co. Mayo on his father’’s side, Robert graduated from Lehigh University with a BS in management and marketing and graduated from the advanced management program at Harvard. He and wife, Carol, have two children, Brian and Susie.

Kathleen Murphy

Fidelity Investments

Kathleen Murphy is president of Personal Investing, a unit of Fidelity Investments, which is the largest mutual fund company in the United States, one of the largest retail brokerage companies and the number one provider of workplace retirement savings plans. Kathy assumed her current position in January 2009. Her business serves over 12 million accounts and is responsible for over $900 billion in assets. Prior to joining Fidelity, Kathy was CEO of ING U.S. Wealth Management from 2006 to 2008. From 2003 to 2006, Kathy was group president of ING worksite and institutional financial services. Kathy received her BA from Fairfield University in 1984. She earned her JD from the University of Connecticut. Currently, Kathy sits on the board of directors and executive committee of America’’s Promise, serves on the advisory board of the Smurfit School of Business at the University of Dublin and is a member of the board of directors at the University of Connecticut Foundation. Kathy’’s father’’s family is from Cork and her mother’’s is from Kerry. She is a thirdgeneration Irish American. Kathy is married with one son.



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Kevin Murray • AXA Financial Kevin E. Murray is an executive vice president and chief information officer for AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company. He is also a member of the company’’s executive management committee and of the board of directors of AXA Tech, which is responsible for all data processing services for the global AXA Group. Before joining AXA Equitable in 2005, Kevin served as group CIO for the domestic general insurance unit of American International Group, which included AIG’’s domestic brokerage, personal lines and risk management lines of business. A graduate of Penn State University where he earned a BS in computer science with an emphasis in finance, Kevin is on the advisory board for several organizations, including The American Ireland Fund (New York Regional), AT&T Technology, Hewlett Packard The Financial Services Roundtable, CIO Executive Council and Enterprise Ireland. He received Insurance & Technology’’s 2009 Elite 8 award. Kevin, who lives in New York City, is a second-generation Irish American. All of his grandparents were born in West Cork and emigrated to The Bronx, New York in the early 1900s.

John O’Shea

Westminster Securities John O’’Shea joined Westminster in 1987 and is now chairman and CEO, co-founding member of the Global Alliance Partners, and vice chairman of Monarch Capital Group LLC. He is a member of the New York Stock Exchange, the New York Board of Trade and the Securities Traders Association, as well as the American Council on Renewable Energy. John is also a non-executive director of BlueRock Energy, AllGreen Energy, and China Aoxing Pharmaceutical. John has testified before the Securities and Exchange Commission and the U.S. Congress regarding the impact of SarbanesOxley regulation on U.S. companies. He has also spoken at the Great Hall of the People in China regarding coal technology. John earned BA and MA degrees in economics from the University of Cincinnati, He is a first-generation Irish American whose mother and father both came from Dingle, County Kerry. He says, ““I carry my Irish heritage wherever in the world I travel. My dual citizenship binds me to the global community.””

James O’Sullivan MF Global

James ““Jim”” O’’Sullivan is chief economist of MF Global, a financial services firm. He forecasts and analyzes macroeconomic developments and policy actions driving financial markets. He authors Macro for Markets, a weekly publication on the U.S. economy. Prior to joining MF Global in 2009, Jim was a managing director at UBS. He began his career at J.P. Morgan. Jim has been ranked as one of the top three economists in the Institutional Investor survey of U.S. fixed-income investors in each of the past five years, including first place in 2005, 2007, and 2008. He was named ““Forecaster of the Year”” in 2006 and 2008 by MarketWatch. Born in New York, Jim grew up in Co. Offaly. His father is from Abbeyfeale in Limerick and his mother from Drimoleague in Cork. Jim holds a BA in economics from Trinity College Dublin, where he earned the distinction of scholar. He also earned an MA in economics from Queen’’s University in Ontario. He lives in Manhattan with his Offaly-born wife, Margaret Molloy, a marketing executive, and their sons, Finn and Emmet.



Shane Naughton

Alfred Nunan, Jr.

Shane Naughton is vice president, enterprise account strategy in the tax & accounting business of Thomson Reuters. Previously, he was a founder and chief technology officer of TaxStream LLC, which was acquired by Thomson Reuters in 2008. Shane grew up in Athlone, Co. Roscommon and earned a BA in computer science and an MSc in artificial intelligence from Trinity College Dublin, where he was elected a scholar of the university. He came to the U.S. in 1997 and says, ““Being part of the Irish community in New York makes one very aware of what it means to be Irish, and the positive influence Irish people and culture have on the local and global community. To be Irish here means you can tap into the vast reserves of goodwill built up by generations that have come before. I am proud to be an active member of the community and continue that tradition, and look to serve it in whatever way I can.”” Shane is chair and trustee of the U.S. Fund of Trinity College Dublin, an American Ireland Fund Young Leader, a member of IN-NYC business network and the Irish Arts Center, and a supporter of Concern Worldwide.

Alfred Nunan, Jr. is a senior vice president of business banking at Capital One Bank. He manages over one hundred business banking relationships and coordinates a team of bank product specialists. Al credits his contacts within the Irish American community for his continued success. Prior to joining Capital One Bank, Al worked for Deutsche Bank in the Leveraged Finance Portfolio Group and Allied Irish Bank in New York. Al is the president of the Irish Business Association and serves on the Board of Directors of the Morris Center YMCA and Trinitas Health Foundation. He is on Shannon Development’’s North American Advisory Council. He served nine years on the active roll of the First Troop Philadelphia City Cavalry, a unit within the Army National Guard. Al is a third-generation Irish American who traces his Irish roots to Castletown Conyers, Limerick. He is a graduate of The Hun School of Princeton and received a BS degree in economics from Monmouth University. He resides in Maplewood, NJ with his wife Anne and three children Bridget, Freddy and Denis.

Thomson Reuters

Capital One Bank

Paul Purcell • Robert W. Baird & Co.

Paul Purcell is chairman, president and CEO of Robert W. Baird & Co. Before joining Baird in 1994, Paul spent 22 years with Kidder, Peabody & Co., where he was a managing director and head of the Midwest Investment Banking Group. Paul graduated from the University of Notre Dame and earned an MBA from the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business. He received the University of Chicago Booth School of Business 2009 Distinguished Corporate Alumni Award. Paul is involved with the Cristo Rey Jesuit High School of Chicago and is a member of the board of directors of the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association. He is on the Alverno College board of trustees, the Dean’’s Advisory Board at the Wisconsin School of Business, and the advisory councils of the U. of Wisconsin, U. of Notre Dame Mendoza School of Business, and the U. of Chicago Booth School. He is on the board of directors of RC2 Corporation and the Greater Milwaukee Committee board and executive committee. Paul is a third-generation Irish American with roots in Co. Cork. He and his wife Patti have four children.



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Joseph Regan • J.P. Morgan

Joe Regan, managing director, is the chief risk officer of J.P. Morgan’’s Asset Management line of business. Joe oversees risk management across the business groups of private bank, private wealth management and investment management. He also serves on the Asset Management Operating Committee. An employee of J.P. Morgan since 1986, Joe has had a variety of financial, risk and operating roles over his 24 years, which include his prior experience as Asset Management’’s chief financial officer and J.P. Morgan Asia’’s chief operating officer. He worked most recently in Asia as a senior manager in the investment bank. A native of Pennsylvania, Joe attended Saint Joseph’’s University in Philadelphia, where he obtained his BA. He is a third-generation Irish American on both sides of his family. His mother’’s side hails from County Cork and his father’’s side hails from County Mayo. About his background, Joe says, ““My Irish heritage means a lot to me. It reflects the spirit of my grandparents, uncles and aunts, all possessing such unique character, wit and charm.”” Joe currently resides in New York with his wife, Isamis, and their three children.

Sharon Sager

Vincent Walsh

Sharon T. Sager is a senior vice president and private wealth advisor at UBS Private Wealth Management. She began her career in financial services in 1983 with Kidder Peabody & Co., which was acquired by Paine Webber Inc. and then by UBS. Barron’’s has named her to its Top 100 Women Financial Advisors for the past five years. A native New Yorker, Sharon began her career in textiles and fashion upon receiving a BA from The College of Mount Saint Vincent in Riverdale, New York. She is a member of the board of directors of Careers Through Culinary Arts Program and the chairman’’s circle of the James Beard Foundation, and an active member of The Economic Club of New York, the Financial Women’’s Association, and 85 Broads. Sharon is a second-generation Irish American and holds membership in the Irish Georgian Society and the New York Irish History Roundtable. Her father's family, the O’’Tooles, is from Co. Galway, while her mother’’s, the Carrolls, hail from Co. Cork. She lives with her husband Loring Swasey in New York City and Remsenburg, Long Island.

Vince Walsh, director of operational risk management practice within KPMG’’s Financial Services Advisory Services, has a Wall Street career spanning thirty years. He has spent the past twelve years with KPMG’’s Financial Services Advisory Practice. He is KPMG’’s operations leader for banks and brokers responding to the new IRS cost basis reporting requirements effective next year. Vince is treasurer and executive committee member of the Securities Operations Section of the SIFMA Operations and Technology Society. Vince is a member of the American Irish Historical Society and the Notre Dame Alumni Association, Northern NJ Chapter. He is a third-generation Irish American on his father's side. His great-grandfather left Killala, Co. Mayo and came to the U.S. around 1858. According to Vincent, the Walsh family motto ““Transfixus sed non mortuus”” –– ““pierced but not dead”” –– grounds him with ““a sense of determination, shared history, shared commitment and values and a shared sense of humor!”” Vince lives with his wife Susan and two daughters, Samantha and Jacquelyn, in Chatham, NJ.





Brian Ruane

Timothy Ryan

Brian Ruane was appointed CEO of BNY Mellon Alternative Investment Services (AIS) in November 2009. After completing the acquisition of PNC's Global Investment Servicing business, AIS is now the second largest global hedge fund services provider with $355 billion in assets under administration and custody. He is a member of the operating committee of BNY Mellon and the board of directors and credit committee of Pershing LLC. Brian graduated from Coláiste Éanna in Dublin in 1982. In 1989, he graduated from The Chartered Association of Certified Accountants in the U.K. and Ireland. In 1995, he earned his MBA in international banking from The Zarb School of Business, New York. Brian sits on the advisory boards of The University College Dublin Michael Smurfit School of Business and The Zarb School of Business, New York. His father comes from Crossmolina, Co. Mayo and his mother is from Drumhaldry, Co. Longford. He and wife Anna, who is from Dublin, live in New York with their four children.

Tim Ryan leads the U.S. Assurance Practice for PricewaterhouseCoopers and serves various clients. Prior to this, Tim led PwC’’s U.S. Financial Services practice. Tim has also led PwC’’s Consumer Finance Group and was a member of the PwC’’s Closing the Expectation Gap committee. Tim has served on the U.S. Board of Partners and Principals and its Admissions Committee, the Management Evaluation and Compensation Committee, the Clients Committee and on the firm’’s Global Board of Directors. Tim has also served several of the firm’’s major financial services clients. Tim has been published or quoted in numerous publications and is a frequent contributor to industry events. He attended Babson College where he received degrees in accounting and communications. A secondgeneration Irish American, Tim says, ““My Irish heritage has provided me with a strong appreciation for honesty and hard work.”” He and his wife, Kelley, have six children.

BNY Mellon


“The Jordan family motto is ‘Percussus Resurgo’ which means ‘When stricken I will rise again.’ I have always felt that this was a great motto to live by and to apply to my personal challenges. It is also a symbol of the Irish persona as the people have endured so much persecution and adversity over time. I was very proud of the Celtic Tiger and have complete faith that it will roar again.” – Joe Jordan, Metlife



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Pioneer The


Wall Street

Aliah O’Neill tells the story of how John J. Kiernan created a news service for the financial world, and played politics too.


ll but forgotten today, John J. Kiernan, a pioneer in the financial news industry and inventor of ticker tape news, yields only a handful of hits in a search of the New York Times archives. But in his day, Kiernan became one of the most influential and wealthy men on Wall Street, giving Charles Dow and Edward Jones, founders of The Wall Street Journal, their start at his news agency. Kiernan, born February 1, 1845, was the eldest of six children born to Irish immigrants. Though he barely finished grade school, he began his illustrious career at age 12, running errands for the Magnetic Telegraph Company and later becoming a Western Union messenger. Kiernan quickly realized that the handwritten news dispatches he delivered were highly valuable, especially to customers in the financial district who would pay extra for other news from across the wires. In 1869, using his own savings and borrowing from family and friends, Kiernan launched his own small news bureau, breaking news items in the shipping, railroad and construction fields. He also distributed information to his clients that he received from the New York Stock Exchange and other financial points around the country. Kiernan even went as far as to row out into New York Harbor, skimming ships for days-old newspapers from London and other cities to relay to Kiernan’’s Wall Street Financial News Bureau subscribers. By 1880, Kiernan had hired Charles Dow and Edward Jones, both skilled financial reporters, to work at


““Kiernan’’s Corner,”” the office located at Wall and Broad Streets and the site of today’’s New York Stock Exchange. At only 35 years old, Kiernan had amassed a fortune of about $250,000. His invention of the ““ticker”” expanded the reach of the business, which began to supply general news. As his financial news agency continued to prosper,



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Kiernan turned his attention to politics, winning two terms as a Democratic state senator beginning in 1881. In 1880, as a delegate to the Democratic National Convention, Kiernan was given the honor of escorting Charles Stewart Parnell through Wall Street and into the Stock Exchange during his visit to America. It was a significant time for Parnell –– his party, the Irish Parliamentary Party, had been pushing hard for land reform, believing that abolishing landlordism and allowing tenant farmers to own the land they worked on was a crucial step in securing Irish independence. During his trip to New York and over sixty other cities, Parnell was able to garner support for Home Rule and funds for improvement of living conditions among poor Irish tenant farmers. Kiernan found success as a politician, authoring bills to improve New York Harbor and expanding ferry service. However, as he focused more on politics he saw the success of his news agency decline. In 1882, Dow and Jones left Kiernan’’s agency and launched their own financial sheet, Customer’’s Afternoon Letter. The venture was instantly successful, and eventually the newsletter became The Wall Street Journal. In an attempt to revive his business, Kiernan brought in William P. Sullivan as a partner, but the relationship quickly turned sour. After a series of scornful notes about Kiernan’’s financial dealings were circulated by Sullivan throughout their company and published by the local papers, the partners settled in court in 1888. Sullivan bought the company for only a few thousand dollars, leaving Kiernan stripped of the agency that had made him rich. Over his remaining years, Kiernan struggled to regain political clout. Though he had the support of many leading political figures and was nominated for surveyor of the Port of New York, he was unable to attain a measure of his past success. He was last prominent as a pro-Cleveland Democrat, speaking publicly about the possibility of reform within the Irish community. In an 1884 New York Times article citing the near unanimous support of Grover Cleveland’’s presidential nomination, Kiernan is quoted as saying, ““I have visited every prominent man in the banking and commercial business down town to-day, and I have not found one who is not ready to sustain Mr. Cleveland……As far as I can see, the people who have promised to Blaine [the Republican opponent] the so-

Top: The view looking down Wall Street from the corner of Wall and Broad streets, 1860. From the Robert N. Dennis collection of stereoscopic views. Left: Charles Henry Dow. Opposite page top: John Kiernan, from the New York Public Library’s archives. Opposite page bottom: The New York Stock Exchange building, between 1860 and 1870. From the Robert N. Dennis collection of stereoscopic views.

called Irish vote, if there be such an entity, have promised to deliver goods which they cannot even handle. I do hear of a great Irish reform taking place in New York. If that movement takes the shape of ignoring the ballot boxes of an organization [Tammany Hall] that has shamed the Irish name for many a year, then I hope the talk about that reform is as true as I could wish it to be.”” Cleveland narrowly won New York by just over a thousand votes. On November 29, 1893, Kiernan died of pneumonia and heart failure at age 48 in his Brooklyn home. His second wife and children survived him. Kiernan’’s service was held in St. Stephen’’s church, which was packed to the doors, and his remains were interred in Holy Cross IA Cemetery, Brooklyn.




