Irish America December / January 2010

Page 1



4:10 PM

Page 1

IRISH AMERICA December 2009 / January 2010 • Canada $4.95 U.S.$3.95

!"#$%&'()& *+,-".)/ !"#$%&#'()%*("+,(+-'% -.(%/#)%-.(%/0*12%20('% 34'"+(''%/"-.%&."+#


74470 73334



0 1>


IA.4 (Contents).qxd


12:52 PM

Page 4

IRISH AMERICA December / January 2010

Vol. 25 No. 1


Liam Casey is reinventing the way the world does business with China. Story by Chris Ryan.




A celebration of the Irish presence in international business.

52 WORDS FROM GREAT LEADERS A collection of quotes from Irish Americans at the forefront of business, culled from interviews with Irish America over 25 years.


Irish Americans who are leading the way in environmental responsibility.



Actor and environmental activist Ed Begley Jr. talks to Kara Rota.

80 CONSTRUCTING THE SKYLINE A look into the Irish who built the Empire State Building. By Tom Deignan




Young Irish girls arriving in New York in the 1800s found a home at the Mission of Our Lady of the Rosary. Story by Maureen Murphy

88 FROM HOSTAGE TO AUTHOR Brian Keenan talks to Patricia Harty about his new book and how his time as a hostage affected his life.


Belfast-born conductor Kenneth Montgomery meets up with Patricia Harty at the Santa Fe Opera.

COVER PHOTO: Liam Casey outside his office in Shenzhen. Photo: ANDERSON SCHNEIDER 4 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

DEPARTMENTS 6 8 10 14 98 100 102 104 106 110 112 114

The First Word Letters News from Ireland Hibernia Slรกinte Roots Books Book Notes Those We Lost Crossword Family Reunion Photo Album




12:53 PM

Page 6

{the first word}

By Patricia Harty

Vol.25 No.1 • December / January 2010

“There ’s a huge can-do attitude here in the U.S. that ’s very creative, very innovative. ” – Liam Casey.

“You have to go, and you have to do well, ” Molly Fogarty told her grandson. Molly had been left a young widow with four daughters, the oldest of which was 13 years, and a farm to run. Now her grandson, the only male in that family of women, was about to leave home to take up his first job. His name is Jack Ryan and he was born to Molly ’s daughter Teresa and Thomas Ryan, whose father had worked as a telegrapher on the railroad before settling on a farm in Illinois. Molly sent for her father, Dennis Keating, to come over from Limerick to help with the farm when her husband died. “Reports were mixed on how helpful he was, ” Jack said, but “the one thing that is indisputable is that he certainly livened things up. ” After her family was raised, Molly moved to Assumption, Illinois. She went to Mass every day and prayed that Jack and her other grandchildren would do well. Jack did well. He went on to an extraordinary career that included a stint as Director of Supervison for the Federal Reserve. On the night we met, at our annual Stars of the South dinner in Atlanta on November 17, Jack wanted to talk, not about his career, but about his father ’s family, the Ryans from Tipperary, his mother ’s people, the Fogartys from Limerick, and most of all, his grandmother Molly. He said it was Molly ’s reserve of courage that he called upon when, as a young man, he was asked to present a proposal at the White House, and at other times during his life when he needed to face down a challenge. There were many stories like Jack ’s told at our Stars of the South dinner – indeed, the ancestors no longer with us were the true stars of the night. Michael Nolan talked about his greatgreat-grandparents, Matthew and Ann 6 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

875 SIXTH AVENUE, SUITE 2100, N.Y., NY 10001


A Ribbon of Green


Norris Nolan, who immigrated from Tullow, County Carlow and settled on the west bank of the Mississippi River in New Orleans in 1863, and how their son John Peter became a master mechanic for the Southern Pacific Railroad – the beginning of the family ’s upward mobility. Shirley Franklin, the first AfricanAmerican female to serve as mayor of Atlanta, talked about her Irish grandmother sewing a green ribbon to her collar each St. Patrick ’s Day to remind her grandchild that she had Irish heritage too. Mike McGuire talked about growing up in a small town in northwest Ohio where his family owned a small grocery store. “Everything I needed to know about life I learned there, ” he said. He recalled his father quietly slipping a man money to buy groceries for Thanksgiving, and said observing his parents in their day-to-day dealing with customers, some of whom had fallen on hard times, taught him compassion. “You have to go, and you have to do well. ” How many young Irish boys and girls left lreland to those words? Their own survival and often-times the survival of their family back home depended on it. Like Molly, they kept on keeping on when the going got tough and that ’s the stuff that America is built on. And that ’s the stuff, the “can-do attitude ” that spurred Liam Casey (see our cover story) to international success and our Business 100 to embrace leadership roles. When Katherine Irwin Thomas, a fiddler from Tennessee whose family emigrated from County Armagh in the early 1700s, took the stage to play a soulful Irish tune, it was easy to imagine a window onto the past opening and Molly and the other ancestors entering the room. Amidst the sailing voice of Thomas ’ fiddle, one could almost hear IA them whisper, “You did good. ”

TEL: 212-725-2993 FAX: 212-244-3344 E-MAIL: irishamag @ WEB:

Mortas Cine Pride In Our Heritage

Founding Publisher: Niall O’Dowd 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 Statement of Ownership, Management and Circulation. Irish America Magazine (ISSN 0884-4240) © 1999 by Irish America, Inc. Published bi-monthly. Publication #761070. Mailing address: P.O. Box 1277, Bellmawr, New Jersey 08099. Editorial office: 875 Ave of the Americas, Suite 2100, New York, N.Y. 10001-8013. Subscription rate is $21.95. The name of the corporation is Irish America, Inc. The principal shareholders are Niall Oliver O'Dowd, Patricia Harty & Brendan MacLua. There are no other known bondholders. Average number of copies each issue during the last 12 months: 19,733. Average sales through dealers, carriers, vendors, counters: 3,441. Mail subscription: 8,447. Total paid circulation: 11,888. Free distribution by mail: 650. Free distribution outside mail: 700. Total free distribution: 1,350. Returns from newsagents: 6,495. Actual number of copies of single issue published nearest to filing date: 19,270,. Actual sales through dealers, carriers, vendors, counters: 3,019. Mail subscription: 7,827. Total paid circulation: 10,846. Free distribution by mail: 600. Free distribution outside mail: 800. Total free distribution: 1,400. Returns from newsagents: 7,024. I certify the above statement is correct. Niall Oliver O'Dowd (Publisher).



12:56 PM

Page 8

{letters} CONGRATULATIONS Congratulations on your 25th anniversary. I have been a subscriber for many years and I appreciate all the many wonderful stories and the history of the Irish in America that you have uncovered. Keep up the good work. I particularily enjoyed the tributes to Frank McCourt and Senator Ted Kennedy in the last issue. Alanna O ’Rourke Seattle, Washington

White crosses commemorate the Irish buried in mass graves on Gross Ile, Canada.

HERE’S TO ANOTHER 25 Let me congratulate your 25th anniversary as a magazine. May you continue to publish for another 25 years and continue to celebrate the many wonderful contributions of the Irish to America. John Huerta Warren, Arkansas

THE IRISH IN CANADA It was with great pleasure that I read the article about the Irish memorial on Grosse Ile in Canada. The writer Marianne O ’Gallagher is also the author of The Shamrock Trail, a booklet on the important contribution of the Irish to Quebec City. It contains photos, copies of original documents and maps of three proposed tours and was very helpful on a trip I took to

Quebec to participate in the 1997 commemoration of An Gorta Mor. The commemoration was a celebration of all things Irish with musicians, singers, and dancers from Ireland and Irish groups from Quebec and the Maritimes. On that occasion also, I purchased a history of Canada by Gustave Lanctot.He is an accomplished historian and former director of the National Archives of Canada who has studied the archives of Scandinavia, Germany, France, England, and Ireland and many rare books including the Icelandic Sagas. He concludes that “six centuries before Columbus and two centuries before Erik the Red, the Irish settlers of Iceland had unwittingly discovered the continent later called America. ” I have also noticed, in genealogical books on French Canada, the presence of people of Irish descent amongst the soldiers

stationed in New France. Some settlers also came with Briton families but were originally from Ireland. Prior to the Great Hunger that the memorial on the island of Grosse-Ile is dedicated to, the greater part of our Irish ancestors came following the Wolfe Tone rebellion of 1798. Pierre “Fitzstevens ” Rochon Cornwall, Ontario

NO MORE TOPS As a long time subscriber to Irish America, I always enjoy most of your articles and always look forward to each issue. However, I am a bit tired of seeing and reading about the Top 100 you so illustriously go on and on about. Write more about things happenIA ing in Ireland and the people. Janice O ’Brien Ellenberger Pky, Indianapolis

SEND LETTERS TO: Irish America, 875 Avenue of the Americas, Suite 2100, NY NY 10001, or e-mail Letters may be edited for length and clarity.

{contributors} CHRIS RYAN interviewed and photographed Liam Casey for this issue. As a photographer, Chris shoots events, and as a writer he covers travel, business, politics, and the outdoors, and profiles people of interest for national publications. He is based in the San Francisco Bay area, and his home on the web is

MAUREEN MURPHY, who writes about Charlotte Grace O ’Brien and her fight for the protection of Irish immigrant girls, is acting dean of the School of Education and Allied Human Services and equal opportunity advisor at Hofstra University. She is an assistant director of the Yeats Summer School in Sligo (pictured right with students) and the director of the Great Irish Famine curriculum for schools in New York State. 8 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

ALIAH O’NEILL, who wrote about the the commissioning of the USS New York, is pursuing her MA in Irish and Irish-American Studies at New York University. She graduated in May 2008 with degrees in English and Philosophy from Bucknell University in Pennsylvania. She currently resides in Brooklyn where she spends her time writing and listening to music.



12:57 PM

Page 10

{ news from ireland} By Frank Shouldice

Irish Hostages Released in Sudan and Philippines

Fr. Sinnott was filmed for a video made by his captors, who demanded a $2 million ransom to secure his release. Six gunmen believed to belong to the separatist Islamic faction seized the priest from his missionary quarters in Pagadian he abduction of two Irish citiish ordeal, ” said President McAleese, who City. They brought him to a secret location zens working abroad ended said that the Dubliner ’s resolve had lifted and, like Sharon Commins, Fr. Sinnott, with both being released the entire nation. originally from Co. Wexford, was moved unharmed. The abductions “You ’re made of tough stuff, ” she from place to place in an attempt to avoid were unconnected to each other but the added. “Soft in the heart, but tough stuff. I being located. coincidence of two Irish nationals – was just looking at you emerge from the Concerns were expressed that Fr. Sharon Commins and Fr. Michael Sinnott Government jet and everyone gave a big Sinnott ’s health would suffer by living in – being held hostage at the same time on cheer. The last time I remember that kind the open without his necessary medicadifferent continents sparked public conof feeling was when Brian Keenan came tion. He underwent a heart bypass two cern about the safety of aid workers and off the Government jet. ” years ago. Throughout the kidnap, howevreligious bases abroad. er, Fr. Pat O ’Donoghue, regional Commins was abducted while workdirector of the Columban Fathers, ing for an international charity in Sudan, insisted that no ransom would be paid. and was freed by her captors after being “The video brought things to a difheld hostage for 107 days. Commins ferent level, ” he said at the time. “We and her Kenyan co-worker Hilda know it gives things a new focus but Kawuki were taken from the GOAL even with that we have to settle in and compound in Sudan on July 3 and were wait because we do not agree to anyheld for over three months, during thing the kidnappers demand. So we which time the militants tried to negotiwait. ” ate a ransom. Both GOAL and Minister In the video recording Fr. Sinnott for Foreign Affairs Micheál Martin asked that the Philippine and Irish govinsist no ransom was paid. ernments, as well as the Society of St. The 32-year-old Dubliner told Columban, would cooperate with the reporters how she and Kawuki were kidnappers to secure his release. It is moved regularly from one hiding place Sharon Commins, who was abducted while workunderstood that the hostage was ing in Sudan for GOAL, an Irish relief organization. to another, living in the open under coerced into making this appeal.The armed guard. Commins was given an honCommins attended the presidential Irish Foreign Affairs Minister again disorary reception on arrival in Ireland by reception along with her parents Mark and missed any suggestion that a ransom was President Mary McAleese who praised the Agatha and brothers Derek and Martin. paid. “As in previous kidnaps no ransom GOAL worker for her fortitude at a warm During the ceremony prayers were said was paid by the Irish Government, ” said welcome in Áras an Uachtaráin (official for the release of Fr. Michael Sinnott, a the Minister, welcoming Fr. Sinnott ’s residence of the President of Ireland). Columban priest based in the Philippines. release. “To do so would only have jeopar “The qualities and values that drove Thankfully, that episode also ended withdised the vital work of aid workers and you to undertake the work that you did as out loss of life. missionaries around the world. ” a volunteer, as someone who took your The 79-year-old missionary priest was Fr. Sinnott is now recovering at a clinic gifts and put them at the service of others, held for 32 days before his ordeal was in Manila where his condition is described those same qualities, those same values, brought to a conclusion. During his capas being “as well as can be expected in the helped you to get through what was a hellture by the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, circumstances. ”




Chairman of the Dáil Resigns

OHN O’Donoghue, Ceann Comhairle (chairman) of the Dáil (Irish parliament), was forced into an embarrassing resignation following sustained controversy over his use of ministerial expenses. O’Donoghue, a Fianna Fáil deputy from Co. Kerry (South), came under strong criticism from opposition parties over a series of bills he ran up as Minister for Arts,Tourism and Sport and then as Ceann Comhairle. In five years at Sports he ran up expenses of over €550,000 and added €250,000 in bills in two years as Ceann Comhairle. Many of the bills related to jet travel, luxury accommodation for O’Donoghue and his wife Kate Ann in prestige hotels around the world, and a host of auxiliary charges like a limousine service that ferried the minister from one terminal to another in London’s Heathrow Airport for a fee of €400. 10 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010



12:57 PM

Page 11

Taoiseach Brian Cowen (center) and Minister for Education Batt O’Keefe visited a Dublin school to launch a major plan for technology in schools all over Ireland. Meanwhile, teachers have threatened to mount a day-long strike in protest at cutbacks in the public sector.

Pressure Grows on Government


he coalition government faces a very difficult Christmas as the recession bites harder. Rising unemployment is fueling public anger while widespread strike action is expected in response to a series of pay cuts in the public sector. In addition to a stagnant job market, the government has sent out warning signals that December ’s budget will mean increased hardship for all, including welfare cuts and increased taxation for workers. The budget targets savings of €4 billion but with tax revenues falling steadily Minister for Finance Brian Lenihan is running out of options on how to raise the tax take without causing deflation of the economy. With Ireland aligned to the euro, the Dublin government is taking direction from the European Commission to exert a tight control on public finances. Given the scale of the economic downturn, the Commission provided a little relief for the Finance Minister ’s position by giving a one-year extension on reining in the budget deficit. The government is committed to saving €4 billion with this year ’s budget and repeating that efficiency next year. This would leave the deficit at 12 percent of Gross Domestic Product. “The deteri-

oration of the Irish economy in terms of contraction of the GDP is the biggest in the Euro area, ” noted EU monetary affairs commissioner Joaquin Almunia when announcing the 12-month extension. “But I have to say also that the reaction of the authorities, the decision adopted, the determination to pursue an adjustment process, to reduce imbalances and put again the Irish economy in a good perspective of sustained growth, is the highest in the Euro area also, ” he added. The government ’s policies have been received with somewhat less enthusiasm at home. Nursing staff and secondary school teachers have threatened to mount a day-long strike in protest at cutbacks in the public sector. November 24 has been pencilled in as a national day of stoppage in the public service. Some 3,500 frontline workers – including hospital staff, gardai (Irish police) and prison officers – marched through Dublin to demonstrate against proposed savings of €1.3 billion on the public sector wage bill. Industrial action in the private sector is also likely if December ’s budget means higher taxes for workers on average or below-average wages. Meanwhile, Minister Lenihan continues to grapple with an unprecedented

banking crisis. Legislation on the proposed establishment of the National Asset Management Agency (NAMA) is progressing slowly through the Dáil but the strategy, which will underwrite an estimated €90 billion worth of toxic loans by major Irish banks and lending institutions, has divided financial commentators. Most of the loans are property-related – Anglo-Irish Bank alone wants NAMA to take €28 billion worth of bad loans off its books – but the scale of the gamble, regarded as the riskiest in the history of the state, has caused public disquiet over how the new Agency will operate and the long-term consequences should it fail. Minister Lenihan predicted that NAMA would turn a profit by 2020 but critics argue that it is impossible to assess NAMA ’s chances of success when nobody knows the market value of ‘assets ’ it will help major banks dispose of. While the government contends that transferring toxic loans to NAMA will provide vital impetus for the Irish banking system to kick-start the economy, hard-pressed taxpayers and tens of thousands of unemployed view it as public money being used to subsidize institutional greed. DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 11



12:57 PM

Page 12

{news from ireland}

Crowds Flock to Knock


OME 8,000 pilgrims flocked to the shrine at Knock, Co. Mayo following a prediction that Our Lady would appear there on Saturday, October 31 at 3pm. Dublin clairvoyant Joe Coleman (pictured on right with rosary beads), who claims to have witnessed celestial visits, prophesied that Our Lady would descend from the skies to meet those gathered at the basilica. Although the Dubliner claimed Dublin clairvoyant Joe Coleman, with rosary beads, claims he saw Our Lady of Knock. that Our Lady did arrive at the appointed time – and delivered a message to him – few others in the congregation were able to witness a spiritual presence. The local church in the Co. Mayo town became an international shrine ever since fifteen people claimed to witness an apparition of Our Lady on August THE Gaelic Athletic Association 21, 1879.They were reportedly overwhelmed by the event and stood saying (GAA) celebrated its 125th year the rosary for two hours in pouring rain. with a variety of events around Six weeks later the Archbishop of Tuam John MacHale made an official Ireland. The GAA came into being at Hayes inquiry into their claims and reported that the “testimony of all, taken as a Hotel, Thurles, and as part of the celebrations whole, was trustworthy and satisfactory.” A second inquiry took place in 1936 the Artane Boys Band, traditionally associatwith three surviving witnesses confirming their original statements. ed with GAA events at Croke Park, marched The visit of Pope John Paul II in 1979 conferred a seal of approval from the through the Co. Tipperary town followed Vatican and Mother Teresa visited the shrine in 1993. by standard bearers carrying flags of all

News In Brief •

Customs Intercepts Massive Smuggling Ring


RISH Customs made a highly significant raid at the port of Greenore, Co. Louth when they intercepted a cargo ship arriving from the Philippines and discovered a vast supply of illegal tobacco on board. Over 120 million contraband cigarettes with an estimated retail value of €50 million were seized, making it the biggest customs haul ever made in Europe. The operation involved Irish Customs, revenue officials, gardai (Irish police), the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB), Air Corps and the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) targeting a known criminal gang which has interests north and south of the border. Code named ‘Samhna, ’ the cargo vessel MV Anne Scan was tracked when it set

sail from the Philippines midSeptember. One month later it arrived in Greenore with a load described as animal feed. The consignment of cigarettes was disguised in the hold of the ship, and when officials intercepted it the scale of the haul was revealed. Nine men were arrested following the raid, including seven Irish nationals. Revenue Commissioner Liam Irwin declared the success of the operation “a credit to the close working arrangements and cooperation between the various law enforcement agencies both nationally and internationally. ” The huge tobacco haul was taken to Dublin for forensic examination and then destroyed.


32 counties. “Ireland would be a much lesser place without the influence of Cumann Luthchleas Gael, ” said GAA president Christy Cooney . . . INCIDENCE of H1N1 has surpassed the 100,000 mark in Ireland. By the beginning of November Dr. Tony Holohan, chief medical officer at the Department of Health, estimated that about 2.5 percent of the entire population had contracted the virus. The pandemic had claimed 10 lives in the Republic of Ireland and a campaign was rolled out to offer free H1N1 vaccines to almost half a million patients who would be deemed most at-risk . . . MOVIE fans in Cork have saved the city’s famous Kino cinema from closure. The Kino had run up debts of about €60,000, but when owner Mick Hannigan announced that the 188-seat cinema would have to be closed, the public responded energetically, demanding that the much-loved venue remain open. “I was resigned to having to close the Kino but it ’s clear that people not only care about it but are willing to put their hands in their pockets and hold fundraisers, ” he said. “There ’s still a lot of work to be done but the clouds are starting to lift. ”



12:57 PM

Page 13

Kelly Appointed as Economic Envoy


eclan Kelly, former vice president of FTI Consulting, Inc., was chosen by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as the U.S. Economic Envoy to Northern Ireland on September 11. This appointment follows a long list of accolades in the professional and philanthropic worlds. A distinguished journalist, Kelly went on to start his own business in 1999, which was later acquired by FD, the strategic communications division of FTI Consulting. He then helped lead the buyout of FD and the eventual sale of FD to FTI Consulting in 2006. In addition to heading the company ’s operations across the U.S., Kelly was chairman of FD Ireland preceding his appointment as Economic Envoy. In 2006, the UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School recognized Kelly for excellence in business. An alumnus of National University of Ireland, Galway, he has also been awarded the Alumni Award for Business and Commerce. Irish America magazine has listed him in the Top 100 Irish-American busi-

is given for a unique contribution to IrishAmerican life. As the U.S. Economic Envoy to Northern Ireland, Kelly works to promote investment in and trade with the Northern Irish economy. The appointment received a positive response from Irish officials. Taoiseach Brian Cowen welcomed Kelly, telling the Irish Times, “Declan has a wealth of business experience in the U.S. and internationally, as well as a deep understanding of the challenges and opportunities we have here at home in Ireland. I have valued his advice in recent years and I know that he will bring passion, optimism and ambition to his new role. ”


Above: Bill Clinton, Peter Robinson, Martin McGuinness, Declan Kelly, Shaun Woodward and Michéal Martin share the stage at the Clinton Global Initiative. Left: Northern Ireland Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, First Minister Peter Robinson and U.S. Economic Envoy to N.I. Declan Kelly at the Clinton Global Initiative.

ness leaders in the U.S. four times. Originally from County Tipperary, Kelly has maintained a strong involvement with Irish-American organizations. He sits on the Advisory Board of Glucksman Ireland House at New York University as well as on the board of directors for The American Ireland Fund, which invests in peace and reconciliation initiatives in Ireland. Kelly is also on the Advisory Board of The Irish Lobby for Immigration Reform. In 2008, Kelly was awarded the Gold Medal from the American Irish Historical Society, which

First Minister Peter Robinson was also pleased with the choice: “I would like to congratulate Declan on his appointment as economic envoy. The Northern Ireland Executive is grateful for the Obama Administration ’s commitment to remain engaged with our region, and we eagerly anticipate working with Declan on the basis of mutual benefit and cooperation. ” Kelly jumped right into his position, flying to Belfast the day after his appointment. He was joined there by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Following this initial visit, where he

met leaders on all sides, he wrote on the official U.S. Department of State blog Dipnote about the connection between Northern Ireland ’s economic situation and its political stability. “Since May 2007, the Northern Ireland Executive has been reinstated under the process of devolution, which is a transfer of various executive powers to authorities in Northern Ireland …The investment climate will improve now as it did following the Good Friday Agreement and the cease-fires of the 1990 ’s, when the United States alone invested over $1 billion and created over 20,000 jobs. Maintaining the momentum of peace is absolutely critical to continued economic success. ”

Kelly followed up his trip to Northern Ireland by asking former U.S. President Bill Clinton to host a session on the North as part of his annual Clinton Global Initiative, and Clinton readily agreed. At the Sheraton Hotel in New York on Wednesday, September 23, Clinton welcomed Northern Ireland party leaders including Peter Robinson and Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness to a panel discussion on the North. A crowd of more than 600 attended the discussion, which highlighted Northern Ireland as a place to do business. “Imagine what we could do if we could get the world to focus on the opportunity that exists inside this wonderful area of 1.7 million people, ” Kelly said. He outlined strategies that he plans to work on in the immediate future. “First we want to shine a light on the opportunities that are there, and secondly we intend to develop a strategy both short-term and long-term that enables people to back Invest Northern Ireland ’s IA program of work, ” he said. –Aliah O ’Neill DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 13



12:59 PM

Page 14

{ hibernia }



A Ship of Remembrance

A new Navy ship partly built with steel from the World Trade Center carries the motto “Never Forget.” Aliah O’Neill talks to Lt. Erin Millea who is serving aboard the recently commissioned USS New York.


t. Erin Millea always knew she wanted to be a dentist —her father and older brother are practicing and one of her sisters is in dental school. However, her desire to serve her country and see the world led her to the unique position of practicing dentistry aboard the newly commissioned USS New York, an amphibious assault ship fortified with seven and a half tons of steel from the World Trade Center. While there have been several ships named USS New York in the past, most have not even approached the expected lifespan for the current ship and none have held such symbolic meaning. The first USS New York, for instance, was a gondola commissioned in 1776 by Benedict Arnold that was burned only two days later to avoid capture by the British. The most recent ship, which can remain active up to forty years, was given the motto “Strength Forged Through Sacrifice. Never Forget, ” highlighting the perseverance of our troops and constant remembrance of the lives lost and affected by the 9/11 attacks. Lt. Millea, who was commissioned as an ensign in the Navy in 2004, spoke about her pride in working on a ship that has become so personally meaningful for New Yorkers and Americans throughout the country. Millea, who grew up and attended col-


lege in Nebraska, cites a military program designed to help students pay for medical school as her entry into the Navy: “I was very patriotic to begin with and had a lot of family members in the military during World War II. My Uncle Pat told me about this program called the Health Professions Scholarship Program that would pay for dental school. I figured that would be a good way to serve my country and also see the world. ” Since then, Lt. Millea has been busy traveling in preparation for the ship ’s commissioning, including a stay in New Orleans where the USS New York was built. The ship was finally commissioned on November 7th at Pier 88 South in New York City. As the ship ’s sole dentist, Millea takes care of the dental needs of all 360 sailors on board, as well as approximately 700 marines when they board the USS New York to embark. In addition, Millea takes on various collateral duties —she is the Health Promotions Coordinator for the entire ship and is Treasurer and Social Coordinator of the Ward Room, an off-duty facility for the thirty-seven officers on the ship. Lt. Millea ’s position has taken her to some very unlikely places and allowed her to meet people from all walks of life,

ABOVE: The USS New York, which is fortified with steel from the World Trade Center. LEFT: Lt. Erin Millea. OPPOSITE PAGE: Lt. Millea at work. She is the ship’s dentist for 360 sailors.

especially during the time the ship has spent in New York. Millea says her favorite part about the job is that she interacts with everyone on board the ship because she ’s the dentist for all of them. “I get to hear everyone ’s stories, where they ’re from, and why they joined the Navy. It ’s interesting to meet and get to know all sorts of people from every walk of life on such a personal level. ” Despite the wealth of new experiences, it is clear that Millea ’s ties to home and family remain strong. She recently rang the closing bell at the New York Stock Exchange, which she calls “a huge, huge thrill. It ’s something that you see on TV daily but when you ’re up there it ’s so surreal. It ’s thirty seconds and it passes by in a blink of an eye. ” Her parents and her brother were visiting and knew she would be ringing the bell, but according to Millea, the best part was getting phone calls from friends and relatives back home, shocked to see her on TV. As far as her family history goes,



12:59 PM

Page 15


Millea credits her grandmother with sparking her interest in her Irish heritage. Millea ’s great-great-grandfather, Patrick Leahy, was born on St. Patrick ’s Day in 1852 in County Tipperary. He eventually came to the U.S. as a boy and settled in Emmetsburg, Iowa in 1880, where he met and married Millea ’s great-great-grandmother, a Brennan. The Millea side of her family also has Irish roots in County Clare. When asked about what it means to serve her country during wartime, Millea mentions that her friends and family initially expressed nervousness over her joining the military. Millea responds,

“From the outside looking in, without being part of it, it does look scary. But the more you know the inner workings of the military, it ’s not as scary …I take a lot of pride in being able to serve our country. My capacity might not be as great as some of the other service members going out on frontlines, but especially during times of conflict, I think it ’s important to do the duty I signed up for, and I wouldn ’t change it. ” She adds, “It ’s a really huge honor to be a part of the crew of New York, especially because she stands for New York City ’s perseverance —if we deploy with her it ’ll show that we can be knocked down, but you won ’t keep us down. ” The actual commitment of soldiers like Lt. Millea and the symbolic commitment of the USS New York, expressed through her motto, crest, and design, have deeply resonated with New Yorkers. Millea strongly attests to this —just being in New York City in her uniform has prompted people to come up to her and share their stories. Many of these people lost loved ones in the September 11th attacks and thanked Millea for her work aboard the symbolic ship. “There are so many people who never found remains, never had any-

thing to hold on to, ” says Millea. “This gives them something – each and every one of those people who gave their lives on 9/11 is part of that ship now. The crest of our ship [depicts] a Phoenix rising from the ashes, so I think it ’s very much about rebirth. ” One story that Millea says she ’ll never forget involved a woman ’s brother who was killed on 9/11, which was also his birthday. Millea saw the woman give a talk and then thanked her afterwards for sharing her story and promising to think of her on the anniversary. The woman ended up giving Millea her bracelet, which is engraved with her brother ’s name and the saying “All gave some, some gave all. ” Millea says she wears it every day so that she can remember not just one story, but the stories of an entire country affected by the events of September 11th. Ultimately, it is these stories —of loss, love, and perseverance — that give the USS New York her real weight. “When things get rough, I can always look down and see why I ’m doing this, ” Millea says. “I ’m giving up myself like everyone else has given something — ‘all gave some ’ —so this is the some that I can give. ” IA

Veterans Reunite in Texas O n November 1, veterans from the Texas 141st Infantry Regiment and the Japanese-American 442nd Regimental Combat Team were reunited at a tribute in Houston, hosted by the National Japanese American Memorial Foundation. The tribute came over 65 years after the rescue of “The Lost Battalion” on a French battlefield by the all-JapaneseAmerican 442nd, which fought for 5 days in 1944 to rescue approximately 230 men of the 141st from Nazi forces. The 442nd and the 141st then pushed on for ten more days of battle to complete the 141st’s original objective. The 442nd suffered tremendous casualties in the process and is the most decorated unit in U.S. military history for its size and length of service. In 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, authorizing the forced relocation and internment of some 120,000 Japanese Americans, largely American citizens, into “War Relocation Camps” following Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor. In 1943, the American government reversed its decision on Japanese Americans serving in the armed

forces and the 442nd was created as a segregated unit of the American military. At the Houston ceremony, former Speaker of the House of Representatives Jim Wright received the Award for the Preservation of Constitutional Rights, for his work in passing the American Civil Liberties Act of 1988, which offered reparations to Japanese Americans interned during WWII. Members of Governor James Connally’s family accepted on his behalf The Chairman’s Award, given posthumously to recognize his efforts to honor veterans of the 442nd. – Kara Rota For more information:

Above: Admiral Michael Mullen, who gave the keynote address. Right: Veterans of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team.




1:01 PM

Page 16


Farrell Wins Pulitzer Prize I

n April, second-generation Irish American Patrick Farrell of The Miami Herald was awarded the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Photography, for his incredible and moving photographs of the aftermath of Hurricane Ike and the other serious storms of the hurricane season in Haiti. In a recent conversation with Irish America, Farrell discussed his Irish heritage and his experience of documenting a humanitarian disaster. “My grandfather Michael Farrell came to this country around 1906 from County Longford. He married a woman named Annie McRobbie and raised 11 children in Brooklyn, NY, where he was the owner and operator of an Irish pub called Farrell ’s Bar and Grill, located in Windsor Terrace to this day, ” said Farrell, who grew up one of twelve children. “The bar and its connection to everything Irish were always a topic of discussion in my family ’s South Florida home, from its famous Irish-American patrons to its core Irish pub roots of being a great place to gather and tell stories. ” The most fascinating story in Farrell ’s family history, however, is the story of his grandfather ’s younger brother, Jim Farrell. “He went down on the Titanic and is quoted in the book A Night to Remember by Walter Lord as shouting ‘Great God, man! A selection of Patrick Farrell’s Pulitzer-winning photographs, documenting the aftermath of hurricane season in Haiti. Inlay: photographer Patrick Farrell.

Open the gate and let the girls through, ’ where a barrier was down and Kathy Gilnagh, Kate Mullins and Kate Murphy were being held back as the ship was going down. ” When asked whether he sees his work as art, news or both, Farrell replied, “I believe I ’m a photojournalist (like many photojournalists) who tries to capture moments and tell stories and make them visually compelling. The photographs and experience in Haiti during last year ’s hurricane season were the most devastating and important pictures I have shot during my career. Haiti had been relentlessly battered by those storms, and the destruction of homes and the incredible loss of life were stories that had to be told. ” In the hurricane season of 2008, four storms, Fay, Gustav, Hanna and Ike, killed nearly 800 people and injured an additional 600. Around another 300 went missing. Over 100,000 homes were ruined or 16 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

damaged. Seventy percent of Haiti ’s crops were destroyed. “At the time I was overcome by what I was seeing and photographing, but it didn ’t take long for me to realize that it was important for people back home to see what the Haitian people had gone through, ” Farrell told Irish America. “I was very humbled to win the Pulitzer Prize for such a devastating event, but I believe the recognition from the prize brought some added attention to the situation in Haiti, which is needed. Everywhere you look in Haiti there is an image that has to be seen. ” Farrell traces his interest in visual expression to a childhood injury. “I think my appreciation for everything visual came from an accident on Halloween in 1971 when I was shot in the right eye by a BB-gun and spent a week in the dark behind eye-bandages, and the rest of the month with one eye still bandaged. I believe subconsciously I spent a little more time looking at things, which led me to want to see how I could capture images on film. ” IA – Kara Rota



3:56 PM

Page 18

{ irish eye on hollywood}

By Tom Deignan



LEFT: Saoirse Ronan will star in The Lovely Bones. ABOVE: Kate Hudson and Daniel Day-Lewis in the upcoming Nine. BELOW: Russell Crowe in the new version of Robin Hood.

