Announcing Irish America’s 2019 Hall of Fame Inductees
By Maggie Holland
Irish America magazine, the leading national glossy publication of Irish interest in North America, will host its annual Hall of Fame Awards luncheon on Thursday, March 14, at the Pierre Hotel in New York City.
The Irish America Hall of Fame honors the extraordinary achievements of Irish-American leaders, from their significant accomplishments and contributions to American society to their personal commitment to safeguarding their Irish heritage and the betterment of Ireland. The Irish America Hall of Fame exhibition is housed in New Ross, County Wexford, at the Dunbrody Famine Ship Experience.
This year’s inductees are NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill; legendary radio host Adrian Flannelly; Academy Award-winning director, screenwriter, and producer Terry George; the two co-founders of the award-winning Irish Repertory Theatre Company, Charlotte Moore and Ciarán O’Reilly; Grammy Award-winning Jazz musician Arturo O’Farrill and legendary lawyer and peacemaker John C. Dearie.
The event will feature a cocktail reception followed by a seated luncheon and induction ceremony presented by Irish America founders Patricia Harty and Niall O’Dowd. The Hall of Fame inductees will each give remarks, and there will be performances by Arturo O’Farrill as well as Niamh Hyland and Shu Nakamura.
Grammy Award-winning singer Judy Collins and Emmy Award-winning actress Fionnula Flanagan will be special guests.
About the Inductees
Throughout the Irish-American community, John C. Dearie is recognized for having organized four Irish American Presidential Forums during Presidential election years. A lawyer of note, John was elected ten times to the New York State Assembly, and served as a State Assemblyman, representing his home borough of the Bronx. During his tenure, John was Chairman of the Committee on Cities, Ways and Means Committee, Housing Committee and Aging Committee, and was the sponsor or co-sponsor of countless legislation.
James O’Neill is the 43rd Police Commissioner of New York City. A hands-on practitioner and dedicated police reformer, O’Neill was instrumental in developing the Neighborhood Policing strategy, which is renewing and recasting the NYPD’s patrol function to provide greater police and community interaction and collaboration. The program has now been implemented in all residential NYC precincts and is the largest, best-funded, and best-staffed community policing initiative ever undertaken in the United States.
Adrian Flannelly is a radio broadcaster and host of The Adrian Flannelly Show since 1969. The first Irish-American talk radio show, The Adrian Flannelly Show continually presents a lively mix of interviews, music, culture and heritage, national and international news, and commentary. Flannelly serves as the Irish Cultural Liaison for the Irish Hunger Memorial in Battery Park City, adjacent to the World Trade Center and World Financial Center. In 2000, the Irish government appointed Flannelly as its U.S. Representative on its Task Force on “Policy Towards Emigrants.” He was appointed Irish Cultural Liaison to New York City Hall under Mayors Edward Koch and Michael Bloomberg. March 17, 1997 was declared “Adrian Flannelly Day” in New York City by Mayor Giuliani.
Terry George is an Academy Award-winning director, screenwriter and producer known for films Hotel Rwanda, In the Name of the Father, and Some Mother’s Son, as well as the television show The District. Much of his film work involves The Troubles in Northern Ireland. In 2010, George wrote and directed the short film The Shore, while his daughter Oorlagh produced it. The film was shot over six days outside his home in County Down and won an Oscar in 2012. In July 2013 he was awarded an honorary degree from Queens University Belfast in recognition of his “exceptional services to film and drama.”
Charlotte Moore and Ciarán O’Reilly co-founded the award-winning Irish Repertory Theatre in 1988 with a production of Sean O’Casey’s The Plough of the Stars. Today it is still the only year-round theatre company in New York City devoted exclusively to bringing Irish and Irish-American works to the stage. More than 40,000 audience members annually attend its productions. Moore acts as artistic director of the Theatre and has directed at least half of its shows, while O’Reilly acts as producing director.
Arturo O’Farrill is a Grammy Award-winning jazz pianist, composer, and director of the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra. His professional career began at age 19 performing with the Carla Bley Band at Carnegie Hall and continued as a solo performer with a wide spectrum of artists including Dizzy Gillespie, Lester Bowie, Wynton Marsalis, and Harry Belafonte. The son of Latin Jazz musician, arranger, and bandleader Chico O’Farrill, Arturo has performed in the U.S., Europe, Russia, Australia, and South America in just the last few years. He travels to Cuba regularly as an informal Cultural Ambassador, working with Cuban musicians, dancers, and students, bringing local musicians from Cuba to the US and American musicians to Cuba.
About Irish America
Since its inception in October 1985, Irish America has become a powerful vehicle for expression on a range of political, economic, social, and cultural themes that are of paramount importance to the Irish in the United States. It has helped re-establish the Irish ethnic identity in the U.S. (34.7 million according to the last U.S. census) and highlights the best political and business leaders, artists, writers, and community figures among the Irish in America.
For ticket information, click here.
For questions about the event, please contact Mary Gallagher at [email protected].
For information on the Hall of Fame, click here. ♦