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“Diamond The charmed life of James Buchanan Brady, who rose from humble origins to become one of the wealthiest men of his day. By Steven Mark Adelson




here have been many times in my life when a situation develops where I fear I am going to fail. Whenever the odds against me seem insurmountable or I cannot think of a solution, I remind myself of an individual who faced complete ruin after achieving tremendous success in a variety of business endeavors: railroad equipment and supply salesman, racing stable owner, railway car manufacturer, steel mill owner, farmer, stock speculator, philanthropist, and all around bon vivant and gourmand. Incredibly, this person did not plan to become any of these. Chance, happenstance, and equal portions of hard work and self motivation were his tools of success. His name was James Buchanan Brady, though he was better known by his nom de plume ““Diamond Jim”” for his propensity of wearing enough diamonds in public so as to glitter like a French chandelier. Jim was born on August 12, 1856 above the saloon his father owned in the west side of Manhattan. He literally grew up around his father’’s bar, observing how political deals and busi-

ness arrangements were made. Then, in 1863, his father died suddenly. Though his mother quickly remarried, Jim did not get along with his new stepfather, who turned the bar into a dive and shanghai center. So at the age of eleven, Jim and his older brother Dan left home. Jim soon found employment at the elegant St. James Hotel as a bellboy. For the next few years he had a ringside seat in observing how the ““other half”” of society lived –– industrialists, bankers, robber barons and kings of commerce all dressed to the nines, and always accompanied by equally fashionable ladies in the latest haute couture. Always a bright and congenial person, Jim, by the age of 15, was given his first real career opportunity by one of the hotel’’s regular patrons, John M. Toucey, an executive with the New York Central Railroad. Mr. Toucey made the following proposition: if Jim was willing to take a cut in pay to start in the baggage department and go to business college at night to study bookkeeping, he would be given an opportunity to advance himself. Jim readily accepted. By the time he was 21, Jim was made chief clerk and confidential right-hand man to Mr. Toucey, under whose tutelage Jim



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Jim” Brady learned the inner secrets of the railroad business: organization, cost analysis, reliability performances of locomotive equipment, repair scheduling and just about anything related to efficient office administration. THEN JIM WAS FIRED A few years earlier, Jim had managed to have his brother hired by the New York Central. Unfortunately, Dan was later caught raiding the petty-cash box. The accepted mores of the day dictated that Jim be discharged too. This was something John Toucey, now the General Manager, was reluctant to do. He genuinely liked Jim and he was also afraid that a rival railroad would hire him and thus be privy to New York Central’’s corporate secrets –– at the time the New York Legislature was about to begin a major investigation into railroad practices. Toucey arranged an interview for his young assistant with his friend Charles Moore, a partner with Manning, Maxwell & Moore, a major railroad supply company. Even though Jim had no sales experience and his rough-hewn speech often included ““dems”” and ““does,”” Moore was won over by Jim’’s Far left: Diamond Jim in a York Times photo. genial nature and natural New Left: Edgar Bergen with Charlie charm. That, and his exten- McCarthy, Diamond Jim Brady sive knowledge of railroad and Lillian Russell. operations. He was hired Below: New York Central Railroad Depot, 1891-1893. immediately. Before going on the road, Jim made certain that he was properly outfitted. Recalling his days at the St. James, he knew that in order to make money you have to look like money, so he spent his savings on several hand-tailored suits, a stove pipe hat, a furcollared overcoat, and a one carat diamond ring (which successful men of the day wore as a display of their credit rating and not as a frivolous adornment). When making a sales call it was not uncommon for Jim to be mistaken as a member of the board of directors and not some common ““drummer.”” In no time ““Diamond Jim”” became the number one salesman in the country. He accomplished this by engaging in the sort of intelligence gathering normally associated with a secret agent. Before stepping into the purchasing superintendent’’s office, Jim would spend days, even weeks, reconnoitering the railroad’’s network right down to the tool shacks and the gandy dancers who kept the track straight. In other words, he got to know the

men who really ran the railroads: section foremen, mechanics, stationmasters and conductors and he acquired all sorts of inside information as to equipment and repair shop needs and current and future requirements. Jim would often know the needs of the railroad better than the executives and this was the reason for his success. He soon became wealthy enough to support his mother in a new house, now that his stepfather had abandoned her and headed west. AFTER A FEW YEARS, FATE INTERVENED AGAIN In 1888, Sampson Fox of the Leeds Forge Company of England tried, and failed, to sell American railroad companies his all-steel Fox Undertruck. This was a lightweight undercarriage made of pressed steel from a formula his company developed and was in use in Britain. At the time, American railroad undercarriages were made of wood and the railroad magnates saw no reason to change. Fox’’s last stop was to Charles Moore who declined the offer to become the company’’s U.S. representative. However, Moore told Fox that he had a top salesman on his payroll and that if he wanted to sell his undertruck as a sideline, that was all right with him. Over dinner that night, Fox made his offer: If Jim would represent Fox in the U.S., they would provide him with the technical expertise to produce the undertruck and pay him a 33 1/2 percent commission on every one he sold. With an incentive like that, Jim decided to convert every undercarriage used in America over to the Fox Undertruck. Jim found a blacksmith shop in Joliet, Illinois and immediately had them fabricate ten undercarriages for the newly formed Fox Pressed Steel company. He knew from experience that American railroad men were the most conservative, if not the most hardheaded, of businessmen. Talking about your product meant nothing to them. They had to see for themselves in order to be convinced. Brady began his campaign at the offices of the New York Central, then the leading railroad in the country. He made an appointment with the motive-power superintendent and boldly declared that if they didn’’t at least give him the opportunity of a demonstration he would give the Pennsylvania Railroad, New York Central’’s chief rival, the chance to be first on the list for a product that would provide an edge on shipping costs. This was because the all-steel undercarriage was stronger than the wooden version –– and thus could carry more, lasted longer, and AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010 IRISH AMERICA 71



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required less ““off line”” time for mainteevery steel mill in the country. nance and repair. If anyone else made this Brady had discovered that the Carbon statement they most likely would have Steel Company of Pittsburgh was being been thrown out the door, but ““Diamond pushed into bankruptcy by Carnegie. He Jim”” wasn’’t just anyone. His reputation as had to act fast. Time did not allow for him America’’s top salesman preceded him and to trawl Wall Street in search of venture he was granted his test run, providing he capitalists, but recalling his days at his supplied twenty railcars. It meant working father’’s bar, he began to make the rounds at overtime to produce the extra ten underthe better watering holes around Manhattan carriages, but they were delivered on time. until he found a couple of Wall Street For the test itself, the cars were filled investors who were tempted by the idea of halfway with scrap metal and rock. Jim, becoming men of steel. Brady made them on seeing this, ordered the cars to be the following proposition: if they would filled to the top, ““to make it a real test.”” purchase Carbon Steel and make Brady a The run was from Albany to New York partner in the new firm, he would provide City and back, a route full of turns and them with the process for creating high tentwists. The test was a success, making sile steel and Fox Pressed Steel would buy the trip in good time. The New York all the steel they could produce. Central placed an order for one hundred The new company was a greater success steel undercarriages. than Brady could have imagined, and no Jim then went to the Pennsylvania doubt caused Carnegie to seethe in rage. Railroad and quickly sold them the next The canny Scotsman had been outmaneulot. Not to be outdone by their main rival, vered by an Irish American! The demand they ordered two hundred and fifty underfor pressed steel was so great that a second carriages. Within a few months both railfactory was soon built, and in time, Carbon roads announced that they were going to Steel Company began producing steel for convert all of their rolling stock to the Fox many of the larger locomotive companies. Undercarriage. With that sort of endorseJim was now living an even better life. ment, every railroad in the country sent in The poor boy from lower Manhattan was orders. By early 1889, Jim was selling hunnow earning about one million dollars a dreds of undercarriages a week at his now year in commissions (and remember, this greatly expanded facility. He also included was in the days when the dollar was gold in his shops the manufacture of hydraulic backed and there was no income tax) from brakes, fireboxes, and an assortment of the Carbon Steel Company, Fox Pressed other railroad equipment. Steel and from Manning, Maxwell & Jim was now living the good life. His Moore. Incredibly, Jim insisted on continuhome was a large mansion on Eighty-Sixth ing working for his original employer, statStreet, he enjoyed dining and entertaining ing that Charles Moore had given him his on a baronial scale at New York’’s finest start as a salesman and had introduced him restaurants; wore diamonds on his buttons, to Sampson Fox. As wealthy as ““Diamond watch, belt buckle, scarf pin, eyeglass case, TOP: This cigarette card shows Edward Jim”” became, he never forgot how imporand Binnie Barnes in Diamond Jim, rings, tie pins, walking cane and cuff links; Arnold tant it is to be loyal to others. a film based on James Brady’s historic rise and was the constant companion of Lillian to wealth and fame. Jim, who succumbed to a heart attack Russell, the voluptuous leading star of the ABOVE: Steel magnate Andrew Carnegie who and died in his sleep at the age of 61, American stage (and who preferred his tried to force Brady to sell out to him. bequeathed a collection of 30 diamondcompany over that of J. P. Morgan). Jim encrusted watches (one of which was foralso became the owner in a racing stable and even bought a farm merly owned by Napoleon) to his tailor and best friend Jules in New Jersey, the bounty of which often ended up in gift basWeiss. He left $10,000 each to the New York Central kets to his numerous friends in the railroad industry and in the Employees’’ Hospital, the Newsboys’’ Lodging Home, the theater. Roman Catholic Orphan Asylum, the Children’’s Aid Society, and the Actors’’ Fund of America. Even his favorite Pullman THEN DISASTER STRUCK porter received $2,500. Jim had earlier torn up about $250,000 Pittsburgh empire builder Andrew Carnegie noticed the in I.O.U.’’s provided for his brother and sister and given about tremendous profits the Brady operation was generating and $1,500,000 in jewelry to various women. began to raise prices on the steel they were buying from him. His The remainder of Jim’’s fortune was divided between New plan was to either force Brady to sell out to him, or force him York Hospital and Johns Hopkins in Baltimore, Maryland, home into bankruptcy and then pick up the pieces of his operation at to the James Buchanan Brady Urological Institute, which is bargain prices. Brady chose neither option. He would fight. rated as the best urological institute in the country. The key to winning was to find another dependable source of Jim is buried with his parents in Holy Cross Cemetery, IA steel. Not an easy task with Carnegie’’s tentacles reaching into Brooklyn, New York. 72 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010



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13th Annual Wall Street 50 Co-hosted by

with the support of

Thank you to all of our sponsors: Mutual of America The Coca-Cola Company Quinnipiac University UCD Michael Smurfit Business School The Irish American Museum of Washington, DC Waterford Crystal 1-800-Flowers.com The American Ireland Fund The Merrion Hotel Dublin

IRISH GOVERNMENT AGENCIES CIE Tours International Enterprise Ireland IDA Ireland Tourism Ireland



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Mining Town Many of the 1.8 million Irish who emigrated to Canada and the U.S. between 1845 and 1855 found employment in the dangerous but lucrative mines that played a vital role in building American industry. A new documentary, Butte, America, shows how over the following decades, the American Industrial Revolution swallowed entire families who lived in mining communities, as the often deadly work caught immigrants between the power of the wealthy companies and the pull of unions. By Kara Rota


arrated by Gabriel Byrne, Butte, America is a documentary that tells the story of the most profitable hard rock mining town in American history. Through historical narrative and interviews with mine survivors and their families, the film captures the pioneering spirit that drew men to work in the mines, the emotional ties that formed in mining communities, and the powerful hold that the mining companies had over every aspect of their lives. ““I never said goodbye in the morning, going to work. I’’d say see ya, so long. Never goodbye,”” says John T. Shea, an Irish ironworker, in the opening moments of Butte, America. This cheerful spirit belies the underlying knowledge all the miners must have had that their work could mean an early death for them. Butte’’s mines were statistically the most


dangerous in the world, and required immense manpower to operate. In the early 1870s, Butte was a mining town on the verge of becoming a city full of immigrants in search of employment and the American Dream. When the advent of electricity demanded more copper, the ““Copper Kings,”” industrialists Clark, Daly and Heinze, called for more manpower, pushing Butte’’s population

near 90,000. Immigrants flowed in from Ireland, England, Lebanon, Canada, Finland Austria, Italy, China, Montenegro, Mexico, and more: the ““no smoking”” signs in mines were written in sixteen languages. The Irish, however, felt a special connection to Butte. Beginning their immigration during Famine times, many came from the Beara Peninsula where they had mined before leaving for America. They arrived in Butte by way of Nevada’’s Comstock Lode, Pennsylvania’’s coalfields, and Michigan’’s copper mines. They arrived from Cork, Mayo, and Donegal. According to David Emmons’’s book The Butte Irish, 12,000 of Irish descent were living in Butte by 1900, where the population was then 47,635. At a quarter of the population, Irish made up a higher percentage in Butte than they did in any other