This holiday season, audiences will see Saoirse Ronan – the Northern Irish wunderkind actress – in the intense drama The Lovely Bones, also starring Rachel Weisz, Susan Sarandon and Mark Wahlberg. Ronan plays a girl who is brutally murdered and, afterwards, watches from beyond the grave as her friends and family try to come to terms with this horrific turn of events. Next spring, however, Ronan will be taking a trip to merry Sherwood Forest. She is set to star alongside Russell Crowe and Cate Blanchett in a new movie version of the Robin Hood saga. Directed by blockbuster veteran Ridley Scott (American Gangster, Black Hawk Down, Gladiator, Alien), this is just the latest big screen version of the Robin Hood tale. Past films have featured a wide range of males in the lead role, from Kevin Costner to Errol Flynn (who often touted himself as an Irishman, though his parents were Australian). Blanchett and Crowe played historic Irish characters in previous films. Cate Blanchett portrayed crusading journalist Veronica Guerin, while Crowe was legendary Irish-American boxer Jim Braddock in Cinderella Man. Expect to see Ronan, Crowe and Blanchett in Robin Hood in May 2010. Later in 2010, Scott will be directing Liam Neeson in the movie version of the campy TV classic The A-Team. More on Liam Neeson later. Aside from Saoirse Ronan, Irish movie buffs will also be spending the Christmas season with Daniel Day-Lewis and Jim Sheridan. Day-Lewis, not seen since his screen-chewing, Oscar18 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

winning turn in 2007 ’s There Will Be Blood, is among those in the star-studded cast of Nine. Also featuring Nicole Kidman , Penelope Cruz , Judi Dench and Kate Hudson, Nine is loosely based on Federico Fellini ’s head-tripping 1963 film 8 1/2. The film explores a movie director beset on all sides by demanding women, including lovers, would-be lovers and even his deceased mother. Nine is set to be released Christmas Day. In early December, director Jim Sheridan ’s next film Brothers will also be released. Featuring Jake Gyllenhall and Tobey Maguire as the titular siblings, Sheridan (In America, In the Name of the Father) is aiming for another Oscar in this drama about an Afghan War veteran (Maguire) who returns home to a wife (Natalie Portman) who © UNIVERSAL PICTURES may have fallen in love with Gyllenhall ’s character. Anjelica Huston – daughter of Irish-American Hollywood legend John Huston, whose last film was James Joyce ’s The Dead – will ring in the new year co-starring in a romantic comedy entitled When in Rome. Also starring Kristen Bell and Jon Heder (forever known as Napoleon Dynamite), When in Rome is about an ambitious New York woman (Bell) who runs off to Rome in search of love. She comes across a seemingly magic fountain, which sends an odd assortment of potential lovers her way. When a nosy reporter (Josh Duhamel) begins sniffing around the story of the magic fountain, it could be that true love has been found.



3:56 PM

Page 19


Stephen Rea (The Crying Game) and Irish-American thespian Martin Sheen have signed on to star in an Irish movie project, which will actually be shooting in the Tipperary town where Sheen ’s mother was born. The film, entitled Stella Days, features Sheen as a movie-loving priest, and is based on the life of an Irish priest by the name of Father Dean Cahill, who set up a movie theater in the tiny town of Borrisokane in the 1950s and 1960s. In Stella Days, Sheen ’s character fears he has lost his passion for the priesthood. That is, until the locals – and the movies – light a new fire inside of him. Thaddeus O ’Sullivan (Ordinary Decent Criminal) is among those who have been mentioned to serve as director of Stella Days. The film is based on a book by Michael Dorley Dubhairle entitled Stella Days: The Life and Times of a Rural Irish Cinema.

ly died. Dubliner Colin Farrell, Johnny Depp and Jude Law take turns playing Ledger ’s character. You ’ll also see Farrell in an upcoming film from director Neil Jordan entitled Ondine and set in the west of Ireland. Incidentally, Jordan ’s long-gestating TV series about the infamous Borgia family may turn up on Showtime next spring. Show biz insiders are saying the Borgia series could replace the heavily Irish Showtime hit The Tudors, which is ending its run. Though The Tudors dramatizes the trials and tribulations of British royalty, the series is filmed in Ireland and its cast includes Irish talent such as Jonathan Rhys Myers and Peter O’Toole. Jordan ’s series about the Borgias will look at the trials and tribulations of another prominent family, an Italian one during the Renaissance which produced a pope as well as many accusations of corruption and murder.


Ridley Scott ’s The A-Team is just one of several movies Liam Neeson has coming out soon. In 2011, you ’ll see Neeson with the aforementioned Russell Crowe and In other Irish TV news, Gabriel Byrne ’s HBO Irish-American actress Olivia Wilde (best known series In Treatment will for TV roles in House and the be back for a third seaIrish New York drama The son. Byrne plays Dr. Black Donnellys) in The Next ABOVE: Tobey Maguire and Jake Weston in the critically Three Days. Based on a Gyllenhall in Brothers. RIGHT: Gabriel acclaimed show. Each French film entitled Anything Byrne stars in HBO’s In Treatment. episode takes a close © HBO for Her, The Next Three Days look at Dr. Weston ’s sesalso features Irish-American veteran Brian Dennehy, as sion with a particular patient. In Treatment also stars Oscar well as Elizabeth Banks (W). The film will be directed by winner Dianne Wiest. Production on the third season Paul Haggis, who won an Oscar for 2004 ’s Crash. should begin early in 2010. Neeson will also be seen in an upcoming film about Irish showbands in America entitled The Virgin of Las Vegas. U2 frontOn to DVD news. Director Troy Duffy ’s sequel to his notorious first flick Boondock Saints was released in October and man Bono is among the producers. should be available soon on DVD. The first film was a cheesy Pierce Brosnan, meanwhile, is as busy as Liam Neeson. gore fest about Boston Irish gangsters which became a cult Brosnan and Susan Sarandon will soon be seen in The classic —mainly after the release of a documentary about Greatest, written and directed by Shana Feste. The film, which Duffy ’s rise to fame, which depicted the bartender-turnedwas a favorite at The Hamptons International Film Festival in director as self-destructive and spoiled. October, looks at a family in the wake of a tragedy involving Speaking of which, in a world of temperamental artists and their son. The Greatest also features Carey Mulligan, the super-rich celebrities, it ’s refreshing to hear about a film such British actress who recently earned raves in The Education. as Into Temptation. Brosnan has at least three additional movies set for release Starring Kristen Chenoweth and directed by Patrick Coyle, the movie was an homage to the 50-year-old director ’s in the next year or so. There ’s Vanilla Gorilla, a comedy-drama Irish Catholic father, who was once a seminarian but eventuabout an albino ape directed by Irishman Terry Loane. ally raised eight kids in Omaha, Nebraska. Then there ’s Remember Me, due out in February 2010. Available on DVD, Into Temptation is about a prostitute Finally there ’s Percy Jackson and The Lightning Thief, which also and a flawed but dedicated priest. According to the Omaha features Steve Coogan (whose parents were Irish immigrants to England), Uma Thurman and Sean Bean. World-Herald, Coyle showed his dad the film in a hospice, Speaking of the Hamptons Film Fest, The Imaginarium of where the 91-year-old was slowly dying. “He loved it, ” Dr. Parnassus closed the festival. Directed by Terry Gilliam, Coyle said. “He felt it resonated very truthfully, that it was the film has gotten tremendous attention because it was the powerful. ” IA movie Heath Ledger was working on when he unexpectedThe elder Coyle died just weeks later.




1:07 PM

Page 20


25 Years A-Growing Irish America magazine celebrated its 25th year anniversary with Finian’s Rainbow on Broadway and a party afterwards at Sardi’s sponsored by Coca-Cola.

Milo O’Shea and Jim Norton.


uminaries from the community and just plain ordinary folks who had been good to the magazine over the years joined co-founders Niall O’Dowd and Patricia Harty and the staff of Irish America to celebrate its 25th anniversary on November 4th. Among those in attendance were Pulitzer Prize-winner William Kennedy, whose classic Ironweed was made into a movie starring Meryl Streep, New York Times writers Maureen Dowd, Jim Dwyer and Dan Barry, and New York Post media columnist Keith Kelly.The cast of Finian’s Rainbow, which is enjoying a glorious run with rave rewiews, joined in the party.The star of the show, Tony award winner Jim Norton, paid tribute to actor Milo O’Shea, his mentor and friend, who was also in attendance. In short, a great night was had by all and sundry.

Dana and William Kennedy with Caroline Hansberry and David Remfry.

Publisher Niall O’Dowd and actor Milo O’Shea with the cast of Finian’s Rainbow and young fans. Left to right: Emma Fairweather, Alanna O’Dowd, Kathleen Staunton and Amy Burgess.

Above left: Ellen, Malachy, and Diane McCourt. Above right: Mary Pat Kelly, Tom and Valerie Kennedy. Right: Kieran McLoughlin, his wife Sarah, Milo and Kitty O’Shea, Julia and Declan Kelly.

John Farrell of Coca-Cola, Turlough McConnell, Cathie Ryan, Dave Fitzgerald and Hugh Gordon of Coca-Cola.

Above: Mary Ann Pierce and Patricia Harty. Right: Aidan Connolly, Pauline Turley and Josephine McNamara. Left: Maureen Dowd and her sister Peggy.




1:08 PM

Page 21


Irish Honored at the Emmys


he 61st annual Emmy awards, revived from last year ’s disastrous ratings, were held on September 20 at the Nokia Theater in Los Angeles. The Irish made their mark, gathering awards in several categories including an Outstanding Lead Actor in a MiniSeries honor for Brendan Gleeson. Gleeson ’s performance in Into the Storm, an HBO film, captured the complexities of politician Winston Churchill. The film chronicles the end of WWII and the final years of Churchill ’s life as Prime Minister. The actor, native to Dublin, is no stranger to awards, gathering nominations for BAFTAs, Golden Globes and past Emmys over the course of his eclectic career. This year his acceptance speech was touching as he thanked director and fellow Dubliner Thaddeus O ’Sullivan and added a special thanks to the producer of Into the Storm. “In particular Frank Doelger for allowing my mam and dad to see a first cut of Into the Storm before my mam died. It meant a huge amount to me and I ’d like to thank him for that. ” Irish director Dearbhla Walsh was awarded the Best Director prize in the Mini-Series category for the BBC ’s Dickens adaptation Little Dorrit. The drama was honored for its writing, art direction, costumes and cinematography and left with the coveted Best Mini-Series award. Little Dorrit, which starred Matthew Macfadyen, Pam Ferris and Sir Tom Courtenay, was the dark horse at this year ’s award ceremony but surprised viewers as one of the most prominent shows of this year. Ireland ’s Minister for Arts, Sports and Tourism Martin Cullen told The Irish Times, “Brendan is one of our finest actors and Dearbhla one of our most accomplished directors. ” Walsh, a seasoned director in her own right, is credited as director for episodes of the acclaimed series The Tudors as well as the popular Irish-language soap opera Ros na Rún. Kevin Dillon received his first Emmy nomination this year for his supporting role on the hit HBO comedy Entourage. The brother of famed Irish-American actor Matt Dillon, Kevin plays the ironic role of a failing actor in the shadow of his more famous brother. The parallels between the Irish-American actor and his character have been shattered by this nomination, proving this Dillon is one to watch. Irish actor Gabriel Byrne was nominated for the second year in a row for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Series for In Treatment, adding to HBO ’s lengthy list of nominations. Irish-American actor Neil Patrick Harris was the host of this year ’s Emmy Awards, and was himself nominated for Best Supporting Actor in the popular comedy How I Met Your Mother. Well received for his comedic timing and wit, Harris received the stamp of approval from Jeff Probst, this year ’s winner of the reality host award and one of five hosts of the award show last year. Probst announced in his acceptance speech, “Neil Patrick Harris …this is how you host the Emmys. ” IA –Tara Dougherty

Above: Brendan Gleeson won the Outstanding Lead Actor in a Mini-Series award for Into the Storm. Left: Dearbhla Walsh was awarded the Best Director of a Mini-Series Emmy for Little Dorrit.




1:10 PM

Page 22


The Inaugural Education 100


he Irish Voice newspaper held its first annual Education 100 gettogether at the New York Historical Society on Thursday October 8. A diverse group of educators from throughout the United States were honored. Irish Voice editor Debbie McGoldrick, said, “It seemed a natural that we should pay tribute to the Irish who have made such an indelible mark at colleges and universities throughout both the United States and Canada. ”

Honoree Father Robert Grimes of Fordham University, Irene and Ken Hickman, American Irish Historical Society development and event coordinator Meghan Doherty.

University College Dublin President Dr. Hugh Brady, Helen O’Neill, honoree Robert O’Neill of Boston College.

Pictured are honorees Christopher Fox and Brian O Conchubhair of Notre Dame University.

Honoree Sharyn O’Halloran of Columbia University, Irish Voice founding publisher Niall O’Dowd.

Anne Keenan, honoree Sister Marguerite O’Beirne of Irish Consul General Niall Burgess addressed the guests. Neumann College, Eileen Farrell and Kristine Daly.

Maureen Gannon, honoree Tony Gannon of Space Florida in Cape Canaveral, Lynn Bushnell, honoree Dr. John Lahey, president of Quinnipiac University.

James Murray Lynn, honorees Sister Jeanette Lucey and Sister Constance Touey of St. Francis de Sales in Philadelphia, Sister Mary McNulty.

Students Manage $1 Million McCann Investment Fund Students of Bethany College, the oldest college in West Virginia, will now have the opportunity to manage real money as part of their studies.The college announced the creation of the McCann Family Student Investment Fund, founded by Robert and Cindy McCann of Madison, N.J. Bethany is the first college in West Virginia to offer such a program. A 1980 graduate of Bethany, McCann went on to earn his MBA at Texas Christian University.While there, he studied under a similar program, which McCann credits as an extremely valuable experience.The McCann Family Student Investment Fund contains a $1 million dollar endowment for which students will be fully responsible, researching stocks and making investment recommendations and trades. McCann has also appointed a group of officers to serve as an External Advisory Committee and a Faculty Advisory Committee, to ensure that there is long-term total return and that the principles of sustainable business and corporate governance are in effect. McCann, CEO of UBS Wealth Management Americas, and one of Irish America’s Wall Street 50 honorees, gave the keynote address at our annual Wall Street 50 dinner in 2006. 22 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010


1:11 PM

Page 23


Legal 100 Honored in Washington The Irish Voice and the Irish Ambassador to the U.S. Michael Collins hosted the second annual Irish Legal 100 reception at the ambassador’s residence in Washington, D.C. on November 11. 1

Photos by Nuala Purcell.





7 1) Ambassador Collins, honoree U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts, and Irish Voice/Irish America publisher Niall O’Dowd. 2) Robyn Rocondino and Amy Feran of the Irish Voice with honoree Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley. 3) Honorees Thomas O’Hara and Edward Egan, Terry Kilcur, honoree James Kilcur. 4) Tom Foley and his daughter Shioban Foley. 5) Honoree Jim Doherty II, Judy Doherty, Jim Doherty III. 6) Honorees Lawrence Donnelly and Kevin Dooley Kent. 7) Marie Collins, honorees Jane Sullivan Roberts and Chief Justice John Roberts, Ambassador Collins. 8) Honoree John Murphy, James Murphy, honorees Lisa Maloney and John Coffey. 9) Denny Quinn, honoree Paul Quinn, Stella O’Leary.






1:12 PM

Page 24


It’s Bedlam But It’s Beautiful The identical Lyons triplets turn one.


hear shuffling of little feet and then a little male voice announces, “There ’s someone at the door. ” Liam Lyons, otherwise known as “Little Chief, ” a handsome four-year-old who looks like his father Desmond, stands at the door looking up at me. He is accompanied by his sister, three-year-old Ciara, a miniature version of her beautiful mother Kerry. “Hello there, ” I smile. “Who are you? ” asks Liam, not wasting any time. I explain to the chief that I ’m here to meet his three younger brothers. “Well, they are sleeping. Do you want me to wake them so you can talk to them? ” he asks helpfully. “Oh no, ” I say. I follow Liam into the living room and wait. Liam and Ciara are the older siblings of identical triplet boys, Cormac, Declan and Kevin. Their birth, naturally conceived, astonished everyone, including their parents, Kerry and Desmond Lyons. The odds of having identical triplets come in at 100 million to one. Since their birth on October 10, 2008, the triplets have become mini celebrities. Now, a year later, Irish America decided to check in with the Lyons family to see how they are coping with the sudden addition of lives to their family. While Liam proudly shows me his handstands and his sister Ciara emulates his moves, there is a distant sound of crying in the background. “They ’re awake now, ” says Liam, jumping up and down, and within minutes Kerry appears in the living room, a bundle of joy in each arm, followed by the children ’s nanny with a third baby. Sitting the boys side by side on the sofa, Kerry embraces each of them one by one as they giggle with delight. I sit at the other end of the sofa looking on in awe. There is no telling them apart. Noticing a speck of green paint on Cormac ’s toe, I ask about it. Kerry tells me of the color-coding system she put in place at the hospital the day the boys were born. Cormac green, Declan blue and red is for Kevin. “I had to have some kind of system, ”


says Kerry, who works for an Internet advertising firm. “At one stage I had to do three feedings eight times a day and also feed Liam and Ciara. ” Liam, wanting to get in on the action, climbs on Kerry ’s lap. When secured he plants gentle kisses on each of the boy ’s faces and introduces me to his brothers. The sound of the front door opening has everyone ’s attention. Daddy Desmond has

side as the canine swoops past. Ciara is trying to give Cormac a hug — at least, I think that it ’s Cormac. Not wanting to be disturbed from his play, he gives a little grunt and she moves away; Liam is hanging onto Finnegan ’s neck for a cuddle while Declan and Kevin are crawling towards the door. “It ’s like this every day, ” informs Desmond, a lawyer. “We are so used to it, ” adds Kerry, laughing. Kerry gave birth to the boys at 36

At home in Irvington, New York: Desmond and Kerry Lyons with Liam, Ciara, and triplets, Kevin (in his father’s arms) Declan and Cormac, and the family dog, Finnegan.

come home from work. Ciara runs into his arms and Cormac, Declan and Kevin begin to shuffle around as they greet their daddy with warm smiles and giggles. Kerry places each of them, one by one, on the floor. Within minutes five children under the age of five are crawling, running and playing in the cozy living room of the Lyons ’ household. In addition to the mix, Finnegan, the family dog, joins in the fun. Declan attempts to grab Finnegan ’s tail as he shoots past, Kevin rolls on his stomach to avoid him, and Cormac is shifted on to his

weeks by Caesarean section at the New York Presbyterian Hospital in Manhattan. Although it was an extremely anxious and nerve-wracking pregnancy, both Kerry and Desmond were overjoyed when their three bundles of joy arrived last October. Kevin, the biggest, was six pounds, Cormac came out at five pounds, eight ounces and Declan was five pounds, three ounces. “We are blessed and treasure each day that we have, ” says Kerry while noticing Declan is doing something he shouldn ’t. IA It ’s bedlam but it ’s beautiful. —April Drew



1:14 PM

Page 26


The raising of The Children of the Famine memorial. Below: Bishop Benedict Fenwick.

A Celtic Cross for Bunker Hill The Irish buried in a Catholic cemetery on Bunker Hill are remembered.


he cemetery is gated and well hidden, and there have been no burials in it for three score years and more. It ’s a lovely, grassy, tranquil place, and Dan Mahoney, the parish priest, remarks how all the headstones face northeast toward home, toward Ireland. The Catholic burial ground is on the fabled battle site of the Revolutionary War in Charlestown, Massachusetts that turned the tide against the British and led eventually to independence. And, though the battle was fought on nearby Breed ’s Hill and the Colonials “lost the day, ” the fervor of the name “Bunker Hill ” stirs the hearts of patriots. That the “Hill ” was transformed into a Catholic cemetery and became a sectarian battleground is yet another piece of Charlestown ’s long, contentious history. The Second Battle of Bunker Hill would pit the well-heeled Yankee establishment against a gutsy bishop on a mission. In 1830, Bishop Benedict Fenwick found there was need for a burying ground in or near Boston. He purchased a parcel of land in Charlestown overlooking the Mystic River for the purpose — a severe blow to the Charlestown Yankees, who, after two centuries, felt Town and “Hill ” were theirs. They resolved to do all in their power to thwart the Catholic bishop ’s “unholy scheme. ” Fenwick, a Jesuit, was regarded with suspicion by the Boston Protestant elite, who were openly and vehemently anti-


Catholic, anti-Irish, and anti-Jesuit. The Bishop was, however, intelligent, courageous, and willing to take on the formidable challenge to the cemetery. Historian Thomas O ’Connor tells us, “No place in the New World was more hostile to Irish and Catholics than Charlestown — it was a tight little AngloProtestant enclave with no time for Irish Papists. ” At the height of the Famine, William Whieldon, Editor of Charlestown ’s Bunker Hill Aurora, wrote, “Our country is literally being overrun with the miserable, Remembrance They lie in silence, thousands strong In a hidden Charlestown graveyard Awaiting a marker Evidence of lives lived? Why do you lament their tragic passing? What might have been Pales to insignificance. What counts is memory and memorial. The Celtic Cross in Charlestown Graveyard Honors soul and spirit Of those Irish dead They are remembered. Rest well now Where Tir na nOg and Gate of Heaven, Sun and Cross are all the one. — Donal O ’Cathasaigh (Dan Casey)

wretched, vicious and unclean paupers of the old country. They are not only introducing their wretchedness and disease among us but, if they ever recover from these plagues, they have a worse disease, which will overspread this country, their religion. ” Charlestown was, in fact, so intolerant of the Irish that in 1847 the town ’s selectmen turned the Famine ship Reliance away from Dwin ’s Wharf with 280 desperately ill aboard. Seen in this light, it ’s understandable that the Bunker Hill Cemetery faced fierce resistance from Yankee Charlestown at every step of the way. But Bishop Fenwick won the day. Nine to ten thousand Irish are buried here, and, safe to say, most were Famine refugees and their children who “did not go gentle into that good night. ” In the bad old days, when infant death was all too common and the Irish poor had no means to buy a grave, deceased infants and young children were left at the cemetery gate for burial. Patrick Denvir, the sexton and undertaker at the Irish Cemetery behind St. Francis de Sales Church in Charlestown, tells us that sad practice was not unusual. There are hundreds of infants and children buried here. Their graves went unmarked but the children were not forgotten. One glorious September Sunday in 2009, a thousand or more gathered on the Hill to raise the Children of the Famine Memorial. The centerpiece is a Celtic Cross, one reminiscent of Muireadach ’s IA High Cross at Monasterboice. – Ed Callahan and Dan Casey



1:15 PM

Page 28


The Stars of the South


he third annual Stars of the South dinner in Atlanta on October 17 was a grand success. Co-hosted by Irish America and Don Keenan and the Keenan Kids foundation, it was a night that united Irish, American and Scots Irish American and everything in between. There were stories and music galore. Stonewall, a group from Northern Ireland, performed and gave a great rendition of “The Homes of Donegal ” and honoree Katherine Irwin Thomas, a fiddler from Tennessee, was joined on stage by several of her young music students from the Atlanta Junior Ceili Band. Dr. Ian Adamson of the Ulster-Scots Academy gave an informative and humorous talk on the roots of Scots-Irish culture, and all of this year ’s honorees spoke movingly about their ancestors and their own journeys in America. Jack Ryan, a former director of the Federal Reserve, paid tribute to his grandmother Molly Keating Fogerty whose husband died and left her on a farm with four daughters, the eldest of whom was 13 years old at the time, while Mike McGuire, who grew up in a small town in Northwest, Ohio where his family owned and operated a grocery store, talked about watching his father quietly slip one of his customers the money to buy food so the family could celebrate Thanksgiving. Three of those honored were immigrants: Monsignor Edward J. Dillon, who has served at Holy Spirit parish in Atlanta since 1987, Maeve McPhail, who works for JCB North America and paid tribute to her mother, and Ciaran Morris, who after a career with the IDA Ireland now works for PricewaterhouseCooopers in Atlanta and talked about the love and laughter he enjoyed growing up in Dublin. The event was held at the Commerce Club. Photos by Aixa Caldera.

Marie Fullington,Tourism Ireland, Gary McLoughlin, Judith McLoughlin, chef, The Ulster Kitchen.

John Player, Joe Williams, James Kettle, and Andrew Fincher of the Metro Atlanta Police Emerald Society.

Dr. Ian Adamson, founder of the Ulster-Scots Academy, presents Mayor Franklin with a book on Northern Ireland.

Top: Editor Patricia Harty is pictured with the dinner committee: Don Keenan, James Flannery, Kif Cahillane and Dave Fitzgerald.

Above: Kevin Kern, Julie Kern and Monsignor Edward J. Dillon. Far left: Katherine Irwin Thomas performs with her students. Middle left: Honoree Jack Ryan and Patricia Harty Left: Ciaran Morris, honoree.




1:16 PM

Page 30


Quote Unquote

“America gave me a second chance at life. A life I had previously mishandled so catastrophically. I will always be Scottish in my heart, but my soul is American. ” Talk show host Craig Ferguson writing in his memoir American on Purpose.

“We realize that this is a historic time, and we have to get the health care reform now.We can’t wait another10 years.” John J. Sweeney who after 14 years has stepped down as president of the A.F.L.–C.I.O. Sweeney, 75, said he hoped that President Obama would push through a health care overhaul as well as legislation that would make it considerably easier to unionize. – The New York Times

“There was a time when many of us older Marines wondered if the current generation had what it took to carry on a heroic war-fighting legacy forged over more than 200 years. Let us reflect on the magnificent history of our forefathers, but let us also pay tribute to those brave men and women, today ’s heroes, who willingly go into harm ’s way in Afghanistan and Iraq. ” General James T. Conway, Marine Corps commandant, speaking at the commissioning of the USS New York on November 7 in New York. – Tuscaloosa News

“Set in a fluid, shadowy dreamscape, through which Mr. Thompson moves like a thrashing sleeper in a nightmare, this ‘Emperor ’ digs into recesses of the every-mind, setting off Jungian echoes of universal resonance in a work often perceived as a dated portrait of the black man ’s burden. While much of Mr. O ’Reilly ’s production occurs in near-darkness, I can ’t think of another show (in what has been a mostly lusterless theater season) that burns brighter. ” Ben Brantley reviewing the Irish Repertory Theatre’s production of Eugene O’Neill’s Emperor Jones starring John Douglas Thompson (pictured above) and directed by Ciaran O’Reilly. – The New York Times

“There are families not eating at the end of the month, ” said Stephen Quinn, executive vice president and chief marketing officer, the Wal-Mart Stores, and “literally lining up at midnight ” at Wal-Mart stores waiting to buy food when paychecks or government checks land in their accounts. – The New York Times reporting on the Alliance for Family Entertainment of the Association of National Advertisers’ three-day conference in Phoenix in November.

“The richest one percent have more financial wealth than the bottom 99 percent combined.” Michael Moore discussing his movie Capitalism: a Love Story with Chris Matthews. The Hardball host asked Moore, “What is your trick of being hilariously funny and angry at the same time?” Moore replied: “You mean, how do I do that? Because, I’m Irish [Laughs].” 30 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

“Let’s not forget, we’re producing a blueprint for this state for the next two decades. So this has to be something we can live with, win or lose Race to the Top.” Colorado’s lieutenant governor, Barbara O’Brien, vying for her state to win the $4 billion competition for federal school dollars known as Race to the Top. The money will go to the state that proposes the best strategy for improving schools.



1:18 PM

Page 32

The Global





1:18 PM

Page 33

Dubbed “Mr. China” by James Fallows of The Atlantic Monthly, and the subject of a BBC 4 program, Liam Casey, a native of Cork, is changing the way the By Chris Ryan. world does business with China.


You ’ve studied the goods and compared the prices, and your latest electronic desire hovers in your online shopping cart, awaiting that final command. You click “Purchase ” and you ’ve tipped the domino, sparking a chain reaction that will play out on a global scale. Already, your order has appeared on a screen before nightshift workers on the other side of the world. A highly choreographed dance involving ever-changing flows of data, people, money, goods, and ideas brings the product to your doorstep, just two days later. The choreographer of this global production is a former farmer from Cork whom you ’ve probably never heard of. But he works behind the scenes to deliver the goods – quite literally – for some of the top makers of high-tech devices around today. To do this he spans time zones, disregards borders, jets between continents, thinks spatially, works incessantly, and lives out of a Sheraton in Shenzhen, China. He ’s an Irish-born man with the world as his stage.

Hyper Connections I caught up to Liam Casey on a recent autumn afternoon in the heart of California ’s Silicon Valley. To get there, I rode part of the Pacific Coast Highway, a long stretch of seaside road that holds special significance for Casey. He was in his late 20s, he explained, and had just spent ten years in the retail business, which he likened to a rat race. For the first time, he “had a chance to stand back and take a breather. ” It was in Southern California just off the Pacific Coast Highway. “There was something about driving on it that just captured me. ” Casey also found the culture suited his personality well. “There ’s a huge can-do attitude here in the U.S., ” he beams. “That ’s one of the things I really liked – it ’s very creative, very innovative. ” It was soon after, while working for a Southern California trading company, that Casey got the idea for his next move. He asked a Taiwanese colleague who imported hardware from Asia whether he had ever sold his products to Ireland. His answer: “I ’ve never heard of that company. ” It lit a fire under Casey. He realized there had to be great opportunity in Ireland to bring goods into Europe. Two years later he was thinking beyond merely importing products; he was learning what Western companies wanted to build and creating the connections to make it happen. By age 30, Casey had founded a company in Cork and named it PCH, after that Pacific Coast road. Fast forward 14 years to the present. Casey meets with Silicon Valley clients – some of the top names in consumer electronics and personal computers – hops a plane back to Hong Kong, and makes the short jump to his base in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen. In this Special Economic Zone, Casey can choose from hundreds of factories within a few miles to piece together all the aspects of engineering, manufacturing,

Photograph by Chris Ryan




1:18 PM

Page 34


Opening page: Liam Casey on a recent visit to Silicon Valley, CA. Above: Casey stands beside workers assembling laptop computers.

retail packaging, order management – even product design – that Western companies can ’t do as fast or efficiently. PCH handles well over a billion dollars worth of product in a year. Crucial to this harried assembly line of high-volume high technology are the millions of rural migrants who flow to Shenzhen to work in its factories. While often arduous and repetitive, the work can earn them a much better living than they can squeeze from the countryside. In just 20 years, Shenzhen has grown from a small fishing village to a metropolis with twice the population of New York City. Thanks to the recent flourishing of more interactive, Web-based applications, the process isn ’t over when the products leave China on the early-morning Fed-Ex flight. From Shenzhen, Casey ’s people can monitor the blogs where consumers are raving about – or ripping on – his clients ’ products. The real-time feedback allows them to tweak the supply chain quickly, fixing any problems at a speed impossible before the advent of “Web 2.0 ” sites like blogs and wikis. Globalization is not just hype or business-speak but reality in full swing. Now, bringing a new product to stores – which often took companies years to do


on their own – commonly takes just six months. Casey calls this “disruptive commerce. ” This is the notion that these growing, interacting flows of information, people, concepts, and capital add up to more than just lower costs and faster trade. New ideas and products which, in the past, may have looked too risky to back can now leave the drawing boards and come to life. Meanwhile, Casey ’s clients can focus on conceptualizing the next hot handheld device. Casey is modest about the success he has enjoyed in his business, but I sensed a tiny blink of pride at his notion that he ’s helping to shake up the order. While southern China and the U.S. are central to his enterprise, Casey sniffs out local strength wherever it lies, which is why the company ’s headquarters are still in Cork. Ireland has well-known education and tax advantages, but Casey also likes it for its time zone. A California client can talk to customer service in Cork, where the sun is still up, instead of a bleary-eyed nightshift worker on the other side of the globe. The ties between countries may be multiplying, but most places still have their own strengths and character. Casey smiled while recalling a story from one of his Irish engineers who went to China

several years ago. “One of the last billboards he saw on the way to Dublin airport was a beautiful lady in a Wonderbra. And he arrived in Shenzhen 24 hours later and the first billboard he saw was an industrial molding press, so he knew he was in the right place, ” Casey chuckled. Ironically, one of the local strengths Casey sees in China is its ability to think globally. In the U.S., he said, they talk about the American dream. In China, “it ’s the global dream. ” Casey seems to embody both a strong appreciation of local details and the ability to think and work comfortably across time zones, currencies, systems, and borders – in short, local expertise combined with global perspective. While most of us are grounded in one culture and place, as most of humanity has always been, Casey is one of a small number who live a globalized life on a day-to-day basis. It dawned on me that many reporters have been looking at Casey through a narrow lens. The media often refer to him as “Mr. China, ” either for “unlocking China ’s secrets ” or bringing the world ’s work to its factories. But Casey ’s stage is international and his very success as an immigrant from Ireland flows from working across all the boundaries and distances that have seemed so important



1:18 PM

Page 35

for so long. A more fitting alias for Liam Casey is “The Global Irishman. ”

Ireland’s Second Act In today ’s world, such cross-border fluency is in demand wherever experts converge to ponder the future. Shortly before I met with Casey, he spoke at the Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco, and the month before that, at the Global Irish Economic Forum at Farmleigh in Dublin. The Irish government convened the Farmleigh conference in September to explore ways to renew the Irish economy. In the lead-up to the big recession, Ireland was simply on the wrong track, Casey told me. Our concern was all about “investment properties and holiday homes and all that . . . If you look at the history of Ireland, we ’re not a landlord nation. I

Globalization brings huge challenges, he conceded, but “we ’re writing the rules for globalization now. ” Any nation “has great opportunity to create what ’s next. ” Of course, Casey is optimistic by nature, a trait which has allowed him to spot potential and seize on it before others. But his prescriptions are wellgrounded. The Irish should look beyond Europe, he reflected. “I see huge opportunity if we can take what we do in Ireland and take it globally. ” Indeed, this is what Casey has already done with PCH, a strategy which has helped the private firm grow 30% this year, over revenues of about $115 million last year, as it employs 800 people worldwide. In a globalized world, he predicted, the solutions to what ’s happening in Ireland “won ’t come from the island, they ’ll come from outside. ” But they ’ll require the initiative of Irish people. Whether the Celtic Tiger fades into history is “up

business are too big to miss, ” he insisted, “and time is often our number one currency. ” By now you might be imagining a stressed, highly caffeinated executive. But Casey struck me as comfortable and highly personable. He came from his client meeting wearing not a suit but a denim shirt and Nehru jacket. And he flatly rejects the workaholic label. “It ’s a cliché, but if you love what you do, you never work a day in your life. . . . I love it, it ’s great fun. ” Here in the Silicon Valley, Casey works with “some of the best, most creative companies on the planet. ” And on the other side of the globe in Shenzhen, which he described as the fastest changing city on the planet, Casey has had “front-row seats to the changing of the world . . . Take those and put them together, and I wouldn ’t say it ’s work. ” Work and pleasure are so synonymous to Casey that getting him to suggest any-

It’s a cliché, but if you love what you “ do, you never work a day in your life. . . . I love it, it’s great fun.” think the focus was wrong and now we have an opportunity to correct that. ” Casey agreed with many of the proposals that came out of Farmleigh, particularly ones which build on Ireland ’s existing strengths, like culture and the arts. One panel recommended the country build a world-class center or university for the performing arts and Irish culture. Irish poets and musicians are indeed famous across the world. But considering the big downturn in more fundamental parts of the economy, I wondered how Ireland could translate things like art and culture into significant economic recovery. I asked Casey whether countries like China and India may, in fact, be eclipsing the Celtic Tiger, moving into many of the value-added, service sector roles in which Ireland has long had an advantage.

to us, ” Casey declared. It ’s “our decision whether we let that happen or we don ’t. ”

Man in the Nehru Jacket Jetting between continents, speaking at high-profile conferences, working “26hour days ” . . . I asked Liam Casey how all the hours and the travel affect his personal life. “What personal life? ” he grinned. Weekends are rare for Casey. After meetings in California, he usually flies back to China on a Friday night, which puts him in Shenzhen late Sunday morning, with just half a day to recover. And home, for Casey, is the Shenzhen Four Points Sheraton. Why not live in a house or a flat? “The opportunities in our

thing else he might do with more time in the day was harder than expected. Finally, after a long pause, he offered, “I think I ’m . . . disruptive by nature, so I ’d be looking at, what can I break next, and what can we do better? ” There ’s no way to know what the next disruption will bring, to Ireland, to China, or to your own front doorstep. I asked Casey to reflect on his own surprising course, from the farm in County Cork to his present-day mobile, global identity. “It ’s not a clean arc, there ’s been a bit of meandering. To me it ’s a journey, and often the journey is more fun than the destination. ” I thought again of the Pacific Coast Highway. “The longer you can keep the journey going, ” Casey smiled, “the better. ” IA




1:23 PM

Page 37

I.A. Business


The Business 100 is a celebration of Irish-American corporate success, and this year is no exception. The executives profiled in the following pages represent some of the most powerful corporations in the world. All of our Business 100 share one thing in common: pride in their Irish heritage.The accomplishments of the men and women on our list are immense, and it is an honor for this magazine to highlight their achievement and success. We thank all of those who took the time to fill out their personal biographical forms and share glimpses of what being Irish means to them. Congratulations to all our honorees. Education:

Counties of Origin:

Harvard • Fordham • Stanford • Notre Dame • Georgetown • University College in Dublin

Cork • Kerry • Galway • Mayo • Roscommon • Sligo



Ancestral Links:




18% 19%



2:03 PM

Page 38

BUSINESS100 Michael Beckerich York Analytical Laboratories Michael P. Beckerich owns and manages a diverse group of enterprises that include an environmental laboratory (York Analytical Laboratories, Inc.), which services Greater NY; The Classics of Golf, for which he publishes golf books of historical and literary significance, and real estate. Michael began the first eight years of his career with Coopers & Lybrand in Stamford, CT, and then as a financial officer with significant expertise in SEC and alternate energy matters. Michael is a member of Ireland’s own Royal Dublin, and served as president of historic Saint Andrew’s Golf Club in New York from 1995-2002. He serves on the Legal Board of Trustees of Iona College (a 1972 graduate) and the N.A. Board for University College Dublin’s Smurfit School of Business. His mother Jean, an O’Conner from Colooney, County Sligo, came to America as an 18-year-old in 1948. Michael and his wife Maryann have raised three children to adulthood.

