Awards for Peter Quinn, Tom French, and IAW&A

Terry Golway on left presents Annie Moore award to Peter Quinn. Photo Courtesy IACI.

By R. Bryan Willits, Editorial Assistant
April / May 2016

Peter Quinn, noted novelist, historian, and speechwriter has been awarded the Annie Moore Award from the Irish American Cultural Institute. The Annie Moore Award is named for the first immigrant to be processed at Ellis Island, 15-year old Annie Moore, who arrived from County Cork in 1882. The Award is presented to a deserving individual who has made a significant contribution to the Irish American community in the areas of arts & letters or community service.

“I have the greatest respect for the Irish American Cultural Institute and their long history of bringing Irish history and culture to the forefront,” said Quinn, who was delighted to accept the award.

John Kearns, treasurer and salon producer for IAW&A, is pictured with the award.

John Kearns, treasurer and salon producer for IAW&A, is pictured with the award. Photo: @IrishAmWA / Twitter

In March, the Irish American Writers and Artists Association was named Organization of the Year by the Irish American Heritage and Culture Committee of the New York City Department of Education.

Citing “their work to provide opportunities for aspiring actors, authors, and performers to meet Irish professionals in these areas,” through their monthly literary and performance salons, the establishment of the Frank McCourt Literary Prize for high school students, and the annual awarding of the Eugene O’Neill Lifetime Achievement Award, the IAHCC called IAW&A “truly an organization preserving and sharing our Irish heritage and culture.”

Tom French. Photo by Éamon Little / The Gallery Press

Tom French. Photo by Éamon Little / The Gallery Press

Poet Tom French, pictured above, received the Lawrence O’Shaughnessy Award for Poetry from the University of St. Thomas Center for Irish Studies, St. Paul, Minnesota.

French, 49, was born in Kilkenny and raised in Tipperary and currently resides in Meath with his wife and children. The author of three collections, his poem “West” was awarded the Dermot Healy International Poetry Prize in 2015. He lives in County Meath with his wife and family.

The $5,000 Award honors Irish poets and is named for Lawrence O’Shaughnessy, who taught English at St. Thomas from 1948-50, served on the university’s Board of Trustees, and is the retired head of the Ignatius Aloysius O’Shaughnessy Foundation. ♦

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