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American city at the turn of the last century. Seventy-seven various families of Sullivans left Castletownbere, Cork and came to Butte. By 1908 Butte hosted 1,200 Sullivans. The land in Butte was owned by the mining companies, and mining families paid ground rent to live there. As the companies fought for control of the fruitful mines, the larger companies expanded into railroads, logging and other industries, pushing their smaller competitors out of business. Monopolies meant that corporations held greater and greater power over the families that lived in mining towns, and unions could do little to change the occupation’’s hazards. Butte was awash with widows raising large families alone, left with no insurance or income. The women held several jobs, and children contributed to the workforce as soon as they were able, ushering in the age of newsboys. Some 16,000 miners worked in the connected honeycomb of mines that lay underneath Butte, all with beautiful names that belied what went on underground: Anselma, Alice, Lexington, Bell Diamond, Mountain View, Moonlight, Silverbowl, and on and on. In 1899, Copper King Marcus Daly joined with William Rockefeller, Henry Rogers and Thomas Lawson to form the Amalgamated Copper Mining Company,

which soon changed its name to Anaconda Copper Mining Company. Marcus Daly was born in 1841 and raised near Ballyjamesduff in Co. Cavan. In Butte, he found a rich and plentiful source of precious metals, and became one of the wealthiest men in the West when demand for copper rose. He was known for his tendency to hire Irish whenever possible. Known simply as ““The Company,”” by 1914 Anaconda Company had become the fourth largest corporation in the country and had full control of Butte. They controlled town and state legislatures, and miners were pushed to increase production. Under the stress, the miners’’ union splintered into smaller factions, none of which were acknowledged by Anaconda. After 1905, Butte was a

OPPOSITE PAGE Top: Headframes (the structural frames above underground mines) in Butte, Montana. Bottom: Entering Butte in the 1920s. THIS PAGE Top left: A group of Butte copper miners, many of them Irish. Above: Copper King W.A. Clark with a small child at Columbia Gardens, Clark’s “gift to the people of Butte.” Left: A mother and her children during a lengthy strike in 1939. Bottom: Marcus Daly, illustration from 1900.

hub of organization for the ““Wobblies,”” or Industrial Workers of the World. As WWI hit, more and more copper was needed, and Irish miners were expected to work longer hours. The conditions became, unthinkably, even more dangerous, culminating in a fire that exploded in the Granite Mountain Mine on June 8, 1917. Hundreds of miners were trapped inside; 168 bodies were found. The shocked town mourned. Miners demanded safer working conditions, but the mine owners refused. Butte became a violent place, with union halls blown up and miners jailed or even murdered. When a strike at one mine was sustained for seven months, the miners were accused of treason during wartime and AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010 IRISH AMERICA 75



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marched into the mines at gunpoint when federal troops were called in. In the Anaconda Road Massacre of 1920, Pinkerton Agency guards hired by The Company shot a group of picketing strikers, killing one and injuring 16. By 1920, industrial unionism was a thing of the past as the ““Roaring 20s”” ushered in an era of rampant capitalism. Then 1929 hit America with the biggest bust it had ever seen. A new era for workers arrived in 1932 when FDR ran on his promise of a New Deal and support for labor unions. Newly confident union workers were legally empowered to strike, and many did so in a pattern of every three years: the length of a contract. This led to a striking cycle in which mining families were forced to do without, but mining communities supported them with a created economy of credit, gift and barter. This community support during strike times, which many considered the highest moral achievement, also helped the miners achieve a living wage. Still, The Company’’s hold on Butte was ever-present, as it became more and more entwined in the daily lives of the families who lived there. Company-sponsored picnics, parade floats, and children’’s sports teams were common, and miners’’ kids grew up playing in the toxic playgrounds near active mines. However, by the 1940s, Anaconda’’s profit was largely supplemented by overseas mining in Chile, which gave The Company a significant advantage in negotiating mining contracts with unions. After a lifetime in the mines, if they survived the day-to-day perils of the machinery and conditions, many miners experienced a buildup of silica dust in their lungs and died painful deaths. After WWII, the prominence of industrial manufacture meant that greater and greater quantities of metal were needed. In the 1950s, Anaconda shifted their operations towards open pit mining, which utilized equipment and machines over manpower and caused greater environmental degradation. Miners were consistently laid off, and those that remained were turned into drivers and machine operators, stripping the work of the pride that men had had in it for gen76 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010

ABOVE: Present-day Butte, looking east over the Berkeley Pit, a giant former open pit copper mine filled with toxic water. LEFT: Young mine workers in 1910.

erations. Entire neighborhoods were bulldozed to make room for pit mines, and the remaining families were surrounded with gaping holes in the town they called home. When a fire swept across Butte, many believed it was set by The Company to destroy buildings in the way of more open pits. ““They owned it, that’’s all that mattered,”” remembered one Butte citizen. ““You can do anything you want when you own it.”” In 1977, Anaconda was purchased by the ARCO company, which started shutting down mines due to lower metal prices. Layoffs continued to wrack Butte economically and emotionally, as men

Butte, America director Pam Roberts and cinematographer Erik Daarstad in production.

who had given their lives to the mines were rewarded by being cast aside. In 1982, the pit mines began to close and unemployment was rampant. By 1984 the Berkeley Pit was the greatest poisonous lake in North America: thirty-three billion gallons of water laced with a toxic sludge of minerals and chemicals killed snow geese that migrated overhead and came into contact with the water. The environmental, emotional and economic devastation that characterized the rise and fall of Butte, Montana under the hand of the mining business remains evident today. However, the spirit of community support that characterized Butte through the mining era remains. Since 1882, Butte’’s annual St. Patrick’’s Day festivities have provided an annual celebration of the city’’s Irish heritage. Over 30,000 attend the parade held by the Ancient Order of Hibernians in Butte’’s historic Uptown District. The annual An Ri Ra, held on the second weekend in August, is a cultural festival that focuses on the music, dance and language of Ireland. Thousands attend the event. Once called ““The Richest Hill on Earth”” for its natural resources, which along with hardworking immigrant labor was plundered for profit, Butte is carving out a new identity as a city with a rich cultural history IA and pride in its Irish heritage. To purchase Butte, America: http://butteamericafilm.org/contact/purchase-home-dvd/



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Nobody Hears a Broken Drum

Playwright, actor, director and writer Jason Milller, left, talks about one of his projects with reporter Robert Curran.

Jason Miller, playwright, actor and friend, is remembered by Robert Curran. 78 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010




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first met Jason Miller when he was a senior playing varsity basketball at St. Patrick’’s, West Scranton. I was a senior playing at St. Patrick’’s, Olyphant, a small town about six miles north of Scranton. We used to make small talk during warm-ups prior to the games between the two schools. At the end of basketball season, Miller was named The Catholic League’’s leading scorer and was elected to the all-star team. One afternoon in the winter of 1956, Miller, who I, like most people, called Jack (he was actually christened John Anthony), and the girls called Howie, telephoned and said he wanted to hang out in my neighborhood. We agreed that he would drive over to my parents’’ house, and from there we’’d go to Pihl’’s Diner. At 17, Miller had that magic that would bring him later success as an actor. Everyone paid attention when he walked into a room. The girls swooned when we sat down at a table in Pihl’’s, and the next day in school I was very popular. Everyone wanted to know how it was that I happened to be hanging out with Miller and if we were good friends. After our night out at Pihl’’s, the next time I saw Miller, I was part of a contingent of students who attended a diocese oratorical contest, and Miller, competing against larger schools, won the contest for St. Patrick’’s. Miller, the grandson of a coal miner, always considered Scranton home, but he was actually born in Long Island City, New York, on April 22, 1939 to Irish-American parents, Marie Claire Collins, a teacher, and John Miller, an electrician. The family moved to Lackawanna Valley, Pennsylvania when Miller was very young and he always carried an emotional connection to the place. Miller’’s Irish heritage was important to him. He was a big fan of Notre Dame football, and everything Irish.

He entered the Jesuit-run University of Scranton on an athletic scholarship, but the nuns at his old high school had introduced Miller to poetry and encouraged him to write, and he soon left athletics behind to study theater and playwriting. After the graduation from Scranton he continued his studies at Catholic University of America where he met, and soon married, Linda Gleason, a fellow student, and the daughter of comedian Jackie Gleason. The couple moved to New York where Miller worked as a messenger boy, truck driver and waiter to stay afloat, while performing in offBroadway productions. He had a couple of his plays produced during this time, including one about the plight of Irish

ended in divorce. In total, Miller was in 29 movies. None could top The Exorcist, but an outstanding television movie in which he starred with Tuesday Weld was F. Scott Fitzgerald in Hollywood. Miller’’s performance went deep into the soul and psyche of the troubled Fitzgerald. There was no hiding from Miller the sweat and blood and bad times of those who lived tortured lives searching for the right words. He often drank heavily himself, and at times, after his return to Scranton, you would see him walking alone, hunched, staggering, wearing his favorite coat, a dark olive U.S. Army combat jacket. I think one of his big disappointments in life was the film version of That

A superb athlete who entered the Jesuit-run University of Scranton on an athletic scholarship, Miller credited the nuns at St. Patrick’s Academy with interesting him in poetry and writing. miners set in Pennsylvania in 1862, called Nobody Hears a Broken Drum. In 1972, Miller wrote That Championship Season, a play about a winning basketball team returning to the house of their coach for a reunion. After opening off-Broadway the play moved to the Booth Theatre where it ran for 988 performances. It won the Tony Award for best play, 1973, and brought Miller the Pulitzer Prize in Drama. The year 1973 proved to be a milestone in Miller’’s life. In addition to winning the Pulitzer and the Tony, he was nominated for an Academy Award for his first on-screen performance as Father Damien in the horror movie The Exorcist. Sadly, in the midst of all this professional acclaim, his marriage to Linda with whom he had three children (including actor Jason Patric)

Championship Season. As director, Miller had assembled a first-rate cast to film in Scranton. William Holden was set to play the lead role of the coach, and liked the screenplay so much that he believed it would resurrect his career. But Holden died, and Robert Mitchum was given the part. Not everyone agreed that Mitchum was the best choice because of his laid-back manner. Miller told me about this one day after some critics had panned the movie. In the mid-1980s, Miller decided to leave Hollywood and return home to Scranton. He took up permanent residence in an apartment on the corner of Spruce Street and Washington Avenue in the heart of downtown where he had a sweeping view of the city and the Lackawanna County Courthouse, across the street. Miller wanted to revive the arts in




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Scranton, and with his friend Bob Shlesinger diligently co-founded the Scranton Public Theatre. It didn’’t take him long to get things going. He was asked to appear at every event from A to Z, and he generously accepted. It became noticeable that many people in Scranton would say, ““Oh, I was out with Jason Miller last night.”” Downtown one day, I ran into William ““Bill”” McAndrew, Miller’’s longtime friend and publicist, and he told me to be on the lookout for a letter from Miller inviting me to a party at his apartment. Sure enough, I received a note saying, ““And please don’’t bring the ghosts,”” a reference to my book and movie, The Haunted. It was a nice time at the gathering,

street may have thought we were two lunatics. One of Miller’’s goals was to write a book covering 50 years of Irish history, including the labor movement, the coal mines (he went into the mines to see the dangers for himself) and injustice to the Irish on all fronts, including the confiscation of their land by Britain. During one of our conversations, he said: ““It’’s very suspicious that there’’s a famine in Ireland in the mid-19th century that was blamed on a virus, while Ireland’’s population decreased from 8 million to 3.5 million. It’’s curious that a ‘‘famine’’ lasted five years.”” Miller served as Artistic Director of the Scranton Public Theatre for many years and also continued to work out-

He wanted to write a book covering 50 years of Irish history, including the labor movement, the coal mines, and injustice to the Irish on all fronts. and as I was leaving, Miller came over to me, hugged me, kissed me on the cheek and said, ““I love ya, pal.”” We joked about what would happen to our legs if we tried to play basketball again. Miller was quiet, polite and somewhat shy, but at times he’’d open up to have some fun. One day, Richard Harris arrived in Scranton where he had agreed to teach university drama students, and put on a play. I was on the city courthouse steps with Miller when Harris arrived. The Masonic Temple, with a huge theater inside, was a short walk up the street, and Harris wanted to see it and get the lay of the stage. Miller and I had been inside scores of times and decided to wait outside. Suddenly, Miller walked up the steps to the temple, and out of nowhere, began reciting from a play, I believe it was something from Shakespeare. He continued this tour de force while I clapped and chanted ““bravo,”” and people walking up and down the


side. He starred as Henry Drummond opposite Malachy McCourt as Matt Brady in Inherit the Wind. The play opened in Scranton and then transferred to Philadephila where it had an extended run in the Courthouse, and broke the city’’s record for long run plays. Malachy remembers Miller: ““It was a challenge to attempt to come near his performance, but he made sure it didn’’t defeat. You would find yourself giving the performance of your life. He was very good company. He had an extraordinarily bright and incisive mind –– always tinged with paranoia. ‘‘They were doing something,’’ whoever they were. I was always worried about him. He was constantly on about how he was going to stop drinking and going to stop smoking, and I was trying to be helpful without being preachy . . . in that sense he was quite self destructive.”” Miller continued to work. He toured the country in his one-man play Barrymore’’s Ghost, which ended with a four-month run Off-Broadway.