James Brett The New England Council James T. Brett is president and CEO of the New England Council, the oldest regional business organization in the U.S. which promotes economic development in the region. The Council works with Capitol Hill to influence public policy. Before joining the Council, Jim was a Massachusetts state representative for 16 years. He was a member of the President’s Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities and is current chairman of the Massachusetts Governor’s Commission on Mental Retardation. Jim is a recipient of the “Irishman of the Year” award from the Friends of John F. Kennedy Library. He sits on the board of directors of the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation and is a trustee of Catholic Charities of Boston. He received a 2006 Solas Award from the Irish Immigration Center. Bay Cove Human Services of Boston named a home for disabled adults “Brett House” in his honor in 1996. Jim’s parents immigrated from Tubbercurry, Sligo to Boston in the 1920s, where the six Brett children were raised. Jim and his wife Patricia reside in Dorchester, Massachusetts.

Marianne Brown Omgeo LLC Marianne C. Brown is president and CEO of Omgeo LLC. Marianne is an accomplished chief executive with a proven track record of driving revenue and income growth within complex global organizations. Prior to joining Omgeo in 2006, Marianne served as CEO of Securities Industry Automation Corporation. She began her career in 1978 at Automatic Data Processing, Brokerage Services Group, now known as Broadridge Financial Services, where she remained until 2005.Throughout her 26 years at ADP, she held numerous positions that provided a broad swath of experience. Marianne has been profiled extensively in the press, in outlets such as CNBC’s Squawk Box, The Wall Street Journal, and Wall Street & Technology. A native of Brooklyn, NY, Marianne is a graduate of Concordia College with a degree in business. Marianne is a second-generation Irish American, and her father's side of the family came from County Fermanagh. She lives in Westchester, NY with her husband and son. 38 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Tom Bradley FICO Tom Bradley joined FICO as executive vice president and CFO in April 2009. Previously, he headed North America Operations for Zurich Financial Services, a firm he joined in 2004 in the role of CFO for North America. Before that, he was executive vice president and CFO for The St. Paul Companies. Tom joined St. Paul in 1998 when that company acquired USF&G, where he was serving as vice president of finance and corporate controller. A graduate of the University of Maryland with a bachelor’s degree in accounting, Tom also holds a master’s of business administration degree from Loyola College of Maryland and is a certified public accountant. He resides in St. Paul, MN with his wife Michelle and son Andrew. Tom is a third-generation Irish American whose great-grandfather Thomas Bradley came to Newtown, CT from the west coast of County Clare.Thomas fought in the Civil War, raised 7 sons, and rose from a factory worker to become the town’s selectman and postmaster.

Tim Brosnan MLB Enterprises, Inc. As executive vice president, business and CEO of Major League Baseball Enterprises, Inc., Tim Brosnan oversees all domestic and business functions of Major League Baseball’s Office of the Commissioner, including licensing, sponsorship, domestic and international broadcasting, special events and MLB Productions.Tim joined the Office of the Commissioner in 1991 and was quickly promoted to COO of Major League Baseball International. In his current position he oversees the multi-billion-dollar enterprise that baseball advertising and promotion has become. Tim foresees the day when countries including Ireland will play in the World Baseball Classic, an equivalent to soccer’s World Cup. A second-generation Irish American whose grandparents came from counties Kerry and Sligo,Tim has visited Ireland many times and even taken in a game in Dublin where Peter O’Malley, former chairman of the Dodgers, gifted a baseball field.Tim resides in Westchester County, NY with his wife, Claire O’Brien, and their three children, Helen, Kevin and Charlotte.

Patrick Burns Anheuser-Busch Companies As the director of European brands at Anheuser-Busch, Patrick Burns oversees brand management for Beck’s Family, Lowenbrau, Boddingtons and Tennent’s. Patrick, a native of St. Louis, Missouri, earned a BS in business administration from the University of Evansville. He began his career with Merchants Bank in deposit products administration, and moved to Anheuser-Busch Companies in 1988. His first job with Anheuser was as a wholesale inventory coordinator, but he soon rose through the ranks occupying a number of positions over the years, including wholesaler inventory coordinator, marketing project manager, international sports marketing manager, geographic marketing manager, senior sports manager and director. A third-generation Irish American with roots in County Carlow, Patrick says his Irish heritage “has handed down values that have allowed me to look at each day with a little curiosity, that behind every situation you can find some humor.”



2:03 PM

Page 39

Profiles BUSINESS100 Patrick Byrne, Inc. Patrick Byrne is the chairman and CEO of, Inc., a Utah-based Internet retailer that has been publicly traded since 2002. Under Patrick’s leadership, the company’s annual revenue has gone from $1.8 million in 1999 to $800 million in 2008. In 2001, Patrick began,’s socially responsible store for products handcrafted by artisans in developing nations and the rural U.S. More than $30 million has been returned to Worldstock’s artisan suppliers. Patrick earned a BA in philosophy and Asian studies from Dartmouth, an MA in philosophy from Cambridge as a Marshall Scholar, and a PhD in philosophy from Stanford. Patrick is co-chair of the Milton & Rose Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice. He has founded 19 schools internationally, educating over 6,000 students. After surviving cancer, Patrick cycled across the country four times. His last ride, in 2000, helped raise record-breaking funds for cancer research at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. Byrne is a fifth-generation Irish American with roots in Cork and Wexford.

Brian Cashman New York Yankees Brian Cashman has been a part of the Yankees family since he was nineteen, working as an intern in the club’s minor league and scouting department. In 1998, at age thirty-one, Brian became the second-youngest general manager in baseball history. Now serving as both senior vice president and general manager, he is the longest-tenured GM under Yankees owner George Steinbrenner. Brian’s first position in baseball was as a bat boy for the LA Dodgers during spring training in 1982. Brian has received many accolades for his work with the Yankees. He was named “Executive of the Year” by the Boston chapter of the BBWAA in 2000, and in 1999 and 2003 by New Jersey Sportswriters Association. In 2005 he was honored with the “Ossie Davis Award for Inspirational Leadership.” Brian attended Catholic University, where he played intercollegiate baseball and earned a BA in history. The Yankees have won 27 World Series championships, most recently the 2009 World Series against the Philadelphia Phillies.

Jim Clerkin Moët Hennessy USA Jim Clerkin has over 30 years of experience in the beer, wine and spirits industry. He began his career in Ireland where he rose through the ranks at Guinness in a variety of roles to executive sales director and became a member of the board of directors. In 2008, Jim was recruited by Moët Hennessy, the wine, champagne and spirits division of LVMH, to take on a new role as COO of Moët Hennessy USA with responsibility for global brands such as Hennessy cognac, Moët & Chandon Champagne, Dom Perignon, Veuve Clicquot Champagne, Grand Marnier and Belvedere vodka. Jim, who was born in Rostrevor in County Down, has been involved with a number of charities, including Co-Operation Ireland where he served as chairman of Co-Op Ireland USA for five years and is still an active board member. He is the proud father of four children and resides in Westport, Connecticut with his wife Jenny and their youngest son Luke.

Charles Carey CME Group, Inc. Charles P. “Charlie” Carey is vice chairman of CME Group, a company formed by the 2007 merger of the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) with the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.Today, CME Group is the largest derivatives exchange in the world. Earlier, Charlie was chairman of the CBOT from 2003 until assuming his current position at CME Group in July 2007. Previously, he served on the CBOT Board of Directors for eleven years in various roles, including vice chairman, first vice chairman and full member director. An independent futures trader, Charlie became a member of CBOT in 1978 and is a partner in the firm Henning and Carey. In 2007, Charlie was presented with the Oak Park and River Forest High School Tradition of Excellence Award and earlier that year with the Western Illinois University Distinguished Alumni Award. He is president of the Chicagoland Sports Hall of Fame, an organization that provides scholarships for underprivileged youths. A lifelong resident of Chicago, Charlie received a BA degree in business administration from Western Illinois University.

Kieran Claffey PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP Kieran Claffey is a partner at Pricewaterhouse Coopers LLP (PwC), a member firm of PwC International Limited. After joining PwC in 1985, Kieran spent over ten years in the assurance practice, primarily servicing multinational clients. He then transferred to the firm’s national office to focus on major litigation and regulatory related issues. He is PwC’s representative on two professional committees of the American Institute of CPAs: the Professional Issues Task Force and the Technical Standards Committee. Kieran was a founding member and director of the Ireland Chamber of Commerce in the United States and a director of the EuropeanAmerican Chamber of Commerce. He is currently the national treasurer and board member of the Ireland-U.S. Council of Commerce & Industry. Kieran is also a member of the Board of Trustees of The Gateway Schools and a director of LIFT. Born in Dublin, Kieran received his BA from University College Dublin. He is also a chartered accountant and a CPA. He lives in Manhattan with his wife Michelle and three sons, Ryan, CJ and Steven.

Clodagh Clodagh Since leaving high school at 17, dropping her last name and setting up her own company, Irishborn Clodagh has been a constant force in the design world. Widely recognized as a leader in the green design movement, Clodagh believes that good design can support well-being, and her pioneering use of feng shui, chromotheraphy, biophilia, and sustainable materials has enriched her projects with an unmistakable look, structure and flow that appeals to all the human senses. In her Manhattan studio, Clodagh oversees three distinct divisions: Clodagh Signature, the product design group for her many licensees; Clodagh Collection, an on-premises showroom highlighting Clodagh and carefully edited home furnishings and accessories; and Clodagh Design, her architectural and interior design practice. Clodagh’s second book, Your Home,Your Sanctuary, was released by Rizzoli in October 2008. Clodagh lives in New York City and is married to international photographer Daniel Aubry, who has shot the images for both of her books. DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 39



2:03 PM

Page 40


The Cookie Guy

Pepperidge Farm’s President Pat Callaghan provides comfort food for tough times.


atrick Callaghan is president of Pepperidge Farm, Inc., based in Norwalk, CT. Pepperidge Farm is the nation ’s largest manufacturer of premium baked goods including fresh bread, cookies and crackers. Pat started his career in Boston working for Nabisco. At Pepperidge Farm, Pat has held the positions of general manager, SVP of Marketing, SVP of Strategy and Business Development. He was named president of Pepperidge Farm in January 2006. Pat is an active leader in the bakery industry, serving on the Board of Directors of both the American Bakers Association and the Grain Foods Foundation. He is past chairman of both industry groups. Pat earned his Bachelor of Science degree from Stonehill College and his Master ’s of Business from Suffolk University. He is a first-generation Irish American with strong family roots in Ireland. His father was born in the village of Ballynona, Dungorney, County Cork, and his mother grew up in the village of Moycullen, at the foothills of Connemara County, Galway. He currently resides in Huntington, CT, with his wife Gretchen. They have two daughters.

During the Great Depression, sales of Mrs. Field’s cookies and other treats reportedly rose because while consumers couldn’t afford larger purchases, they could take comfort in small luxuries for themselves and their loved ones. Have you noticed the current recession affecting purchasing habits in any way? Yes, and I think the financial people would call that the “lipstick effect, ” where sales of lipstick go up in recessions because women trade down from larger indulgences like getting their nails done. That has happened over the last few recessions, and cookies are very similar to that. While people are eschewing major luxury items such as cars and other purchases for themselves, they are more than willing to treat themselves to a small indulgence like a Milano cookie. It ’s an affordable treat that hopefully makes the hard times a little more palatable —no pun intended. What is your favorite memory of visiting Ireland? I have been there a few times to see my relatives. Half my dad ’s family immigrated to this country so we still have a good number of first cousins over there. One of my best memories is of County Cork —we had a reunion at a hotel down on the water, so I had a chance to take my daughters to meet some of their second and third cousins. It was their chance to spend some time on the family farm, milk the cattle and get to know some of the cousins. That ’s a great memory for me —we were around two hundred strong at the reunion, so it was a lot of fun to get to know anoth40 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

er side of the family. I also like to play golf there, from Royal County Down to Ballybunion. It ’s really the beauty of the country and the warmth of the people that make Ireland special in all my memories.

Is there anything in your Irish heritage or any particular Irish characteristics that helped you get to where you are? I think mostly it ’s the example of hard work that my parents instilled in all their children. There are probably three characteristics. I think the first characteristic is tenacity —to be able to push on and move forward after setbacks. The second is to treat people with respect and dignity, and the third is to have a sense of humor. That helps quite a bit. Many of America’s greatest investors and innovators were immigrants. Where do you stand on America’s current immigration policies and attitudes? I don ’t know whether I really have a stance. I would say this is a country where my parents came over with no money. My father saved —the oldest came over first and got the next one over and then the two of them saved enough money to get the third one over. This is the kind of country where people just have a vision and the opportunity to succeed and I would hope this country continues to be able to provide that opportunity to all types of people. What is the best career advice you were ever given? It was probably from my dad —make sure you ’re sharing your success with others and taking responsibility for your failures yourself. How do you balance your corporate responsibilities and your personal life? It ’s a challenge. I think it was Robert Frost who said, “What ’s the difference between a job and a career? It ’s the difference between forty and sixty hours a week. ” One of the things we do is try to hire and promote the right people here and make the time to do the things that are important with your family. I try to be as productive as I can at work so I can spend time with my family. How can American business reinvent itself so that we stay on the cutting edge and ensure that America remains a leader in the global economy? I think we have to continue to focus on creativity, technology, service and productivity. I think particularly around creativity and technology we ’re able to exploit opportunities. We ’re not going to be a low-cost producer in many areas, so our biggest opportunity is in focusing on technology and creativity. IA



1:31 PM


Page 42


Thomas Codd PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP Thomas W. Codd is North Texas market managing partner for PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP. He has spent his entire career serving manufacturing and distribution companies, including public and private equity-owned companies ranging in size from multi-location companies to multinational corporations. Thomas is a director of the American Ireland Fund, a member of the North American Advisory Board of the UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School and a member of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick. He earned a BSc in management from Purdue University. Thomas is a second-generation Irish American whose paternal grandparents were born in counties Carlow and Sligo. On his Irish heritage he remarks, “I attribute my fundamental values of work ethic, loyalty, fortitude, humor and grace in large part to my ancestry. Also, Irish heritage enables a connection to an Irish community that stretches around and across the globe.” He and his wife Shelly have four children,Tommy, Kevin, Mike and Kaitlin.

Deirdre Connelly Glaxo Smith Kline Deirdre Connelly joined Glaxo Smith Kline Pharmaceuticals (GSK) as president, North America in February 2009. Prior to joining Glaxo, Deirdre served as president of U.S. operations at Eli Lilly and Company, a position she held since 2005. She joined Lilly in 1983 as a sales representative and has held sales and marketing roles of increasing responsibility. In 2003, she became executive director of human resources for Eli Lilly’s U.S. affiliate and president in 2005. A leader in the pharmaceutical industry, Deirdre has been named by Fortune magazine as one of the 50 most powerful women in business. A native of Puerto Rico, Deirdre earned a bachelor’s degree in economics and marketing from Lycoming College in Pennsylvania in 1983. She graduated from Harvard University’s Advanced Management Program in 2000. Born to an Irish father and a Puerto Rican mother, Deirdre is one of nine children, and upon hearing that she would be in the Business 100 said her “father would be smiling from heaven.”

Anthony Coughlan Accenture Anthony Coughlan is controller and chief accounting officer of Accenture, a consulting and outsourcing IT services provider. Tony has been with Accenture for over 30 years, having joined in 1978. He became director of finance in the Americas in 1994. He was made partner and moved back to London as the director of finance in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, then moved to Chicago in 2000 to become the Accenture corporate controller. He has been the Accenture controller and CAO since 2004. Tony is responsible for corporate policy and accounting and external reporting and has overseen a variety of major projects in the past including corporate reorganizations, conversion from partnership to corporate status, the initial public offering, secondary offerings and implementation of a global ERP system. Born in Ireland, Tony went to University College in Cork. He is married to Kathy, and they have six children.They currently live in London and also maintain their home in Chicago. 42 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Donald Colleran Federal Express Don Colleran is executive vice president of sales for FedEx, leading a team of more than 4,000 sales professionals worldwide. Don started his career with FedEx in 1989, serving as an international sales manager, then global sales manager in the U.S. before moving to Tokyo in 1992, beginning a 12-year offshore career in international sales and operations management. He was appointed to his current position in 2006. Don leads a sales team that taps into a worldwide network that has helped FedEx grow into a $35 billion company. Don earned a BS from the University of New Hampshire in Durham, NH. Don is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Indy Festival Foundation children’s charities, a member of the American Chamber of Commerce, and a member of the USASEAN Business Council. He also serves on the Board of Directors of InMotion Orthopaedic Research Center. Don is a native of Boston and a third-generation Irish American with roots in Galway and Cork.

Kevin Connelly Spencer Stuart As chairman of Spencer Stuart, one of the world’s leading executive consulting firms, Kevin Connelly has both client-facing responsibilities and a firm leadership role. He is the elected representative of the partners, chairs the board and partners’ meetings and is responsible for providing strategic perspective to the firm’s business and finances. Prior to becoming chairman, Kevin managed the firm’s business in the United States, Japan, Canada and Mexico and had global oversight for the Industrial and Financial Services Practices. Kevin serves on the board of the Children’s Memorial Medical Center of Chicago and is a member of the Economic Club of Chicago and Commercial Club of Chicago. Kevin earned an MBA in 1979 from the Graduate School of Business at the University of Chicago and received a BA degree from Marquette University in 1975.A second-generation Irish American on his mother’s side and fourth-generation on his father’s, he traces his maternal Irish roots to Cork and Kerry. His father’s ancestry lies in Galway and Mayo. Kevin is married with two daughters.

John Crowley Amicus Therapeutics John Crowley is the president & CEO of Amicus Therapeutics, a publicly held biopharmaceutical company developing drugs to treat genetic diseases. His involvement stems from the 1998 diagnosis of his children, Megan and Patrick, with Pompe disease: a rare and fatal neuromuscular disorder. Megan and Patrick were given months to live. John helped to co-found a five-person start-up biotech company called Novazyme Pharmaceuticals, focused exclusively on developing a treatment for Pompe.The company went from a $1 million angel financing to $27 million in venture capital financing and was acquired for nearly $200 million by Genzyme Corporation. In 2003, Patrick and Megan began an experimental enzyme therapy developed by Genzyme that has saved their lives. Newmarket Press will publish a memoir by John in January 2010 entitled Chasing Miracles:The Crowley Family Journey of Strength, Hope and Joy. John graduated from Georgetown, Notre Dame and Harvard. He is a commissioned officer in the United States Navy Reserve, assigned to the U.S. Special Operations Command.



1:24 PM


Page 44


Patricia Cunningham Continental Airlines Patricia A. Cunningham is the manager of transatlantic leisure sales for Continental Airlines, the fourth largest airline in the United States. Cunningham oversees leisure sales for 30 destinations in Europe, Israel and Greece, including sales to Belfast, Dublin and Shannon. Patricia serves on the board of the Ireland - U. S. Council. She started her airline career at Varig Brazilian Airline. She then became the director of airline sales for Virgin Atlantic Airways, before going to Continental Airlines in 1997. Patricia is past president of the Airline Sales Manager Association in New York City. She was the first female president of SKAL in New Jersey. Cunningham is second-generation Irish American with roots in Roscommon on her father’s side. Of her Irish heritage she says,“My Irish heritage has been a source of immense pride, and has provided me with strong work ethics and a commitment to hard work in both my professional and personal career.” She resides in Hillsborough, New Jersey.

A. James DeHayes DeHayes Consulting Group A. James DeHayes is an authority on strategy development and implementation in marketing, distribution, and M&A support for the financial services industry. He has successfully guided clients through the complex process of designing and developing distribution systems tailored for new products, enhancing productivity and profitability of existing distribution, and adjusting legacy distribution to new competitive realities. Prior to founding DCG, James served as CMO for a major diversified financial services company. He is an alumnus of the Harvard Business School, a graduate of Leadership in Professional Services, a Chartered Life Underwriter and Chartered Financial Consultant from the American College, and holds an MBA from Pepperdine University. James is a member of the North American Advisory Board for the UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School in Dublin. James is a second-generation Irish American whose mother’s family has roots in Belfast. He is married with six children.

John Donahoe eBay Inc. John Donahoe became president and CEO of eBay Inc. in 2008. He has global responsibility for growing each of the company’s business units, which include eBay Marketplaces, PayPal and Skype. John joined eBay in February 2005 as President of eBay Marketplaces. He focused on expanding eBay’s core business and also oversaw a number of strategic acquisitions, including, StubHub and classifieds sites, such as Gumtree and LoQUo. Prior to eBay, John spent over 20 years at Bain & Co., a worldwide consulting firm. Starting as an associate consultant, John became the firm’s CEO and oversaw Bain’s 30 offices and 3,000 employees. In addition to serving on the Board of Directors for eBay Inc. and Intel Corp., John is also on the Board of Trustees of Dartmouth College. John received a BA from Dartmouth and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. A fifth-generation Irish American, John’s roots are in Tipperary. He is married to Eileen Chamberlain and they have four children. 44 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Pamela Daley General Electric Pamela Daley earned her AB degree from Princeton University and graduated first in her class from the UPENN Law School,where she was editor-in-chief of the Law Review. Before joining GE, Pamela was a tax partner at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius and an adjunct professor at the UPENN Law School. Pamela joined GE in 1989 as tax counsel and was VP and senior counsel for transactions from 1991 to 2004. In 2004, Pamela became VP–corporate business development and was promoted to senior vice president in 2005. She is responsible for GE’s mergers, acquisitions and divestiture activities worldwide (acquisitions, dispositions, joint ventures, alliances, and other business development arrangements). Pamela serves on the boards of General Electric Capital Corporation, GE Capital Services, Inc., and the GE Foundation, and is a past director of Genworth Financial, Inc. She is a member of the boards of UPENN, the UPENN Law School, the World Wildlife Fund and The Juilliard School. She is a second-generation Irish American with roots in Roscommon on her father’s side.

Laurel Delaney Laurel Delaney is an entrepreneur,speaker,educator and author with over 20 years of global business experience. She runs and, Chicago-based firms specializing in international entrepreneurship. The U.S. Small Business Administration has recognized Laurel as a world-renowned global small business expert by naming her the “Illinois Exporter of the Year.” She is the author of Start and Run a Profitable Exporting Business and numerous articles that have appeared in international and scholarly publications. Laurel produces a monthly e-newsletter called “Borderbuster” and is the creator of a social media platform comprising four blogs. She serves as the Chicago chapter chair for the Women Presidents’ Organization, is a pioneering member of the World Entrepreneurship Forum and is a member of the International Council for Small Business. Laurel holds an MBA from Lake Forest Graduate School of Management. Laurel is a second-generation Irish American whose father’s family comes from Ballyhaunis, County Mayo.

Craig Donohue CME Group Craig S. Donohue has served as CEO of CME Group and its predecessor company, CME Holdings Inc., since 2004. Craig has set the company’s vision and developed growth strategies to expand CME Group’s core business and generate new growth opportunities in over-the-counter and emerging markets. Craig is chairman of the Board of Directors of the Council for Economic Education, first vice chairman of the Executives’ Club of Chicago and a board member of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce. Craig also serves as vice chairman of the CME Group Foundation and NYMEX Foundation, whose collective missions are to enhance economic opportunity, health and education, especially for disadvantaged youth. He holds an MBA degree from Northwestern University’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management, a JD from John Marshall Law School, an ML from IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law and a BA from Drake University. Craig is a third-generation Irish American with roots in Cork.



1:24 PM


Page 46


John Dooner McCann Worldgroup As chairman and CEO of McCann Worldgroup, a company he formed in 1997, John Dooner heads one of the world’s largest and fastestgrowing marketing communications organizations, with operations in over 30 countries. Built on the foundation of McCann Erickson, the leading global advertising agency network, today six of the seven marketing communications companies comprising Worldgroup are global leaders in their categories, a remarkable achievement given that five of the companies did not exist before 1997. Moreover, Worldgroup’s offering of seamlessly effective communications programs ideally positions it for the future. Vision, energy, consistent delivery of strategic solutions and a persistent dedication to growing Worldgroup’s business by building its clients’ businesses have characterized John’s 35-year career with McCann and its parent company, The Interpublic Group. John, who was born in New York, earned his BA from St. Thomas Villanova University, and traces his Irish roots to his grandparents from County Clare. He and his wife reside in Westchester, New York.

Patrick Dowling Tygris Patrick Henry Dowling is the senior managing director and group leader of Tygris Commercial Finance Group’s aerospace & defense finance business. Prior to joining Tygris, he was managing director and general manager of CIT Leveraged Finance–Transportation. He was also a member of CIT’s management committee. Patrick was previously managing director and industry leader, aerospace and defense, for GE Commercial Finance and spent over 22 years at GE in various management and leadership positions. He is active in various industry organizations, including The National Chamber Foundation of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and The Institute for Defense and Business Foundation. Patrick is a certified public accountant and has served as a director on several company boards including Penske Truck Leasing. He holds a BS from Fordham University and a JD from Pace University School of Law. Patrick is a second-generation Irish American whose mother’s family hails from Cork. He is married to Kate and has three sons.

John Farrell KPMG LLP John Michael Farrell is a national lead partner for KPMG in enterprise risk management (ERM) services. With more than 20 years risk management and risk/control experience with Fortune 500 multinational clients, John specializes in internal audit, regulatory & compliance services at KPMG. In this position he is responsible for service delivery on priority accounts in the manufacturing and information/communication sectors. A graduate of the State University of New York at Albany, John received his master’s of science, accounting and MBA, finance, from Long Island University. He is also a certified public accountant in New York State and belongs to the New York State Society of CPAs. Before joining KPMG, John served as the director of internal audit for Minerals Technologies, Inc. John is a third-generation Irish American with roots in Monaghan on his father’s side. His grandmother was one of eleven children born at the turn of the century in New York, whose parents came to America from Ireland in the 1880s. 46 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Michael Dowling North Shore-LIJ Health Systems Michael Dowling is president and CEO of North Shore-LIJ Health Systems. He joined the organization in 1995 as SVP of hospital services. In 1997 he became EVP and COO, and oversaw development operations and planning when North Shore and LIJ merged. Before joining North Shore, Michael served in New York government for 12 years, including seven as chief advisor to Governor Mario Cuomo. He was commissioner of New York State Department of Social Services from 1993-1994. He also was a professor of social policy and an assistant dean of the Fordham University Graduate School of Social Services. Michael came to New York City from Limerick looking for a job at age 17 and maintains close ties to Ireland. He was recently made chairman of the North American Advisory Board of UCD Smurfit School of Business at University College Dublin and is on numerous medical and charitable boards. He is married with two children.

Terrence Duffy CME Group, Inc. The Honorable Terrence A. Duffy is executive chairman of CME Group. Previously, he served as chairman of the board of CME and CME Holdings and as executive chairman. Terrence was a key player in the merger of CME and the Chicago Board of Trade and CME’s acquisition of the New York Mercantile Exchange. In 2002, he was appointed by President Bush to serve on a national summit on retirement savings and confirmed by the Senate to the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board. He 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 co-chair of the Mayo Clinic Greater Chicago Leadership Council. Terrence also is chairman of the NYMEX Foundation and vice chairman of the CME Group Foundation. Terrence attended the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. He is a third-generation Irish American who traces his father’s family to Westport, County Mayo.

Irial Finan The Coca-Cola Company Irial Finan is executive vice president of The Coca-Cola Company, and president of bottling investments and supply chain. Based in Atlanta, he is responsible for the $5 billion internal bottling business. Irial joined Coca-Cola in 1981 and has a myriad of national and international experience. From 2001 to 2003, he served as CEO of Coca-Cola HBC, during which time he managed the merger of CocaCola Beverages and Hellenic Bottling, and led the combined company’s operations in 26 countries. He is on the board of directors of Coca-Cola and other companies and is the non-executive director of Alltracel Pharmaceuticals and chairman of the Audit Committee. Irial is also a member of the Galway University Foundation Board, and is non-executive director for Co-operations Ireland. He holds a bachelor of commerce degree from National University of Ireland in Galway and is associate (later fellow) of the Institute of Chartered Management Accountants. He is a native of Roscommon County.



1:24 PM

Page 47

Profiles BUSINESS100 Dave Fitzgerald Fitzgerald & Co. In 1983, Dave Fitzgerald founded the successful advertising agency Fitzgerald & Co. He remains president and CEO, and his company was named the Best Agency in the Southeast by Adweek.Along with his success, his relationship with employees led Fitzgerald & Co. to be named one of the 10 best companies in Atlanta to work for by the Atlanta Business Chronicle. He was formerly the president of the Atlanta Advertising Club and past chairman of the board of directors for the Saint Joseph’s Hospital Foundation. A second-generation Irish American, Dave ran the Order of the Green Jacket of Ireland, which helped raise funds for Irish athletes in the 1996 Olympics. A member of the Ancient Order of the Hibernians, the Metropolitan Atlanta Police Emerald Society, and the Hibernian Benevolent Society, he has twice been Grand Marshal of the Atlanta St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Dave, who traces his family to the western counties of Kerry and Sligo, visits Ireland often and became an Irish citizen last year.

Lawrence Flanagan MasterCard Lawrence Flanagan joined MasterCard in October 1996. He is currently the executive vice president and chief marketing officer, worldwide marketing and communications, and a member of the company’s operating committee. Lawrence is responsible for building the value of the MasterCard brand on behalf of customer financial institutions and shareholders as well as managing the brands of the company’s various consumer payment solutions.The force behind MasterCard’s Priceless advertising campaign, his guidance has resulted in the ad currently airing in more than 90 countries. The campaign has won numerous awards and honors. In 2004, Lawrence was recognized as one of the most influential figures in sports by Sports Business International. Lawrence, a fourth-generation Irish American with roots in Galway (the first Flanagan migrated to New Haven, Connecticut on January 10, 1850), holds a BS degree from the University of New Haven. He resides in Darien, Connecticut with his wife and three children.

Brian Flynn Schlossberg Flynn Brian Flynn is a founding partner of Schlossberg Flynn, a business advisory firm in New York that is a partner to emerging companies, helping them to accelerate growth, build greater value and get to market faster. Brian has 20 years of experience in finance, management and business development. In 1999, Brian became CEO of Annotate Technologies. From 2001 until 2003, Brian executed a turnaround as president of RLM Public Relations. Brian holds a business degree from Georgetown University and has written articles for The Wall Street Journal, the Daily News, BrandWeek, and the Harvard Business Review. He is on the Board of Directors of AccuMED Innovative Technologies, Inc. Brian is a member of the U.S.-Ireland Alliance and Irish Americans for Obama.A second-generation Irish American with roots in Leitrim, Rock,Tyrone and Caherciveen, Kerry, Brian says his heritage gives him “the strength to persevere, the courage to rebel, the faith to pray, the eloquence to speak out, and the overwhelming desire to laugh.”

John Fitzpatrick Fitzpatrick Hotel Group John Fitzpatrick, CEO of the Fitzpatrick Hotel Group, North America, began his impressive career in Ireland. John has led his family hotel group to great heights by achieving notable recognition in the U.S. over the last decade. He took a four-year hotel management course at the Fitzpatrick Hotels in Ireland, followed by the prestigious hotel management course at UNLV in Las Vegas. Honing his experience, John returned to Ireland to work at the family hotels in Dublin and Bunratty. John oversees hotel operations in New York, one of the most competitive cities in the world. A discerning business traveler himself, John’s establishments appeal to the business executive, with the utmost in modern amenities. John is chairman of the Hotel Association of NYC, and on the boards of the American Ireland Fund and the Ireland-U.S. Council. He received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor in 2002. John’s charity work reflects his interest in organizations that aid children in need and others that advance the peace process in Northern Ireland.

