2016 Presidential Distinguished Service Awards

Four Irish Americans were awarded the President's Distinguished Service Medal. (Photo: DFA)

By Olivia O’Mahony, Editorial Assistant
February / March 2017

The Presidential Distinguished Service Awards were celebrated in January, honoring exceptional members of the Irish diaspora.

President Michael D. Higgins (first row, center) presented the awards to many figures of note, including four Americans: Dr. Garret FitzGerald (back row, far right), who served as Irish America’s inaugural keynote speaker for the Healthcare and Life Sciences 50 award ceremony; Shamrock Foods owner Norman McClelland (back row, third from right) for charity work; and co-chair of the New York City St. Pat’s for All parade Kathleen Walsh D’Arcy and LGBT group Lavender and Green Alliance co-founder Brendan Fay for community support (back row, second and third from left).

“This year’s Presidential Distinguished Service Award recipients signify the breadth and richness of our diaspora,” Minister for Diaspora and International Development Joe McHugh said. “They include those working with the most marginalized and vulnerable, those who become the voice for those who have none.” ♦

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