Nominees announced for 2012 Offaly Person of the Year Award

The nominees have been announced for the 2012 Offaly Person of the Year Award. The winner will receive their award at the Offaly Association Dublin’s Annual Dinner Dance on Saturday April 6.

The nominees have been announced for the 2012 Offaly Person of the Year Award. The winner will receive their award at the Offaly Association Dublin’s Annual Dinner Dance on Saturday April 6.

The Dinner Dance is taking place at the Red Cow Moran Hotel. Tickets for the event are €40 and will be available for sale soon.

The nominees with a brief citation are as follows.

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Andy Gallagher
Andy Gallagher served the Offaly hurlers as a player, selector and manager almost uninterrupted over a 40-year period, during which nine Leinster and three All-Ireland titles were won.

He is also one of Offaly’s leading GAA administrators and is currently Assistant Treasurer of the county board. In his previous role as Treasurer he played a central role in the impressive redevelopment of O’Connor Park.

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Anne Mulvey RIP 
Anne sadly passed away on Christmas Day 2011. Nominated for her lifelong work with the St Vincent De Paul helping the poor and underprivileged in the Birr area. She joined St.Brendan’s Conference of the SVP in 1985 and became President of the Conference in 1995. 
She was instrumental in the opening of the SVP shop and in many other ventures also for the Society and for those in need, always looking out for the needs of poor, lonely or socially-deprived people and always speaking on their behalf. She is very much missed by the community that are bereft by her loss.

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Ann Larkin & Mary Hoctor
Nominated for their work and professionalism as Community Welfare Officers. 
They are highly spoken of by those that they take care in the community. They give hope to those that need it most.

Outside of their work, they contribute to the local community, Mary in the Tullamore Youth club and Ann with Ballycumber GAA.

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Brendan Killeavy 
The young Tullamore Sinn Fein Councillor was first elected in 2009 and has been nominated in particular for his work with the disadvantaged. He has shown himself to be committed to improving the living and working conditions of the people of the local area and has been described as a hard-working public representative.

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Camillus Boland 
“The Man With The Horse”. A keen and accomplished sports man in his day, Camillus was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2002. Since then he has been living a very productive life, writing poetry, a book and recording music.

So far, Camillus has published a book “Reflections On Life” and written and recorded two CD’s: “The Simple Times” and “Step Back In Time”. His material which draws on his life experiences, both good and bad have been described as uplifting and inspiring.

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Clara Ballad Group
The Clara Ballad Group have won a remarkable 5 Scór All Ireland titles in the Ballad Group discipline.

Having already sung for the President in Arás an Uachtaráin and in front of over 45,000 people in Croke Park, Clara Ballad Group are the most successful group to have taken part in the GAA Scór finals which involves 2,500 GAA Clubs and spanning over forty years of competition.

In 2012 the group, consisting of John Scanlon, Paul Scanlon, Aisling Cornally, Maura Eivers and Colette Rabbette were once again crowned victorious at the All-Ireland Scór finals in INEC Killarney

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Cleary Family
The Cleary family are behind the Glenisk Organic Ireland business based in Newtown, Killeigh which was established in 1987 and is an offshoot of another successful family business, Tullamore Dairies.

Glenisk is based on the farm which raised 14 children who now continue the running of the business. Since the mid 90s, Glenisk has pioneered the organic yoghurt and milk market in Ireland. Glenisk employs 50 staff, and sources milk from 40 organic dairy farms and 10 organic goat farms across the country.

The business has been transformed into an international success story producing a growing range of environmentally conscious and premium quality organic dairy produce utilising fully certified Irish organic milk as well as providing local employment.

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Danny Owens 
The current Kilcormac-Killoughey manager guided the club to the first county title 2012 and subsequently to the All Ireland club championship final. Danny won All Ireland hurling medals with Offaly in 1981 and 1985. He also captained the county side to its only League title in 1991.

He entered the field of politics being elected as a local councillor and eventually rising to the position of Cathaoirleach of Offaly County Council. In this role he was on hand to greet President Barack Obama on his historic visit to Moneygall in 2011.

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Denis Duggan
In his role as a regional development manager at Shannon Development, was acutely aware that Offaly performs badly in national statistics in terms of computer literacy, start up technology enterprises and 3rd level participation. With this in mind he was instrumental in setting up a ‘Coder Dojo’ in Birr – A Coder Dojo is a platform where children are teaching children, parents are becoming mentors and everyone is having fun. This has been a remarkable success and already there is a waiting list of people hoping to take part.
Denis has shown passion, drive and enthusiasm in securing the support and involvement of a diverse group of volunteers.

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Freda Kinnarney
Nominated for her involvement with the Tullamore Show as the Show Secretary. She works tirelessly in fulfilling her role in the show and has contributed massively to its phenomenal success.

She is also noted for her good humour and positivity and has contributed hugely in making the Tullamore show one of the country’s major annual events.

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Geraldine Byrne
Recently retired and greatly missed principal of St Joseph’s national school. For over 40 years she has been a truly inspiring advocate for generations of children in Arden View and Tullamore. Her leadership embodied the school motto of “every child, every chance, every day”. St Joseph’s was one of the first schools outside of Dublin to have a Home/School liaison office and to offer parent classes and breakfast clubs.

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John Grennan
John Grennan works in the Agri-trading business and family owned business J Grennan & Sons is a well known company. The family have been involved in farming for many generations and in Agri Trading since 1878. The business has developed from very small, solely retail beginnings, into one of the leading importers, manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers of farm inputs in Ireland.

John provides vital employment locally to dozens of people as well as bringing indirect benefits to the local economy. The “Nugget” brand which was founded 20 years ago is known all over the midlands. He also does charity work for the less fortunate in South Africa and is known as someone who doesn’t seek acclaim or attention.

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Johnny Butterfield 
Johnny Butterfield was first elected to Offaly County Council in 1967 and held his seat until 1999 before reclaiming it in the local elections of 2004.

He has also campaigned on a number of issues over the years including farming and housing through his involvement in Macra na Feirme and more recently as chairman of the Mid-Offaly Housing Association.

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Jim Bermingham 
The Banagher man turned Dublin publican whose pub on Dorset Street has been a home-from-home to countless Offaly people for the past 60 years

The Bermingham name will always be associated with Offaly GAA and many joyous occasions at Crokes Park over Jim’s time in the pub trade, when he has played the perfect host for pre-match warm up sessions and post game celebrations.

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Fr Liam Lawton
Edenderry’s Fr Liam Lawton is an internationally renowned singer and composer. In 2003 he was signed to the EMI label and his first album in 2004, Another World, featured the likes of Brian Kennedy, the Celtic Tenors, Fionnuala Sherry, Moya Brennan, Eimear Quinn and Roisin O’Reilly and went double platinum.

Liam has recorded 14 albums to date and has achieved Platinum Status for his recordings. His nationwide tours have been hugely successful and he has sold out the National Concert Hall on numerous occasions. At the International Eucharistic Congress held in Dublin last year, Fr Liam performed in front of 75,000 people in Croke Park.

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Mary Walters
Mary set up the Irish Sarcoidosis Support network in 2006 following her sister’s death from the condition. She has worked since voluntarily looking after many sufferers and their families. She has campaigned for greater recognition and funding for the disease and has worked to raise over €50,000 for research into the disease. There is now an expanding support network across the country with groups now having been launched in several other major towns.

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