Bill Flynn Mutual of America During his 34 years with Mutual of America, Bill Flynn established himself as a great leader whose business skills were reflected in Mutual of America’s performance and recognized throughout the life insurance industry. Now Mutual’s chairman emeritus, Bill’s commitment to social justice continues to be felt in the success of the Irish peace process and the work of the National Committee on American Foreign Policy (NCAFP). As the first Irish-American chairman of the NCAFP, it was Bill who invited all of Northern Ireland’s political leaders, including Gerry Adams, to the U.S., a move that propelled Northern Ireland into the peace process. A graduate of Fordham University, Bill is a first-generation Irish American with roots in Counties Mayo and Down. In 1996, he was Grand Marshal of New York City’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade. In 2005, the Tanenbaum Center for Interreligious Understanding presented him with a Special Peacemaker in Action Award “for a lifetime devoted to conflict resolution.”

Jack Foley Aer Lingus As executive vice president of Aer Lingus, Jack Foley oversees all strategic, operational and marketing programs for the airline in North America. A customer-focused airline that offers a professional, efficient and friendly service, Aer Lingus was the first airline to apply the pricing strategies of discounters such as Southwest and America West to trans-Atlantic travel. The company receives less than two complaints per thousand customers in the busiest period of travel. Jack has come a long way from his first job in the airline business, as a bag loader for Lufthansa at JFK. That job, however, paid for his bachelor of science and MBA in international marketing from St. John’s University. In 1979, Jack joined British Airways and rose to the position of vice president of marketing in the U.S. In 1996 he was recruited by Aer Lingus to manage their TransAtlantic division. A second-generation Irish American with roots in County Cork, Jack is on the board of directors of the Ireland-U.S. Business Council. He lives on Long Island with his wife and their son. DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 47



1:24 PM


Page 48


William Clay Ford Jr. Ford Motor Company Ford Motor executive chairman William Clay Ford is the great-grandchild of Henry Ford, who was the son of an Irish immigrant from County Cork. Henry “put the world on wheels by making personal mobility affordable,” and William Jr. is leading the 102-year-old company that bears his family name. William, who joined Ford in 1979, is a dedicated environmentalist. His efforts have won him the President’s Commission on Environmental Quality Award. In 2000, under his leadership, Ford published its first corporate citizenship report on the economic, environmental and social impact of its global operations.As vice chairman of the Detroit Lions, he led efforts to build a new, environmentally friendly stadium in Detroit and helped expand the Detroit Police Athletic League youth football program. He is also honorary chairman of the Southeast Michigan Consortium for Water Quality. William holds a BA from Princeton University, where he has served as trustee, and a master’s from MIT. He is married with four children.

Jack Haire PARADE Publications Jack Haire is CEO of PARADE Publications, a position he has held since June 2009. A seasoned executive with vast experience in both traditional and digital media, Jack was chosen to succeed Walter Anderson, who retired. Prior to joining PARADE, he led his own company, Haire Media Ventures, which was formed in 2006 and specialized in innovative digital advertising and distribution strategies. He also serves as a director of LodgeNet Interactive, Phoenix Companies, and Top Ten Reviews. During his tenure there, he was executive vice president of Time Inc. and president of the Fortune/Money Group, where he helped Fortune to achieve its best years in circulation, advertising market share and profitability. He also partnered with CNN on the launch of, one of the Web’s most successful and profitable finance sites. Jack lives in Connecticut with his wife and two children. He enjoys reading, golf, fishing, and playing or watching sports.

Donagh Herlihy Avon Products, Inc. Donagh Herlihy, senior vice president and CIO, leads Avon’s information technology strategy and operations globally. He directs a team of over 1500 responsible for providing all aspects of the technology infrastructure supporting Avon’s internal business operations and for connecting and enabling the business for more than 5.4 million Avon Representatives worldwide. Donagh joined Avon in March 2008 from Wrigley Company, where he was CIO. In addition to leading IT, Donagh served successively as VP of human resources and VP of supply chain strategy and planning. Prior to joining Wrigley, Donagh spent six years at Gillette, ultimately leading IT at its Duracell subsidiary. Earlier in his career, Donagh was based in the U.S., where he worked in manufacturing, business process reengineering and information technology in both the consumer goods and automotive sectors. Donagh has both a BSc and an MA in industrial engineering from Trinity College, Dublin, and he has completed the Executive Program at the University of Michigan, Ross School of Business. 48 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Colleen Goggins Johnson & Johnson Colleen Goggins is a member of the Johnson & Johnson executive committee and has served as worldwide chairman, consumer group since June, 2001. She joined Johnson & Johnson in 1981. Colleen earned a BS in food chemistry from the University of Wisconsin and an MM from Northwestern University’s Business School. She is a member of the Board of Trustees for Historic Morven, Inc. and the Nature Conservancy in New Jersey. Colleen, whose Irish heritage is on her father’s side, was named to the 2007 Fortune “50 Most Powerful Women in Business” list, and has been a regular on the list for several years. She is proud of Johnson & Johnson’s Women’s Leadership Initiative designed to support leadership development of the firm’s female employees around the world.

John Hayes American Express American Express has been at the forefront of innovation and reinvention throughout its 159year history. CMO John Hayes has continued the company’s legacy of customer-focused innovation. For the past 14 years, he has overseen global marketing efforts. In addition to overseeing marketing strategies and product development, John leads the company’s global advertising, digital marketing strategy, market research, corporate sponsorships, brand management and publishing organizations. John has continued American Express’s tradition of giving back through programs such as “Charge Against Hunger,” “Save The Music,” and “Members Project,” allowing cardmembers to choose causes for American Express to support. Prior to joining American Express, John was the president of Lowe and Partners, and held senior positions at Geer DuBois, Ammirati & Puris and Saatchi & Saatchi Compton. John served on the Tiger Woods Foundation board from 19992006, and currently chairs the Leadership Committee of the National Peace Corps Association.

Martin Holleran Merryck & Co. Martin Holleran is CEO of Merryck & Co. USA, the world’s leading CEO mentoring company. Martin joined Merryck after over 26 years with General Electric, where he held the position of corporate officer. Martin received his BS from the University of Scranton and an MA from the University of Delaware. He received the Torch of Liberty Award from the Anti-Defamation League, as well as serving as a commencement speaker at Rutgers University and as an executive in residence at St. Joseph’s College. Martin established the Children’s Pompe Foundation, a group that searches for a cure for a rare form of muscular dystrophy. He has participated in the Presidential Executive Interchange in Washington, D.C. and is on the board of regents at Catholic University. A second-generation Irish American, his father’s family came from Mayo and his mother’s from Sligo. He says,“Being Irish has given me the ethics, will, focus and tolerance to succeed.” Martin has been married for 45 years and has three children.



1:24 PM

Page 50




KPMG’s Shaun Kelly sets the strategic direction for U.S. operations.


haun Kelly is the vice chair in charge of KPMG ’s U.S. Tax Practice and regional head of the Americas Tax practice. He is responsible for setting the strategic direction for, and overseeing the operations of, KPMG ’s Tax practice. Shaun leads a team of over 400 tax partners and more than 4,000 tax professionals. He serves as a member of the firm ’s Management and Operating Committees. Prior to assuming the vice chair role in 2005, Shaun led KPMG ’s Global Transaction Services practice and was regional coordinating partner for the Transaction Services practice in the Americas. Shaun grew up in Belfast and attended Holy Child Primary School and St Mary ’s Christian Brothers Grammar School in West Belfast. He received a bachelor of commerce degree from University College, Dublin. Shaun first moved to the U.S. in 1984 on a short-term assignment. After working in Belfast from 1990-1999 he returned to the U.S. where he has worked in KPMG ’s offices in San Francisco, Chicago and New York. Shaun lives in Connecticut with his wife Mary, who was born in Donegal, and their four children, two of whom were born in Belfast.

What is your favorite memory of Ireland? That question is a bit difficult for me to answer, as it seems to suggest I have left Ireland behind. In fact, Ireland is as much a part of my life as ever, in my values and in my approach to life. One thing I do remember vividly is the smell of turf fires in Donegal. I particularly remember them from the times when I would attend language school in the Gaeltacht. Groups of us would spend a few weeks there during the summer learning the language and taking in the culture. Those days were great breaks from the Belfast at that time. The smell of the turf and a full Irish breakfast will always bring back those times. Is there anything in your heritage or any particular Irish characteristics that you think helped you to get to where you're at? My father ’s family came from the Falls Road in Belfast – nine children growing up in a tiny terrace house. Like many of the Irish they had a great sense of humor, which helped them deal with whatever challenges came along. I ’ve come to realize that that same sense of humor and the ability to keep things in perspective are great strengths that have helped me with all the changes in business, particularly over these past few years. As Oscar Wilde said, life is too important to be taken seriously! What was the best career advice you were ever given? Gene O ’Kelly, a former chairman of KPMG who sadly passed away in 2005, once told me that the key to success was being 50 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

focused on the role or task at hand and not getting too far ahead of yourself. He said it was the same principle as in sports, where the adage is, if you look ahead to your next opponent you will likely lose the game you are playing. I ’ve taken that advice to heart. While it is important to have a long-term plan, it is equally critical that you succeed at what you are doing now. The focus has to be on developing your skills, experience and the ability to learn. People will notice the good job you are doing, and their respect will position you for the next move.

How do you balance your corporate responsibilities and your family/personal life? Finding balance is always a challenge, and it is not an area where one size fits all. Everyone has to find the balance that is right for them. I have been extremely fortunate that my wife Mary has been there to support me all along the way. Whether attending business events, guiding our family through numerous moves (many of which she had to organize while I was not there to help!) or encouraging me when things get tough, she is always there for me and our children. A key is putting down markers on the non-negotiable things that really matter to you. It might be a family vacation every summer, a community or church organization you want to devote time to, or just getting to the gym every day. You need to commit to making time for those things, let your colleagues know they are important to you, and learn what is important to them. We really emphasize achieving this balance at KPMG. We all work together to help each other achieve the balance we want. How can American business continue to be on the cutting edge and ensure that it remains a leader in the global economy? The spirit of invention and inquisitiveness is what has made America the great economy it is, and innovation will ensure that it remains a leader. To help keep the innovation engine running strong, we need to get a number of key factors right, including continued investment in education, support for entrepreneurs and maintenance of efficient and respected capital markets. Historically, a rich source for innovation has been the immigrants who have come to America, and I believe that is still the case today. Einsteins can come from anywhere, be it Asia or Europe, including Ireland. The diversity of experience and outlook that immigrants bring to any country allow them to see new solutions for old problems – and that ever-fresh perspective is at the heart of a growing, strong economy. I think the greatest opportunities for breakthrough innovation exist in sustainability and green technology. It is critical that our world focus on these areas, and I have no doubt American techIA nology and business will rise to the challenge.



12:46 PM

Page 52

25Years of Great Business Leaders Brian Moynihan

“I like to think my vocation is improving people ’s lives. That ’s why I went into the housing business initially —I wanted to see if I could improve the way poor people lived. ”

Anne Sweeney

“I think that no matter how many generations removed, there’s a little bit of a chip on the shoulder, and that you always feel you must prove yourself . There’s no sense of entitlement . . . you’ve got to go out and work hard to get there.”

“I believe they hired me here because I do have a really strong feeling about my family, whether it ’s my kids or my extended family. ”

– President, Disney Channel; Executive Vice President, ABC. (Nov/Dec 1998)

Eileen Naughton



Joseph Corcoran

“I believe strongly that the purpose of having a meeting is to share one ’s views with one ’s colleagues and then decide on the right course of action. ”

– President, Federal Reserve Bank of New York; Vice Chairman, Federal Reserve Board. (Aug/Sept 2000)

To celebrate our 25th Anniversary Business 100 feature, here are excerpts from 25 interviews with the best and the brightest Irish Americans in their respective industries.

– President of Global Banking and Wealth Management, Bank of America. (Aug/Sept 2009)

Bill McDonough

“When you think about this little country, [Ireland,] it has put forth some interesting people on this earth. ”

– President, Time. (Dec/Jan 2006)

– Founder, Corcoran, Jennison Companies. (Dec/Jan 2006)

Tom Murphy “The great success story in the United States is the Irish, and you just have to look at corporate America to see that there is no other group that ’s had the success in business that the Irish have had. ”

– Chairman, Capital Cities/ABC. (Nov/Dec 1995 )



12:47 PM

Page 53

Tom Moran

Alan G. Lafley

Tom Flatley

“It might have been while driving a taxi at two o ’clock in the morning during my college years that I developed my passionate belief in the greatness of our country, and the power of the American Dream. I came to understand how hard people are willing to work under what, at times, can be extreme conditions, just because of the promise of a better life for their kids. ”

“As you get older you reflect more on your history. You tend to think of the things that are more enduring. Where you come from is a big part of who you are and where you are going. It is good to reconnect to all that. ”

“If you take advantage of the opportunities presented to you, you will do well. ”

– Chairman and CEO, Mutual of America. (October 1992)

“Don ’t be so sure that you ’re that important in life because eventually it ’s going to end. If you don ’t have that in perspective, you ’re going to wish someday that you did, because you ’re going to look back on it and say, I didn ’t have to be quite that rude or self-important, or that my personal visibility wasn ’t as important as I made it at the time. ”

“When you grow up in a small neighborhood like Woodside, you learn early on that in order to survive you have to work with people and treat them fairly. My clients trusted me to work in their best interest, just like I trusted them to take care of me when I brought something. I wanted my clients to be treated right and it paid off. ”

– President, Merrill Lynch. (Premier Issue 1986)

Dennis Long

Nicholas Moore

“Irish Americans are really only now reaching the top levels of business, law, finance and politics. We ’re the third generation and we ’ve paid our dues. It ’s to time to put something back. ”

“[I] would not feel happy to be the chairman of this company and at the same time not have a good relationship with my children. ”

– President, Anheuser-Busch. (January 1986)

– Chairman, PricewaterhouseCoopers Inc. (Aug/Sept 1999)

Brendan McDonagh “If you ’ve got good ideas coming from your team, try not to stop them. Your job is to manage the bright people around you and be comfortable and not be threatened by them. ”

– Chairman and CEO, C-SPAN. (Dec/Jan 2002)

– CEO of HSBC North America Holdings. (Aug/Sept 2008)


– Chairman and CEO, Elan Corporation. (Dec/Jan 2002)

“We need to get Irish Americans together, to use the vast economic clout we have to help Ireland.”

Dan Tully

Brian Lamb

“The idea that you can really make a difference is powerful and inspiring. It drives most of the people in this company, it certainly drives me. ”

Bill Flynn

– Chairman, President, CEO, Procter & Gamble Company. (Dec/Jan 2006)

– Chairman, President, CEO, Mutual of America; Chairman, Concern Worldwide U.S. (Apr/May 2008)

Donal Geaney

– Real Estate Mogul. (Dec/Jan 2003)




12:47 PM

Page 54

25Years of Great Business Leaders


Peter Lynch

John Dillon

Charles Feeney

Brian Connolly

“Investing is a passive business. You can ’t control the market. You just have to sit back. You have to understand you ’ll make mistakes. It ’s not your fault. If you ’re consistent and you keep doing it, you ’ll win. ”

“In the last few years we have been trying to help our communities understand what we do and the relationship between the success of our business and jobs and relationships in the community. ”

“The only good thing about the publicity is that it focused attention on the issue of giving. ”

“We are a company that doesn ’t want to read our own headlines about our social responsibility. And I personally don ’t want to be breathing in my own exhaust. We just want to touch lives and make a difference. ”

– Vice Chairman, Fidelity Magellan Fund. (Oct/Nov 1999)

– Founder, Atlantic Foundation. (Nov/Dec 1997)

– CEO and Chairman, International Paper. (Nov/Dec 1997)

– Executive Vice President and President, Avon North America. (Dec/Jan 2005)

Kathleen Murphy “I tell a lot of the young people I work with: You don ’t have to be the smartest person in the room, but if you have a positive attitude, if you ’re willing to roll up your sleeves, work hard, be a team player, people will gravitate toward you. ”

– CEO, US Wealth Management, ING US Financial Services. (Dec/Jan 2008)

Don Keough

Susan Kelliher Ungaro

“You don’t have to have a fantastic, great, highfalutin powerful job. I really, truly saw that in my father. He was a bus mechanic and he certainly worked long hours, but he took pride in his work, and he loved the friends that he made at the bus company. He went to work cheerful.” – Editor-in-Chief, Family Circle. (Dec/Jan 2002)


“And so, my friends, each of us is a wonderful Irish story. And a wonderful American story. An Irish-American story. We each have our own story and it ’s important that we have it, that we cherish it, that we pass it along to our children and our grandchildren, because the truth is that a family culture and a company culture and a country culture is a collection of stories. So we need to find ours and to tell ours, and for each of us, today is a new chapter in our story. ”

– Chairman, Allen & Co. (Business 100 Keynote address, November 2008)

Jack Welch “My mother was my buddy, my manager, my critic. She was everything. She taught me to play to win, but know how to lose. ... She always said there were only two kinds of people, those who are Irish and those who wish they were Irish. I mean, it was bred into my toes. ”

– Chairman and CEO, General Electric. (November 2002)

Michael Roarty “As an Irish American, I hope that [young Irish Americans] will always be mindful of the heritage of their ancestors, to know that we too suffered our discriminatory phase and that that knowledge will help them understand others. ”

– Vice President, Anheuser-Busch. (June 1992)

Editor’s note: Positions listed are the job titles of executives at the time of the interview.



1:36 PM


Page 56


James Houlihan Houlihan-Parnes Realtors LLC James J. Houlihan, representing the fourth generation in a family business founded in 1891, is managing partner of Houlihan-Parnes Realtors, LLC. A graduate of Manhattan Preparatory School and Fordham University’s School of Business, James recently put together an exhibit entitled Fighting Irishmen: A Celebration of the Celtic Warrior which premiered at the Irish Arts Center in New York City before moving to the South Street Seaport Museum and then to the John J. Burns Library at Boston College. The Fighting Irishmen exhibit is currently the feature exhibit at the Ulster American Folk Park in Tyrone, Ireland. James serves on the board of the Irish Arts Center and has served as chairman of the Great Hunger Memorial Committee of Westchester County. A fourth-generation Irish American on his father’s side with roots in Kenmare, Kerry, and second-generation on his mother’s side, with roots in Tyrone and Donegal, James lives in Bronxville with his wife Pat and their five children.

Michael Kelly The Weather Channel Co. Michael J. Kelly is president and CEO of The Weather Channel Companies, the world’s largest weather-focused media and technology company, reaching over 160 million consumers. Michael joined TWCC from Veronis Suhler Stevenson, the media-focused private equity firm, where he was Senior Advisor to the fund. Prior to that, he held several positions in over 23 years at Time Warner. He was also founder and CEO of American Town Networks, an interactive media company that creates local networks in thousands of towns. Mike is an officer of the American Advertising Federation and Chairman of the Advertising Hall Of Fame. He was also on the boards of The Advertising Council and Professionals in Advertising PAC. He is a founder of The Kelly Gang, which benefits grassroots charities. He is from Chicago and graduated from the University of Illinois in 1979. Mike’s great-uncle was the first Irish mayor of Chicago, and his sister is filmmaker and author Mary Pat Kelly. Mike has dual citizenship in the U.S. and Ireland.

MacDara Lynch Pfizer MacDara Lynch is the vice president/team leader of Pfizer’s global external supply division. He joined Pfizer in 1972 in Ringaskiddy, Cork and over the years has worked in Belgium, Indonesia, and Nebraska. In 2000, MacDara transferred to Brooklyn as Site Leader for the manufacturing facility. In 2003 he was appointed as vice president/team leader of Pfizer’s global manufacturing division, United States East/Canada Region before assuming his current position in 2007. Born in Bandon, County Cork, MacDara graduated from University College Cork in 1972 with a BSc degree in chemistry.Throughout his travels, he has always been active in the community. He served as Honorary Irish Consul in Indonesia for two years and served on Brooklyn Legal Services Corporation’s board of directors. He is also a member of the board of directors of the Ireland - U.S. Council and Cooperation Ireland. MacDara and his wife Ita have three children and two grandchildren and live in Connecticut. He says being Irish “helps to refocus on what is really important in life.” 56 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Alfred Kelly, Jr. American Express As president of American Express Company, Alfred F. Kelly, Jr. works with the chairman and CEO to develop strategic direction and key policies for American Express. He is responsible for the company’s global consumer businesses, including consumer and small-business cards, customer service, global banking, prepaid products, risk and information management, and consumer travel. Alfred was one of two group presidents at American Express after joining the strategic planning department in 1987. Before joining American Express, he worked in government and private industry. Alfred is on the Board of Trustees of New York Presbyterian Hospital and the Boards of Directors of Concern Worldwide USA, the Council on Foreign Relations, and the Iona Preparatory School. He is vice chairman of the Wall Street Charity Golf Classic, a fundraising event for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. He earned a BA and an MBA from Iona College. He is a second-generation Irish American with roots in Cork, and is married with five children.

Don Keough Allen & Company, Inc. Don Keough has been chairman of the board of Allen & Company, Inc., a New York investmentbanking firm, since 1993. In 1993, Don retired as president, COO and a director of The Coca-Cola Company after 43 years of working with Coca-Cola. From 1986 to 1993 he was chairman of the board of Coca-Cola Enterprises, Inc., the world’s largest bottling system. He also served as chairman of Columbia Pictures, before it was sold to Sony Inc. Don serves on the boards of InterActive Corp, Global Yankee Holdings, Berkshire Hathaway Inc. and The Coca-Cola Company. Don has also served as a member on the boards of McDonald’s Corporation, The Washington Post Company, H. J. Heinz Company and The Home Depot. He is chairman emeritus of the Board of Trustees and a life trustee of the University of Notre Dame. He is a trustee of several other educational, charitable and civic organizations. Don resides in Atlanta, Georgia, with his wife, Marilyn.They have six children and 18 grandchildren.

Pearse Lyons Alltech Dr. Pearse Lyons is the founder and president of Alltech, a global animal health company that employs more than 1,900 people and has a presence in 113 countries around the world. Pearse graduated from the National University of Ireland, Dublin, and pursued his master’s and doctoral degrees at the University of Birmingham, England. He worked as a biochemist in Irish Distillers before founding Alltech in 1980. Pearse received the State Export Award for Kentucky and was named Kentucky Entrepreneur of the Year in 1993. He has been recognized for his contribution to science and industry and has received honorary doctorates from the University of Plymouth, England, and Heriot-Watt University, Scotland. His alma mater selected Pearse as one of its honorary doctorates on its 150th anniversary. Recently, he was recognized as one of the top 15 Irish-American life scientists of the year by Biolink USA-Ireland. He has authored more than 20 books and numerous research papers in scientific journals.



1:36 PM

Page 57

Profiles BUSINESS100 Joanne Maguire Lockheed Martin Joanne Maguire is executive vice president of Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company business area and an officer of Lockheed Martin Corporation. SSC provides a broad spectrum of advanced-technology systems for national security, civil and commercial customers. Joanne serves on the board of directors for United Launch Alliance and on the boards of two nonprofit organizations, Space Foundation and INROADS. Joanne assumed her current position in 2006. She previously served as vice president and deputy of SSC. Prior to joining Lockheed Martin in 2003, she worked at TRW’s Space & Electronics sector, now Northrop Grumman Space Technology. Joanne earned a BA from Michigan State University and an MA from UCLA. She is a graduate of the executive program in management at UCLA’s Anderson School of Management and completed the Harvard Program for Senior Executives in National and International Security. Joanne is a first-generation Irish American whose father, Michael F. Maguire, was born in Ballyshannon, County Donegal.

Philip Patrick McAveety Starwood Hotels

John Martin All New York Title Agency John Martin was admitted to practice in New York, New Jersey and before the United States Supreme Court. John has served as counsel for Lawyers Title Insurance Corp. He founded All New York Title Agency in White Plains and is their general counsel. John served as chairman of the Westchester County Bar Association Real Property Law section. John served as chairman of White Plains Housing Services and as president of the Fisher Hill Association. In 1994, John was elected to the White Plains Common Council. He was vice chair of the Urban Renewal Agency and chair of the Comprehensive Plan Management Committee. He is on the Board of Assessment Review and is chairman of the Business Improvement District. John founded the White Plains St. Patrick's Day Parade, which held its first parade in 1998 with 5 bands and a few marching groups.The parade now includes hundreds of marchers. His family is from Tyrone, emigrating because of the Famine. He has been married for 22 years and has four children.

James McCann

Phil McAveety is executive vice president and chief brand officer of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc., a leading hotel and leisure company. Phil is responsible for worldwide marketing and brand performance. Phil served as global brand director for Camper International in Mallorca, Spain where he developed the company’s overall strategic growth plan. Prior to joining Camper International, Phil spent nine years with Nike Inc. in several positions, including vice president of marketing for Nike Europe, Middle East and Asia (EMEA). Before joining Nike, Phil spent nine years with Leo Burnett International in a variety of roles. Phil has lived and worked in the UK, Portugal, Hong Kong, the U.S., the Netherlands and Spain. McAveety earned an AMP from Harvard Business School and a BA in Economic History from Exeter University. He is a first-generation Irish by way of London who fondly remembers his first visit to the U.S. for the 1994 World Cup. His father Jim hails from Swalinbar in County Cavan and his mother, Bridie, from Kilmichael, County Cork.

James McCann is a successful entrepreneur, public speaker and author whose passion is helping others to connect with the important people in their lives. Jim’s understanding of the universal need for social connections and interaction has focused on the concepts of family and celebratory occasions of all kinds. His vision and energy led to his founding of, which has grown into the world’s leading florist and gift shop. Jim’s willingness to embrace technologies that help people connect and express themselves long before others has enabled him to stay at the forefront of consumer and social trends. Jim has become an award-winning public speaker, published author and a frequent guest on radio and television programs nationwide. Jim is a member of the Board of Directors of Willis Group Holdings Limited, London based, and Gruppo Lottomatica in Rome, Italy. He also works on many charitable and educational boards. Jim is a third-generation Irish American with roots in Armagh and Limerick.

David McCourt

Frank McCourt

Granahan McCourt Capital David C. McCourt, chairman and CEO of Granahan McCourt Capital, has founded or bought 14 companies in 7 countries. David was raised in Watertown, Massachusetts and graduated from Georgetown University. In 1982, he created his first company, McCourt Cable Systems. David also founded the Grenadian TV station, Discovery TV. David was executive producer on the series What's Going On?, documenting the impact of global conflict on children around the world. In 2005, David won an Emmy for the series Reading Rainbow and produced Miracle's Boys on Nickelodeon's teenage network,The N. Today David serves as CEO of Satellite Holdings, LLC. In 1984, President Reagan presented David with the first award from the White House recognizing accomplishments by private sector businesses. In 2004 the American-Irish Historical Society presented him with its Gold Medal. He lives with his wife and two children. David is a second-generation Irish American. His mother’s family is from Galway and his father's is from County Tyrone.

Los Angeles Dodgers Frank McCourt is the owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers. Frank, a lifelong baseball fan, purchased the team in 2004, and has lived in Los Angeles since then. Recognizing his role in one of baseball’s most pioneering franchises, since 2004 Frank has been committed to bringing championship baseball back to Los Angeles, expanding the Dodgers’ participation in the community, and providing fans with one of the best baseball experiences. In 1977, Frank founded The McCourt Company, which specializes in the development of major commercial real estate projects. His family has been associated with nearly every major Boston real estate project, including the city’s Back Bay, Logan Airport and Boston’s waterfront. Frank graduated from Georgetown in 1975, and is a member of the university’s Board of Directors. He is active in a wide array of educational, trade, civic and charitable organizations. He is also board chairman of Thinkcure, which raises money to facilitate cancer research. He has four sons, Drew,Travis, Casey, and Gavin. DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 57



1:36 PM

Page 58


Communicator The

Western Union’s Anne McCarthy says “Don’t make excuses.”


s executive vice president of corporate communications and public affairs for Western Union, Anne McCarthy is responsible for the company ’s overall communications strategy. She oversees global media relations, internal communications, reputation management, government relations, community relations and the Western Union Foundation. Anne is based in Englewood, CO, at Western Union ’s global headquarters.

What’s your favorite memory of visiting Ireland? My older sister and I landed on our cousins ’ doorstep in Malahide in 1981. We had never met the Raffertys, but we became instant members of their family. They took us in, fed us, entertained us and introduced us to our homeland. We spent two weeks with the Raffertys and then we ventured to Ballyhaunis, Co. Mayo, where my grandfather, Thomas Mulkeen, lived and visited our grandmother ’s hometown in Co. Westmeath. Our cousin took us to Irish pubs and introduced us to Irish folk music. We selected our Waterford patterns, purchased Aron sweaters and met relatives we had only heard about during our childhood. As I approach my 50th birthday, my husband will repeat a decade-long tradition of taking me to Dublin in December to celebrate another landmark birthday. Is there anything in your Irish heritage or any particular Irish characteristics that helped you get to where you are? I have the good fortune of “having the map of Ireland ” on my face as well as having a recognizable Irish surname. My grandparents were Irish immigrants who helped shape my parents ’ philosophy of faith and family first, followed by education and community involvement. The Irish characteristics that have helped me on my journey through life include a good sense of humor, strong family values, a healthy competitive spirit and the good sense not to take myself too seriously. Many of America’s greatest investors and innovators were immigrants. Where do you stand on America’s current immigration policies and attitudes? I believe immigration is a natural bi-product of globalization, and should be a choice, not a necessity. I am actively involved in immigration reform as the head of Western Union ’s Corporate Affairs Department. I am in the unique position to help create awareness and understanding of the relationship between the commercial aspects of globalization and the important role immigrants play in economies around the globe. My team and I have worked with the Economist Intelligence Unit and New York University (the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, & Human 58 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Development) to develop a fact-based approach to this emotional and controversial topic. Further, I am working with the Migration Policy Institute and The Hague Process and the Global Agenda Council to develop the “business case ” for global migration. Simply put, I believe there is the human case as well as the business case for global migration.

What was the best career advice you were ever given? My father, an avid tennis player, told me, “don ’t have rabbit ears. ” While he was encouraging me not to listen to the groans over a double fault or the cheers for a strategically placed overhead smash, I applied his sage advice to my business life. Because of my parents, I ’ve always had a clear understanding of my “true north. ” While I ’ve encountered a few speed bumps along the way, I have always remembered my dad ’s words of wisdom, which have helped keep me grounded. What advice would you give to young women breaking out in your industry? Get the best education you can afford – be curious. Challenge yourself and question the status quo. Travel, read, engage. Don ’t waste time. Don ’t make excuses. Be kind. Listen. Give. Laugh. How do you balance your corporate and your personal life? I work hard and play hard. I can figure out “balance ” when I am retired. On the professional side, I have the good fortune of working with energized colleagues who are committed to making a difference to our stockholders, customers and communities. On the personal side, I am blessed with a supportive husband and a large, loving family and terrific friends who inspire me. How can American business reinvent itself so that we stay on the cutting edge and ensure that America remains a leader in the global economy? The entrepreneurial spirit is what has fueled America for over 200 years. I believe that spirit will continue to drive our country in the future. It ’s important for America to set higher standards in education and to leverage technology as a differentiator. It ’s also important for America to define the balance between the role of the public sector and the private sector – free enterprise is a critical component of America ’s DNA. As a society, we can ’t become complacent. We must remain intellectually curious and push into new territories with confidence. I believe each country and every culture has an opportuIA nity to contribute to the betterment of our planet.



1:36 PM


Page 60


Liam McGee The Hartford Liam E. McGee is chairman and CEO of The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc. He served until recently as president of the consumer and small business bank part of the Bank of America Corporation. His bank served over 50 million consumer households and small businesses through a distribution network that included over 6,100 branches. Prior to Bank of America, he held senior positions at Wells Fargo. Liam is active in civic affairs and education and is a member of the National Urban League Board of Trustees and the Financial Services Roundtable Board of Directors. Liam has acted as chairman of both the University of San Diego Board of Trustees and the United Way of Greater Los Angeles, and served as a director of the Los Angeles branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. A native of Donegal, Liam grew up in Southern California. He is a graduate of the University of San Diego, with a master’s degree in business administration from Pepperdine University and a law degree from Loyola Law School.

Thomas McInerney ING Insurance Americas Thomas J. McInerney is the chairman & CEO of ING Insurance Americas and also serves on the ING Group executive board. He is responsible for ING’s wealth management, retirement services, insurance and investment businesses in the Americas, and also oversees the global coordination of ING Investment Management. Thomas was president of Aetna Financial Services and joined ING after they acquired Aetna Financial in December 2000. After graduating with honors from Colgate University in 1978 with a BA degree in economics, McInerney received a master’s of business administration from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College in 1982. A fourth-generation Irish American with roots in Counties Clare and Cork, Thomas’s great-grandparents, both maternal and paternal, came to the United States in the 1840’s and 50’s working on the railroads in New Haven, the brass mills in Waterbury, and the cable mills in upstate New York.

Margaret Molloy Gerson Lehrman Group Margaret Molloy is VP of marketing at Gerson Lehrman Group, a company that connects business decision makers with subjectmatter experts worldwide. Prior to GLG, Margaret held marketing leadership positions at Siebel Systems. Margaret also served as VP of marketing at Telecom Ireland US where she advocated Ireland as a location for inward investment. She came to the U.S. with Enterprise Ireland in 1993. She is a member of the American Ireland Fund and prominent supporter of Irish-led causes in New York. Born in Offally, Margaret is the eldest of six children. She earned an MBA from Harvard Business School, and holds a BA in European business from the University of Ulster and the Universidad de Valladolid, Spain. Margaret and her husband Jim O’Sullivan and sons Finn and Emmet live in Manhattan. She says, “Three characteristics of the Irish—a genuine interest in others, passion and grit—define my philosophy of life and work.” 60 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Michael McGonigle Audax Credit Opportunities Michael McGonigle joined Audax Group in 2007, a founding member of the Audax Credit Opportunities Fund. He is responsible for the day-to-day activities of the fund, which invests in debt securities of leveraged, non-investment grade companies with a focus on the middle market. Before joining Audax Group, Mike was a managing director for GE’s corporate lending business. He joined GE in 1982 in the international trading operations group and in 1986 joined GE Capital’s corporate finance group. He held positions in GE’s leveraged finance businesses. Mike was a founding member of the par and distressed loan investment businesses, building the sourcing and underwriting teams. In 2004, Mike joined GE Corporate Financial Services corporate lending business. He is on the Board of Directors of the Community Fund of Bronxville, Eastchester and Tuckahoe. Mike received an MBA from Fordham’s Graduate School of Business and a BS from Fordham. His mother is from Churchill, County Donegal. His father was born in Belleek, County Fermanagh. He is married with three daughters.