He began working on a screenplay with his son Joshua (by Susan Bernard). On May 13, 2001, he attended a wake for the mother of Judge James Walsh. He and his companion Dana Oxley continued on to have lunch with friends at Farley’’s Pub and Eatery in Scranton. He was alive and well at one moment, but in the next moment he was gone. It was a fatal heart attack. Funeral services were held at St. Patrick’’s Church, West Scranton, and among the attendees was actor Martin Sheen and others who had roles in That Championship Season. A Roman Catholic nun bristled when asked by the press if she thought Miller might have been drinking too much. ““How can you say that?”” she shot back. ““Everyone likes a drink every once in a while. There’’s nothing wrong with it. And look what he’’s done for Scranton,”” she said. Miller loved Scranton and Lackawanna County to the end. One day in his apartment, he and I were talking when he jumped up from his chair, and said, ““You have to listen to this. I just found it today.”” He pulled out Carl Sandburg’’s Honey and Salt from a stack of books and he opened it to a page where ““Lackawanna Twilight”” was printed. He read the poem to me: Twilight and little mountain Towns along the Lehigh, sundown And grey lavender flush Miners with dinner buckets and Headlamps, state constabulary on Horses, guns in holsters, Scranton, Wilkesbarre, the Lackawanna Trail. Twilight and the blessed armistice Of late afternoon and early evening. Twilight and the sports sheets, movies, Chain programs, magazines, comics, Revival meeting. Twilight and headlights on the new Hard roads, boy friend and girl friend, Dreams, romance, bread, wages, babies. Homes.

As they say on Broadway, he had a IA good run.



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{music reviews}

By Tara Dougherty

Songs from the Heart of Ireland Susan McKeown and Lorin Sklamberg Saints & Tzadiks

In this self-titled album, Saints & Tzadiks, Susan McKeown and Lorin Sklamberg come together on a musical endeavor which takes traditional Irish language songs and Yiddish folk songs and bridges the gap between the two rather similar genres. The pair have worked together before, memorably with the Klezmatics, which earned Grammy awards. Vocalist Susan McKeown brings a sweetness to the tracks, shining particularly on ““Oakam”” which explores a more traditional Irish genre. The bulk of the Jewish material was drawn from the recently published Yiddish Folk Songs from the Ruth Rubin Archive. Sklamberg’’s presence on the album is strong, performing a haunting solo a capella ““Father and Son”” as well as lending vocals to the other tracks and playing the accordion and piano on most every song. The combination merges surprisingly well, seamlessly blending the linguistics into a much unified folk blend. Rather than creating an album where the genre moved from Yiddish folk to Celtic as the tracks go on, McKeown and Sklamberg worked to bring elements of both into each song, making it a consistent but unique work and thoroughly entertaining.

Annette Griffin

Songs from the Heart of Ireland Breaking from her residency playing at Ashford Castle Hotel each night, Annette Griffin has recorded some of the hotel frequenters’’ favorites, thus came Songs from the Heart of Ireland. Griffin’’s voice is soothing and brings a pleasant modern flavor to the collection of traditional songs with a few pop songs thrown in for good measure. Her rendition of J. Gold’’s ““From a Distance”” is a delightful surprise toward the end of the record following a medley of trad songs such as ““Galway Bay”” and ““Come by the Hills.”” Griffin is native to County Galway and studied voice at the 82 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010

Royal Irish Academy of Music in Dublin. Now with a CD to sell her fans at Ashford, Griffin’’s voice can travel beyond the castle walls and bring the songs from the heart of Ireland onward.

Dan Milner

Irish Pirate Ballads and other Songs of the Sea Joined by some of Irish music’’s most recognizable names, Dan Milner sings maritime songs which tell the tales of Irishmen on the ocean, while other songs chronicle the diaspora. Mick Moloney writes the introduction to the album, praising Milner’’s vocals. Moloney also has an important presence on the album, joined by Joanie Madden, John Doyle, Susan McKeown and others as guest artists. Irish Pirate Ballads was released by the nonprofit Smithsonian Folkways Recordings. The songs are upbeat and Milner’’s light vocals bring such personality to the tracks that the authenticity of each ballad remains uncompromised though recorded in most cases centuries after they were written.

Julie Fowlis


Julie Fowlis’’s third album Uam meaning ““from me”” is a truly moving collection of Scotch Gaelic songs. Fowlis’’s vocals are flawless throughout, delivered with a haunting effortlessness. ““A Chatrion Org”” (Young Catriona) is a sorrowful lament of love lost. Joined by Duncan Chrisholm on fiddle, the ballad stands out on the album for its emotional impact. Fowlis also explores more upbeat songs such as ““Brogan Ur Agam ANochd”” which brings an airy, toe-tapping change to the album. The tempo changes are mixed well through the tracks, keeping the listener moving through without getting bogged down in too many slow ballads in a row. The contrast allows a greater appreciation for the degrees of emotion in the music. As a whole the album is very special, a familiar Celtic tone to which Fowlis lends her vocals IA perfectly.



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By Aliah O’Neill

From Diapers to Sport Stars The history of the O’Donovan clan turns up some surprises.


he first recorded spelling of the family name Donovan is actually O Donnabhain, found in the Annals of the Four Masters. O Donnabhain comes from the word ““donn,”” which means brown and ““dubhan,”” a derivative of ““dubh,”” the Irish word for black. The O’’Donovan name has several variations including Donnavon, Donraven, Donnovin and, the version most common today, Donovan. The O’’Donovans held territory in County Limerick and are descendants of Eoghan Mor (Eugene the Great), King of Munster. His descendant “Crom” O’Donovan built a castle by the River Maigue in County Limerick that the town of Croom (which means bend in the river) grew up around. It is in the exact center of County Limerick, and is credited with being the place from which the form of poetry called the limerick originates. Crom’’s great-great-grandfather Cathal was one of Brian Ború’’s chief commanders at the Battle of Clontarf, which drove the Danes out of Ireland in 1014. However, by the 12th century, the O’’Donovans were driven out of Limerick by Donal Mór O’’Brien, a descendant of Brian Ború. They moved further into the southwest, mostly settling in West Cork and parts of Kerry, where the name is still prominent. The remains of a family residence, Castle Donovan, survive today outside Drimoleague, County Cork. Believed to have been the seat for the Clann Cathail


sept of the O’’Donovan clan in the 16th century, most of the 60-foot-tall tower house remain and is undergoing restoration. Castle Donovan was abandoned in the mid17th century after being attacked by soldiers during the Cromwellian invasion. An Irish Fenian who lived in exile for much of his life, Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa (18311915) was born to a family of tenant farmers in County Cork. In 1856, he created the Phoenix National and Literary Society, dedicated to the liberation of Ireland by force, which later merged with the Irish Republican Brotherhood. He was arrested and jailed twice –– once in 1859, without trial, and again in 1865 for plotting a Fenian uprising. Though serv-

ing a life sentence in prison, he managed to be elected for the Tipperary constituency of the British House of Commons in 1869. A year later he was exiled to the U.S. where he continued his republican activity through Clan na Gael and the Fenian Brotherhood until his death at age 83. His body was brought back to Ireland, where Patrick Pearse delivered the oration at a huge funeral in Glasnevin Cemetery. Marion Donovan (1917-1998), inventor of the disposable diaper, was not immediately recognized for her work. The post-World War II mother, frustrated with having to constantly change her child’’s clothing and bedsheets, created a disposable diaper using a shower curtain. She also replaced the safety pins used at the time with snap fasteners. When no one showed interest in the invention, Donovan marketed the item on her own and it became an instant hit, debuting at



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Opposite page, far left: Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa. Bottom: Marion Donovan. This page, far left: Michael Francis O’Connor O’Donovan, better known as Frank O’Connor. Left: Anne Donovan. Below: Landon Donovan.

Saks Fifth Avenue in 1949 and receiving a patent in 1951. She continued to improve upon her product in her later years, receiving 20 patents over her lifetime and inspiring Victor Mills to create Pampers in 1961. Sculptor William O’Donovan (1844-1920) is known for his monuments and busts of notable Americans. After serving in the Confederate Army during the Civil War, Donovan moved to New York City and opened a studio where he began sculpting memorial pieces. His most famous sculptures include Lincoln and Grant in Grand Army Plaza in Brooklyn, New York, Irishborn Archbishop Hughes at Fordham University and a bust of Walt Whitman. In the literary world, Michael Francis O’Connor O’Donovan, better known as Frank O’’Connor (1903-1966), wrote over 150 works, including short stories, essays, poetry and novels. Raised in County Cork, many of his stories were based on his own life experiences, especially of the Irish War of Independence and the Irish Civil War. O’’Connor served in the IRA during this time and was interned from 1922-1923 as part of the 12,000 combatants who were opposed to the Anglo-Irish Treaty. Largely raised by his mother, O’’Connor used her maiden name as a pen name,

reflecting on his tumultuous childhood and strained relationship with his father in many of his stories. Neil Jordan’’s film The Crying Game is based on O’’Connor’’s short story ““Guests of the Nation.”” Major General William Joseph Donovan (1883-1959), nicknamed

““Wild Bill,”” was an American soldier during World War I and II and was head of the Office of Strategic Services, a wartime intelligence agency. He is known as the ““Father of Central Intelligence”” for his role in creating the CIA, which he suggested as a centralized, peacetime American intelligence organization. In sports, Landon Donovan (1982- ) is a soccer player for Los Angeles Galaxy and most recently played on the U.S. team for the 2010 World Cup. He played in all four games, and scored goals against Slovenia, Algeria and Ghana. Donovan is the all-time leader in scoring and assists for the United States national team. At 28, he has won every title and honor possible in American Major League soccer, helping to bring the U.S. team to international prominence at the World Cup. Anne Donovan (1961- ), the first and only female coach to win a WNBA title, began her career as a decorated college basketball player at Old Dominion University. With 801 blocked shots over her career, she holds the NCAA record. Donovan went on to win two gold medals in the 1984 and 1988 Olympic Games for the U.S. women’’s basketball team. Upon her retirement she began coaching and won a national championship with Seattle Storm in 1995. She was inducted into the Basketball Hall of IA Fame in 1995. AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010 IRISH AMERICA 85



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{ book notes } MILESTONE

To Kill a Mockingbird H

Turns 50



arper Lee’’s To Kill a Mockingbird celebrates its fiftieth anniversary this year with no sign of waning cultural influence. Despite being one of the most frequently banned books, according to the American Library Association, the novel continues to be a staple of the American school curriculum. Narrated by Atticus Finch’’s daughter Scout looking back on her childhood, To Kill a Mockingbird tells a powerful story of pre-civil rights America and of the possibility for humanity to triumph over the ugliness of hate and racism. The characters are loosely autobiographical –– Atticus Finch is based on Lee’’s father Amasa Lee, who was a pillar of their small Alabama community. Scout’’s friend Dill is based on Lee’’s childhood friend Truman Capote, whose aunt just happened to live next door. Though Mockingbird was nearly universally loved by critics, in his 1960 New York Times review, Frank H. Lyell qualifies his praise of the book by hinting that Lee may have had her eye on Hollywood: ““Movie-going readers will be able to cast most of the roles very quickly, but it is no disparagement of Ms. Lee’’s winning book to say that it could be the basis of an excellent film.”” We, of course, know he was right: the film was nominated for eight Academy Awards and garnered a Best Actor win for Gregory Peck, who could not have been better-suited to play the role of the upstanding Atticus Finch. In a 1997 Irish America interview, Peck said of the film, ““It seems to me, looking back on it, that we were in a state of grace. In that we identified so closely with the roles……We were emotionally immersed in telling that story through those characters.”” Horton Foote, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author who wrote the screenplay for the movie, called Peck ““the essence of Atticus –– born to play that part. He has such dignity as a man, and there’’s an enormous sense of integrity about him.”” Harper Lee, who also spoke to Irish America, said simply of Peck and his character Atticus that ““the man and the part met.”” She and Peck remained friends until Peck’’s death in 2003.

Author Harper Lee and Gregory Peck, who played Atticus Finch in the film version of To Kill a Mockingbird.

Those who have read the novel or seen the movie share that feeling of immersion: the book sells nearly one million copies a year and according to The New York Times has been the secondbest-selling backlist title in the country for the past five years. In celebration of what author and filmmaker Mary McDonagh Murphy calls ““our national novel,”” readings, discussions and parties are being held across the country this year to mark its fifty-year influence. In April, Symphony Space in New York City held a panel discussion of the novel including Murphy, novelists Libby Bray and Kurt Andersen, and TV host Stephen Colbert. To Kill a Mockingbird’’s publisher, Harper Collins, is also spearheading many of these readings and events as well as releasing four new editions of the novel. Despite the continuing embrace of her award-winning novel, Harper Lee, who resides in her hometown of Monroeville, Alabama, has kept fairly quiet throughout the years and never published another book. Though she will not be taking part in any of the festivities, Monroeville is planning several events including a reading of the novel in the county courthouse. That the novel is still cherished, discussed and even censored suggests that To Kill a Mockingbird will remain a literary mainstay – Aliah O’Neill for the next fifty years and beyond.