Andrew McKenna Schwarz Supply Source Andrew McKenna is chairman of Schwarz Supply Source, an international distributor of paper packaging and allied products, and is also non-executive chairman of McDonald’s. He also serves as a director of the AON Corporation, the Chicago Bears Football Club and Skyline Corporation. Andrew is a trustee of the Museum of Science and Industry, and a director of the United Way of Metropolitan Chicago, the Children’s Memorial Hospital of Chicago, the Big Shoulders Fund of the Archdiocese of Chicago, The Ireland Economic Advisory Board and the Lyric Opera of Chicago. A graduate of Notre Dame with a BS in business administration, Andrew was awarded the university’s Laetare Medal in 2000. He was the chairman of the board of trustees from 1992-2000 and continues to serve today. He earned a JD from the DePaul Law School. A second-generation Irish American, Andrew has roots in Mayo and Monaghan. He and his wife Joan have seven children and 24 grandchildren.

Thomas Moran Mutual of America Tom Moran is chairman, president and CEO of Mutual of America—one of the nation’s preeminent life insurance companies. He began his career with Mutual in 1975 as a pension underwriter. In 1994 he became the first CEO to emerge from the ranks. He serves on many other boards including Aer Lingus, the National Committee on American Foreign Policy, the Smurfit Graduate School of Business at UCD, and the American Cancer Society Foundation. He is a member of the Taoiseach’s Economic Advisory Board. Tom has been awarded the Calvary Medal, the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, the Terence Cardinal Cooke Award, and has received an honorary doctorate in law from the National University of Ireland and an honorary doctorate of science from Queen’s University. A native New Yorker, he earned a BS from Manhattan College. He traces his Irish ancestors to Fermanagh and Tipperary and lives in New York City with his wife Joan.



1:36 PM

Page 62


Coach The

Football and trading are Joe Moglia’s passions, and one helps the other.


oe Moglia is a first-generation American whose mother is from Belfast. He is married with six children. In the business world, Joe is chairman of TD Ameritrade, which he joined in 2001 after 17 years at Merrill Lynch. Joe knows he was a better business leader because of his experience as a football coach. Over 16 years, he won two Ivy championships at Dartmouth, set school and national records at Lafayette, turned two high school programs around, wrote a book and numerous articles in national coaching journals, and has been inducted into two halls of fame. He is currently the Leadership and Life Skills Consultant for football at the University of Nebraska as well as the Chairman of the Board for TD Ameritrade.

How does TD Ameritrade empower its customers to use investing wisely? We strongly believe in the power of financial literacy – in helping people not only understand how to invest, but how to make smarter decisions when doing it. To that end, we provide a variety of custom tools, calculators, third-party research and investor education programs to help investors build confidence and take an active role in the management of their financial futures.

Your parents were both immigrants. How did they meet?

My dad was an Italian immigrant who fought for the United States in World War II. When the war was over he met my mom in Belfast. After returning to the United States he wrote and asked her to marry him. My mom took the letter to her parents, and they said they needed to discuss three things. First, he was Italian (I'm not sure they thought that was a good thing). Second, he owned his own business (a fruit store in the Bronx). And three, he lived on Park Avenue – “You can't let this guy get away! ” (He did live on Park Avenue, but it was the Park Avenue in the Bronx, overlooking the railroad tracks). When my mom arrived in this country, she moved into my dad's apartment – along with his mother, two brothers and his sister. And when she looked out the window, all she saw were the railroad tracks. When she wrote home to her parents, she said, “I don't know why the Americans make such a big deal about Park Avenue. ” I would like to visit Northern Ireland and see some of the places and people that my mother loved in the 24 years she lived there.

Is there anything in your heritage or any particular Irish characteristics that you think helped you to get where you're at?

Sense of humor – even in your darkest hour it's essential. It's comforting and brings us closer together. Laughter means the same thing in any language. I've always strived to look at the brighter side of any situation – no matter how challenging – and bring others along with me. 62 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

How do you feel about America’s strict immigration policy? As the son of immigrants, it's hard for me not to appreciate the value of immigration. It's an opportunity to start over – to work hard and pursue a better life for you and your family. I think there's still a place for it in America, but we have to find a way to develop the right process – and hold people accountable when they don't follow it.

How do you balance your corporate and your personal life?

I've had the opportunity to do two things in my life that I truly love – coach football and work in the business world. As I've transitioned from CEO to chairman, many other opportunities have come my way. But the thing that I want to do the most is work with youth at the college level as a football coach. To that end, I'm currently a consultant for football for the University of Nebraska. Balancing personal life and professional responsibilities is a challenge. It all goes back to passion. If you love what you do, you'll find a way to make it all work. Sometimes it might be missing a meeting so you can see your son's game. Other times it might be missing a school play because of a crisis at the office. There's always a tradeoff, but if you're honest with your loved ones and communicate often and openly you'll find it easier to balance your responsibilities as everyone feels comfortable airing their concerns, rather than keeping them bottled up as they build into resentment over time. The other thing to remember is that your family is your family for life. And at the end of the day do what's best for you and your family – not for someone else.

What was the best career advice you were ever given?

The best career advice I ever received came directly from my Irish mother. Too many people “go to work ” every day, and they're miserable. Money, power and prestige are all well and good, but your career choice must first and foremost match your capabilities, and you must have the passion to do it each and every day. The right skills will help you get the work done, and a passionate drive will carry you through the long nights, the time away from your family and the challenges that every professional faces at one point or another.

How can American business reinvent itself so that we continue to be a leader in the global economy?

American business may have become a little too comfortable. The best thing we can do is get back to the basics and embrace change and diversity. Every business has three key constituencies: clients, shareholders (or stakeholders) and employees, and I think there are many management teams in this country that have lost sight of those things. That's how you avoid trouble, to some degree, and ensure that the decisions you make as a business leader make sense with the long-term growth of the organization. Second, the global economy has made us a more diverse world. Never before have there been more cultures, ideas or innovations to learn from, and if you're stuck in your ways and unwilling to shake the establishment a bit, you will be left behind. I'm not saying embrace change for the sake of change, but it's important that we as business leaders keep an open mind to what's really having an impact and express a willingness to try new things if they are a reasonable fit for our goals and objectives. Who says “it has to be done this way because it's always been done this way? ” Let's get back to our revolutionary mindset and disrupt the universe a bit. IA



1:36 PM


Page 64


Brian Moynihan Bank of America Brian T. Moynihan is president of consumer & small business banking for Bank of America, which serves 53 million U.S. consumer and small-business households with unrivaled convenience through the leading online and mobile banking platforms. Prior to his current role, Brian led global banking and wealth management for Bank of America. Brian chairs Bank of America’s global diversity & inclusion council. He joined Bank of America in 2004 following the company’s merger with FleetBoston Financial, serving as president of global wealth and investment management. Brian joined Fleet in April 1993 as deputy general counsel. Brian is a graduate of Brown University and the University of Notre Dame Law School. He serves on the boards of directors of YouthBuild Boston and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Boston. A fourth-generation Irish American with roots in Cork and Kilkenny, Brian lives in Wellesley, Massachusetts with his wife and three children.

Alan Mulally Ford Motor Company President and CEO Alan Mulally joined Ford Motor Company in September 2006. He also serves on the company’s Board of Directors. Prior to joining Ford, he was president of Boeing Commercial Airplanes. Alan has received recognition for his leadership throughout his career and was named “Person of the Year” in 2006 by Aviation Week magazine and one of the “Best Leaders of 2005” by Business Week. Alan holds a BA and an MS in aeronautical and astronautical engineering from the University of Kansas. He also has a master’s in management from MIT and was a 1982 Alfred P. Sloan fellow. He has sat on the advisory boards of NASA, the University of Kansas, MIT and the U.S. Air Force Scientific Advisory Board.With a surname derived from the Gaelic Ó Maolalaidh, Alan Mulally traces his roots to the western counties of Ireland and Galway in particular.

Michael Muldowney Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Michael P. Muldowney is executive vice president and CFO of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company and its parent company, Dublin-based Education Media and Publishing Group Ltd. (EMPG). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt is the world’s largest K–12 educational publisher. Throughout his career, Michael has led 20 acquisitions, an initial public offering, and numerous senior and subordinate debt issuances in addition to several preferred equity issuances. Previously, Michael was COO, CFO, and a member of the board of directors at Nextera Enterprises. He was also a partner with Oliver Wyman, an international strategy-consulting firm. An active trustee in a number of non-profit organizations, including the Adopt-a-Student Foundation, Cathedral High School and Hugs for Heroes, Inc., Michael is also a board member of Youk’s Hits for Kids, a charity which supports underfunded programs to ensure the safety and well being of children.

Bill Mullaney MetLife William J. Mullaney is president of the U.S. business organization at MetLife, a leading provider of life insurance, annuities, dental and disability insurance as well as retirement and savings products. Bill was named to this position upon MetLife’s combination of its institutional and individual businesses, as well as the auto & home unit, into one organization. From January 2007 through July 2009, Bill was president of institutional business, which provided insurance and retirement benefits to employers of all sizes. Previously, he served as the president of MetLife auto & home. Bill serves as a member of the board of directors for the Employee Benefit Research Institute, MetLife auto & home, MetLife Europe Limited, MetLife Bank and MetLife Foundation. He also is the chairman of the New York Blood Center’s Volunteer Leadership Campaign. He received a BA from the University of Pittsburgh, an MBA from Pace University and a chartered life underwriter designation from The American College. A first-generation Irish American, his parents hail from Roscommon and Cork. He is married with two children.

Kathleen Murphy

Martin Naughton

Fidelity Investments

Glen Dimplex Group

Kathleen Murphy is president of Personal Investing, a unit of Fidelity Investments, which is the largest mutual fund company in the United States and the No. 1 provider of workplace retirement savings plans. Kathy assumed her current position with personal and workplace investing in January 2009. 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, 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 and 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 third-generation Irish American. She is married with one son. 64 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Martin Naughton is the founder and chairman of the Glen Dimplex Group. He started the company in 1973 as Glen Electric, with a mere ten employees. He later acquired Dimplex, the leading brand in the UK heating market. The Glen Dimplex Group is now the world’s largest manufacturer of domestic heating appliances. A longtime supporter of the University of Notre Dame, in both a civic and philanthropic manner, in 2006 the university granted him a high honor by renaming their Institute for Irish Studies the Keough-Naughton Institute (Donald Keough, another of our Business 100, was the original benefactor of the Institute). Martin has served on Notre Dame’s Board of Directors since 1991. He cofounded the university’s Ireland Council, and received an honorary doctor of science degree in 1998. He is ex-chairman of InterTradeIreland, a cross-border and business trade group, and has been extremely active in promoting peace in Ireland through economic ties. He resides in County Meath.



1:36 PM


Page 66


Denis O’Brien Digicel Denis O’Brien is chairman of the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Judging Panel and a director on the US Board of Concern Worldwide. Denis founded the East Telecom Group plc and built it through the 1990’s until its sale to British Telecom plc. In 2001, Denis established Digicel and launched a GSM cellular phone service in the Caribbean. He is the founder of Communicorp Group, which manages a portfolio of media and broadcasting-related companies in Ireland and seven European markets. He chaired the 2003 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Ireland. He is the chairman and co-founder of Frontline, the International Foundation for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders. Based in Dublin, Frontline is working to oversee the standards set out in the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders. In 2000, he established The O’Brien Foundation to identify and assist projects that aim to alleviate disadvantaged communities. Denis holds a BA from University College Dublin and an MBA from Boston College.

Thomas O’Brien State Bank of Long Island Thomas M. O'Brien is president and CEO of State Bank of Long Island and State Bancorp, Inc. Thomas began his banking career in 1977 at North Side Savings Bank in New York City, where he was appointed CEO at age 33. In 2000, he joined Atlantic Bank of New York as president and CEO and member of its Board of Directors. He remained with the bank until its sale in 2006. Thomas is an independent trustee for Prudential Insurance Company's $65 billion insurance mutual fund complex, a trustee for Catholic Healthcare System of New York and the Catholic Healthcare Foundation, Inc., and a trustee for Niagara University.At the moment he is the president of the Society of the Friendly Sons of Saint Patrick in New York. He also founded the Galway Bay Foundation, Inc. Thomas holds a BA from Niagara University and an MBA from Iona College. His father's Irish heritage lies in Clare and his mother's in Galway. He is married with three children.

Eoin O’Connell Kerry Group Over his 23 years at Kerry Group, Eoin O’Connell has risen from a member of the accounting department to president of the dairy & culinary business for Kerry Ingredients & Flavours – Americas Region. Eoin joined Kerry in 1986 as a graduate from the University of Limerick, as accountant for Kerry Foods, a division of Kerry Group and leading consumer foods processing and marketing organization in the UK and Ireland. In 1990, Eoin transferred to the Americas region where he served in several leadership roles within Kerry’s ingredients division. In 2000, Eoin relocated to Canada where he served as president of Kerry Canada until his appointment to president of Kerry’s dairy business unit in 2003. The son of Joe and Breege O’ Connell, Eoin was raised in Corofin, County Clare. Eoin resides in Madison, Wisconsin with his wife Nicole, and their two daughters,Aoife and Ayla. He travels to Ireland regularly for business and on family vacations to see his mother, Breege, and his siblings Joe,Therese and Maura. 66 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Dermot O’Brien TIAA-CREF Dermot J. O’Brien is executive vice president of human resources & corporate services at TIAA-CREF. He is a member of the company’s executive management team. Dermot joined TIAACREF in 2003. He oversees all strategy related to human resources and directs corporate services, which encompasses corporate real estate, facilities, corporate security and strategic procurement. Dermot has over 20 years experience in financial services human resources. Before joining TIAA-CREF, he held several senior positions at Merrill Lynch & Co., including head of HR for global debt markets. His financial services career started at Morgan Stanley. Dermot is a member of the Human Resource-50 Group, a knowledge-sharing group of human resource officers from around the world. He has volunteered with Junior Achievement for years, teaching children financial literacy.A Dublin native, Dermot holds an undergraduate degree in finance from the Lubin School of Business at Pace University. He is the son of the late Dermot O'Brien, 1957 All-Ireland GAA captain for County Louth and well-known Irish entertainer.

Emmett O’Connell Great Western Mining Corp. Emmett O'Connell is chairman of the Great Western Mining Corporation, a mineral exploration company based in Nevada with headquarters in Dublin. A promoter of technology and exploration companies for over thirty years, Emmett has acted as founder and director of several other companies, including Eglington Exploration plc., Osceola Hydrocarbons and Bryson Oil and Gas plc. Emmett's career has taken him to many countries on five continents. He has been involved with highly successful public companies quoted on the London, Dublin and Vancouver Stock Exchanges. In April 2008 the London PLUS market awarded Great Western Mining Corp. the best resource stock award for the continued investing and expansion of the company's North American mineral resources. He was inducted as a Knight of St. Gregory in the Vatican in 1986. When not in some distant part of the world, Emmett lives on a farm in Wexford with his wife of 48 years. He has three children and six grandchildren.

Kevin O’Leary QUMAS Kevin O’Leary is the CEO of QUMAS, one of Ireland’s leading software companies. QUMAS provides regulatory compliance solutions to global life sciences organizations. He has been with the company since its inception and was responsible for the design of their first product. Born in Cork, Kevin studied computer science at Cork IT and then studied industrial management through the Federation of European Production & Industrial Management Societies. Kevin was nominated for the 2009 Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award. Kevin splits his time between Cork and New Jersey. He takes pride in the strong link between Ireland and the U.S. and says, “I am very proud to be Irish, but I am equally proud of my connection to the U.S., and of what we in QUMAS have achieved in terms of building a world-leading firm that is focused on the U.S. and maintains its roots in Ireland.” Kevin is married with three children, two of whom were born in the U.S.



1:36 PM


Page 68


Brian O’Malley Domino Foods, Inc. Brian O’Malley was appointed president and CEO of Domino Foods, Inc in 2001. His career in the sugar industry started in 1982 when he joined the accounting department of Amstar Corporation, the former parent company of Domino Sugar. Brian holds an undergraduate degree in finance from Glassboro State College and an MBA in finance from Rutgers University. He is vice chairman of the Advisory Council to the Grocery Manufacturers Association and was president of the International Sugar Club for 2008. He resides in Middletown, NJ with his wife Maureen and their three children—Erin, Michael and Kevin. Brian is a first-generation Irish American. His father’s family hails from Knocknahila and Clare, and his mother’s family has roots in Waterford and Galway. Brian says, “As an Irish Catholic, my father taught me about the sanctity of the mass, about the responsibility to work hard and the importance of leadership in the family, at your business and in your community.”

James Quinn Tiffany & Co. James Quinn has been president of Tiffany & Co. since February 2003.As president, Jim oversees Tiffany business in over 50 countries and is responsible for its global expansion, including the development of the Tiffany business in key markets in Asia and Europe. He began his career with the internationally renowned jeweler in 1986. Jim serves on the board of Mutual of America Capital Management. He is chairman of New York’s 5th Ave. Association, vice chairman and trustee of the Museum of the City of New York, was former chairman and serves on the North American advisory board of the Michael Smurfit Graduate School of Business at University College Dublin and is a member of An Taoiseach’s economic advisory board. A graduate of Hofstra University, Jim received his MBA from Pace University. Jim, who is married to Diane and has two children, traces his Irish roots to Offaly and Westmeath on his father’s side, and Kerry on his mother’s side. All four of his grandparents were from Ireland.

Edward Reilly American Management Assoc. Edward Reilly has been the 17th president and CEO of the American Management Association, International since 2001.AMA is the world’s leading not-for-profit, membership-based management development, research and publishing organization. Ed previously served as president and CEO of Big Flower Holdings, Inc. He spent over 25 years with the broadcast and book publishing groups of the McGraw-Hill Companies, becoming president in 1987. He was chairman of the board of the Television Bureau of Advertising (TVB), chairman of the board of the Association for Maximum Service Television (MSTV) and board member of the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB). Ed is also a past chairman of The Advertising Council. Ed holds a BA in business administration from St. Francis College, New York, and attended the Stanford Executive Program. He resides in Westport, Connecticut, with his wife, Susan. He is a fourth-generation Irish American with roots in Cavan on his father’s side and Limerick on his mother’s. 68 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Walter Owens TD Bank Walter Owens is head of U.S. commercial banking at TD Bank. Walter is responsible for leading the commercial team in the U.S., which includes commercial banking, real estate, specialty lending, asset-based lending, derivatives, corporate banking, commercial operations, and support groups. During his nearly 30-year career,Walter has built a reputation for delivering strong results, building high-performing teams, and fostering impressive growth in challenging markets. In 2008, he joined TD Bank from CIT Group, where he served as president of CIT corporate finance, with responsibility for major business units across the U.S. and UK.Walter established CIT corporate finance as a nationally recognized leader in middle-market financial services. His previous role at CIT was EVP and chief sales and marketing officer. Before joining CIT, he was CMO for GE commercial finance. Walter is a certified public accountant. He earned his BA from Villanova University and his MBA from NYU’s Stern School of Business. His Irish roots lie in Leitrim, Limerick and Roscommon.

Kevin Quirk White Hat Brands Kevin Quirk is the president and chief executive of White Hat Brands, a kids' health and wellness beverage company. He provides clear direction and leadership toward enacting the company philosophy of combating childhood obesity and related health issues. Kevin is currently selling White Hat Brands to a public global wellness company. Prior to founding White Hat Brands, he was Inzone Brands Inc.’s vice president of sales & marketing. Kevin also spent time working for The Coca-Cola Company and Anheuser-Busch. Kevin has a BS in marketing and economics and a BA in communications from Saint Louis University, as well as executive education from Harvard Business School. He has been married to his wife Rani for 15 years and has two children. Kevin’s ancestors emigrated from Kerry to Savannah, Georgia to escape the Famine. Kevin is division president of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, on the executive committee of the Atlanta St. Patrick’s Day Foundation and a member of the Shamrock Society of Atlanta.

Brian Ruane Bank of New York Mellon Brian Ruane was appointed CEO of BNY Mellon Alternative Investment Services (AIS) in November 2009. He was formerly head of Global Client Management North America. Brian is a member of the Board of Directors and Credit Committee of Pershing LLC. In 2003, he was co-opted onto the Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s Working Committee on the Future of the U.S. Government Securities Markets. Brian is a member of the Advisory Board of the University College Dublin Michael Smurfit Graduate School of Business, and the Frank G. Zarb School of Business, New York. He is a graduate of the Chartered Association of Certified Accountants in the UK and Ireland and received his MBA in international banking and finance from the Zarb School of Business. Brian’s father comes from Crossmolina, Co. Mayo and his mother from Drumhaldry, Co. Longford. He and his wife Anna, who is from Dublin, live in New York with their four children.



1:36 PM

Page 70


The Seeker

AFAR Media’s Greg Sullivan explores new horizons.


n a climate where magazines are folding and publishing companies are shrinking, it takes an Irishman to drastically broaden the horizons of the medium. On a trip to India, Greg Sullivan and AFAR Media ’s co-founder Joe Diaz realized that there was no media voice for cultural explorers seeking to broaden themselves by going beyond the typical tourist haunts. Thus was born the inspiration to launch the AFAR Media brand ’s magazine and web site, which focus on helping travelers connect deeply with local people and places Following a career as a corporate securities attorney and later an investment banker, Greg launched a series of successful entrepreneurial ventures. After selling a business designing and manufacturing international arcade games that he started in 1989, Greg led a car retailing and finance company, growing it into a $750-million operation with 76 dealerships. He sold his interest in that business in 2006 and traveled the globe, searching for his next entrepreneurial opportunity. Greg attended the University of Notre Dame for his undergraduate degrees and the University of Virginia School of Law. He is a third-generation Irish American with roots in Cork, Kerry and Limerick.

What widespread shifts in people’s experiences of travel inspired you to create AFAR Media? I think many people have long wanted to travel to understand other people and cultures, and technology has made other places and other people more attainable. In the past, ordinary citizens ’ knowledge of other places and people came from reports from “afar ” by the privileged few who could make these trips. Now, we see these places and people regularly on TV, and we can communicate with others around the world through the Internet. We have also seen how interrelated we are with people all over the world, so more and more people are seeing themselves as global citizens, and they want to know their world and their world neighbors better. People want to view the rest of the world as active participants themselves, not as mere observers. Now people want to engage in their travels, to come back with knowledge, connections and experience that make a difference in their lives. What is your favorite memory of visiting Ireland? It ’s tough to pick a favorite, but my first memory of visiting Ireland was 1981. My brother and I flew into Shannon, got a rental car and drove to Ennistymon, where we stopped in a pub. We struck up a conversation with a couple of fellows, and we ended up singing along to “The Fields of Athenry ” and having a grand old time. It was a great start for a kid from Oklahoma who had never been overseas before, but whose Irish heritage had always meant 70 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

so much. We certainly knew we had much different pasts, these fellows from County Clare and the Sullivans from Oklahoma. But we also shared a kinship.

Are there any particular Irish characteristics that you think helped you to get to where you are? I ’m sure there has been lots of good Irish luck in my favor. And dogged Irish determination has served me well. It certainly hasn ’t hurt to not take myself too seriously and laugh at my many bungles or else that determination really would drive me to ruin. I think the Irish are curious and look at the world with wonder. Many of America’s greatest investors and innovators were immigrants. Where do you stand on America’s current immigration policies and attitudes? I ’m none too fond of erecting fences to keep people or ideas out. To some extent they are necessary, but our inclination should be to limit fence building to the absolute minimum we can. My belief is that there are many undesirable consequences that go along with such barriers, and I think generally these outweigh the benefits. What was the best career advice you were ever given? My first boss told me not to be shy about admitting my mistakes. People were going to see them anyway, and most would respect me for admitting them. How do you balance your corporate responsibilities and your personal life? I am pursuing my life ’s passion in my work, and I am fortunate that I don ’t view “work ” necessarily as distinct from my personal time. I just go with what feels right: what my body, mind and heart are telling me at any one time. How can American business reinvent itself so that we stay on the cutting edge and remain a leader in the global economy? We need to think longer term. American fixation on the short term has served us well in some ways, helping American businesses to be productive and to not accept poor results. But short-term results are not always indicative of the long term. We certainly saw this in the gains that were made in real estate and financial instruments in the early and middle of this decade. We need to find a way to drive for the best long-term interests of the companies, without losing our focus on productivity and results. What I think this means is each business coming up with a better statement of what it is trying to achieve in the long term and determining valid measurements of successes along the way. IA



1:36 PM


Page 72


Kevin Ryan AlleyCorp LLC As chairman and CEO of AlleyCorp LLC, a network of technology and Internet companies based in New York, Kevin Ryan focuses on his role as chairman of Gilt Groupe. He also chairs Henry Blodget’s Silicon Alley Insider, which aggregated its three media properties, Silicon Alley Insider, Clusterstock and The Business Sheet, into The Business Insider. Kevin is a technology innovator and entrepreneur who is also the former CEO of DoubleClick, the interactive ad giant acquired by Google in 2008 for $3.1 billion. Kevin serves on the boards of Human Rights Watch, the NYC Investment Fund and INSEAD. Kevin is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Yale International Council. He is an investor in Kevin received a BA from Yale University and an MBA from INSEAD (The Business School for the World). He is a fourth-generation Irish American who traces his roots to Counties Clare and Cork.

Margaret Smyth United Technologies Corp. Margaret M. Smyth is vice president and controller of United Technologies Corporation, providing high technology products and services to the building and aerospace industries. Prior to her current position, Margaret was vice president and chief accounting officer of 3M and a senior partner at two leading global accounting and professional services firms in New York City. Margaret earned her undergraduate degree from Fordham University and her master’s from NYU Stern School of Business. She is an alumna of the Aspen Institute’s Henry Crown Fellows Program. Margaret currently serves as a director for Concern Worldwide (US) and a trustee fellow of Fordham. She is also a member of IFRIC, the London-based interpretations group of the International Accounting Standards Board, and is on the Board of Directors of Mutual of America Investment Corporation. A second-generation Irish American and an Irish citizen, Margaret is married and has two sons. The Smyths reside in West Hartford, CT and have a second home in Roscommon.

Ted Sullivan KPMG LLP Ted Maurice Sullivan is a managing director at KPMG LLP and serves someof the firm's largest advisory clients. Since joining KPMG in 1999,Ted has worked in the advisory practice, primarily servicing telecommunications and media clients. Ted traces his mother's ancestors to Co.Tyrone, and his father's to Co. Cork. He is a founding member of the Metro Atlanta Police Emerald Society and has served as the Georgia president of the Ancient Order of Hibernians. He currently serves on the Sigma Alpha Epsilon Atlanta Alumni Association Board and is a trustee for the Georgia Preservation Trust. He has served twice as parade chairman of the Atlanta St. Patrick's Day Parade and was the parade's honorary Grand Marshal in 2005. Ted visits Ireland every year to reconnect with friends in Navan, Cork, and the North of Ireland, where he has participated in various political forums. He holds a BS in finance from Troy State University. He and his wife Sara reside in Atlanta with their daughter Mary Lois. 72 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Timothy Ryan PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP Timothy Ryan is the leader of PwC's assurance practice and the global engagement partner on the American International Group account where he leads a global team of PwC partners and staff. Timothy led PwC's U.S. financial services practice and PwC's consumer finance group. Timothy has also served at JP Morgan Chase, Freddie Mac, Bank of America, Fleet Boston and GMAC. He was a member of the PwC’s “Closing the Expectation Gap Committee” who designed and implemented improvements in PwC's audit process to address gaps between the expectations of constituents and accounting standards.Timothy has served on the U.S. Board of Partners and Principals and the board's admissions committee, the management evaluation and compensation committee and the clients committee.Timothy has also served on the firm's Global Board of Directors. Timothy has provided auditing and accounting services to a wide range of financial services institutions in the U.S. and internationally.

Brian Stack CIE Tours International Brian W. Stack is managing director of CIE Tours International, one of the largest producers of tourists to Ireland, Scotland, and many other areas of Europe. Prior to joining CIE Tours International, Brian worked with Aer Lingus, The Irish Tourist Board, and Ocean Reef Club in Florida. Brian has served as chairman of the United States Tour Operators Association, was president of the Society of Incentive Travel Executives, was a board member of the Irish American Cultural Institute and is currently vice president of the Ireland-U.S. Council for Commerce and Industry. His awards include “Man of the Year” from the Incentive Travel Industry and “International Executive of the Year” by the World Congress on Marketing and Incentive Travel. A resident of Rye, New York, Brian is married to Anne-Marie and has two grown children. He is a Dublin native.

Anne Sweeney Disney Media Networks As co-chairman of Media Networks,The Walt Disney Co., and president of the Disney-ABC Television Group, Anne Sweeney has risen through the ranks of television and was named one of the “50 Most Powerful Women in Business” by Fortune magazine and one of “The World’s 100 Most Powerful Women” by Forbes. Anne is a recipient of the Cable Television Public Affairs Association’s President’s Award, the Golden Mike Award for Outstanding Contributions to Broadcasting by the Broadcasters Foundation of America, and the Matrix Award for television from New York Women in Communications, Inc. Anne, who earned a BA from the College of New Rochelle and an EdM from Harvard, traces her roots to Meath, Kerry and Mayo. Anne was elected director of the International Council of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences in March 2001. In October 2007, she was inducted into the Cable Hall of Fame, and also received the Committee of 200’s Luminary Award. Anne and her husband, Phillip Miller, live with their two children in Los Angeles.



1:44 PM

Page 74


Going Green

Irish Americans on the cutting edge of eco-friendly development. Compiled by Kara Rota


s we present our annual Business 100 list, a celebration of the best and the brightest Irish-American executives and their standout achievements in the corporate world, we remain committed to highlighting progressive and innovative examples of business and industry. The following companies and executives are pioneers in using ecological thinking to fuel successful business. From electric cars and green energy production to sustainable cleaning products and free-range fish farming, this year ’s Irish greens represent Irish Americans on the cutting edge of eco-friendly development.

The Seafarer

Brian O’Hanlon, President, Founder and Board Member, Open Blue Sea Farms

Open Blue Sea Farms ’s mission is to feed the growing premium fish market with all natural, healthy, delicious branded seafood, through environmentally safe and sustainable free-range openocean farming methods. Their fish are cultivated in native waters far offshore in the open ocean and raised in a strong flow of pristine waters that have not been impacted or influenced by land. Further, their sustainable methods can satiate growing appetites 74 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

without poisoning the environment, our oceans, sea life and us. Brian O ’Hanlon is an open-ocean aquaculture veteran who has had multiple milestone successes in culturing and farming species of fish. Through his first venture, Snapperfarm, Inc., he was one of the first to move fish farming into the open sea. His fascination with the sea is no surprise, coming from a family that has for three generations worked in the seafood industry, beginning with his grandfather John, who spent his professional life at New York ’s famous Fulton Fish Market. As a youngster, Brian became aware that our oceans would no longer be able to supply enough food for the world, and his passion focused on fish farming as the best way to alleviate the condition of our emptying seas. Brian, with plans to significantly expand his proven seafood cultivation technology and market acceptance under the Open Blue Sea Farms banner, is actively pursuing investment for Open Blue ’s deep open-ocean aquaculture launch of branded, upscale and gourmet seafood products. He calls it “The Open Blue Revolution, ” cultivating seafood far from shore into the open ocean where strong currents and deep water support biomass without damaging sensitive ecosystems. This translates to environmental and social impacts reduced or eliminated, stakeholder



1:44 PM

Page 75


impacts being avoided, reduced energy consumption and improved coastal conditions in addition to creating a reliable, year round and sustainable supply of nutritious, healthy, safe, and delicious seafood. O ’Hanlon is a founding board member of the Ocean Stewards Institute and is on the Steering Committee of the World Wildlife Fund ’s Cobia Standards Dialogue. He is a fourth-generation Irish American with roots in Kerry, Clare, Louth, Limerick and Galway.

The Green Mr. Clean

Adam Lowry, Chief Greenskeeper and CEO, Method Products, Inc.

Method Products, Inc. combines the efficacy of powerful cleaning products with the safety of naturally derived, non-toxic ingredients. Their entire line of home and personal care products is biodegradable and safe for people and the environment. They offset carbon emissions by planting forests and by buying electricity from renewable sources like solar and wind energy. Adam Lowry believes that business is our greatest vehicle for positive social and environmental change. First and foremost an entrepreneur and change agent, Adam has a proven track record of innovation across multiple categories and consumer segments. Prior to founding Method, Adam worked as a climate scientist at the Carnegie Institution of Science, developing software products for the study of global climate change. As CEO and chief greenskeeper of Method Products, Adam ’s focus is bringing sustainable innovations to the business. He also directs the sustainability aspects of product design, sourcing, and production, and provides strategic input for consumer marketing and the press. A third-generation Irish American whose great-grandfather Thomas Kirkpatrick Lowry was born in 1889 in Cork, Adam says that his Irish heritage means “you go after the things you believe in and make sure to enjoy yourself while you ’re in the fight. ” Adam holds a BS in chemical engineering from Stanford University, and resides in San Francisco with his wife, Mara, and daughter, Kenning.

Networking Naturally

Charisse McAuliffe, Founder and CEO,

GenGreen LLC

The goal of GenGreen LLC is to be the most comprehensive and diverse resource available for people looking to live a locally focused, environmentally conscious lifestyle. This is accomplished through, the largest database of accredited green businesses and organizations in North America, where over 60,000 listings in the GenGreen network form a multi-faceted platform for communication, education and connection, from green

news headlines, job listings and events, to tips helping consumers live a sustainable life. GenGreen is one of the preeminent aggregators and distributors of environmental content online. Born in Atlanta and a graduate of the College of Charleston in South Carolina with a degree in mass media communications, Charisse McAuliffe began her career working as a segment producer and field producer for Warner Brothers/Telepictures and as a production manager for ASAG Productions. Following a position as a broadcast producer, she got her real estate license and began brokering commercial real estate projects. Starting with green building practices, Charisse explored other areas of the sustainable lifestyle, and in 2006 moved to Colorado, where she began to pursue her environmental calling. She made it her life ’s mission to make it easier for people in Colorado, the U.S., and hopefully one day the world to live sustainably. Charisse was named one of the top 40 business leaders under 40 for 2008 by the Northern Colorado Business Report and one of the “Hottest CEOs of Cool Green Companies ” by in 2009. She serves on the Board of Directors for the Rocky Mountain Sustainable Living Association and Northern Colorado USGBC. She has two daughters, Kylah and Abigail. A fourth-generation Irish American with ancestry in Cork, Charisse says, “Raised by my mostly Irish parents, I was brought up believing that I could accomplish anything I set my mind to. I have often given credit for my passionate attitude towards life to my Irish roots. We put our hearts and soul into all that we do, we take great pride in our heritage, and consider it of the utmost importance to carry the message of where we came from to the generations that come after us. ”

Where Coffee Goes Green

R. Scott McCreary, COO, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Inc.

Since 1981, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Inc. has been roasting the finest Arabica beans from coffee-growing communities around the world, creating award-winning blends. Their goal is to provide consumers with an extraordinary coffee experience that ’s environmentally sound, socially just, and delicious. They work to achieve this goal by integrating their values with their business operations and allocating 5% of pre-tax earnings to social and environmental causes. Through their business, Green Mountain hopes to inspire others to view business as a partner, and positive change agent, in the global effort to create long-term solutions and sustainability for people and ecosystems worldwide. They have developed programs around energy use and solid waste and funded grants related to jobs programs that merge environmental DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 75



1:44 PM

Page 76

BUSINESS100 stewardship with poverty relief; the development of creative economies in rural areas; raising awareness and building capacities related to organic farming and fair trade as well as supporting an annual effort to clean up our nation ’s rivers, among other causes. Scott has served as chief operating officer of GMCR ’s Specialty Coffee Business Unit since 2004. From 1993 until joining GMCR, Scott was employed by Unilever North American and its subsidiaries. His experiences include positions with Kraft General Foods, M&M Mars and Pillsbury. Scott holds an MBA in marketing from the University of Minnesota and a BS in engineering. He is a fourth-generation Irish American with roots in County Down.

Setting an Example Patrick Lynch, Senior

Vice President and CFO, Interface, Inc.

In 1994, Ray Anderson, founder of Interface, Inc., the world ’s largest manufacturer of modular carpet, awakened to the urgent need to set a new course toward sustainability. Interface committed to become the first name in industrial ecology worldwide, setting a course to total sustainability and a promise to eliminate any negative impact Interface might have on the environment by 2020. Seven of its manufacturing facilities currently operate with 100 percent renewable electricity, and more than 27 percent of Interface ’s global energy consumption is derived from renewable sources. The company, which has a subsidiary in Craigavon, County Armagh, also began a program in 1995 to identify, measure and eliminate waste in manufacturing processes, and has successfully achieved a 50 percent reduction in waste cost per unit, resulting in $372 million saved to date. In 2007, Interface became the first carpet manufacturer to implement a process for “clean separation, ” allowing for a maximum amount of post-consumer material to be recycled into new products. Patrick C. Lynch joined Interface in 1996 and became vice president and CFO in 2001. He was promoted to senior vice president in 2007. Patrick graduated from The Citadel in Charleston with a bachelor of science degree in business administration in 1992. He then went on to earn both a juris doctor degree in law and a master of business administration degree from Georgia State. A fourth-generation Irish American with roots in Cork, Patrick says that his Irish heritage provides him with “shining examples of faith and perseverance when faced with difficult circumstances. ” Patrick resides in Atlanta with his wife Erica and their two daughters, Emily and Molly.

Winning the Race

Diarmuid O’Connell, Vice President of Business Development, Tesla Motors Tesla Motors designs and sells high-performance, super-efficient electric cars. Their cars join style, acceleration, and handling with advanced technologies to make them the quickest and the most energy-efficient cars on the planet. The Tesla Roadster moves not only under its own power, but ultimately free of the existing and increasingly troublesome petroleum-based infrastructure. With 76 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

a range of over 200 miles on a single charge and a supercar level 3.9 second 0-60 mph acceleration time, the Roadster is proof that the combination of passion and technology can deliver a truly groundbreaking automobile. Diarmuid O ’Connell joined Tesla in 2006, and currently serves as the vice president of business development. Before joining Tesla, Diarmuid served as chief of staff for political military affairs at the U.S. State Department, where he was involved in policy and operational support to the U.S military in various theaters of operation. Prior to his tenure in Washington, Diarmuid worked in corporate strategy as a management consultant for Accenture, as a founder of educational software developer at Real Time Learning, and as a senior executive with both McCann Erickson Worldwide and Young and Rubicam. Diarmuid has a bachelor ’s degree from Dartmouth College, a master ’s degree in foreign policy from the University of Virginia, and an MBA from Kellogg. He lives with his wife and two children in the Bay Area and escapes to the mountains whenever possible. Diarmuid is a fourth-generation Irish American with roots in Cork, Kerry and Mayo. On his Irish heritage, he says, “Wherever I ’ve traveled or worked in the world, my Irish heritage has given me entrée into networks of active, engaging and committed communities of interest. ”

The Power of Knowledge

Dara O’Rourke, Founder, GoodGuide, Inc. GoodGuide provides information about the environmental, social, and health performance of products and companies to consumers at the point of purchase (through web and mobile apps). They present this information through innovative visualization tools, facilitating learning, sharing, and contributing information to friends, families, and broader communities, and providing simple means for users to send signals to companies. Dara O ’Rourke is an associate professor at the University of California, Berkeley, and the cofounder of GoodGuide, Inc. Dara ’s research focuses on systems for monitoring the environmental, labor, and health impacts of global production systems. Dara has served as a consultant to international organizations such as the World Bank, the United Nations Development Program, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, and a wide range of domestic and international non-governmental organizations. He has degrees in mechanical engineering, political science, and energy and resources, and was previously a professor at MIT. Born in Dublin, Dara became a U.S. citizen at age 12. His father ’s family is from Roslea, County Fermanagh, and his mother ’s from Belturbet, County Cavan. He says, “I ’m very proud to be Irish and am continually inspired by Ireland ’s culture and achievements. I personally inherited the ‘gift of the gab ’ and a love of debate from my Irish parents. ”



1:44 PM

Page 77

BUSINESS100 Producing Alternative Energy Dr. Jason Pyle, Founder and CEO,

Sapphire Energy

The goal of Sapphire Energy is to be the world ’s leading producer of renewable petrochemical products. The team has built a scientifically superior platform that uses photosynthetic microorganisms to convert sunlight and CO2 into carbon-neutral alternatives to conventional fossil fuels. This domestic crude oil can be produced at massive scale on non-arable land. Dr. Jason Pyle, founder and CEO of Sapphire, holds an appointment as adjunct professor of bioengineering at Vanderbilt University where he has worked to develop cross-disciplinary programs of biological and engineering research. He was named Innovator of the Year (2006) by Frost and Sullivan, and holds numerous pending and issued patents in the engineering and biological sciences and has worked in diverse cross-discipline areas such as nanofabrication, optical engineering, and structural biology. Dr. Pyle holds a PhD in molecular and cellular physiology and an MD from Stanford University, and received degrees in optical engineering and physics from the University of Arizona. Dr. Pyle, whose Irish roots lie in Co. Donegal, says, “Beyond my own heritage my wife is second-generation Irish. She ’s a Staunton from County Mayo. Her father, Vincent, came to the U.S. as a young doctor. His story reminds me that all our families came to this nation at one point largely because of great hardships. We have a lot to be proud of. ”

The Man Who Climbed the Mountain Casey Sheahan, President and CEO, Lost Arrow Corporation and Patagonia, Inc.

Lost Arrow is the holding company for the highly successful Patagonia brand of outdoor equipment and clothing. The company operates a small number of freestanding Patagonia stores in the U.S. and abroad, and sells its line through roughly 1,200 dealers in the U.S., Europe, and Japan. A design leader in several areas, pioneering specialized synthetic fabrics as well as bold, bright colors widely imitated by other outdoor apparel manufacturers, the company is dedicated to environmental preservation. As a member of “1% for the Planet, ” Patagonia pledges to donate at least one percent of its annual sales to promote conservation and preservation of the natural environment. Casey Sheahan serves as president and CEO of Patagonia, Inc. and Lost Arrow Corporation. Casey, a long-time industry veteran, came to Patagonia from his post as president of Kelty, Inc. Prior to his tenure at Kelty, he served as vice president of marketing for Merrell Footwear and was category marketing manager at Nike ACG. In addition to his diverse management background, Casey brings a breadth of skills in the fields of writing,

marketing and sales. He has edited for several outdoor-inspired publications including Powder Magazine and Runner ’s World. He is aligned with a number of environmental organizations and served as president of the Conservation Alliance. Born in Santa Barbara, Casey is a lifelong skier and fly-fishing enthusiast. He earned a BA in American studies from Stanford University. He has a personal affinity for cycling, paddling and all water-related activities, as well as backpacking, sleeping in the dirt and spending time with his family: his wife Tara and children Caelin and Aidan. A third-generation Irish American with roots in Shannon, County Clare and Cork, Casey says, “The wonderful heritage of Irish music, history and literature connects me to my past and inspires me to laugh and cry! ”

The Eco-friendly Abbot

Rev. Abbot Brendan Freeman, Founder,

Trappist Caskets

Located in a richly forested area near Dubuque Iowa, New Melleray Abbey, a Trappist monastery, managed to support itself through farming until the agricultural market collapse of the 1990s. Abbot Brendan Freeman launched a new venture in 1999 that would offset the shortfall in income. Taking advantage of a change in the law which allowed consumers to provide their own funeral merchandise, Abbot Brendan founded Trappist Caskets. By utilizing the Abbey ’s massive timber resources and available monk labor force, the new company adopted the Irish tradition of wooden caskets. From its inception, the business has experienced brisk growth due to the vision, acumen, and oversight of Abbot Brendan. Trappists are committed to responsible stewardship, and their methods are aimed at preserving the world as God made it. Towards this end, the New Melleray monks use wood of local origin, much of it from their own awardwinning 1,200-acre forest, which is managed to be a sustainable ecosystem. A tree is planted in the forest in honor of each individual buried in a Trappist casket. In addition to its casket business, New Melleray continues its 150-year tradition of farming, particularly chemical-free crops and raising organic Black Angus beef. Rev. Abbot Brendan Freeman received an MA in religious studies and divinity from Catholic University of America. He is an Irish citizen whose father ’s family hails from Ballyhanus and his mother ’s from Kiltimagh, both in County Mayo. He is the president of the Board of Directors of Cistercian Publications and has been elected abbot for six consecutive terms at New Melleray Abbey, which was founded in 1849 at the time of the great famine by the Irish monastery Mount Melleray of County Waterford in Ireland. IA Many of the companies whose executives are honored in Irish America’s Business100 list this year are pioneering green initiatives. For a complete list of these projects, visit DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 77



1:45 PM

Page 78

the the



Kara Rota interviews Ed Begley Jr. on his eclectic career, environmental activism, and hit television show. 78 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Begley Jr. is an actor and environmental activist whose work spans the gamut in terms of genre and cross-generational appeal. His breakthrough role was as Dr. Victor Ehrlich on the hit TV show St. Elsewhere, which earned him six Emmy nominations. Since then, his career has included film, television and stage work, and his latest project, the reality show Living With Ed on Planet Green, represents a new stage. We caught up over the phone and discussed the projects he ’s working on and his environmental plan that makes it simple for any consumer to go green and save money while doing so. Living With Ed follows the story of Ed and his wife, actress and Pilates instructor Rachelle Carson Begley, and their self-sufficient solar-powered home near Los Angeles. Along the way, Ed and Rachelle provide viewers with information on how to incorporate green living into their own homes. Ed says that his consciousness of environmental issues “came from growing up in smoggy Los Angeles. I lived there from when I was born in 1949 to 1952, and I live in LA now. At this point I ’ve lived there over two decades. So, at that point in 1970 when the first Earth Day came along, I went, ‘Yeah, I ’m on board, ’ because it was wrong. It ’s not right to live in this kind of choking pollution. It hurts my lungs and it ’s not good, and I ’m going to try to do something different. It was very personal. ” In 1970, Ed began changing his lifestyle to lessen the impact of his consumption on the environment, and was surprised to find that these alterations helped conserve his money as well as the earth. “That is what ’s so effective about the show, ” said Ed. “We certainly show some highfalutin ’ homes with some big-ticket items, but we always focus on the cheap and easy stuff. We have that up on the website as well. I ’m not asking people to do it any differently from the way I did it in 1970. I was broke, and what I was doing even after 1970 wasn ’t much. So do the cheap and easy stuff first, you will save money, and then you move up the ladder and do more. ” I asked him what he would tell a consumer who, like most of us, feels overwhelmed by the amount that there is to do in terms of living a more eco-




1:45 PM

Page 79

Ed Begley Jr. and Rachelle Carson Begley. Opposite page: Ed advises, “Get out of your car as much as you can.”

conscious lifestyle. “Get out of your car as much as you can, ” Ed responded. “This means that if you live in an area where you can walk to things, do that. When weather permits, ride a bike. If you live near public transportation, try that. Second, save energy in your home as much as possible. What does that mean? Energy-efficient light bulbs, energy-saving thermostats …You ’ll save money and get a taste for it and you ’ll want to do more. ” Ed has high expectations for the evolution of his own ecologically sound lifestyle as well as optimism for the future of American environmentalism. “My long-term goal is to be more efficient in home energy use and in travel, whatever the mode of transportation, and to do something about air pollution, water pollution . . . we ’ve got a lot of different things to work on. In the short term, I want to help people to save money in this tough economy. ” Ed Begley Jr. ’s grandparents, Michael Begley from Killarney and Hannah Clifford Begley from Killorglin, both in County Kerry, came over from Ireland on a boat in 1898 and settled to raise a family in Hartford, CT. Ed ’s childhood included the Irish experience of Catholic schools in New York, on which he commented, “Though the nuns at Cure of Ars Catholic School in Merrick were super strict, my experience there and at Stella Niagara in Lewiston showed me that hard work and discipline can really pay off. ” Ed stays in close communication with his relatives in Ireland. “A relative on my grandmother ’s side, a Clifford, lives in Killarney still and I write to him and his daughter and stay in touch with them. Mick Begley, a cousin of mine, lives in

Dublin and I also keep in touch with him. He ’s come to visit me here and brought his family over, so I see him a lot. ” Ed was drawn to acting by the work of his Academy Award-winning father, and his work also brings families together, as I found in preparation for my interview with him. I was familiar with Ed ’s work from his appearances on more recent television shows like Arrested Development and Six Feet Under, but my grandfather remembered seeing him on Johnny Carson decades earlier. “For many years, I just tried to pick the best material and that would vary from film on occasion to television shows like St. Elsewhere . . . when I got that job in the early 1980s, it was better than most films I ’d worked on, ” says Ed. “Even though it was on the smaller screen, it was better material. I did stage as well, and sometimes that provides the best material. And this reality show – there ’s no script, but it ’s an opportunity to engage people in a humorous fashion and to have takeaways every show where people can try this stuff and save money. ” The beginnings of Ed ’s eclectic career included stand-up comedy in nightclubs between 1969 and 1976, which he considers “the greatest training, better than any acting school I could ’ve gone to, because it ’s very immediate. You get all the condemnation or praise instantly by the very fact that they would be laughing or they wouldn ’t, and there ’s no better review or opinion than that. If you ’ve got a good act – you know, some people begrudgingly or reluctantly laugh if they feel it ’s politically incorrect, whatever they feel – but they laugh just the same. So it ’s a very immediate kind of return and I liked that, so I did that for a while. ” Ed, Rachelle and the rest of the green

movement are picking up speed in their effort to influence America ’s consumer habits, but there are still obstacles: for example, the fact that only 57% of Americans see “solid evidence of [global] warming, ” according to The Pew Research Center poll. “It ’s difficult because there ’s so much opposition still, ” says Ed. “Skepticism is healthy. I like people who are skeptical, and it ’s good to be skeptical about climate change even, but to deny what is happening with the snows of Kilimanjaro melting, and the Greenland ice shelf melting, and the Arctic ice melting...We can see Alaska ’s glaciers receding from photographic documentation at Glacier National Park, and even within the lower forty-eight states you can see the evidence of it. When people deny that, it gives the wider population a reason to not do anything. It gives them an excuse for inaction. The interesting thing is, the main reason that [people say] we shouldn ’t do anything is because of how much it ’s going to cost. ‘It ’s going to break the bank. ’ Keep in mind, that ’s what they said when we went about cleaning up the air in Los Angeles in the early seventies. ‘Hey, we all want clean air, but we can ’t afford it. ’ But we cleaned up the air in LA and businesses thrived because there are jobs making catalytic converters and turbines and cleaning spray paint pollution and all this stuff you need to clean up the air. So that ’s the big lie. Somehow, [the idea is that] the money that one makes on an oil refinery, those dollars are printed on good Federal Reserve notes that have value that goes out into the wider community, but the money you would spend on wind turbines, on solar panels, hybrid cars, green installation, that ’s printed on paper that disappears instantly the minute you spend it. And of course that ’s absurd. It would be good for our economy to do this stuff. Even if you disagree about climate change – and this is the way I approach this when I talk around the country – then let ’s agree to disagree. I think it ’s so, and many other scientists do. You think it ’s not so . . . let ’s agree to disagree about that. You want to clean up the air like we did in LA, you want to lessen our dependence on Middle East oil, and you want to put money in your pocket? Most people have a hard time saying no to that, and if you do those three things you ’ve also done a great deal to combat climate change. So what ’s the harm in that? I haven ’t heard a good IA answer to that yet. ” DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 79



1:46 PM

Page 80

The Irish

who built the Empire State Building and the photographer

who captured the work.

By Tom Deignan

Empire The




1:46 PM

Page 81


n 1908, acclaimed photographer Lewis W. Hine snapped a simple portrait entitled “Irish Steel Worker. ” The aged laborer has a weathered face and sad eyes. A pipe sprouts from his mouth. He sports suspenders, a thick handkerchief in his front pocket and a woolen cap atop his head. Hine, born in Wisconsin in 1874, would go on to become one of the progressive era ’s great photographers. As Jacob Riis did a generation earlier, Hine used the camera as a tool to record social inequities and spur reform. The same year he snapped the Irish steel worker, Hine also created one of his more famous series of photographs, entitled “Child Labor: Girls in Factories. ” But it was a decade and a half later that Hine would find his true muse. Hine ’s most famous subject was not even a person. It was, instead, the tallest building in the world, a monument to enormity and audacity which just so happened to begin rising as the nation sank into a deep depression.

Laborers and Power Brokers Construction of the Empire State Building began in March of 1930 on the site of the old Waldorf-Astoria Hotel at 350 Fifth Avenue at 34th Street. It was completed 14 months later in May, 1931. At 102 stories, it was at that time the tallest building in the world. It is presently the third tallest building in America.

Babe Ruth and former New York Governor Al Smith at the Biltmore Hotel, Coral Gables, Florida (1930).

Hine ’s photographs of construction of the building capture the wonder, romance and artistry of the skyscraper and its builders. Almost as an afterthought, though no less important, the photos also capture a project on which Irish Americans played a central role, from the power brokers who envisioned this unprecedented project to the laborers who got the Empire State Building erected in just over one year. Hine captured the determination of the men who stirred the concrete and stacked the steel. But it ’s important to note that Irish-American power brokers also played a key part in the Empire State Building ’s rise. First, there was Al Smith. A child of Manhattan ’s Lower East Side, Smith often claimed the only degree he ever earned was an FFM degree, because he

had to go to work at the Fulton Fish Market when his father died. Smith emerged from Tammany Hall in an unlikely fashion: without the whiff of corruption. He served as a popular, progressive New York governor in the 1920s, but then made a doomed run for the presidency in 1928. Smith was the first Catholic candidate to run for the White House, and many in middle America considered him an agent of Rome who hailed from the mongrelized metropolis. The Ku Klux Klan burned crosses on the campaign trail. Even Smith ’s opposition to prohibition was seen as deeply unsavory. Add in the fact that the economy was booming and you get the picture. Smith was trounced by Herbert Hoover.

Raskob the Irishman Though it devastated him, Smith did not vanish into obscurity after this loss. He was named president of the Empire State Building Corporation, whose job it was to erect a towering new building on the former site of the WaldorfAstoria Hotel. Another important figure in the planning stages of the Empire State Building was John J. Raskob. Raskob ’s father was Alsatian, but his mother was Irish Catholic. The self-made man from Lockport, New York first got a job with the Du Pont family in the early 1900s and made enough money to invest in Manhattan real estate just in time for the roaring 1920s. On August 29, 1929, Raskob, Smith and a group of investors took aim at the biggest real estate investment New




1:46 PM

Page 82

York had ever seen: The Empire State Building. Less than two months after this announcement, the stock market crashed. Raskob, Smith and the other bigwigs who saw dollar signs at the vast corner of 34th Street and Fifth Avenue would have to adjust their vision. The Empire State Building would still go up. The problem? It might turn out to be the biggest real estate boondoggle in American history. Still, the project was good news for at least one group of people: Irish-American laborers desperate for work. Men like Irish immigrant Michael Briody.

A “Novel” Approach Laborer Michael Briody would probably be forgotten had he not been New York Irish novelist Tom Kelly ’s great-uncle. Kelly had heard family stories about his uncle. Briody got mixed up in some shady business, was murdered and buried in the Bronx. Kelly decided to look more deeply not only into his uncle ’s past but into the celebrated skyscraper he helped build. The result was his thrilling 2005 novel Empire Rising. Though it is a work of fiction, Empire Rising is a rich, informative look at how

Men of Steel

This photograph, often credited to Lewis Hine, was in fact taken by Charles C. Ebbets during construction of the GE Building at Rockefeller Center in 1932. It shows 11 men eating lunch, seated on a girder with their feet dangling hundreds of feet above New York City. Many attempts have been made to identify the men, several of whom are Irish laborers. According to a recent story in The Connacht Tribune, the picture features two men from Shanaglish, near Gort, County Galway.The man on the extreme left of the photo lighting the cigarette is Matty O’Shaughnessy, while Patrick ‘Sonny” Glynn is holding the bottle on the extreme right. The photograph has appeared on many book covers, including Peter Quinn’s Waiting for Jimmy, and on the Sawdoctors’ new album entitled To Win Just Once: The Best of the Sawdoctors. 82 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

the Irish helped build the Empire State Building. There are no hard statistics about just how many Irish immigrants and Irish Americans helped build the Empire State Building. But it is generally accepted that Irishmen, as well as Scandinavian Americans, were the dominant group at the work site. One reason for this is because a new wave of Irish immigrants had swept into New York City. As with the Irish immigrants (such as Mike Quill) who founded the Transit Workers Union (TWU) in 1934, more than a handful of Empire



1:46 PM

Page 83


State laborers were Irish republicans on the run from the grueling civil war which broke out in Ireland in the 1920s, following the Easter Rising and partition. For these Irish immigrants, who fled a war-ravaged land just in time to hit a great depression in the U.S., a job on a project such as the Empire State Building seemed a blessing from the sky. It was a chance to put the past behind them and help create an American icon. Unbeknownst to all of the men who were working on the Empire State Building, a man with a camera was documenting them. Just as he ’d been documenting laborers and immigrants for the previous 30 years.

Hine at Ellis Island Lewis Hine was in his late 20s, and only in New York City for a few years, when he and his camera were drawn to Ellis Island in the early 1900s. The Irish were still coming (such as the laborer whose memorable portrait he took in 1908), but these were also the days of the so-called “new ” immigration. Waves of Italians and Jews from Eastern Europe were arriving every day at Ellis Island, along with Finns, Germans, Poles and Hungarians. From 1904 to 1909, Hine documented the hardships as well as the happiness, mystery and daily grind of the Ellis Island immigration process. It was the first of many progressive photographic projects for Hine. Born in the progressive hotbed of Wisconsin, Hines political outlook was further

Photographs by the pioneering social photographer Lewis W. Hine (1874-1940) taken during the construction of the Empire State Building. Construction began in March of 1930 on the site of the old Waldorf-Astoria Hotel at 350 Fifth Avenue at 34th Street. It was completed 14 months later in May, 1931. At 102 stories the building is the third tallest building in the United States. John J. Raskob (second to last photo. above), was an important figure in the planning of the Empire State Building. Raskob’s father was Alsatian, but his mother was an Irish Catholic.

honed at the University of Chicago. He brought this belief in progress and reform to New York in 1901. He became a teacher at the Ethical Culture School and, according to biographies, took up the camera around this time, believing that images could be as powerful, if not more so, than words. Following his Ellis Island series, Hine ’s photos of child laborers opened many eyes and were part of a broader movement to expose and put an end to the use of child labor. By this point, Hine ’s work was coming to be considered not just crusading but sociological. His portraits were studied for all that they revealed about their subjects. He photographed conditions in Europe for the Red Cross after World War I, then returned to Ellis Island in the 1920s to document efforts to improve conditions at the immigration center. Then, in March of 1930, just seven months after Smith and Raskob announced the construction of the Empire State Building, Hine was commissioned to document the skyscraper ’s rise.

Man and Machine The men in Hine ’s photos are lean, muscular. Often they seem to be floating, even dancing gracefully. Of course, they are actually a slip of the hand or foot from death. (Interestingly, it is believed that only five people died during the construction of the Empire State Building.) In Hine ’s photos, the sun and sky create stark contrasts of black and white. The steel and machinery often seems to gleam, in contrast with the hazy, seemingly insignificant buildings in the distance. The photos ultimately capture the awe that such a skyscraper, and its construction, inspired in the 1930s, a feat difficult for modern audiences to grasp, now that nearly every medium-sized city in the world has skyscrapers. In the end, Hine, Smith, Raskob and the Irishmen who helped erect the Empire State building produced a collaborative work of art of concrete and steel, shutter and lens. When the twin towers were destroyed in 2001, the sight of the Empire State Building was, among many other things, a beautiful comfort. For it too had had its plane crash. On July 28, 1945, a U.S. Army B-25 bomber lost in the fog hit the 79th floor, causing 14 deaths and $1 million in damages. But the building stood and continues to function as an office building and the main tourist attraction in New York City.When deciding what the first line of Empire Rising should be, Tom Kelly ultimately chose this very telling line: “This one, they say, will stand IA forever. ” DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 83



1:47 PM

Page 84

Mission THE

Girls Maureen Murphy writes about the Mission of Our Lady of the Rosary for the Protection of Irish Immigrant Girls.

Top: Charlotte O’Brien when she was superintendent of the immigrants’ home. She never wore a cap, but the photographer insisted on it for dignity. Above: A group of immigrant girls at the Mission pictured with agent Patrick McCoole, top row second from right, and two unidentified gentlemen.




1:47 PM

Page 85


etween 1883 and 1908, 307,823 Irish girls arrived at the Port of New York. Who met them? Who helped them reach their destinations or find work? Most of the girls who were not met by family or friends were assisted by the Mission of Our Lady of the Rosary for the Protection of Irish Immigrant Girls. The Mission was the inspiration of Charlotte Grace O ’Brien (1845-1909), the daughter of William Smith O ’Brien who was transported to Tasmania for his part in the 1848 Rebellion. Charlotte was born on November 23, 1845, a year that saw the first failure of the potato crop and the beginning of what became known as the Great Famine. Her father was a member of Parliament for Limerick. Britain ’s refusal to relieve the starving Irish led him to join the 1848 revolt. “I do not profess disloyalty to the Queen of England, ” he said in his last speech at Westminster, “but it shall be the study of my life to overthrow the dominion of this Parliament over Ireland. I would gladly accept the most ignominious death rather than witness the sufferings and indignities inflicted by this Legislature upon my countrymen. ” For his part in the rebellion, Smith O ’Brien was captured and sentenced to be hanged, drawn and quartered. The sentence was commuted by the Crown to transportation for life. On July 29, 1849, he and three of his comrades were transported to Tasmania. This is the setting that young Charlotte was born into. Her father, before his capture, had executed a deed transferring his property to a trust to be held for his wife with the instructions, “Go back to our estate, back to our poor, back to our broken land. ” Charlotte inherited his concern for the poor and his fighting spirit. The failure of the potato crop opened the floodgates, and for the rest of that century and the early part of the next, the Irish left in the thousands. Emigration was a reality particularly for the rural poor of the west, a fact that Charlotte addressed in an article entitled “Eighty Years, ” published in 1881, which expressed her deep sympathy for the emigrants ’ anguish and her

Above: Immigrant girls in front of the Mission of Our Lady of the Rosary, circa late1800s. Left: The Mission building as it is today.

concern about the loss that emigration meant to Ireland. Shortly after the publication of “Eighty Years, ” her article “Horrors of the Immigrant Ship ” appeared in the Pall Mall Gazette. While staying with family in Queenstown (Cobh), O ’Brien visited the White Star liner Germanic, anchored in the harbor. While she wrote later that she thought that the Germanic was no worse than other trans-Atlantic ships, she was horrified at the way that young women slept on sailcloth hammocks in the midst of married men and their families. “If they remove their clothes it is under his [male] eye, if they lie down to rest it is beside him. ” The image of the steerage passengers huddled together haunted her. Despite the limit of 1,000 passengers she noted the steamer had carried as many as 1,775 at one time. Her sonnet “Steerage of the Germanic — Two Pictures of the Mind, 1882 ” contrasted images of a summer ’s evening in the Irish countryside with ship life below deck: “Tween dim-lit decks, hard hands, and weary eyes / Hearts so toil-worn that scarce they dare arise. . . ” That image became a call to action and she described herself as “tumbling ” into the fight to improve conditions for emigrant girls: departure, transit and reception. She

started with emigrant lodging houses in Queenstown (now Cobh, Co. Cork) where unscrupulous boarding house keepers took advantage of emigrants waiting to board their liners. She opened her own O ’Brien Emigrant Boarding House at West Beach, Queenstown on April 1, 1882. It was a daunting task for a middle-aged single woman who had modest resources and was almost profoundly deaf. Her fellow Queenstown lodging house owners were so hostile that they urged local merchants to boycott her. She had to bring in every loaf of bread and pound of tea from Cork city. Improving the boardinghouses was the first step in improving conditions for Irish emigrant girls. There were other dangers: the ocean journey itself and the emigrant ’s reception on arrival. In fall, 1882, Charlotte accepted an offer of free passage aboard the White Star ’s Baltic. The last couplet in her sonnet “IrelandFarewell ” affirmed her commitment to a life devoted to the welfare of her country: “Rather henceforth shall my rejoicing be / That God hath given me life to live for thee. ” O ’Brien arrived quietly in New York City and spent a month with a longshoreman ’s family in a tenement house on Washington Street, near the site of the former World Trade Center, where she acquainted herself with immigrant conditions in the city. Then she went west in October to see John Ireland, Bishop of St. Paul, Minnesota, the member of the American Catholic hierarchy who would be the most receptive to her proposal that there be a home for immigrant girls arriving in the Port of New York. She later recalled that when she said to Bishop Ireland, “I am only the plank over the stream, it is you, the Catholic Church, who have to build the bridge, ” he told her, “You need not fear, Miss O ’Brien, I will DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 85



1:47 PM

Page 86

not let this matter drop. ” O ’Brien returned to controversy in Ireland in 1883. The influential John Boyle O ’Reilly, Irish Republican Brotherhood member, who himself had been transported to Australia and was now the editor of the Boston Pilot, denounced her as a British agent whose emigrant boardinghouse and plans for an American home for Irish immigrant girls facilitated the government ’s assisted-emigrant scheme, the scheme that helped landlords clear their estates of poor tenants. In fact, O ’Brien opposed assisted emigration, but she would do her best for those who were sent to her. While she worked through 1883, Bishop Ireland raised support for her proposal at the May 1883 meeting of the Irish Catholic Colonization Society. The Society voted to endorse the plan and to establish an information bureau at Castle Garden, the New York State immigration depot. (When the federal government assumed the jurisdiction for emigration, Ellis Island replaced Castle Garden as the immigration reception site.) Bishop Ireland contacted Cardinal John McCloskey in New York about providing services for Irish immigrant girls. The Irish Emigrant Society ’s agent Daniel O ’Connell assured the cardinal that there was indeed work for a priest in Castle Garden. Father John Riordan, the first chaplain at Castle Garden, officially established the Mission of Our Lady of the Rosary for the Protection of Irish Immigrant Girls on October 1, 1883. The Mission had three goals: a Catholic Bureau at Castle Garden to provide information and counseling to immigrants, a temporary home or boarding house where immigrants could be safely sheltered while in transit or while waiting for work, and an immigrants ’ chapel. The Mission opened on January 1, 1884. Immigrant girls needing accommodation were placed in local boarding houses until May 1st when a Home for Immigrant Girls was opened at 7 Broadway with a Mrs. Boyle, a matron from the Labor Bureau, hired to look after the residents. The following year, Father Riordan purchased 7 State Street for the Mission home from Isabella Wallace for $70,000. Patrick McCoole joined the Mission early in 1906 as its first agent at Castle Garden and then at Ellis Island. He inter86 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Above: Castle Gardens which served as New York’s immigrant processing center from 1855 to 1890. Right: Father Peter Meehan, the current pastor of the parish.

viewed arriving girls, assisted them with meeting family or friends, advised them about traveling on to destinations outside New York, and escorted those unmet girls or girls without sponsors to the Home. McCoole ’s experience with the arriving Irish girls gave him insights that he passed along to immigration and to shipping officials. After McCoole ’s death in 1906, Sligo-born Patrick McDonough became the Mission ’s agent at Ellis Island, where he met Helen Healy when she landed in 1908; he married her the following year. In addition to his administrative work for the Mission, McDonough edited its quarterly Old Castle Garden (19311940). Its pages demonstrate the way that immigrant benevolent societies and programs like those of the Mission helped to acculturate new arrivals. Articles in Old Castle Garden offered sensible advice about education and employment, cautionary tales like “Bridget ’s Night Out, ” and immigrant literature that helped articulate their sense of loss and displacement. At the time of the Mission ’s Silver Jubilee in 1908, the Mission ’s third director, Father Michael J. Henry, reported that they had seen nearly one third of the 307,823 Irish girls who passed through the Port of New York between 1883 and 1908. They found employment for 12,000. The photograph of the Irish immigrant girls in front of the Mission represents some of those 100,000 who passed through the Mission. They are the faces of our mothers and grandmothers. The Mission ’s ledger books hold the records of 60,000 arrivals; it is a priceless and unique archive of the immigration experience of Irish women.

Some entries include comments. The most frequent is “seen to her, ” and “seen to her ” they did. The data from 1,736 arrivals who went through the Mission between August 24, 1897 and August 31, 1898 provides a profile of the Irish immigrant girl who passed through the Mission during that year. She arrived in the spring aboard a White Star liner that she had boarded in Queenstown. The average age of arriving girls that year was nineteen and a half. She certainly came from rural Ireland. Mayo, Galway, Cork, Kerry and Roscommon accounted for nearly half of the arrivals for whom we have a county of origin. Nearly ten percent traveled with a sister. Twenty-six percent of the girls were met by a female with the same surname; forty-two percent listed sponsors with the same surname. It was an immigration of siblings, of family reunification in Irish America. The Mission of Our Lady of the Rosary never closed; it has continued as the Parish of Our Lady of the Rosary. Today it shares its site with the St. Elizabeth Seton Shrine at 8 State Street. Under the leadership of Father Peter Meehan, pastor of the parish, the current Watson House Preservation initiative seeks to provide funding for the completion of the building restoration project. There is a further effort to conserve and digitalize the Mission records. The final phase will be a museum and reading room for visitors and for those who wish to use the Mission archive for genealogical research, and who, like IrishAmerican historian John Ridge, might open a ledger and discover the names of their mothers or grandmothers among the girls assisted by the Mission. “With the archives I found and a few hours of leisure time I discovered sources of an unassuming story containing inspiration of love and service here on State Street, ” says Meehan. “The genealogical, cultural, educational and spiritual potential of the IA project is real. ” Those interested in contributing to the Mission project are encouraged to send their contributions to the Preservation FundWatson House, Our Lady of the Rosary Parish, 7 State Street, New York, NY 10004.