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Bringing Joyce to the Masses J ames Joyce’’s Ulysses is, arguably, the greatest novel that few people seem to have actually read. Declan Kiberd, in a delightfully readable analysis of this allegedly unreadable work, makes the case that the notorious difficulty of Joyce’’s masterpiece is not so much intellectual snobbery on the part of the author, but rather that he based his work, as did Shakespeare, on the popular oral traditions and lived experiences of ordinary people. In writing Ulysses and Us: The Art of Everyday Living, Kiberd sets out to rescue Ulysses from the arcane formulations of academia and restore it, as Joyce intended, to a general readership. Consistent with his own practice as a deeply learned scholar who wears his learning lightly, Kiberd’’s meditation on Ulysses carries the feel of what we all look for in a great teacher, namely the ability to communicate significant ideas in such a dynamic way that the act of learning becomes an exciting intellectual adventure that enlarges our own capacity for living. Kiberd, like Joyce, is a native Dubliner who clearly revels in the ebullient vitality of the people one encounters in the course of rambling about that most convivial of cities. By focusing on the many ways in which an older man of the world, Leopold Bloom, functions as the mentor for the intellectually precocious but emotionally constricted Stephen Dedalus, Kiberd suggests that the novel is really concerned with the ways in which Stephen –– and by inference we the readers –– can learn about such fundamental aspects of everyday life as how to cope with grief; how to be frank about death in an age where it is denied; how the language of the body is often far more eloquent than the more abstract language of words; how the way one approaches food can explain who we really are; how to tell a joke as a way of opening oneself to others; and how men and women can negotiate their sexual desires while purging them from all notions of ownership. For Kiberd, the real significance of

Ulysses lies in the way it confronts the constantly shifting, increasingly disposable realities of the modern world. By losing our sense of what he calls ““the sacredness of everyday life,”” we allow ourselves to become addicted to meaningless distractions –– distractions that destroy our individual dignity even as they wreak havoc in our personal and public lives. As a result, the insidious

busyness of modern life has displaced meaningful experience with an overload of random sensations, nowhere more so than in the exploitation of the powerless by the powerful across the globe. No previous critic has ever before dealt with the manifold meanings of Ulysses in such a compelling, urgent or compassionate voice as Declan Kiberd. It is both salutary and inspiring to note that Ulysses and Us, a book by a leading Irish public intellectual, has found a wide readership in Ireland. All is not lost in the dying yowl of the Celtic Tiger.

But there may be a teaching moment for Americans as well. The cover of the paperback edition of Ulysses and Us features a strangely childlike photo of Marilyn Monroe seated in what looks like a playground while delving intently into a copy of Joyce’’s masterpiece. If, as Joyce insisted, Ulysses is really a kind of cosmic joke, he would surely have appreciated this image. According to Kiberd, modernism as an intellectual movement has fostered ““a tragic split between the cold claims of abstract science and the hot passions of ordinary people.”” In choosing as the cover image for his book the iconic Marilyn, who was herself torn apart by the competing claims of the emotionally unavailable playwright Arthur Miller and the devotional possessiveness of baseball player Joe DiMaggio, Kiberd may be saying that what we need most to learn once again is how to celebrate the passion of psychic and sexual energies combined. ““The foolish author of a wise book”” is how Joyce once described himself. The true wisdom of Joyce lies in teaching us that it is not in the abstractions, intellectual or otherwise, that ceaselessly bombard us –– nowhere more so than in academic life –– where we would find the key to a more meaningful existence. Instead, as one learns from a conversation with almost any Dublin cabdriver, everyday encounters, if embraced with a sense of humor and an awareness of their lifeaffirming possibility, can often provide the greatest learning experiences. Would that there were more teachers like Declan Kiberd who recognized and sought to IA impart that truth. – James W. Flannery is the Director of the W. B. Yeats Foundation and the Winship Professor of Arts and Humanities at Emory University.




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The Mighty The remarkable Quinn Bradlee has a new memoir that offers a moving account of living with disabilities. By Niall O’Dowd. ow do you make your mark when your parents, Ben Bradlee and Sally Quinn, are among the most famous figures in Washington lore and you have been born with a significant disability that makes many basic things in life difficult? You surpass them with a tale so full of blood, guts and gusto that the world simply has to take notice. Thus does Quinn Bradlee make his mark. The 28-year-old puts his success down in considerable measure to his Irish roots. In his book he writes, ““I always remind him [Ben Bradlee] that the Quinns are from Ireland. Irish Americans take great pride in their Irish ancestry and always have. And that is something that I will never stop talking about.”” That new book, A Life’’s Work, by Ben and Quinn Bradlee with observations by Sally Quinn, (Simon and Schuster) tells the heartwarming story of a family who have survived one near-death experience of their child after another, many years when no diagnoses could be made of Quinn’’s actual condition, and the incredible love of life and drive to succeed that marked their son’’s entry into manhood and independence. Later this year Quinn Bradlee will be married at the National Cathedral in Washington D.C. He has emerged as a national spokesman for children with disabilities. He holds down a full-time job and has just published his second book. He has done the impossible. Sitting in the Georgetown mansion his parents call


home, Quinn Bradlee strikes me as an emissary from a silent world we think far too little about. How often do we think about the inner life of those we consign to the heap marked disabled or, cruelly, retarded? There is an endearing honesty to him. He talks about his childhood struggles, his battle against depression, his determination to tell the world that while he may be wired somewhat differently to the rest of us he lacks for nothing when it comes to perception, insight and the need to love and be loved. The night before we met at his book launch party, attended by such luminaries as Bob Woodward, Maureen Dowd and others, all unabashed fans of Quinn. He was remarkable for his own speech, an honest and vivid account of growing up with famous parents, battling disability and demons, and ultimately succeeding. He speaks his mind in a way that some could find unsettling, but which has a refreshing honesty and insight. There is no social filter, no need to worry about niceties. He tells it like it is and his two books to date make that clear. A Different Life, his earlier memoir of growing up disabled, was a critical and publishing success. We can learn from him about honesty and how those who are different can perceive the world. He is a reporter from a foreign shore, putting us in the mindset of those who have had no spokesman or guide for the longest time. It is a humbling experience to talk to this young man. Even his parents seem a little in awe. They have the kind of resumes and back story that Hollywood loves. Indeed, Ben Bradlee, the most famous newspaper man of his era, was featured front and center in the movie All the President’’s Men.



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That was the gripping tale of how the Washington Post newspaper took down the Nixon presidency by digging and digging on a seemingly one-day story about a June 1972 bungled break-in at the Democratic headquarters at the Watergate building in D.C. Ben Bradlee was famous before Jason Robards portrayed him, but afterwards he became quite simply the best known and greatest editor of the modern era. Sally Quinn, on the other hand, has become a Washington legend as a hostess, columnist and style arbiter. Vanity Fair recently devoted a lavish spread to her and made it clear that in the hyper-competitive world of Washington access, power and politics, Sally Quinn reigns supreme. Sally Quinn and Ben Bradlee met late in life, married, and had Quinn, their only child. He came into the world on April 29th, 1982, and was immediately diagnosed with a heart murmur. It was the beginning of a long series of inexplicable illnesses, one after another, which threatened his life and led to openheart surgery at just three months of age. Quinn was slow to learn, slow to focus. One school administrator advised the family that he would need institutional care all his life . It was the kind of life sentence no parents wanted to hear. But Sally Quinn and Ben Bradlee would not give up. Finally, a diagnosis was made. It was VFS, or

Velocardiofacial syndrome, a genetic condition that affects one in 2,000 persons worldwide, marked by a series of physical problems and learning disabilities that Quinn suffered from. As he struggled through childhood Quinn Bradlee developed a thick skin, an acute sense of insight and a determination to not allow his condition to hold him back. His account of boarding school, of his battles with inner demons, his gradual realization that he had so much to offer and his determination to stand up for others with his condition who had no voice, make up the heart of his first book. His latest book traces the family influences that made that courage possible. His inspiration was his mother’’s father, General William Quinn, or ‘‘Dandy,’’ a deeply proud Irishman who was one of the top intelligence officers in the U.S. Army during World War II. The disabled grandchild and the hard-bitten general hit it off big when Quinn was growing up. He developed his love of genealogy and Irish heritage from him and the general ensured that his grandson would never shirk a challenge, never fail to do his best and always stand up for what he believed. Sally Quinn writes movingly in an earlier book A Different Life about what it is like for a parent to raise a special needs child, to see the loneliness when Quinn was always left out, lacking the social networking skills to fully integrate with classmates. Yet neither she nor her boy gave up. A Different Life sets the stage for A Life’’s Work. The bond between Ben Bradlee and his son Quinn fill these pages. Bradlee is an outdoors man who likes nothing better than to leave the hurly burly of Washington for his beloved West Virginia retreat. Quinn is with him every step of the way. Out on the land the two bond. Much of the narrative in the book describes the art of clearing brush, cutting down diseased trees, using chainsaws to improve the land. The extraordinary aspect of the book about father and son bonding is that it is the father, who by the end of it, is learning from the son. There cannot be too many people who can have that impact on the legendary Ben Bradlee, still hale and hearty at 89. Yet his son reaches him, explains vulnerability, takes him and his wife Sally on their own inner journey to understanding their son. IA They and the world are much better for it.




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{ review of books}

A selection of recently published books of Irish and Irish-American interest.



eirdre Madden’’s new novel Molly Fox’’s Birthday is the story of a complicated friendship between three unique individuals: lauded Irish actor Molly Fox, who is away working in New York and London; Belfast-born art critic and television personality Andrew; and the unnamed narrator, a well-established female playwright who is struggling with a new work while staying in Molly’’s Dublin home. The paperback spans in time only a single midsummer’’s day, cut through with the narrator’’s recollections of other moments in the history of her friendships with Andrew and Molly. But rather than coming off as stylistically ambitious, the one-day structure feels understated and yet wholly satisfying. The intimacy of inhabiting Molly’’s house, staying among her things, runs parallel to Molly’’s career, as an actor, of inhabiting other characters’’ selves. Molly’’s house is filled with precious belongings, as distinctive as Molly herself, which makes Molly’’s lack of emotional attachment to these material possessions all the more curious and reflective of a deeper detachment that affects all of her relationships. Each of the three main characters has a brother who serves as a foil and a tie back to pasts that each has tried to escape in order to reinvent themselves. The narrator’’s brother is Tom, a Catholic priest who instilled in her a love of language that offered a world outside of their upbringing in a large farming family who ““all lived in each other’’s pockets”” in a remote Northern Ireland town. Molly’’s unstable brother Fergus tells a version of their childhood with the mother Molly villanizes that is quite different from Molly’’s. But most poignant of all is Andrew’’s relationship with his brother Billy, the favorite of his parents who was killed during the Troubles as a loyalist paramilitary. This is a book about superstition and


faith, about acting and pretending, about keeping secrets and telling stories. There is something wonderfully contained about its narrative, but there are infinitesimal details to savor on every page while the novel’’s philosophical scope is wide. ““Friendship is far more tragic than love,”” thinks the narrator. ““It lasts longer.”” Deirdre Madden, from Toomebridge, Co. Antrim, teaches at Trinity College Dublin and is the author of eight other novels. She has won the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature, the Somerset Maugham Award, and the Hennessy Award. Molly Fox’’s Birthday was a finalist for the Orange Prize. – Kara Rota (240 pages / Faber & Faber / $14)



n The Best of It, United States 2008-2010 Poet Laureate Kay Ryan offers selections of new poetry alongside earlier works in a volume that is sure to satisfy long-time fans and new readers alike. While The Best of It adopts the structure of a retrospective, it proceeds forward at a confident stride, maintaining the freshness and intensity that earned Ryan her status as one of America’’s greatest living poets and led to her appointment as the Library of Congress’’ sixteenth Poet Laureate in 2008. She has a particular skill in making the familiar refreshing and the ethereal tangible. After each poem, the reader is not sure whether to pause in contemplation or at once barrel onward, hungry for more. The Best of It takes its title from from a poem in Ryan’’s volume The Niagara River (2005), that reads in part: However carved up / or pared down we get, / we keep on making / the best of it as though / it doesn’’t matter that / our acre’’s down to / a square foot. Here is poetry that even the non-poetry-lover can enjoy. In its clarity and wisdom, The Best of It offers no less than the title promises. – Dianne Nora (288 pages / Grove Press / $24)


ick Laird is an Irish-born poet known for his political themes and emotional resonance. His latest book of poems, On Purpose, is a slim 65 pages saturated with heartbreaking ruminations on relationships, and the mundane elevated to the lyrical. Some of the poems are small and sweet (““As opposed to those that flow / because an onion is reduced to pieces / …… / authentic tears, like these, like yours, / contain much higher rates of manganese, / thought responsible for sadness.”” Others, like ““The Underwood No. 4,”” four pages long, span great emotional distances in Laird’’s taut language. ““Lipstick”” stands out as an extraordinarily visceral and powerful piece. Influenced by the journal of a British soldier who participated in liberating Bergen-Belsen in 1945, it recreates the incredible image of a relief truck filled with lipstick tubes descending upon concentration camp victims. Inspired by a myriad of influences including his love of Seamus Heaney and Sun Tzu’’s The Art of War, Nick Laird transmutes human frustrations, grudges and anxieties into cathartic beauty in On Purpose. – Kara Rota (65 pages / W.W. Norton / $13.95)



eter Quinn’’s The Man Who Never Returned is a page-turner noir novel based on the true unsolved mystery of New York State Supreme Court Justice Joseph Force Crater’’s disappearance on August 6, 1930. Fintan Dunne, the detective who readers will recognize from Quinn’’s Hour of the Cat, has retired to a life of leisure with his beloved wife in Florida when a mysterious phone call pulls him back into the irresistible draw of New York and its uncovered secrets. He takes on an assignment from media tycoon Walter Wilkes to solve a 25-yearold case that the police have long given up on. As Dunne becomes further entangled into a web of dead ends, unconnected leads, deceptive testimonies and Wilkes’’ femme fatale assistant, Adrienne Renard, Quinn masterfully crafts a forceful narrative whose revealing ending doesn’’t disappoint. – Kara Rota (336 pages / Overlook / $24.95)