1:50 PM

Page 88

A Journey Beyond Imagination

Brian Keenan with his wife Audrey and his sons Jack and Cal on a recent trip to Lebanon.



t ’s early morning in the upscale café in the Four Seasons Hotel in Manhattan. Not my usual hangout, but having spent two days immersed in Brian Keenan ’s book An Evil Cradling, the story of his almost five years as a hostage in Beirut, it seems fitting, since it ’s my treat, that we breakfast in nice surroundings. Seated opposite me, barely touching his pancakes, Keenan, 58, speaks in a soft Belfast accent. He is in good spirits, but a little abashed at the reaction to a talk he gave at a conference the day before.



1:50 PM

Page 89


women do. ” She also sent the minister “the hell away ” from the door when he called to complain that the young Keenan was asking too many “awkward questions ” at Sunday school. “I didn ’t have all that church contamination. My father and mother whenever [questionable] things came up weren ’t too taken aback, and neither was I, consequently. ” Asked about his story of stopping his buddies from taunting a Catholic boy, he said: “It was this kind of intuitive thing that kids have about what ’s just and what ’s fair. And [the boy ’s] sense of alienation mirrored something that was articulating back to me in an unspoken way. There were lines of psychological and emotional connection. One was about justice and one was about being different. And he mirrored me and I mirrored him and it couldn ’t have been a reason thing at that age. ” Brian explained further: “I suppose I always was a reflective child. I wasn ’t like the other kids. I had what ’s called buck teeth, very prominent teeth. So I got called names like Bugs Bunny, which didn ’t seem to bother me. Your mates are still your mates ( ‘Listen, Bugsy ’). It really only bothered me Brian Keenan on his release from captivity, with then Irish Prime Minister Charles Haughey and Gerry Collins, then Minister for Foreign Affairs. once girls came onto the scene ‘because who ’s gonna Many of the audience members had been moved to tears by kiss you, man? ’ And I didn ’t play football and if I was picked I his stories, and his vision of a united Ireland, which he said was the last person picked to play. So I read books. ” “must be a place of imagination, intellectual not political. ” He The first book he read was Jack London ’s Call of the Wild. received a standing ovation. And half a century later he says he can remember it. “I was Asked why he got such a reaction from the 700 plus audience, about nine when I read it. While my mates were out kicking a gathered for a Unite Ireland Conference hosted by Sinn Féin, football or robbing orchards I was reading Jack London and Keenan explains: “When I was asked to do it I said yes instincrunning with a pack of wolves. So I suppose I was quiet, reflectively. When I sat down to prepare for it I realized, holy God, tive in that sense. I got a lot of compensation out of taking how can you take five centuries of trouble, despair and a bloodmyself other places or going other places imaginatively. bath and bring it to a place in fifteen minutes? And so I had to Imagination was always a buoyant lifebelt I wore. ” go back to my stories. I knew it had to be a very personal thing Keenan left school at fourteen to become a heating engineer. because we ’re all engaged with this personally whatever our Later he decided to become a teacher and enrolled at university. politics might be. ” In 1986, at age 30, he found himself at loose ends; his friends The stories that Keenan told – about the taunting of the only were all getting married, and he decided that he needed a change Catholic boy who lived on his street; about an old Protestant of scene. “I was tired of the intransigeance, the backward mess, woman crying on learning of Bloody Sunday; about a Catholic the terrible sense of stoppage, politically and socially. I ’m saybarman breaking in a pair of shoes for Keenan ’s father so he ing that about myself on a personal level too. I wasn ’t married. could walk more easily in a July 12th Orange Parade – were I didn ’t have a job. ” very effective in putting a human face on the Troubles. Pete He applied for a position to teach English at the American Hamill, the American writer who moderated the conference, and University in Beruit and was accepted. Four months into his talked about people like his own Belfast-born parents “being contract, in April 1986, he was kidnapped by fundamentalist hurt out of Ireland, ” was among those visibly moved by Shi ’ite militiamen and held hostage, apparently because they Keenan ’s stories, which are now included with other stories in a believed he was British. Despite pleas from the Irish Embassy newly released memoir of Keenan ’s childhood, I ’ll Tell Me Ma. in Beirut (he was traveling on an Irish passport) and an active Much has been made of the fact that Keenan was born into an campaign put together by his two sisters back in Belfast, he Ulster Protestant family and brought up in a strict sectarianism remained hostage for almost five years until he was finally culture. He explains why he escaped contamination. released into Syrian custody in August, 1990. “My dad was an Orangeman but he was a socialist in his own Needless to say, the Brian Keenan sitting across from me is way, he had very strong views on it. He was the most unusual different from the image of the emaciated hostage that went Irishman, I can tell you. Well, he was a Mason. My mother had around the world when he was released. Today, he ’s a fit-looka kind of Mother Earth thing going. She was always doing ing man, a badly healed broken nose the only remaining evithings for the neighbors. You know the way working class dence of his physical torture. DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 89



1:50 PM

Page 90

His boyhood imagination became a valuable resource to draw on during his internment. He recalled books that he read and movies he ’d seen and rewrote the endings in his head. As a child he had explored Belfast on his own, and as a teenager he ’d hopped on trains, and in the darkness (for most of his internment he was blindfolded and chained) he recalled those journeys, which helped but didn ’t always keep the insanity at bay. He explains: “You know that famous line from Milton ‘A mind is its own place, and in itself, can make heaven of hell, a hell of heaven ’ – that ’s what happened. The mind can take you places you really don ’t want to go. It was very hard to deal with, and maybe the only way I could find to deal with that was to say, [ ‘It ’s] okay if I ’m going insane. So I ’m going to go take myself there and I ’m going to become more insane than sanity itself. ’ ” After several months in isolation Keenan was joined by John McCarthy an English journalist, who had been kidnapped shortly after Keenan. McCarthy recalled that first encounter in an 1999 interview with The Independent newspaper. “After a few hours we were laughing a lot. That was certainly a great relief. What surprised me was Brian ’s reaction to the guards. He wasn ’t going to take any nonsense. I was impressed, but also slightly frightened by it. These are the guys with the guns. We ’d heard them beating people up, even killing someone. When he started standing up to the guards, saying ‘No, I ’m not going to do this, ’ or, ‘You ’ve got to bring us food, ’ I ’d be thinking, let ’s back off a bit. But it was very encouraging to me. . . . What Brian taught me was if you don ’t address fear and fight it, then you ’re lost. ” The two would become each other ’s “buoyant lifeline. ” Chained and blindfolded much of the time, held in confined spaces and moved 17 times in the dead of night tied up under trucks and in the boots of cars, suffocating from the tight mummy-like bindings, they were always relieved to find that they were still together when they reached their new location. “He would be aware of when I was getting very frustrated or unfocused. He would use the medium of humor, ” he said of McCarthy. And in turn, Keenan would do the same for him. “I knew intuitively when he was going down, he didn ’t have to say anything or do anything. I knew 90 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Brian Keenan on a recent trip to Lebanon.

“The true revolutionary is really a lover and not a fighter. Because the object of his concern is all of the people, not all of the idea.” when he was entering a dark place. ” The fact that McCarthy was English and Keenan was an ardent Irishman helped. “If I had been with somebody who was like myself, time would ’ve passed very slowly, because you need validity of who you are through another person. So I would ’ve got less validation because I would ’ve had less to give. “McCarthy ’s difference meant he had more to give and I had more to give. The other curious thing is, John said the public school he went to, most of the lads either went to university or else they went into officer training in the British Army. He said at one time, ‘I could ’ve been pointing down a gun at you or you at me. ’ And we laughed about this. It made me banter with him like hell. And he would banter back, saying, you fucking Irish baboon. We were able to play – you know how important play is to kids, it takes you out of where you are. Well, that ’s what happened. Two grown men had to learn to play again. He had just assumed I was an Irish Catholic nationalist, and about a year down the road I said, ‘John, I ’m a Protestant ’ and he said, ‘What? ’ ” A review in the English press said of An Evil Cradling, if you ever want to understand the Irish question you should read the story of Brian Keenan and John McCarthy.

“It is about validation, ” Keenan said. “You need the other to validate who you are, what you are, or what you might aspire to be. You need another to listen to what you ’re saying and you need to do the same with him. ” The point he ’s making is that a united Ireland “has to be a Republic of the heart, of the mind, of the word. It has to be a united place imaginatively brought together. Whatever might articulate itself in political terms or historical terms or visionary terms, I believe it ’s the imagination that will create this [united place] and if you want imaginative Ireland you must go there first. Then begin to articulate it to the others. ” Despite the destruction that the Troubles brought to the North, in the scale of things, it ’s not as bad as other places Keenan has seen. “I ’ve been to the Middle East, and other troubled places. And when I put them all together, the North doesn ’t weigh too heavy, in a comparative sense. We ’re not psychically hurt to the degree of some other people. I ’ve walked through some places and Jesus, you know, I don ’t know if those people can be rescued, if their humanity can be pulled up out of that very, very dark destroyed place that they are in and give them a sense of identity and purpose. At least we didn ’t lose



1:50 PM

Page 91

that, ” he said. There ’s a pivotal moment in Keenan ’s captivity that he writes about in An Evil Cradling when he realizes that Said his tormentor is himself tormented. Brian explains: “Said is praying and he ’s annoying me with his prayers because he ’s right on the other side of the sheet [dividing McCarthy and Keenan from their captors]. And he would do this because he knew it was like putting a hot poker inside me. Now, I would have cut Said ’s throat and smile while doing it because he was not a pleasant man, he got off on torturing you. But [this one night when he was praying] he started sobbing and I realized, this man is genuinely disturbed. I knew that place because I ’d been there. My instinctual reaction was that I would reach out and hold him, but I couldn ’t because he was on the other side of the wall. In some strange way, Said knew that I knew. It changed things. No words were exchanged, but Said knew that there wasn ’t anything more he could do [to me]. ” Asked if he truly believes, as he had said, that the only way out is love – it ’s like a stepladder out, he said: “But that ’s very hard. It ’s really hard for people to climb out of their own sense of dislocation or dispossession or to fight their way out of it. For me the true revolutionary is really a lover and not a fighter. Because the object of his concern is all of the people — not all of the idea. There ’s nothing in our DNA that marks you as terrorist. So people become that for some reason, and you ’ve got to find out the reason. ” Given all that happened to him, Keenan seems remarkably normal. How had he managed to go on with his life while others did not? Hostage Frank Reid, taken at the same time, never recovered and died a broken man. “There ’s a term for coming back to earth, a kind of reentry. That ’s the way I thought of it. Or like coming up from a deep dive, when you ’re taken to a decompression chamber for a while and then another one, and that ’s the way I kind of unconsciously chose to work this through. I refused to talk to a psychiatrist. I don ’t need anyone to tell me what ’s wrong with me. ” He signed himself out of hospital after 10 days and headed to the West of Ireland by himself. It was something he had promised himself he would do.

“I found an old cottage, and as much as I could do with my own hands and labor I rebuilt it. I wrote a book – it wasn ’t supposed to be An Evil Cradling. But it ’s what I wrote. And the other thing [I wanted to do] was to paint because for five years I looked at a concrete wall but I hung pictures on that wall which I created out of my head. I haven ’t done that yet [painted]. I have the colors and the brushes but there ’s part of me that says the pictures in my head are more perfect than if I was to try to put them on canvas, ” he said. The image of Keenan as a loner who left Belfast – because all his friends were getting married and he was not in a relationship (and in An Evil Cradling he

young sons, Cal and Jack, 9 and 11. He admits that he had to work up the courage to ask her out. But the one thing he had learned during his confinement was to push through his fear. “I have this absolutely firm belief, which I discovered the importance of when I was locked up, that choice is the crown of life. If you don ’t activate choice, you ’re not living. You ’re just breathing in the antithesis of what life is, ” he said. Keenan followed up An Evil Cradling with a book called Four Quarters of Life in which he explores Alaska, object of his fascination which began as a small boy when he chose Call of the Wild from the school library. It ’s a soulful book, beautifully written. He also co-wrote Between Extremes with John McCarthy, about a trip they took together to Brian Keenan with his Patagonia and Chile where they wife Audrey and his crossed the Andes on horseback. sons Jack and Cal. The reasons Keenan made those journeys was not only to pit himself against the wilderness while he “physically still could ” and “find that part of himself that was still unknown, ” but because he wanted his sons to know that their dad was not just an exhostage, that they had lived in Alaska when they were young where Cal learned to walk. It ’s why he takes them on trips to the west of Ireland “to show them a place of magic when they wonders if he will ever have children) – are young that will always be with them. ” began a fast fade on a day soon after his And it ’s why he took them on a recent release. Keenan was still in hospital trip to Lebanon where he was kidnapped, when a physiotherapist named Audrey to show them that it is not a place of evil. Doyle brought him down to the gym, had It occurs to me that had Keenan not been him sit on the floor and tied a cord on his a hostage he would not have written these ankle and the other end to a bar on the wonderful books. wall. It was for resistance training “Well, that ’s true, ” he said. “[My capbecause he had lost so much muscle tone tors] didn ’t give me any books until during his confinement, she explained. halfway through the third year. Then they Shackled thusly, he looked up wide-eyed gave me a copy of the Koran, which I at her and the incongruity of the situation read. There ’s a part of the Koran where hit her. She burst out laughing. “She ’s the words ‘an evil cradling ’ come from inclined to do that whenever she ’s nervwhere the prophet is talking about the ous ” he said. taking of captives. And the prophet says He had been worried about affection – to his followers, give the Koran to the giving it and receiving it. For so long the captives so that they take with them touching had been aggressive beatings – when they go more than was ever taken but he found himself drawn to Audrey, from them. I ’m not religious – I don ’t perhaps because she was the first one to believe in that hocus – but that ’s what touch him in a physical way after his happened. I came back with more than release. They dated for a couple of years they ever took from me. I came back with IA before marrying and now have two a wealth of riches. ” DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 91



1:51 PM

Page 95

Patricia Harty catches up with conductor Kenneth Montgomery in Santa Fe.


anta Fe Opera House is truly one of the wonders of the world. Perfectly situated on a mesa a 30-minute drive from historic downtown, and offering breathtaking views of the Jemez Mountains to the west and the Sangre Cristo Mountains to the east, its state-of-the-art design – open at the sides and back of the stage – allows not only great comfort and acoustics, but also glimpses of New Mexico ’s brilliant night skies. I ’ve been around Irish America for so long now that I ’m hardly surprised when I come across Irish people in unlikely places, and finding a Belfast man holding the baton in such an exotic clime is delightful but not altogether unexpected. What is surprising about Kenneth Montgomery, conductor of international renown and Santa Fe Opera ’s principal guest conductor, is that he came from a family with no background in music. Born in 1948, he grew up in a working-class family in Belfast, the son of an electrician and a mother who had spent a couple of years working for the Electric Board before becoming a full-time wife and mother. Yet, the way Montgomery tells it, from the moment it was discovered that he had an

interest in music – an aunt noticed that on Sunday visits he was fascinated with her piano – not only were his parents on board, but it seems like the stars were in alignment, for he soon embarked on a journey that would lead him to a brilliant career in music. He began piano lessons when he was seven and singing lessons when he was eight. Soon he found himself in a boys ’ choir under the tutelage of Arthur Martin. “My parents were not at all musical, but Arthur Martin was not only a good vocal coach, but a very encouraging person. And he encouraged my parents to buy me a good piano. ” They bought him a Steinway upright! More good fortune followed. “An acquaintance of the family died and left me a whole pile of music, ” he recalls. At the age of ten the young Montgomery could sight-read all this music. “Sometimes a Victorian ballad and sometimes a Bach oratorio. ” He learned to play the bassoon as well as the piano and played in amateur orchestras, but he knew from an early age that he wanted to be in front of the orchestra, not in it. “From the age of 10 I knew I wanted to be a DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 95



1:51 PM

Page 96

musician and by the age of 12 I knew I wanted to be a conductor. There was an orchestra in Belfast at the time called the City of Belfast Orchestra and they used to rehearse on Wednesday afternoons. And an arrangement was made that I could go to these rehearsals instead of sports. ” Getting out of sports was a welcome relief for Montgomery. He recalled that when he ran into the school principal in Amsterdam about five years ago he thanked him “for letting me off those nasty sports and letting me go on with music instead. ” The principal was delighted to have played a part in Montgomery ’s success. “He said, ‘Well, we ’re very proud you ’ve reached the kind of position that you have in the music profession. ’ ” Montgomery left Belfast for the Royal College of Music in London after high school. “My teacher was from there, and I made it my aim to get in there, ” he said. It could have been rather nerve-wracking for a young man from Belfast, a city far from the center of things musically, but by this time, Montgomery had acquired a really wide musical knowledge, and soon he was making a name for himself. In fact, in his third year at the Royal College he was asked to go to the Glyndebourne Festival Opera as assistant conductor. That exposure helped him get a scholarship to study in Germany. And by the time he had done that he was working with the famed English National Opera (then known as Sadler ’s Wells), which he did for three years. Montgomery also made a name for himself in the Netherlands, following his 1970 début with the Nederlandse Opera in Cavalli ’s L ’Ormindo. In 1975 he was appointed principal conductor of the Dutch Radio Symphony Orchestra and subsequently of the Dutch Radio Choir with some 80 singers, as well.

Back to Belfast He found “a very healthy climate of 96 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

music making ” in Holland and in 1979 decided Amsterdam would be his base. It ’s remained so ever since. “Music is subsidized in Holland, so there was a lot of contemporary music, commissions of Dutch composers and important world composers, constantly being performed, and at the same time there was a move towards learning to play early instruments, ” he said. Montgomery was also becoming wellknown internationally. He was a regular guest conductor with the main orchestras in Europe, Canada and the U.S. Then in the mid-80s he was asked to help redo the opera company in Northern Ireland, and he returned to Belfast. He recalls that period in his life fondly. “I enjoyed that period very much and we managed to get very good reviews from the British press. It was very heartwarming. They would say, ‘You should go to Belfast to see a wonderful production of The Magic Flute. ’ ” Alas, the North of Ireland was caught up in both economic and political strug-

gles at the time. The Europa Hotel, next door to the Grand Opera House, was bombed constantly, and there were financial troubles as well. It was, he said, “very special that we were well thought of. But it was always a bit of a struggle to make the money work out. ” After Montgomery left the opera company it folded. (In 1991 he was made director of opera studies at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague, where a chair in opera studies was set up in his name.) “[The Belfast Opera Company] existed for another two or three years but the people that took over the management were not so canny at making the arts council help us, ” he said sadly. “It ’s a great pity because I felt very much at that time that a city of roughly half a million people should have an opera company of its own. ” It ’s also a great shame, according to Montgomery, that young Irish musicians still have to go abroad to complete their education, as he had to go to London as a young man. “The one thing that we really miss in Ireland is an advanced training course for musicians. You get to a certain level then you have to go somewhere else to reach the final performance level. I would be very keen to see something develop so that people from Ireland don ’t have to go abroad, ” he said.

New Mexico His favorite opera is “nearly always the one I ’m doing at the time but if I ’m really pressed I suppose The Marriage of Figaro. I think it ’s got the greatest humanity of any piece I know. The forgiveness at the end, all that comedy you go through . . . Life is a comedy and people have to be big-hearted. I did it here [Santa Fe] last year and it was a wonderful group of artists doing it. ” The Marriage of Figaro aside, Montgomery has an appreciation for the not so commonly performed – perhaps harkening back to the catch-all of music left to him as a child that he would draw



1:51 PM

Page 97

on to surprise his music teachers. “I was curious about all kinds of music, sometimes bringing pieces to my music teacher in Belfast and he was horrified, saying, ‘What is this? ’ ” He still likes to surprise. We meet for lunch between rehearsals for Christoph Willibald Gluck ’s Alceste with American soprano Christine Brewer in the title role. The opera, which has no sub-plot, and is based on the play Alcestis by Euripides, is a challenge for any conductor. But then Montgomery is the sort who revels in a challenge. In fact, the reason he was invited to Santa Fe was because of his

the orchestra is absolutely wonderful, and of course the setting is fantastic. The founder of the company, John Crosby [a New Yorker], was a wonderful organizer and administrator. He really knew how to put things together. He was a conductor as well and a superb musician and so his combination of music and brilliant administration has made this company as good as it is. And it ’s a great pleasure to work here because you know everything is going to be organized as well as it possibly can be. As you can imagine opera is a very complicated thing to organize, there ’s so many different things that have to go together. This is one of the finest opera companies I know. ”

Home Again Montgomery never lost touch with Belfast. Shortly after our meeting he opened the Opposite page: Conductor Kenneth Montgomery. With American soprano. Left: Christine Brewer who starred in Alceste with Montgomery conducting. Below: The famed Santa Fe Opera House.

penchant for the unusual. “It happened because I ’d been working in Toronto with the Canadian opera and met a stage director there called Bliss Hebert who had been working regularly here [in Santa Fe] and I think it was he who suggested my name for Mignon, an opera by [Ambroise] Tomas. Now I ’ve done quite a lot of rare operas. I like to do rare operas and I liked very much doing it in Sante Fe. They seemed to like me also, so two years later I was back for The Secret Marriage [by Cimarosa]. ” Mignon was in 1982; Montgomery has been a regular conductor at Santa Fe ever since. And he is happy to be here. “It ’s such a fascinating mixture of cultures. After you ’ve been here a bit you begin to feel the Hispanic and the Native American cultures and you begin to realize that the Anglo culture is less important than both of them. It ’s kind of mysterious as well. There are all kinds of elements that make it interestingly mysterious, ” he said. “I ’m very, very happy working here,

2009/10 season at Belfast ’s Waterfront Hall with the Ulster Orchestra. Having served as the orchestra ’s principal guest conductor, he became its principal conductor in 2008, the first Ulster man to serve in this position. Sadly, his father had passed away, but his mother gloried in her son ’s triumph. “Unfortunately, my father died when I was 21 or 22 and had been ill quite a bit before so he didn ’t see me perform much. But my mother is still alive, 98. In fact when I was appointed principal conductor of the Ulster Orchestra I went to see her and as she ’s deaf now, I had to write the news of the appointment down for her. She didn ’t react for a while and I thought, ‘Can ’t she read or what ’ and then she banged her arm on the table and said, ‘I told them so. ’ “She had a group of friends who used to say to her, ‘Lily, you ’re not having any life of your own for all these choir practices. ’ She had to take me – two buses – and wait for me. And her friends would say, ‘You ’re doing too much for him. ’ “And so, ‘I told them so ’ was her way of saying, ‘It was worth it. ’ ” He pauses before adding thoughtfully. “My parents were marvelous really; they just let me get on with it. ” IA

Santa Fe Opera Information The Santa Fe Opera’s 2010 season includes three “top-ten” operas – celebrated classics by Puccini, Mozart and Offenbach – along with a major world premiere and a charming comedy by Benjamin Britten. Purchase tickets or view the 2010 Festival Season JULY or AUGUST performance calendar at or call 800-280-4654. DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 97



1:52 PM

Page 98


By Edythe Preet

A Winter’s Tale A Los Angeles resident pines for winters and the warm comfort of a good book.


ust because I live in Los Angeles doesn ’t mean I ’m an Angeleno. Natives here love that it ’s sunny and quasi-summer all year long. Not me. Locals think I ’m crazy. Crazy like a fox, I say. When it ’s cold, you can put on a sweater. When it ’s hot, you ’re out of luck. I pine for seasons. Some of my dearest memories carry me back to the winters of my Philadelphia youth. Sure, it was cold, but all that frigid air was outside. Inside our row house it was warm, except in the upstairs back bedroom that faced north and had only brick, plaster and uninsulated storm windows separating it from the cold. When the thermometer dropped below 20°F, which was often, a thin sheet of ice would form on the inside of the glass even though two radiators were located just inches below. Until I lobbied for larger quarters more suitable for a teenager than my cozy little girl inner sanctum, the back room was our junk room. Everything that outlived its function ended up there, including a big Art Deco bed that had been replaced by my parents ’ more fashionable Hollywood twin set. And there I spent many a dark winter day, propped against pillows, snuggled up in blankets, and transported to the marvelous worlds found inside books. I now know that it was an Irish thing. Both my parents were readers, but Dad was the real bookworm, and a fine seanachie to boot. On Tuesday evenings, when Mom met with her Sodality Group to recite the rosary, he told me stories and recited poetry, and every Friday night we hiked to the spot on the Avenue where the bookmobile parked, and we loaded up on reading material. He would pick out one hefty tome, and I would select a dozen or more children ’s books. Once I had read every compilation of fairy tales in the Philadelphia Library system, Dad decided I was ready for some Irish mythology. For Christmas 1956, he gave me a copy of The King of Ireland ’s Son, which he had read when he was just a wee fellow shortly after the book was first published in 1916. 98 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

Above: Winter in Wicklow Hills, Ireland. Left: A sketch of Padraic Colum from Project Gutenberg’s Irish Plays and Playwrights, by Cornelius Weygandt.

Immediately on opening the green and richly gold embossed cover I was swept away by narratives from the vast wealth of Irish oral tradition: The Story of the Young Cuckoo; When the King of Cats Came to King Conal ’s Dominion; The Sword of Light; The Adventures of Gilly of the Goatskin; The Town of the Red Castle; The King of the Land of Mist. Best of all were the adventures experienced by the King of Ireland ’s eldest son as he journeyed far and wide, “his hound at his heel, his hawk on his wrist, a brave steed to carry him wither he list, and the blue sky over him ” in his search to find and win Fedelma, the Enchanter ’s Daughter. The author of The King of Ireland ’s Son, Padraic Colum, was also a poet, novelist, dramatist, and avid collector of Irish folklore and folk songs. Every fan of Irish music is surely familiar with She Moved Through the Fair, which Colum collected in Donegal and published in 1909, and which was made



1:52 PM

Page 99


Christmas Ginger Cookies famous by Van Morrison and The Chieftains in the 1988 recording Irish Heartbeat. Born in 1881, Colum was an avid reader and a regular visitor to the National Library of Ireland in Dublin where he met and became good friends with prominent Irish thinkers and writers, among them Lady Gregory, W.B.Yeats, and James Joyce. One of his earliest writings, an anti-enlistment play titled The Saxon Shillin ’ (1902), was awarded a prize by Cumann na nGaedhael, forerunner of the Sinn Féin political party. He was among the founders of the Abbey Theatre in Dublin, where his plays Broken Sail (1903) and The Land (1905) were two of the theatre ’s first public successes. Fiercely Irish, Colum was a member of Conradh na Gaeilge (The Gaelic League), an organization founded in 1893 for the purpose of keeping the Irish language spoken in Ireland. It was his interest in Gaelic that led to the writing of The King of Ireland ’s Son. After a folktale he had translated from Gaelic was published by the New York Tribune, Colum met a Hungarian illustrator named Willy Pogany who suggested they collaborate on a children ’s book incorporating several Irish folktales into a long epic story. The King of Ireland ’s Son has been reprinted numerous times, but it is the original version with Pogany ’s illustrations that is most coveted. The book was so popular that it launched Colum ’s long contract with Macmillan Publishers, covering folklore subject matter that ranged from Ireland to the Hawaiian Islands. Little did I know at the tender age of ten that Padraic Colum was also a leading figure of the Celtic Revival. Encompassing all forms of artistic expression and bridging the 19th and 20th centuries, the Irish Celtic Revival movement encouraged the creation of work based on traditional Irish art and cultural expression, especially myth, legend and folklore. Interest in and adherence to its mission spread internationally wherever Irish emigrants driven by the famines of the 19th century had settled. One thing I knew full well, however, even at such a young age. The King of Ireland ’s Son was one of the best books I had ever buried my nose in. The first time, I read it by myself, snuggled up in the ‘back ’ bedroom with a plate of Christmas Ginger Cookies and Irish Almond Tea Cakes balanced precariously on the mattress beside me. Oblivious to the winter winds blowing outside the window, I ranged in imagination up, over and across the hills of the Emerald Isle in the company of a colorful host of frolicking fairies and fearsome feys. In March, to celebrate St. Patrick ’s Day, Dad and I read it together, with me reading the narrative and him putting on a thick Irish brogue for all the speaking lines – high-pitched and squeaking for the creature characters, low and growling for the villains, melodiously sweet for the maidens, and in his own dear voice for the heroes. Throughout my childhood, I read The King of Ireland ’s Son again and again and again. As Dad aged into his twilight years, hardly a visit passed that he did not beam at me, blue eyes twinkling, a delighted smile creasing his cheeks, and say: “How about that King of Ireland ’s Son – the best book you ever read – eh? ” Yes, it was, Dad. It most certainly was. And a fine, fine way to pass a cold winter ’s day. Sláinte! IA

(personal recipe)

1 3 ⁄4 3 ⁄4 1 ⁄3 2 1 2 1⁄2 1 1 ⁄4

beaten egg cup sugar cup shortening cup molasses cups flour teaspoon cinnamon teaspoons baking soda teaspoon powdered ginger teaspoon salt Granulated sugar in a bowl

In a large bowl, stir together egg, sugar, shortening and molasses. Beat well to combine. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, cinnamon, baking soda, ginger and salt. Add flour mixture to egg mixture, and stir until completely combined. Refrigerate dough for 3 hours or overnight. Preheat oven to 350°F. Using a teaspoon as a scoop, shape dough into 1-inch balls. Roll each ball in granulated sugar and place on a parchment-lined cookie sheet 3 inches apart. Bake for approximately 10 minutes, or until cookies have acquired cracks across their tops. Remove cookie sheets from oven, and let cool for 5 minutes. Transfer cookies to wire racks until they are completely cool. Store in an airtight container. Makes approximately 50 cookies. Note: Keep dough refrigerated between batches.

Irish Almond Tea Cakes

(personal recipe)

6 2 1⁄2 3 ⁄4 1 ⁄3 1 ⁄4 1 1⁄2 1 1 1 1⁄2

large egg whites, room temperature cups almond meal cup granulated sugar cup flour teaspoon salt pinch of nutmeg tablespoons light corn syrup stick plus 7 tablespoons unsalted butter cup plump dried currants tablespoons dark rum

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter as many mini-muffin pans as you have (recipe makes 48 teacakes) or line tins with paper mini-muffin cups. With a whisk, beat the egg whites in a bowl just to break them up. Add the almonds, sugar, flour, salt, nutmeg, and corn syrup and stir until batter is smooth. Melt butter in a small saucepan until it just comes to a boil. Add the hot butter to the batter and whisk it in gently but thoroughly. Stir in the currants and rum. Spoon approximately 1 tablespoon of batter into each mini-muffin cup. Bake 18-20 minutes, rotating the pans at the midway point, until the cakes are puffed and golden – a knife inserted into the center should come away clean. Remove tins from the oven and let the cakes rest in the tins for about 2 minutes, then turn them out onto racks to cool to room temperature. Cakes will keep in a covered container for 4-5 days. Wrapped airtight in plastic wrap they can be frozen for up to 2 months. DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 99



1:53 PM

Page 100


By Tara Dougherty

The Vigilant Casey Clan


asey, from the Irish O ’Cathasaigh, is a common surname in Ireland originally meaning “vigilant ” or “watchful. ” At least six different septs of the name existed in early Ireland as both O ’Casey and MacCasey. These septs were each very significant rulers in their locations, primarily in Munster counties. The O ’Caseys of west Dublin were the Lords of the Suathni. Another line of O ’Caseys were erenaghs, or keepers of church revenue, in Clondara, County Roscommon. The Dalcassian septs were seated at Liscannon, County Limerick, and near Mitchelstown, County Cork. In the 14th century, three bishops named MacCasey were seated at Clogher in County Monaghan. John Keegan “Leo” Casey (1846 - 1870) was a poet, novelist and orator as well as a famous Republican in the Fenian Rising. Born in County Westmeath, John was learning under his father to become a teacher when he discovered the lure of the pen. At the age of fifteen he wrote the famous song The Rising of the Moon to commemorate the Irish Rebellion of 1798. He later took on the pen name “Leo ” and under it wrote extensively for the Nation newspaper. As a leader of the Fenian Rising of 1867, John was imprisoned for eight months. After his release he lived in poor health for a short time before his death on St. Patrick ’s Day, 1870. It was reported that between fifty and one hundred thousand mourners attended the beloved writer ’s funeral. Another famous O ’Casey writer was 20th century playwright Seán O’Casey (1880-1964), pictured above. Born John Casey, Seán adopted the


Gaelic spelling of his name as his interest in the Irish nationalist cause grew. His famous works include Juno and the Paycock, set during the Irish Civil War, and The Plough and the Stars, which is

CASEY set in Dublin during the Easter Rising of 1916. He wrote initially on political issues, attacking imperialist wars, but in his later career, the Dublin native became known for being one of the first playwrights to write about workingclass Dublin. Seán O ’Casey ’s daughter Shivaun O’Casey began her career as a scenic designer in theater before becoming an actress. She settled as a director and founded the O ’Casey Theater Company in her father ’s honor. Shivaun moved on to film and made a

documentary, In the Shadow of O ’Casey, about her father. Also among the ranks of famous Casey writers is John Casey (1939-). A native of Worcester, Massachusetts, John is a famous American novelist who secured the National Book Award in 1989 for his book Spartina. In the world of business, Liam Casey is the founder and CEO of PCH International, and Irish America ’s Business 100 keynote speaker this year. His supply chain management company has grown to offices in Ireland, China, Singapore, the U.S., Brazil, the UK and South Africa. William J. Casey (1913-1987) served under President Reagan as the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). The Queens, New York native largely helped to shape foreign policy in the Reagan administration, particularly in reaction to Soviet activity. William succumbed to brain cancer in 1987. Another Casey who carried the tradition of government service is Mary Ann Casey (1949-), an American diplomat. She is now retired after a career in foreign diplomacy as a Foreign Service Officer and U.S. Ambassador to Algeria (1991-1994) and Tunisia (1994-1997). Mary Ann has worked extensively in Northern Africa with a stint in the U.S. Embassy in Morocco as well as some time as a desk officer in Iraq. In the world of sports, Conor Casey (1981-) is an American soccer player, currently a forward for the MSL ’s Colorado Rapids. He recently earned attention on the international scale after scoring two goals against Honduras in the World Cup qualifier that pushed the U.S. team through to the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. Currently ranked behind only Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson is English golfer and another athletic member of the clan, Paul Casey (1977-). He is on the PGA tour and the European tour, at the IA peak of a professional golf career.



1:53 PM

Page 101

The 1911 Census of Ireland is now online S

ure to become one of the most useful tools among historians, genealogists and scholars of the Irish diaspora, the Irish 1911 census has been made public on the Internet by The National Archives of Ireland. Offering a wide range of invaluable information, the census taken on April 2, 1911 details individuals in each household on the island. In addition to this census and the current project to digitize the 1901 census, the archives have commissioned historians to analyze the information on a political, economic and cultural front. What is extraordinary about this census is that it was compiled of forms filled in and signed by the heads of the households. Most censuses in other countries were transcribed by government officials, but these handwritten original manuscripts survive in the archives, and scans of them are now available online.

What Ireland was like in the early 1900s. Far left: Dublin slum dwellers, 1901. Above: This photograph of Harland and Wolff shipyard, Belfast (circa 1909-1911) shows the Olympic and the Titanic under construction. Left: A woman going to market in the west of Ireland, 1910.

Like the 1901 census, the 1911 census lists every household member ’s age, sex, relationship to head of the household, religion, occupation, marital status and county or country of birth. The 1911, unlike the 1901 census, included the number of years a woman had been married, how many of her children had survived in the household and how many were deceased. It also recorded an individual ’s ability to read and write and his or her proficiency with the Irish language. The census went on to record facts about the living conditions of the household, and architectural details including the number of windows, bedrooms and so on. Beyond its genealogical value, the census also gives a detailed picture of Ireland in the early 20th century. It contains information on towns such as the number of streets and their names and gives an accurate depiction of the socioeconomic conditions of areas throughout Ireland. Photographs of major Irish cities from 1911 are available at the archives ’ website as well. The National Archives online resource allows people to browse the census by county as well as search for family members by name and address. The complete 1901 census is expected to be made available by mid-2010. – Tara Dougherty For more information on the National Archives or to view the 1911 census online, visit DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 101



1:54 PM

Page 102

{ review of books}

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



eil Sheehan worked as a reporter for The New York Times before winning a 1989 Pulitzer and a National Book Award for A Bright Shining Lie, his seminal work about the Vietnam War and Lieutenant Colonel John Paul Vann. The book, recently rereleased, was widely regarded as grand and unforgettable, and Sheehan does not disappoint in this September ’s new epic, A Fiery Peace in a Cold War: Bernard Schriever and the Ultimate Weapon. Despite – or because of – its daunting length, A Fiery Peace draws the reader in with its fascinating analysis of political events and scientific revelations, cultural miscommunications and essentially human anecdotes about the figures involved in the nuclear arms race during this all-important period in world history. On every page, Sheehan breathes well-researched life into characters that

range from Air Force hero Bernard Schriever to the Russian spies that infiltrated American technological developments at every stage, and the obsessive, misunderstood and, in moments, frankly sympathetic Stalin himself. Sheehan is a master of his craft as both an accomplished reporter and a gifted storyteller, and he combines these talents in yet another defining account of American history. – Kara Rota ($32.00 / 560 pages / Random House)



t age twenty-five, the prolific, wellconnected and envygarnering Nick McDonell has already published three novels, the first of which (Twelve) is currently being made into a major motion picture starring Chace Crawford and Kiefer Sutherland. Like Twelve, McDonell ’s latest novel, An Expensive Education, draws on his own experiences: here, rather than exploring the seamy secret lives of the Upper East

Memoir In Colin Broderick’s Orangutan, we first encounter the author as a fresh-faced Irish immigrant who arrives in New York for a clean start, away from the horrors of life in County Tyrone and the discrimination and drunkenness in London. But as he describes the beast inside him that emerges when he drinks, the reader is introduced to the orangutan: the inhuman part of Broderick that emerges when he abuses drugs and alcohol, and engages in shockingly dangerous behavior. His bouts of sobriety range from hours to years, all while the beast inside of him is poised to break through. In the twenty years that the memoir spans, Broderick marries and divorces two women, works in seemingly all areas of construction, and travels throughout the United States. Broderick’s account of his life is astoundingly unapologetic, and this is fitting for the memoir. It is not a story of redemption, of a man who realizes his mistakes and then sets out to fix them. Broderick does not want pity. He simply wants to tell a story, something he strives to do throughout his time in New York and finally accomplishes in the darkest recesses of his final detoxification. It is honest, moving and at times heart-wrenching. Orangutan is, at its core, a story of a man who spent two decades fighting the beast inside of him and surviving life as he did so. – Kerman Patel ($14.00 / 256 pages / Three Rivers Press)


Side ’s teenage trust fund beneficiaries, McDonell focuses on the convergence of Harvard ’s (McDonell ’s own alma mater) social and academic hierarchies with the political atmosphere in Somalia (McDonell reported for Harper ’s and Time magazines from Darfur and Iraq). The story circles around the lives of Mike Teak, a privileged Harvard graduate working for a U.S. intelligence agency; Susan Lowell, a Harvard professor and recent Pulitzer Prize winner for her work on the Somalian conflict; and David Ayan, Lowell ’s advisee who traveled to Harvard from the Somali village at the political heart of the novel. McDonell effortlessly switches between the perspectives of these and his other characters, emphasizing the personal involvements and, deeper, the naïveté – Kara Rota that they all share. ($24.00 / 256 pages / Atlantic Monthly Press)


ames Ryan ’s fourth novel, South of the Border, is a mesmerizing story of first love during the Second World War and its far-reaching consequences. Matt Duggan, a young teacher assigned to a school away from his home in Balbriggan, and Madelene Coll, a local girl whose family harbors sympathies to the German side, are drawn together in the summer of 1942 in the small town of Rathisland, removed from reports of most political and military news. When a Messerschmitt crashes nearby, Matt and Madelene, along with the rest of the town ’s inhabitants, are deeply changed by the unfolding events. A highly satisfying flash-forward at the end of the novel reveals the true context of Matt ’s time in Rathisland, and reminds the reader that although things usually didn ’t happen just the way we recall them, the stories that stay with us remain for – Kara Rota a lifetime. ($29.95 / 233 pages / Lilliput Press/Dufour Editions)


ndrew Greeley ’s Home for Christmas follows the lives of two young students in Poplar Grove, Chicago, through the eyes of their friend and teacher, Father Jimmy. As fate would have it, these students – “Petey Pat ” Kane and Mariana Pellegrino – are



1:54 PM

Page 103

destined to be together. The problem is that everyone knows it except them. Greeley ’s modern-day love story is ultimately not just about Peter and Mariana ’s reunion but also about facing one ’s fears: the lovers struggle with mutual loss and are burdened with separation as Peter leaves to fight in the Iraq War. This is one situation that is not romanticized: indeed, one of the most interesting aspects of the book is Peter ’s subtle dissent to a war in which he is the unflappable hero. At the crux of the story is Peter ’s near-death experience (or what Greeley calls a transcendent experience “with a capital T ”) while fighting to protect his soldiers in combat. In less than ten minutes, Peter meets someone who is finally able to wade through his witticisms to bring out the fears of love, forgiveness, and rejection that lay beneath. Here, Greeley does not disappoint, with a God who is naturally not without a hearty sense of humor. While Home for Christmas is a story about a love secured, it is Peter ’s wartime reflections, seemingly ripped straight from today ’s headlines, which are left open to the reader ’s interpretation. – Aliah O ’Neill ($14.99 / 192 pages / Forge)

Folklore and Mythology


ill Price ’s exploration of the mythology and folklore of Ireland, Scotland, Wales, the Isle of Man, Cornwall and Brittany in his new book Celtic Myths is well-rounded, concise, accessible and packed with fascinating details. Beginning with an overview of the function of myths in culture and their relationship to the history of Celtic peoples, including an excellent exposition on the import of oral tradition, Price goes on to outline and analyze the most prominent stories from Ireland, Wales, and the rest of the Celtic world.

In the section on the Irish cycles, he examines the ways that the stories changed in their transition from oral histories in pre-Christian Ireland to transcriptions by monastic scribes with edits that reflect a Christian era. Price ’s book is an absorbing introduction to the Ulster Cycle, including a separate chapter on the Táin, the Fenian Cycle, the Mythological Cycle, and the Cycles of the Kings, among other myths and legends. The colorful characters of Cúchulainn, Queen Medb of Connacht, Deirdre and Fionn mac Cumhaill come – Kara Rota alive in Price ’s pages. ($19.95 / 160 pages / Pocket Essentials, an imprint of Oldcastle Books)



arth Voices Whispering: An Anthology of Irish War Poetry 19141945, edited by Gerald Dawe, is a revolutionary collection of over three hundred poems spanning Ireland ’s deep and broad history of conflict in the first half of the 20th century, from the 1916 Rising and the War of Independence to the Spanish Civil War and World Wars I and II. Featuring the voices of Ireland ’s writers including Seamus Heaney, W.B. Yeats, Samuel Beckett, Katharine Tynan, Eva Gore-Booth, and Thomas Kinsella, Dawe ’s anthology brings together the words of writers on all sides of clashes, speaking as soldiers, dissenters, civilians and mourners left behind. – Kara Rota ($22.95 / 432 pages / Blackstaff Press Ltd./Dufour Editions)


dited by Joan McBreen, The Watchful Heart: A New Generation of Irish Poets is an anthology of work by twenty-four Irish poets born in the last fifty years. All of them have published at least two books of poetry, but readers will be introduced in this collection to the voices of familiar writers and newly emerging talents alike through biographical details, poems and essays, none of which have ever before been published in

anthologies and most of which are published here for the first time. There are some true gems in this eclectic and varied collection, including Margaret Galvin ’s sensory narratives, Anne Fitzgerald ’s snapshots bursting with life in Ireland, and Paul Perry ’s surreal and – Kara Rota personal pieces. ($29.95 / 231 pages / Salmon Publishing Ltd./Dufour Editions)



ercier Press brings readers yet another true story of murder in Ireland in Dermot Walsh ’s work of nonfiction, Beneath Cannock ’s Clock: The Last Man Hanged in Ireland. The historical narrative explores a criminal whose sentence will go down in infamy as the last penalty of death carried out by the state in Ireland. Beneath Cannock ’s Clock follows in detail the events of November 18, 1953, when 25-year-old Michael Manning took the life of Sister Catherine Cooper, and the subsequent investigation and trial that led to Manning ’s execution. Walsh uses Garda files, only recently made public, as well as interviews to construct this accurate and extremely detailed account of the events. Walsh ’s style is very straightforward and the book provides a stepby-step account with investigatory precision and an unbiased voice. Interviews are included from the investigatory team as well as excerpts from Manning ’s confession to gardaí and newspaper clippings. Walsh ’s approach in this work as a researcher and historian is appropriate given the weight of Manning ’s execution in the context of laws in the Republic. The death penalty was partially abolished in 1964, ten years after Manning ’s execution. It was expunged from the Constitution of Ireland by a referendum in 2001. – Tara Dougherty ($19.95 / 160 pages / Mercier Press/Dufour Editions) DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 103



12:34 PM

Page 104

{book notes} McCann Wins National Book Award


olum McCann ’s newest novel, Let the Great World Spin, was announced November 18 as the winner of the 2009 National Book Award for Fiction during a black-tie ceremony at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City. In his personal history and in his writing, he is a man of many different places. McCann is an Irish writer, born in Dublin, partly educated in Texas and Japan, who has been a New York resident for over fifteen years. He has never confined his writing or his life to one cultural sphere. Perhaps the best we can do is to call him a citizen of the world, someone willing to find emotional connections everywhere. It is appropriate, therefore, that his awardwinning novel takes on the worldwide and yet emphatically located question of 9/11. Let the Great World Spin is set around Phillipe Petit ’s August 1974 tightrope walk between the two towers of the World Trade Center. It is about “many stories that fit into other stories ” that become the story of the city of New York. McCann


says, “There ’s hardly a line in the novel about 9/11, but it ’s everywhere if the reader wants it to be. ” Each of McCann ’s previous novels dealt with distinct and different countries and cultures. The Dancer focused on the career and life of Rudolf Nureyev, the Soviet-born ballet phenomenon. Zoli told the story of a young woman of the Slovakian Roma (or Gypsies). Songdogs made its way across Spain, Mexico, the United States and Ireland. This year, the National Book Foundation also highlighted winners from the past six decades, allowing the public to vote on a selection of previous award winning fiction books. Flannery O ’Connor ’s The Complete Stories, winner of the 1972 National Book Award, was honored as The Best of the National Book Awards Fiction. Sebastian Barry ’s The Secret Scripture and Joseph O ’Neill ’s Netherland are among the 156 novels that have been nominated for the 2010 International

IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, which is accompanied by a 100,000-euro prize. Barry ’s 2009 Costa prizewinning novel was nominated by libraries in Ireland, the UK, the Czech Republic, South Africa, and the U.S., while O ’Neill ’s Man Booker Prize long-listed book was nominated by libraries in Ireland, Austria, South Africa and the U.S. Northern Ireland writers David Park, for The Truth Commissioner, and Deirdre Madden, for Molly Fox ’s Birthday, also earned nominations. The short list for the IMPAC award will be announced in April 2010. – Anne Thompson & Kara Rota

Inaugural O’Neill Event a Success

he inaugural Eugene O’Neill Lifetime Achievement Award event was a resounding success. On October 16 (Eugene O’Neill’s birthday), the Irish American Writers and Artists, Inc. bestowed the award to Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist William Kennedy, at a star-studded event at the Manhattan Club in NYC attended by more than 200 people. Writer/director John Patrick Shanley, writer Malachy McCourt, actor Matt Dillon and other special guests read from a selection of Eugene O’Neill’s and William Kennedy’s works. Noted New York Times journalist Dan Barry presented the O’Neill Award to Kennedy. Speaking about the choice of William

Kennedy as the first winner of the Eugene O’Neill Lifetime Achievement Award, IAW&A president Peter Quinn said, “Bill Kennedy was a natural for this award. Along with Eugene O’Neill, Bill has succeeded as nobody else in giving expression to the yin and yang of the Irish-American soul, shanty and lace-curtain, criminal and respectable. Nothing is left out in his work. His Albany Cycle of novels has already taken its place in the canon of American—indeed, of world—literature. As long as women and men read books, these novels will continue to entertain and enlighten, forever illuminating the comic cadences, tragic contradictions and rich complexities of the IA Irish-American part in our national saga.” FAR LEFT: Malachy McCourt, honoree William Kennedy, Dan Barry, IAW&A President Peter Quinn. LEFT: Tim O’Brien, who painted O’Neill’s portrait for the cover of the evening’s program, Elizabeth Parisi, playwright/ screenwriter/director John Patrick Shanley and Skye Gurney.




1:56 PM

Page 106

Those We Lost D.J. Carey 1954-2009

Denis Joseph Carey III, longtime member and supporter of the Ireland-U.S. Council and prominent Hibernophile in the New York Irish-American community, passed away on October 25 of Lou Gehrig ’s disease (ALS). A graduate of Fairfield University, Carey was vice president of public finance at Prudential Securities for many years. He was a director of the Long Island Sound Keeper Fund, a founding board member of Ireland ’s Children, and a member of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick in the City of New York. Carey served as a director of the American Ireland Fund (and its predecessor, the American Irish Foundation) from 1979-1997, and had previously served as vice president and secretary of the Parish Council of the Church of St. John the Evangelist in New York. He is a nephew of former New York governor Hugh Carey. Since his diagnosis of ALS two years ago, Carey was active in fundraising and lobbying for the ALS Association. He is survived by his brothers Robert, Gregory, and Geoffrey, sister Cynthia, nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles and cousins.

Jim Carroll 1949-2009

Jim Carroll, musician, poet and author of The Basketball Diaries, died at age 60 on September 11 in Manhattan. The cause was reported as a heart attack. Born James Dennis Carroll to a bar owner, he grew up on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, attending Catholic schools, and won a basketball scholarship to Trinity when his family moved to the Inwood neighborhood. There he developed his interest in writing, inspired by poets like Allen Ginsberg and Frank O ’Hara. He began publishing poems in his teenage years, and in 1970 The Paris Review published his journal excerpts. Living at the Movies was published in 1973, and garnered him a larger audience that included the acclaim of his influences, Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac. After stints at Wagner College and Columbia University, Carroll spent time writing dialogue for Andy Warhol ’s films at the Factory. Carroll ’s music career began when Patti Smith and her band provided backing music for his poetry during a show. He formed his own band, which was granted a three-record deal with Atlantic Records. Their first album, Catholic Boy, was a great success. The Basketball Diaries, which chronicled Carroll ’s life from his entry into Trinity to his spiral into heroin addiction, was published in 1978. It was reissued and found much popularity in 1980, and a 106 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

film adaptation in 1995 starred Leonardo DiCaprio as Carroll. Carroll ’s other poetry collections include The Book of Nods (1986) and Void of Course: Poems 1994-1997 (1998), and he has also released several albums of spoken-word poetry.

Frank Coghlan Jr. 1916-2009

Frank Coghlan Jr., the child actor best known for playing Captain Marvel ’s alter ego Billy Batson in the 1941 “Adventures of Captain Marvel ” 12-part serial, died September 7 at age 93 in his home in Saugus, California. His son Patrick told reporters that he died of natural causes. Born in New Haven, the only child of Frank and Katherine Coyle Coghlan, “Junior ” (as he was normally billed) became a silent film actor along with his parents when the family moved to California after Coghlan Jr. was born. His first role was at age 3 in a Western called “Daredevil Jack, ” with Jack Dempsey. In 1925, director Cecil B. DeMille gave Coghlan a five-year contract and he was a commonly recognized face in over a hundred films and television shows. Coghlan was a naval aviator in WWII, then served as head of the Navy ’s motion picture cooperation program. He went back to acting in movies after a 23-year career in the Navy. In 1992, he published his autobiography. Coghlan is survived by his son Patrick, his daughters Cathy, Judy and Libbey, and six grandchildren.

Kate Duffy 1953-2009

Kate Duffy, editorial director of the Kensington Publishing Group and leading figure in the romance novel genre, died at age 56 September 27 at her home in Manhattan. Her brother, Benedict Duffy, reported the cause of death as complications of uterine cancer. She was born Alice Katherine Duffy in Rochester, NY. Her mother was the actress Alice Duffy and her maternal uncle the actor Peter Boyle. After graduating from Trinity College and George Washington University, Duffy became an editor with Popular Library, a book publishing branch of CBS, in 1974. She is considered largely responsible for changing the genre of romance literature altogether, encouraging the creation of options to the standard “bodice-ripper ” style that had dominated the genre for decades. Throughout Duffy ’s career, she was the founder of the Worldwide Library imprint at Harlequin Enterprises, founding editor of Silhouette Books, and creator of the



1:56 PM

Page 107

Brava imprint at Kensington. Duffy is survived by her brother Benedict, her sister Clare, and her mother.

Paul B. Fay Jr. 1918-2009

Paul B. Fay Jr. (far left), former under secretary of the U.S. Navy in John F. Kennedy ’s administration and longtime friend and confidant of the president, died September 23 at age 91 of complications related to Alzheimer ’s disease. Born into a large and affluent Irish Catholic family in San Francisco and nicknamed “Red ” for his hair color, Fay met Kennedy at PT Boat School in Rhode Island and the two commanded torpedo boats during World War II. Fay joined the Navy not long after Japan ’s attack on Pearl Harbor and was awarded the Bronze Star after a Japanese destroyer torpedoed his boat. After Kennedy became president, the men remained close friends and Fay campaigned for Kennedy continually from his first Congress run in 1946. Kennedy appointed him as under secretary in the Department of the Navy, saying in a 1962 news conference, “The presidency is not a very good place to make new friends. I am going to keep my old friends. ” Fay was even an usher at Kennedy ’s wedding. After serving in the administration, Fay became an investment banker in San Francisco, a public speaker and a philanthropist. In 1966, Fay published The Pleasure of His Company about his relationship with Kennedy. He is survived by his wife Anita, his daughters Katherine and Sally, his son Paul III, seven grandchildren and a great-grandson.

Fr. Aengus Finucane 1932-2009

Fr. Aengus Finucane, founder of Concern Worldwide, died October 6 in Dublin at age 77. Known for his humanitarian work, he often said, “We have a strong inclination to do evil; you have to fight like hell to do good. ” Finucane was born in Limerick and entered the novitiate in Kilshane. In 1958, he entered the priesthood after studying theology in Kimmage. Concern Worldwide started in 1968 as Africa Concern after Finucane was involved in chartering a ship to bring emergency supplies to Biafra. Having spent some time in Gabon after being expelled from Nigeria in 1970, Fr. Aengus proceeded to the University of Swansea where he was conferred a diploma in development studies. He then worked as Concern ’s Field Director in Bangladesh, Thailand and Uganda. He returned to research studies in Cardiff University and during this time he led a multi-disciplinary team to assess the needs of the boat people in Southeast Asia. He worked for decades among the disenfranchised in conflicts, natural disasters, and famines, including Bangladesh following the country ’s war of independence from Pakistan; Cambodia during the reign of the Khmer Rouge; and Uganda in the aftermath of the rule of Idi Amin. Fr. Aengus acted as CEO of Concern from 1981 to 1997, and

helped to establish Concern Worldwide US in the mid-90s, and served as honorary president from then on, working closely with Tom Moran, who became chairman of Concern Worldwide US 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.

Barry Flanagan 1941-2009

Barry Flanagan, famed British-born sculptor of bronze hares, died August 31 at age 68 in Ibiza, Spain, where he maintained one home and studio. He had another house and studio space in Dublin and held Irish citizenship. Flanagan ’s New York representative told reporters that the cause of death was a motor neuron disease. Born in North Wales with a father employed by Warner Brothers, Flanagan studied architecture and sculpture at the Birmingham College of Art and St. Martin ’s School of Art in London. His early work, classified as “Process Art ” or “AntiForm, ” often engaged the viewer in the concept of three-dimensional objects in space, making use of simple materials like sand and burlap. He presented his first solo exhibition at the Rowan Gallery in London in 1966, and represented Britain at the Venice Biennale in 1982. Beginning in the late 1970s, Flanagan developed his interest in the form of a hare in motion that would become his most lasting legacy. He worked in ceramic and stone as well as bronze, and also crafted other animals and objects — pyramids, elephants and horses feature prominently. His permanent public sculptures include the giant bronze Hare on Bell at the Equitable Tower West in Manhattan, the Nine Foot Hare in the Victoria Plaza Hotel in London, and the Thinker on a Rock sculptures, leporid interpretations of Rodin ’s famous The Thinker, in Washington D.C. and elsewhere (above: Dublin ’s O ’Connell St.). Flanagan is survived by his companion, Jessica Sturgess, his brother, John, two daughters from his former marriage to Sue Davis, a son and a daughter with Renate Widmann, and two grandsons. DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010 IRISH AMERICA 107



1:56 PM

Page 108

{those we lost}

By Kara Rota

James E. Flynn 1957-2009

James E. Flynn, age 52, died on Sunday, October 18th in Howth, Ireland after a battle with cancer. He was the beloved husband of Brenda and the dedicated and loving father to their children, Sean, Ellen, Kayla and Breanne. Flynn was the son of Margaret and William J. Flynn of Garden City, New York. He was the brother of William K. Flynn of Quogue, Long Island and New York City and to his sister Maureen Welsh (Mrs. Gregory Welsh) of Garden City. He was predeceased by his younger brother Robert of Southampton, New York. Flynn, whose father is chairman emeritus of Mutual of America, was raised in Garden City and attended St. Ann ’s Grammar School and Garden City High School. He graduated from Villanova University where he was a four-year member of the Villanova track team under the tutelage of Coach Jumbo Elliot. He was Senior Vice President for Public Relations – European Union for Mutual of America Life Insurance Company, with whom he was associated for 22 years. He will be mourned and missed by friends, colleagues and family members including nieces, nephews, cousins and in-laws.

Donal McLaughlin



Donal McLaughlin, architect and designer who created the United Nations emblem, died September 27 of esophageal cancer at home in Garrett Park, Maryland. He was 102 years old. A New York native, McLaughlin was born in Manhattan and lived in the Bronx, then earned a bachelor of fine arts degree from Yale and an architecture diploma from the Beaux-Arts Institute of Design, following the legacy of his grandfather James McLaughlin, designer of many public buildings in Cincinnati. McLaughlin did design and planning work for the U.S. government and corporate clients including Pepsi-Cola and Tiffany and Co., and graphics work for the U.S. military. He became involved in the United Nations project while in Washington, and was initially assigned to create a graphic for a round button. McLaughlin ’s design, an image of the world ’s continents criss-crossed with lines of latitude and longitude, was chosen, and with only slight modifications (laurel branches were added before McLaughlin substituted olive branches, symbolizing peace) it became the United Nations official emblem and seal in December 1946. McLaughlin is survived by his son Brian, his daughters Coille and Karen, six grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.


Angela Phelan 1946-2009

Angela Phelan, former Irish Independent diarist and proud Cork woman, died October 29 due to cancer. For more than twenty-five years, Phelan wrote social columns for the Irish Independent and also wrote for Irish publications including the Sunday Tribune, Sunday Press, and Image magazine. She was the author of two books, the shopping guide So New York and the story of Brian Lenihan ’s liver transplant, To Mayo and Back, and was the chief researcher on the most recent edition of Who ’s Who, a guide to Ireland ’s most influential figures. Her son David remembered her at the ceremony as “an old-fashioned journalist who believed in deadlines and always getting the story right. ” She was also known for her extensive charity work. Phelan is survived by her three children Sue, Tim, and David, two grandchildren, and her sister Mary Dooley.

Patrick Swayze 1952-2009

Patrick Swayze, the beloved and talented leading man of Dirty Dancing and Ghost, died September 14 in Los Angeles after a long struggle with pancreatic cancer, diagnosed in January 2008. He had continued practicing his craft, starring in The Beast, an A&E drama series, during treatment. Born in Houston, Texas, Swayze was the eldest child of Jesse Wayne Swayze, a rodeo cowboy and engineer, and Patsy Yvonne Helen Swayze (born Patricia Karnes, Swayze ’s mother was the source of his Irish heritage). His mother, a choreographer, dancer, and dance instructor, taught Swayze her art in his childhood, and he moved to New York to study dance after attending community college in Texas. Swayze joined the Eliot Feld Ballet and debuted on Broadway in 1975, dancing in Goodtime Charley. He played the male lead in the original Broadway production of Grease, and his first screen role was in 1979 ’s Skatetown, U.S.A. In 1983, he appeared alongside Tom Cruise, Matt Dillon, and Emilio Estevez in The Outsiders, directed by Francis Ford Coppola. In 1987, his role opposite Jennifer Grey in Dirty Dancing sealed his fate in stardom, and in 1990, he expanded his screen presence as an ethereal, otherworldly character with Demi Moore and Whoopi Goldberg in Ghost. Between 1995 and 2007 he made over a dozen films, and returned to Broadway in 2006 as Nathan Detroit in Guys and Dolls. Swayze is survived by his wife of 34 years, Lisa Niemi, his mother, his two brothers, Don and Sean, and his sister Bambi. IA



1:57 PM

Page 110


By Darina Molloy


2 Actor Penn played Harvey Milk (4) 7 ___ is another day (8) 10 (& 15 down) Main training base for Irish army (3) 11 Band headed by the late Ronnie Drew (9) 14 License plate abbreviation for County Meath (1, 1) 16 See 32 across (9) 19 New Jim Sheridan movie (8) 22 Purple dinosaur beloved by children all over the world (6) 24 See 43 across (5) 25 Open fire (5) 26 Third largest Irish county (4) 29 These sisters recently reunited for an Irish concert tour (5) 32 (& 16 across) This late night talk show host has been in the news a lot recently (5) 35 To do with the mouth (4) 37 Nickname for Irish X Factor twins (7) 39 Now defunct airline (1,1,1) 41 See 1 down (6) 43 (& 24 across) Ireland ’s largest lake (5) 44 Gaelic for Rory (6) 45 Not fake (4) 46 The entertaining clan in Brothers & Sisters (6)


1 (& 41 across) Boyzone singer who died last year (7) 3 Gregory Peck ’s real name (6) 4 Tip of a pen (3) 5 Hamden, CT university (10) 6 Rock type in Giant ’s Causeway (6) 8 See 34 down (2) 9 See 10 down (8) 10 (& 9 down) Foremost Irish economic expert of the 1950s, ’60s and ’70s; named Irishman of the 20th century in 2001 (1, 1) 12 January 6 feast, aka Little Christmas (8)

13 A famous battle was held in this Dublin neighborhood in 1014 (8) 15 See 10 across (7) 17 (& 23 down) Higgins Clark mother and daughter writing pair (4) 18 Mrs. Bono ’s organic clothing line (4) 20 _____ Falls, Kerry 21 Synthetic material (5) 23 See 17 down (5) 27 Up to the task (4) 28 This John was forced to resign as Ireland ’s speaker of the house over extravagant expenses (9) 30 Swedish pop group who inspired Mamma Mia musical (4)

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 December 29, 2009. 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 October/November Crossword: Anne Sullivan Miscoski, Bristol, TN 110 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010

31 Smallest Irish county (5) 33 Someone who ’s come to call (7) 34 (& 8 down) Cork hurler received a lot of publicity for his new book (5) 35 To take a life (4) 36 Record of population (6) 38 Famous sculptor, Auguste ____ (5) 40 Hello to Hawaii (5) 42 Part of an egg (4)

October/November Solution



1:58 PM

Page 112


By Marian Betancourt

Moran Clan Reunites for a Day in Brooklyn


hey came from as far as Luxembourg and as near as a few blocks for a reunion and bus tour of the Brooklyn neighborhoods where their ancestors had lived, beginning with 107 Pioneer Street (now Warren Street) in Red Hook where Michael Moran (18341906) lived when he founded Moran Towing in New York harbor more than 150 years ago. Everyone received a lapel sticker with the family crest, three golden stars under the word Moran, and a printout of more than a dozen homes of Morans past provided by Diana Moran Charbier, a great-granddaughter of Michael. Her husband William served as tour guide. Several of the 17 Morans present this fine September day were descended from

grandmother was Eugene ’s sister Agnes Moran (1874-1939). Cray began working for Moran ’s East Coast operations and later left to become a pilot on his own and a consultant on tug or piloting operations. Ned told the others how Cray helped settle the tug strikes of the 1980s. “If he had not done that the company would have been very different in the last 40 years. ” Another grandson of Agnes, Mike Bellford from Long Island, was also present. Eugene Dwyer from Virginia handed out a printed Moran genealogy, while his brother Tom from Connecticut offered a map of south Brooklyn with Moran homes noted. Their sister Doris, a Daughter of Charity, has lived in Texas for 38 years. When the Dwyers ’ father Thomas married


Ned Moran (left) chats with cousins Eugene Dwyer and Captain John Cray.

Eugenia Moran in 1930, it connected two Irish families that had been in the maritime trade since the days of the Erie Canal. Peter Moran, another grandson of Eugene, moved to Maine after a career in finance and service on the board of Moran Towing before it was sold. His siblings, Mike and Marie, were also on hand with their MBMs (Morans by Marriage). There was much reminiscing on the bus


Morans and significant others gather at the Montauk Club for a family reunion photo.

Michael ’s third son, Eugene (1873-1961), a maritime oracle who became known as The Dean of the Harbor during his long career running the company and apparently New York City as well. (He prevented Robert Moses from putting a bridge between Manhattan and Brooklyn rather than the tunnel we now have.) Some cousins have kept in touch over the years, but a few were meeting for the first time. Edmund “Ned ” Moran, a grandson of Eugene ’s brother Thomas, said of his Luxembourg cousin W. Dirk Warren, “I never saw him before today. ” Ned, by the way, is the only Moran who still works for Moran Towing, which was sold out of the family in the 1990s. The lone tug man, Captain John Cray, sporting a handlebar mustache, flew down from Portland, Maine for the day. Cray ’s

Dirk and Elz Warren with Tom Dwyer, left.

tour. Tom pointed out the house on Third Street where he was born, while his brother Gene got up to photograph each house. Passing Methodist Hospital, Nick Moran, a great-grandson of Eugene ’s brother Thomas, said his son, now 8 and a sixthgeneration Moran, was born there. Ned, of the third generation, said he was born there, too, but many years earlier. Passing the entrance to 47 Plaza Street near Prospect Park, Dirk recalled his boyhood visits with his grandfather Eugene. As sponsor of the day ’s event, Dirk was nattily dressed in a gray suit with a blue and pink brocade vest and striped tie, perhaps a sartorial inheritance from his grandfather, who was described as “The Elegant Tugman ” by a New Yorker magazine writer. Dirk served in Europe during World War II and fell in love with Elz, which is why he lives in Luxembourg. Now he is Luxembourg ’s consul to the principality of Lichtenstein. Elz and their daughter Beryl joined him for the reunion. The mystery of where in Ireland Michael Moran came from is still unsolved. His children understood him to say Killara, but there is no such place. Assuming his brogue was to blame, they investigated Killare in Westmeath, but no stone masons came from there and Michael ’s father was a stone mason. Several of the Morans have been to Ireland and believe their ancestor came from somewhere in Westmeath. Perhaps one day there will be a reunion over there. Most of the Morans had left Brooklyn behind by 1945, but composer and guitarist Nick Moran moved into the Prospect Park area by chance. He did not realize until Diana contacted him about the reunion how many of his ancestors had lived in the neighborhood. The bus dropped the Morans at the 1888 landmark Montauk Club in Park Slope, where all posed for a group photograph before sitting down to lunch.They also peered at a large 1939 framed photo in the club of the duck pins bowling club reunion with Eugene and his brothers ’ front and center. “Seventy years ago, ” someone pointed out, “earlier Morans were upstairs having IA Bloody Marys. ”



1:58 PM

Page 114

{photo album}

Family Pictures

The Journey West

Back row: Mary McMullin, sister of Bridget, and Margaret Moran. Front: James and Bridget Carlin, Marcella and Blanche Schaefer, granddaughters


y grandparents, James and Bridget Moran Carlin, celebrated their 69th wedding anniversary in 1931 during Depression and drought, yet they always had a sense of humor and told many stories about their Irish parents. James ’s father was from Donegal. He settled in Philadelphia on Hog Island and later moved to Davenport, Iowa when James was eight years old. Bridget ’s parents were from County Clare. They reached the United States by way of Ontario and also settled in Davenport. Bridget and James were married in 1862. In 1870 they packed their belongings and their three little girls into a covered wagon and started across Iowa, heading to the Nebraska frontier. Bridget kept a diary of the 14-day trip. She wrote about the hardships and humorous happenings along the wilderness trail and talked about crossing the Missouri River at Nebraska City. We found the diary years later in the attic of the old Moran house in Davenport. In Nebraska my grandfather James made a living as a freighter. He told stories about the terrible electrical storms and the blinding blizzards he endured in his work. He said that he and Bridget endured greater problems then than they did during the Depression. James died October 5, 1931 at the age of 92, and Bridget passed away at the age of 97 in 1941. They were survived by all of their 10 children: 6 girls and 4 boys. – Submitted by Blanche Schaefer, Omaha, Nebraska 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 No photocopies, please. We will pay $65 for each submission that we select. 114 IRISH AMERICA DECEMBER / JANUARY 2010