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he latest installment in Declan Hughes’’s series of novels featuring Dublin private investigator Ed Loy, The City of Lost Girls is a fast-paced crime novel about a serial killer in post-Celtic Tiger Dublin that had my interest from the very first page. Hughes opens with the serial killer’’s internal dialogue, sending immediate shivers down your spine and setting the stage for an exciting 300 pages. The author’’s use of language and perspective propels the story forward and is at times quite beautiful. Although the story is mainly about stopping the killer, the moments when the characters pause to contemplate their city and its financial troubles allow for intermittent commentary on the state of modern Dublin. With its fast-paced plot, lovely language and well-drawn characters, City of Lost Girls is immensely satisfying. – Anne Thompson (304 pages / William Morrow / $24.99)



d Moloney is an Irish journalist who has made a career out of recording the history of the Troubles and of the Provisional IRA. In 1999, Moloney faced possible jail time when he refused to hand over notes he had made from an interview with British soldier Billy Stobie regarding Pat Finucane’’s murder. Despite this incident, Moloney has continued writing about the Troubles in his latest book, Voices from the Grave. Funded by Boston College, the sizable tome recounts IRA and UVF activity from the late 60s up to the Good Friday Agreement through the eyes of IRA operative Brendan Hughes and politician and UVF figure David Ervine. Combining large sections of candid interviews with Hughes and Ervine, who remember these events with astonishing detail, with precise historical context, Moloney’’s journalistic style pairs well with the jarring pictures of violence pro-

vided by his interviewees. Particularly interesting is Brendan Hughes’’ description of Provisional IRA activity that has been kept secret for years, including Gerry Adams’’ involvement with the group, a detail that Adams has fervently denied. Both Hughes and Ervine are now dead, making Voices from the Grave a definitive historical text in that, as the blurb on the book jacket suggests, these men ““had nothing to lose by telling the truth.”” With few other recorded examples of paramilitary figures discussing the destruction and killings surrounding the Troubles, Voices from the Grave is an important addition to its field and an engrossing read. – Aliah O’Neill (512 pages / Public Affairs / $19.95)


rom rags to riches, Sir Thomas Lipton personified the American dream of making it big. Born in the slums of 19th century Glasgow, Lipton sailed to the U.S. as a boy. His story, in which Lipton eventually established himself as a millionaire sportsman mingling with Wall Street elite and European royalty, is finally told by Michael D’’Antonio in A Full Cup: Sir

Thomas Lipton’’s Extraordinary Life and His Quest for America’’s Cup. D’’Antonio, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, vibrantly describes Lipton as an affable raconteur whose incredible life was the product of hard work and good service. Once in the U.S., Lipton opened a chain of grocery stores and gained international success and wealth as the creator of his namesake tea. The true focus of the book is Lipton’’s desire to win the America’’s Cup sailing regatta. Winning the match to secure the coveted cup, the oldest trophy in international sports, would be Lipton’’s last adventure, and though he participated in the event five times, he never won. Already famous in his day, Lipton became the underdog of the contest and charmed the American public despite his losses. D’’Antonio, with great admiration for Lipton’’s unwavering spirit, writes A Full Cup in light of this underdog quality, depicting Lipton’’s ascent to fame as inspirational and worth celebrating. – Aliah O’Neill (354 pages / Riverhead Books / $26.95)

Remembering 9/11 Bonnie McEneaney’s Messages: Signs,Visits and Premonitions from Loved Ones Lost on 9/11 is the culmination of a project undertaken after Bonnie’s husband Eamon died on September 11, 2001. She was struck by both the premonitions he had shared with her before his death and the experiences she was having of his presence and communication since. In developing friendships with the loved ones of others who had died in 9/11, Bonnie became aware of similar experiences that they shared. Messages chronicles the premonitions, dreams, signs, visitations and other spiritual communications of comfort that many experienced after losing a loved one in the 9/11 attacks. A donation from book proceeds will benefit the Voices of September 11 Living Memorial Project (www.voicesofsept11.org). – Kara Rota (257 pages / HarperCollins / $24.99)




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By Darina Molloy


1 Hear My Song was about this tenor Josef (5) 5 (& 32 across) Longford firedamaged cathedral now undergoing renovation (5) 8 Roman Catholic (abbrev) (1,1) 10 Italian ice cream (6) 11 (& 16 down) He challenged Enda Kenny for FG party leadership (7) 12 This James is new deputy leader of Fine Gael (6) 14 Margaret Thatcher was this kind of a lady (4) 15 See 43 across (9) 18 Weight-bearing part of a plant (4) 19 George ___ Shaw (7) 20 From this springs the mighty oak (5) 23 Unidentified flying objects (4) 24 (& 39 across) This archbishop was one of the founders of the GAA (6) 25 Father in short (2) 26 From the Naples area of Italy (10) 29 See 9 down (5) 30 See 5 down (4) 31 (& 41 across) Largest Irish lake (5) 32 See 5 across (4) 36 Ireland’’s largest island (6) 38 See 28 down (5) 39 See 24 across (5) 41 See 31 across (5) 43 (& 15 across) Actress Amy Huberman married this rugby legend in July (5) 45 Color of Dublin GAA jersey (4) 46 Large vessel used for washing (4) 47 Number of commandments (3) 48 (& 32 down) Limerick location of JP McManus Celebrity Pro-Am (5)


1 (& 34 down) Black 47 front man and author (5) 2 (& 25 down) This Irish actor to play Ozzy Osbourne in new movie? (5) 3 Former NBC popular medical drama (1, 1) 4 Top baby name for boys in Ireland in 2009 (4)

5 (& 30 across) John C. Reilly stars in a new movie about this writer’’s Irish car accident and eventual suicide (8) 6 Swings arms wildly (6) 7 There is a Famine museum in this Roscommon town (11) 9 (& 29 across) Cork musical family who impressed Ellen DeGeneres (7) 13 Beachside promenade (9) 16 See 11 across (6) 17 Lee DeWyze won this year’’s American ____ (4) 21 Birds do this (5) 22 Sale involving multiple bidders (7) 24 Tiny amount (5) 25 See 2 down (7) 27 Winter feed for cattle (6) 28 (& 38 across) New Joseph O’’Connor novel featuring JM Synge (5) 32 See 48 across (5)

Win a subscription to Irish America magazine Please send your completed crossword puzzle to Irish America, 875 Sixth Avenue, Suite 2100, New York, NY 10001, to arrive no later than August 31, 2010. A winner will be drawn from among all correct entries. If there are no correct solutions, the prize will be awarded for the completed puzzle which comes closest in the opinion of our staff. Winner’’s name will be published along with the solution in our next issue. Xerox copies are acceptable. Winner of the June/July Crossword: Michael Leahy, Omaha, NE 92 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010

33 Apparition and Late Fictions: the new book by this Thomas (5) 34 See 1 down (6) 35 Clare cliffs are now pay-per-view (5) 37 This Brian was high king of Ireland from 999 (4) 40 Singing sisters, now reunited (4) 41 Dry one-seeded fruit (3) 42 Not cold (3) 43 Garbage can in Ireland (3) 44 Buzzy insect (3)

June/July Solution

IAcoming home edited.qxd


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{ far and away }

Coming Home Maura Mulligan discovers that New York is home.


Top right: Teaching céilí dancing at the 2010 Comhaltas convention in Parsippany, NJ. Maura is in the red dress onstage, calling the dance. Above: The house where Maura was born in Achadh Mór, County Mayo. Top left: Maura visited cousins in Galway before the floods started.

ver since I retired from teaching with the New York City Public Schools, I’’ve thought about returning to my native Ireland for the remainder of my life. Through the years, I have enjoyed summer visits, and dance and writing workshops there. I looked at cottages near Galway, ancient city of The Tribes. I thought about Dublin, with its literary tradition, and Ireland as home to writers –– from Swift to Yeats and Joyce. I dreamed of a space where I could write and invite friends to join me in the adoration of heather and newborn lambs in spring. I thought I had a cottage a few years ago. In her will my mother left me the house in Mayo that the family bought in the 1960’’s. It was considered an improvement over the house where I was born. My parents had left our old cottage with its thatched roof and whitewashed stonewalls to live in a gray house with a slate roof, a few fields away. After Dad’’s death, Mom left the gray house behind and moved to London. But when I went back to claim my inheritance, the neighbor’’s calves rose up from their straw beds by the fireplace and let me know that they had squatter’’s rights. ““Forget it,”” the lawyer said. ““You’’d be throwing good money after bad, battling to get property back after twelve years of abandonment. ’’Tis an old law.”” Well, the old law depressed me for a while, but I wasn’’t going to let it dampen my enthusiasm for retiring to the land of my birth. So, last November, after being awarded a twoweek writer’’s residency at the Heinrich Böll cottage on Achill Island, I decided to stay in Ireland for a couple of winter months, to see again what it felt like to take country walks in the cold rain and listen to the wind. I needed to find out if I could exchange my life west of the Hudson for a home west of the Shannon. Friends and writing buddies said they’’d


miss me, but they promised to visit. When I left the idyllic writers’’ residence on the sheltered side of Achill, I stayed with my friend Anne on the Atlantic side. Here, the winds roared in from the sea and moaned down the chimney. The rain teemed down while Mick, the cat, sat in his cozy spot on the windowsill. Occasionally, he’’d twitch as the howl of the wind increased, his head moving rapidly from side to side when he spied an airborne feather or wisps of dead grass flying past the window. When the rain stopped suddenly, the sun glistened on the bushes in the wild garden. When the rain returned, Anne’’s living room darkened again. The orange glow of the peat fire was reflected in the windowpane where it appeared to burn by the gray, garden rock. My fire-gazing reverie was interrupted by the voice of a radio announcer: ““An elderly woman sixty-two was found……”” Elderly? ““I may be in my sixties but I’’m not elderly,”” I said as I braved flooded roads where trees rose up out of rivers, and stonewalls appeared down the middle of newly formed lakes. I picked a good time to ““test the waters,”” I thought when I finally reached my sister Bridie’’s home near Shannon. I hosted a dinner party, went to the theater and danced at a céilí. A friendly bus driver said, ““No rush,”” when I searched for change, and a well-mannered youth stood to give me a seat on the train. But I was feeling…… well, elderly. My dance students in New York e-mailed asking when I was ““coming home.”” The head of the North American branch of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Eireann asked if I’’d be available to teach a dance class at the spring convention in New Jersey. I jumped at the chance. When I returned, the city gleamed its youthful welcome. I didn’’t get a seat in the subway, but the lights put a spring in my step. When my dance students embraced me in a group hug, I said, ““I’’m h-o-m-e.”” IA



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{corner of ireland}

By Joe Dougherty

“We Have an Altar” A church built by Irish mining families in North Carolina in the 1800s.


n a time long forgotten, six Irish families came to the foothills of North Carolina. The men were miners and they came to work the gold mines on the banks of the Catawba River near what is now the town of Mt. Holly in Gaston County. The families, four headed by the Lonergan brothers, the other two being the Cahills and the Duffeys, came from Cork, Dublin and Tipperary in 1831 to work for Chevalier Riva de Finila, who owned one of the more successful mining excavations.

St. Joseph and Mary Catholic church in Mt. Holly, North Carolina dates to 1843.

On Sundays, de Finila, a devout Catholic of French and Italian ancestry, invited the families into his home to worship in his specially built chapel. But in 1832, when a court-ordered injunction closed de Finila’’s operation, possibly due to the use of mercury in the processing which polluted the river, he left the area and the Irish were without a place of worship. In 1838, Father Timothy J. Cronin, a Cork man, was ordained in Charleston, South Carolina. He was a circuit priest, traveling on horseback to serve the Catholics of North and South Carolina. With the aid of this good priest, money was raised throughout North and South Carolina and Georgia to build a church for the Catawba River community. One of the largest donations came from William Gaston, a judge on the North Carolina Supreme Courtm for whom Gaston County is named. In 1841, enough money has been raised and work began on the structure. William Lonergan had purchased land from de Finola before he left, and using lumber that they cut and milled themselves, the church soon started to take shape. The building was finished in 1843, only the second Catholic church built in North Carolina. (St. Patrick’’s Catholic church in Fayetteville, built in 1824, was the first.) The Irish families were so thrilled with the new worship center that they engraved the words ““Habemus Altare”” (we have an 96 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010

altar) above the altar. The parish that had started with six families now included the Phelan, Coxe, Miller, Mulligan, Meyers, Rafter, Ryan, Kerns and Hawkins families. Sadly, the four Lonergan brothers sailed home toward Ireland and were lost at sea, and Father Cronin died of yellow fever before the church was finished. He was laid to rest in the cemetery. Father Jeremiah P. O’’Connell was the last pastor of St Joseph’’s. He served during the War for States’’ Rights, known to our Northern family as the Civil War. The war took its toll on the small parish. Only one of the founding members of the church, Pierce Cahill, survived the war. In 1876, Father O’’Connell bought the Caldwell Plantation and sold it to the Benedictine monks to found a monastery in Belmont, North Carolina. Following the war, ““Mary”” was dropped, and the church was referred to as just St. Joseph’’s. As the years passed, the area Catholics began to attend Mass at Belmont Abbey and St. Joseph’’s fell into disrepair. Although the church was not used for close to a century, it was not torn down and in 1970, Bishop Michael Begley of the Charlotte diocese had the exterior, altar and pews restored to their former ““simple”” grandeur. St. Joseph’’s has been designated a National Historical Site by the U.S. Department of Interior and by the State of North Carolina. Today, Mass is celebrated just three times a year in the church, once by a diocesan priest on the date of his ordination into the priesthood, once on March 19, the feast of St. Joseph, and on St. Patrick’’s Day, the two divisions of the Ancient Order of Hibernians in the Charlotte area not only have a Mass celebrated, but they also have a ceremony at the grave of Father Cronin in his honor and to honor the Irish immigrants that are buried in the cemetery.

About the author: Joe Dougherty, a retired transportation manager, was born in South Philadelphia in 1944. He and his wife Nancy have been married for 41 years and now live in the Charlotte, NC area to be closer to their two daughters and five grandchildren. Joe’’s great-grandparents came to the Philadelphia area from Donegal around 1874.

Write us: Is there a corner of Ireland in your neighborhood? Please send a brief description and photographs along with your name, address and phone number to Kara Rota at Irish America, 875 Sixth Avenue, Suite 2100, New York, NY 10001. You may also email same to Irishamag@aol.com.



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By Edythe Preet

Feasting with Angels


op quiz: what’’s the most popular Irish boy’’s name? Odds are, the first one that came to mind was Patrick. Wrong. While Saint Patrick is Ireland’’s patron, his name comes in at #18. Go ahead, try again. Did you say Sean? If so, you picked #2, and you get extra credit because Sean is also spelled Shane, Shawn, Shuan, Eoin, Ion, and Ian, all of which rank in the top twenty and honor the gospel writer John. Another Irish version of this venerable Hebrew name, which means ““one whom God has favored,”” is Jack, which places at #3. Since you still haven’’t picked the winner, I’’ll save you some brain strain. The numero uno Irish boy’’s name is Conor, a variant of Conaire Mor who, according to Irish legend and historical tradition, was Ireland’’s most famous High King. His reign was long (ranging from thirty to seventy years depending on which account is consulted) and peaceful, quite a feat in a time when provincial kings contested constantly for supremacy. Conor’’s birth, rise to power, and death are told in the Old Irish saga Togail Bruidne Dá Derga (The Destruction of Da Derga’’s Hostel). A Middle Irish collection of poems and prose, compiled in the 11th century by an anonymous scholar and entitled Leabhar Gabhála na hÉireann (The Book of Invasions), dates his reign contemporary with the Roman emperor Augustus (27 BC-14 AD). For sheer longevity and Gaelic authenticity, Conor takes the prize as the other top ten Irish boys’’ names (James, Adam, Aaron, Michael, David, and Daniel) have their roots in Christian tradition, which did not influence Ireland until its introduction by Saint Patrick in the 6th century AD. All but one of these popular names refer to wise and honorable men, but despite their wisdom they were merely human. The singular exception is Michael the Archangel. Without too much stretching of the imagination, one could call him the Superman of Hebrew, Christian and Islamic tradition. When Lucifer challenged his divine Maker and led a rebellion among the legion of angels, it was 98 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010

Little Skellig seen through a window of the hermitage of Skellig Michael.

Michael whom God called on to save not only the day, but all of creation as well. When Moses needed counsel and Isaac needed someone to save him from being sacrificed by his father, Michael came to their rescue. The Old Testament’’s Book of Enoch states that Michael and his fellow archangels always accompanied Yaweh whenever he left his celestial throne. Think of them as a divine Secret Service detail and Michael as God’’s finest field general. In art, Michael is depicted as a majestic winged warrior, clad in full battle armor or chain mail with helmet, shield, and an unsheathed drawn sword. Sometimes he

is shown standing above a dragon (symbolic of evil) that he has stabbed with a lance. At other times, he is pictured holding a pair of scales with which he weighs the souls of the dead before escorting them to their heavenly reward or banishing them to Hell. During the time of the Crusades, Michael was naturally named the patron of knights who fought to reclaim the Holy Land. Today, his patronage extends to all armed combatants –– soldiers, mariners, and airborne units, especially fighter pilots and paratroopers –– as well as civilian police officers, paramedics, EMTs, and other emergency responders. Shrines to Saint Michael are usually found in high places, frequently on mountaintops. A notable exception is Ireland’’s Skellig Michael (Michael’’s Rock), a craggy island in the Atlantic Ocean approximately 9 miles west of County Kerry. Since the sixth century, the feast of Saint Michael the Archangel has been celebrated on September 29th. Known as The Feast of Michael and All Angels, or Michaelmas, it was a holy day of obligation, and everyone was required to attend mass. In Old Irish tradition, the day was called Fomhar na nGeanna, the Goose Harvest. Just like cows, geese born in the spring were put out to pasture in flocks to feed on grass. Called ‘‘green geese,’’ they were a delicacy only enjoyed by the very wealthy as were their huge goose eggs, which were served at royal banquets on dishes of gold and silver.

Prayer to Michael the Archangel (one of my personal favorites)

Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the Devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray. And do thou, oh Prince of the Heavenly Host, by the power of God, cast into Hell Satan and all the other evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin and destruction of souls. Amen.



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Most geese, however, were kept until after summer’’s grain harvest when they were released into the cut fields. Feeding on the fallen grain, these ‘‘stubble geese’’ fattened up quickly. Believing that ““If you eat goose at Michaelmas you will never want all year round,”” people usually celebrated the saint’’s day with a goose feast. Prized goose feathers and down were collected for filling mattresses and pillows. In the southeast corner of Ireland, an old saying: La Fheile Mhichil a chroitear an t-ullord (On Michael’’s Day the orchard is shaken) marks the beginning of the annual apple harvest. At almost the same time, the potato harvest comes in, and by Michaelmas, both crops are in abundant delicious supply. Saint Michael’’s feast also signals an end to Ireland’’s blackberry season, for it is told that when Michael

tossed Satan out of heaven the Evil One landed in a blackberry bramble patch and was so annoyed at the many pricks he endured that each year on Michaelmas he returns to curse and spit on all blackberries, rendering them inedible. In addition to its significance as Michael’’s Feast, September 29th also marks one of the ‘‘quarter-days’’ on the old Irish calendar. These four dates during the year, corresponded to religious festivals (12/25/Christmas, 3/25/Lady Day/The Annunciation, 6/24/Midsummer/St. John, 9/29/Michaelmas). Magistrates visited outlying towns to adjudicate legal cases, servants were hired, and rents were due, expanding Michael’’s patronage to the legal and business professions. Frequently outstanding accounts were settled with payment of a Michaelmas goose.

Since September 29th arrives on the heels of the Autumnal Equinox, it also heralds the shortening of days when light from the sun begins to dim and the work of illuminating manuscripts such as The Book of Kells and in later years the setting of type had to be done by candlelight. Irish printers marked this changing of the year by treating their staff to a Michaelmas roast goose feast. In view of Michael the Archangel’’s many patronages, not the least of which is protection against temptation itself, it is not surprising that his name ranks in the top tier of popularity for Irish boys. Personally, I am most fond of Michael’’s tie to publishing the written word, one of Ireland’’s most lauded talents. For me, at least, it implies ““The pen is mightier than the sword.”” Think about it. Sláinte! IA


Michaelmas Roast Goose with Potato-Apple Stuffing

(Festive Food of Ireland –– Darina Allen) GOOSE 1 10-pound goose (with giblets – neck, heart and gizzard) 1 onion 1 carrot Bouquet garni (1 sprig thyme, 3-4 parsley sprigs, 1 piece celery) 6-7 peppercorns STUFFING 2 pounds potatoes 1 ⁄2 stick butter 1 pound chopped onions 1 pound Granny Smith apples, peeled & chopped 1-11⁄2 tablespoons chopped parsley 1-11⁄2 tablespoons lemon balm (optional) Salt and freshly ground black pepper STUFFING: Boil the unpeeled potatoes in salted water until cooked, peel and mash. Melt the butter and sweat the onions in a covered pan on medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the apples and cook until they break down, then stir in the mashed potatoes and herbs. Season with salt and pepper. Chill until cold before stuffing the goose. GOOSE: Remove the wishbone for ease of carving. Put the goose into a saucepan with the giblets, onion, carrot, bouquet garni and peppercorns. Cover with cold water, bring to a boil and simmer for about 2 hours. Remove the bird carefully from the stock and pat dry. Season the cavity with salt and pepper and fill with the cold stuffing. Sprinkle some sea salt over the breast and rub into the skin. Roast for 2-2 1/2 hours in a preheated 350°F oven. Pour off the excess fat three or four times during the cooking (store this fat in your refrigerator as it keeps for months and is wonderful for roasting or sautéing potatoes). To test whether the goose is cooked, prick the thigh at the thick-

est part. The juices that run out should be clear; if they are pink, the goose needs a little longer roasting. When cooked, remove the goose to a large heatproof platter and put it into a low oven (200°F) while you make the gravy. GRAVY: Pour or spoon off the remainder of the fat. Add about 2 1/2 cups of strained giblet stock to the roasting pan, bring it to a boil and, using a small whisk, scrape the pan to dissolve the meaty brown bits. Taste for seasoning and if the gravy is weak, boil for a few minutes to concentrate the flavor, if too strong add a little stock. Strain into a gravy boat. Before serving the goose, remove the stuffing to a medium bowl. Bring the goose to the table, carve it, and serve stuffing, applesauce and gravy separately. An 8-10 pound goose will serve 8-10 people.

Blackberry Apple Crumble 2 1 2 6 4 4 2 2

(Good Food From Ireland –– Georgina Campbell) pounds Granny Smith apples pound blackberries tablespoons water ounces sugar ounces cold butter ounces whole wheat flour ounces oatmeal flakes ounces brown sugar

Peel, core and slice the apples. Mix with the blackberries. Add sugar and water to fruit and stir to combine. Place fruit in a 1 quart baking dish. CRUMBLE: Cut butter into flour, add oat flakes and brown sugar and continue cutting together until mixture becomes crumbly. Sprinkle over fruit, packing down lightly. Bake in a preheated 400°F oven for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 375°F and continue baking for another 15-20 minutes until topping is crunchy brown and fruit has released its juices. Serve hot with cream, whipped cream or ice cream. Makes 6-8 servings. AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010 IRISH AMERICA 99

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{those we lost} John W. Finn 1909-2010

John W. Finn, World War II veteran and Medal of Honor recipient, died on May 27 in Chula Vista, California. He was 100. Finn was the last survivor of the fifteen Navy men who received the Medal of Honor for their service during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and had been the oldest living recipient of the medal. Born on July 23, 1909 in Los Angeles, Finn dropped out of school after the seventh grade and enlisted in the Navy when he was seventeen. Already a fifteen-year veteran of the Navy, Finn was at home with his wife Alice on December 7, 1941 when he heard the sound of machine guns just outside Kaneohe Bay Naval Air Station. Finn quickly drove to the station and spent the next two and a half hours firing at Japanese planes that were part of the attack on Pearl Harbor. He was hospitalized with serious injuries the following afternoon. On September 15, 1942, Chief Finn received the Medal of Honor aboard the USS Enterprise in Pearl Harbor. Finn retired from the Navy in 1956 with the rank of Lieutenant and moved to a cattle ranch in Pine Valley, California. He is survived by a son, Joseph. –– Aliah O’’Neill

Gerald W. Heaney 1918-2010

Midwestern federal appeals court judge Gerald Heaney died June 22 at age 92. He served more than four decades on the bench and championed the desegregation of schools. Beginning in 1981, Heaney wrote 27 opinions that oversaw the integration of schools in St. Louis. In 1967, he wrote the 1967 ruling that reversed a lower court’’s decision to dismiss complaints of racial discrimination in schools in Altheimer, Arkansas. Heaney also authored a decision 100 IRISH AMERICA AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010

that granted school newspapers First Amendment protection, which the Supreme Court overturned. A well-known liberal, Heaney’’s views were shaped by his upbringing in Goodhue, Minnesota, where his father William owned a butcher shop and provided for the hungry during the Depression. Heaney graduated from the University of Minnesota and earned his law degree there in 1941, then enlisted in the Army and served as a first lieutenant. He became involved in local politics and joined the Democratic-FarmerLabor party, and was nominated by President Lyndon Johnson in 1966 to the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit. Heaney is survived by his wife, son, daughter, sister, six grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren. –– Kara Rota

tion for Pokemon and Power Rangers. Keefe lived in Los Angeles for most of his life and was a frequent traveler. Among his favorite destinations was Ireland where he often stayed for weeks at a time. Keefe started out as a producer on a live martial arts television series, a show he hosted alongside Chuck Norris. He was 57 when he succumbed to cancer and is survived by his four siblings, and his mother, Anne, of St. Louis. –– Tara Dougherty

Rue McClanahan 1934-2010

Actress Rue McClanahan, famous for her role as Blanche Devereaux in The Golden Girls, died June 3 at age 76. She died at New York Presbyterian hospital of a brain hemorrhage. Born Eddi-Rue McClanahan (a composite of her parents’’ names: RheuaNell and William Edwin) in Healdton, Oklahoma, she was of Choctaw and Irish heritage. Her paternal grandparents, Zebbin and Fannie McClanahan, Peter Keefe said that Rue had her grandmother’’s 1952-2010 ““Copeland eyes,”” referring to the Known as a vibrant and adventurous Copeland islands in the Irish Sea, north Hollywood personality, producer Peter of Co. Down. Keefe passed away at his sister’’s home McClanahan graduated with honors on May 27th. The Rochester native was from the University of Tulsa, having best known for his work on the Voltron majored in drama, and moved to New series and often credited as the inspiraYork to study acting and ballet. She performed onstage in Pennsylvania, California and New York, where her Broadway debut was in Jimmy Shine, starring Dustin Hoffman. She got some experience in TV work on All in the Family in 1972 and Maude, then was cast as the youngest member of the Golden Girls, which hit the number one spot during its pilot episode in 1985. It remained in the top 10 for six seasons, and McClanahan won an Emmy for outstanding lead actress in a comedy series in 1987. The show ended in 1992, after which McClanahan appeared in movies and on Broadway. Gerald Heaney McClanahan’’s autobiography, My (right) with Eugene First Five Husbands……and the McCarthy Ones Who Got Away, was pubin 1958. lished in 2007. –– Kara Rota

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Historian Preserved Grosse Île Heritage


Harold W. McGraw Jr. 1918-2010

Harold W. McGraw Jr., president and CEO of McGraw-Hill during the 1970s and ’’80s, died on March 24 at his home in Darien, Connecticut. He was 92. Born in Brooklyn on January 10, 1918, McGraw grew up hearing about his family’’s company from his father and grandfather, James H. McGraw, who entered the publishing business in the 1880s. McGraw Jr. graduated from Princeton University in 1940 and was a captain in the Army Air Force during World War II. After working in advertising and book retailing, he joined the family business in 1947 as a sales representative. McGraw worked his way through the ranks and became chief executive in 1975, leading McGraw-Hill through a period of expansion during his eight years in the post. Under his guidance, company revenues reached over $1 billion in 1980 for the first time. McGraw retired in 1988 at age 70 but remained active in the publishing world, serving 25 years on the board of the Princeton University Press and 16 as president. McGraw is survived by a son, Robert, and daughter, Suzanne, as well as eight grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. –– Aliah O’’Neill Note: Mr. McGraw’’s photo was mistakenly printed alongside the obituary of Charles Moore in our June/July issue.

arianna O’Gallagher, a Quebec City historian who dedicated much of her life championing the role of the quarantine island Grosse Île in the story of Irish immigration to Canada, died May 23 at age 81 after a brief battle with lung cancer – two months after she served as Grand Marshal when the provincial capital resurrected its St. Patrick’s Day parade this past March. O’Gallagher’s first visit to the windswept island in the St. Lawrence near Montmagny in 1973 was a catalyst for her pioneering efforts to push Parks Canada to restore the island, the burial site of thousands of immigrants, most of them Irish, who contracted typhus, cholera and smallpox en route to the new world. In the following decades, she would return frequently to pay tribute to the dead, winning the support and respect of federal, provincial and Irish officials in her campaign to give those lost souls a decent resting place. “Walk across that field, and your very footsteps can become an act of prayer for the hundreds of people buried there,” O’Gallagher said during a visit in June 2008 organized by the Canadian Irish Studies program at Concordia University. “This is the main focus of our coming here – to remember all these precious people.” The author of Eyewitness Grosse Île 1847 and and Grosse Île: Gateway to Canada 1832-1957, O’Gallagher was born in Ste. Foy to Quebecers of Irish descent. A former nun, she spent many years teaching at St. Patrick’s High School in Quebec City as well as schools in Nova Scotia, Massachusetts, New York and New Brunswick. “Obviously, she was a core figure in introducing all Quebecers to their own history, that of the Irish and of the generosity of the FrenchCanadian families who offered homes to the Irish orphans,” said Michael Kenneally, director of the Canadian Irish Studies Foundation, which plans to hold an annual conference named in O’Gallagher’s honour. Kenneally hailed O’Gallagher’s meticulous historical research and her gift for finding those personal anecdotes and details which humanized the stories of famine-stricken immigrants. The founder and president of Irish Heritage Quebec, O’Gallagher received the Order of Quebec in 1998 and the Order of Canada in 2002 in recognition of her efforts to gain recognition of Grosse Île and the Irish Memorial National Site. In 1897, the Ancient Order of Hibernians began fund-raising to build a commemorative cross on the island. At the time, O’Gallagher’s grandfather, a civil engineer, was president of the Irish society in Quebec City. “He drew the design on the wall of the kitchen at 13 Conroy St. in Quebec City,” O’Gallagher recalled. “My father said as more and more money came in, the monument grew in size and stature on the wall.” But by the time his granddaughter paid her first visit to the island, the neighboring cemetery was in a sorry state, “waist-high” in brush and raspberry bushes. Reprinted from © The Montreal Gazette


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{those we lost} William R. Callahan 1931-2010




The Rev. William R. Callahan died at age 78 on July 5 in Washington, of complications related to Parkinson’’s disease. A Roman Catholic priest who vehemently opposed Vatican policies, Father Callahan co-founded the Quixote Center, an organization which called for Church and societal reforms, in 1976 with Dolly Pomerleau, who was his partner in activism for many years and to whom he was married days before his recent death. The Quixote Center supported the leftist Nicaraguan government in the 1980s and raised over $100 million in humanitarian aid for Nicaragua. After being expelled from the Jesuit order, Callahan remained a priest and continued fighting for causes he championed, such as ordaining women as priests. When, in 1979, Pope John Paul II claimed that barring women from becoming priests was not a human rights issue, Callahan replied, ““Perhaps this is not a human rights issue because women are not human or they do not have rights.”” Callahan also worked on religious books including 1982’’s Noisy Contemplation: Deep Prayer for Busy People. He preached to informal gatherings of Catholic reformers who shared his concerns about the church’’s conservative hierarchy. In 1971, Callahan helped to found the Center of Concern, an organization focused on issues of social justice. In 1975 he founded Priests for Equality, through which he pressed the cause of ordaining women. Born to a Catholic father and Unitarian mother in 1931, Callahan was raised by paternal grandparents as a Catholic after his mother died when he was just six months old. He earned B.A. and M.A. degrees from Boston College and a Ph.D. in physics from Johns Hopkins University, while working on weather satellites for NASA. He was ordained as a priest in 1965. In addition to his wife Dolly, Callahan is survived by three brothers and three sisters. –– Kara Rota

Robert McNeil Jr. received the American Institute of Chemists Gold Medal in 2005.

Robert McNeil 1915-2010

Robert McNeil Jr., the third generation of the McNeil family running McNeil Pharmaceuticals and the introducer of Tylenol, died at the age of 94 on May 20 in his home in Wyndmoor, Pennsylvania. In 1879, McNeil’’s grandfather, a young entrepreneur in Pennsylvania, bought a pharmacy which would later evolve into McNeil Laboratories. McNeil joined the family business, expanding the pharmacy with his father and brother into McNeil Laboratories. In 1955, McNeil introduced Elixir Tylenol, a liquid pain and fever reliever for children under the marketing slogan, ““For little hotheads.”” Four years later, Johnson & Johnson bought the company. Robert Lincoln McNeil Jr. was born in Bethel, Connecticut to Robert Lincoln McNeil and Grace Slack McNeil. He grew up in the Germantown area of Philadelphia. McNeil graduated from Yale in 1936

with a BS in physiological chemistry and bacteriology. He would obtain a second BA from the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science. McNeil is survived by wife Nancy McKinney Jones, two sons and two daughters. –– Tara Dougherty

George Steinbrenner 1930-2010

Just as we went to press, New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner, suffered a heart attack at his home in Florida on July 13, the day of the 81st All-Star Game. Steinbrenner was born on July 4, 1930. His mother Rita was a Christian Scientist with Irish ancestry. He was a controversial figure in sports for his outspoken nature, and was known as ““The Boss”” for his hands-on style. Through Steinbrenner’’s 37-year ownership from 1973, the Yankees earned 7 World Series titles and 11 pennants. IA –– Kara Rota



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{the last word}

The Lost Children


Aliah O’Neill explores the legacy of Church-run mother and baby homes in Ireland and the children that were adopted by Americans.

n the wake of the Ryan and Murphy reports*, both released in 2009, often the memories of the children, women and workers involved have taken a sideline to the question of who is to blame for systemic abuse. But while the Irish public attempts to heal from this broken past and demand justice, more stories are on the verge of disappearance: those of the unknown women and babies who lived in Church-run mother and baby homes and of the American families who adopted these children from the 1940s until the early 70s. I spoke with Dr. Valerie O’’Brien, lecturer and researcher in Applied Social Science at University College Dublin, about her joint project with Dr. Joyce Maguire Pavao, founder and CEO of Center For Family Connections in Boston and lecturer in Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, to reach out to those involved and record a history obscured by Church and State. By sharing these stories, O’’Brien and Maguire Pavao see an opportunity to positively affect modern adoption practices in Ireland as well as bring dignity to the mothers who were forgotten by their community. Even after the 1952 Adoption Act, which regulated adoption in Ireland and made it legal, most adoptions were facilitated by nuns in mother and baby homes. In these homes, pregnant, unwed women were hidden away in shame to have their child under the watchful eye of the Catholic Church. Sometimes located on the same site as the Magdalene laundries**, the institutions were also workplaces for pregnant women and new mothers, who often raised their children until they were toddlers. Based on records of adoption passports from 1949 on, O’’Brien and Maguire Pavao list 2103 adopted Irish children, though the exact number is still not known. While the mothers gave consent to


their children’’s adoptions, O’’Brien describes it as a decision made out of helplessness. ““For the vast majority of women, they couldn’’t leave the mother and baby home until their child was a certain age. For many of the women the children were 2 or 3……[and] the nuns didn’’t always tell the American adoptive parents that their mother was looking after them. They wanted to give the impression that they were orphaned or abandoned children,”” says O’’Brien. Not only was this painful for the young mothers, the method posed problems for both adopted people and adoptive parents. ““The adoptive parents weren’’t given the full picture. They were often given very traumatized children who were suffering from separation from their mother’’s love and care and attention.”” Even after the Adoption Act, this practice continued due to a loophole that provided for ““illegitimate”” children to go overseas. The difficult search for biological family by adopted children reveals the need for full access to mother and baby home records. ““Prior to the 90s [when records of adoption were found], some people

knew about the practice,”” says O’’Brien, describing the mother and baby homes as ““known but not known”” by the Irish community. ““There was some disquiet reported from time to time in the media but attempts to more tightly regulate the practice were impeded. What was involved were nuns moving children from Ireland to America with the cooperation of Catholic charities here predominantly, and placing children in adoptive homes. And the children were then adopted here [in America]……Unless they were told by their American adoptive parents that they were adopted they might not even know.”” The adopted children, now adults, were often given new names upon arrival and may not be in possession of their original birth certificate; in fact, they may not even know they are Irish. While the Church stipulated that the adopted child be placed in a Catholic family, the family did not have to be Irish American. According to O’’Brien, ““The criteria that was laid down by the Church was that the children were placed in Catholic homes, where parents gave a commitment to raising the children Catholic, sending them to Catholic school and Catholic college.”” Controversially, these adoptions all occurred without the help of American institutions——though the Child Welfare League of America offered assistance to the Catholic Church and Catholic charitable organizations throughout the 50s and 60s, their offers were turned down. Recognizing these past concerns, the project aims to impact contemporary adoption practices. In addition to being a member of the Irish Adoption Board for over ten years, O’’Brien has written frameworks for many aspects of domestic and international adoption in Ireland. Still, with Ireland just beginning to become a ““receiving”” or adopting country rather than a sending country, she believes that the country’’s adoption prac-



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Nuns and children at Sean Ross Abbey, which adopted out the second highest number of children after St. Patrick’s Guild.

tices can be improved, particularly by passing Hague legislation to regulate intercountry adoption and prevent child trafficking. Ireland is the last country in the western world to adopt this legislation. The recent release of the Ryan Report and the allegations of abuse against children and women in Church and State-run institutions are also not far from O’’Brien’’s mind. In her early work to understand the historical angle of adoption in Ireland, she adds that she is ““trying to examine through the lens of the Ryan Report what might have happened if the children had stayed. I think some of the children were probably very lucky, that they didn’’t stay in institutions where we now know so many children were treated abysmally.”” That O’’Brien can see the positive side to these adoptions, despite their circumstances, is a testament to the project’’s ultimate goals of justice and sensitivity. ““When we uncover the past we must be very mindful of people’’s sense of self and identity and integrity. We’’ve no wish to pathologize individuals……because for many people that came here [to the U.S.], they’’ve had very successful lives. So what we’’re really interested in is hearing about those successful lives but also how they learned to integrate the stories from the past and how they learned to integrate their identity in relation to their Irishness, especially for those who

that were in applied social sciences at UCD, my university,”” says O’’Brien. ““There were many stories of students going to live or study in America very often had their passage paid and brought the child on their knee. Again we don’’t have any firm data, and those are the stories that need to be collated.”” This memory work provides the chance for connections that concrete statistics often cannot. O’’Brien learned that for herself when she described the project she was working on to her aunt one day. Her aunt replied that as a child she remembered babies, wrapped in shawls, coming through the house with nuns on their way to the airport. It turned out O’’Brien had relatives who worked in mother and baby homes and they would

O’Brien learned that for herself when she described the project she was working on to her aunt one day. Her aunt replied that as a child she remembered babies, wrapped in shawls, coming through the house with nuns on their way to the airport.

weren’’t raised in Irish American homes.”” For the mothers who raised their children in mother and baby homes without power or choice, O’’Brien has found common ground with the calls to expose the horrors of the Magdalene laundries in balance with respect and privacy for women involved. ““I think it’’s the same issue of justice for women who have been through quite a horrific period where to be pregnant outside marriage in Ireland was such a taboo, and while the Church played its part the community did as well……I don’’t think any of us can walk away.”” Like these other projects that attempt to heal the wounds of the past in Ireland, so much depends on access to state records. But in the absence of concrete numbers, the significance of what O’’Brien calls ““memory work””——focusing on remembering rather than uncovering the truth——becomes all the more clear. She and Maguire Pavao are conducting interviews with everyone ““from policy makers to air hostesses to students

often stop for a cup of tea on the way. O’’Brien had already been working on the project for years before she made this accidental discovery. ““It was just amazing. It was so powerful to think that some of the people that I might get an opportunity to meet in fact were held in arms in IA my family home.”” *The Ryan Report is the published report of the Irish government’s investigation of child abuse in reformatory institutions and industrial schools operated by the Catholic Church and funded by the Irish Department of Education from 1936 on.The Murphy Report investigates cases of sexual abuse in the Catholic archdiocese of Dublin. **Magdalene laundries were Church-run institutions in Ireland where young girls and women engaged in hard labor and many allegedly suffered physical and sexual abuse.This abuse was also covered in the Ryan Report.

If you are interested in participating or have any questions, please contact Dr. Valerie O’’Brien at Valerie.Obrien@ucd.ie or Dr. Joyce Maguire Pavao at kinnect@gmail.com. AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2010 IRISH AMERICA 105



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{photo album}

Family Pictures

Chicken Today, Feathers Tomorrow C

hicken today, feathers tomorrow. That’’s how my mother described life with my father, James McQuillan Stewart, a Belfastborn charmer whose love of literature led to my career as an advertising writer. In this 1923 photo, he looks every inch the winner. He arrived in New York in the early 1920s, bringing with him an excellent head for figures, a great sense of humor and the Irish love of poetry. As a child I read and re-read a leather-bound book of poems he gave me; six decades later I can still recite Oscar Wilde’’s ““The Ballad of Reading Gaol,”” his favorite poem, by heart. During the darkest days of the Depression, with no job and a second child on the way, my father tried his luck now and then at Belmont or Aqueduct racetracks. Thanks to one memorable win, he showered us with gifts: a Tiffany diamond ring for my mother, a rocking horse with a wonderful tail for me. When he lost, Mom said, ““Chicken today, feathers tomorrow.”” During World War II, we lost touch with my father’’s brothers Robert, Edward and George (one of whom was an RAF pilot during the war), and sisters Doris and Lillian who owned a dance studio before marrying and moving to Wales. At one point the family lived in Liverpool. Today I

long for aunts and uncles I’’ve never met, all speaking with my father’’s beautiful Belfast brogue, the one I had as a child. IA – Victoria Stewart, New York, New York

Please send photographs along with your name, address, phone number, and a brief description, to Kara Rota at Irish America, 875 Sixth Avenue, Suite 2100, New York, NY 10001. If photos are irreplaceable, then please send a good quality reproduction or e-mail the picture at 300 dpi resolution to Irishamag@aol.com. No photocopies, please. We will pay $65 for each submission that we select.


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