GAA President Christy Cooney has revealed the GAA President’s Award winners for 2010.
The 16 award winners, including a special merit award for Ballylanders GAA Club for their 125 Anniversary celebrations, will be honoured at a banquet in Croke Park this evening in the company of family and friends.
They will also be presented to the crowd at Croke Park at half time in tomorrow’s AIB GAA Club Championship Football final.
This is the seventh year of the awards scheme.
The GAA President lauded the contribution of winners who were drawn from across the full spectrum of the wider GAA family, to include representatives from all four provinces, Camogie, Ladies Football, GAA Rounders, GAA Handball, Scór and the Overseas and Schools sectors.
He said: “Volunteers make a unique contribution to our Association and underpin the community ethos that goes hand in hand with our activities across the country.
“This year’s list is made up of dedicated and committed GAA members who work tirelessly in their chosen field and who have gone above and beyond - and continue to do so - the call of duty.
“Tonight’s event is about acknowledging their special input on what is a special week for our Club units and I heartily congratulate all of this year’s award winners.”
Tonight’s event is kindly supported by AIB and TG4.
2010 President’s Awards Winners
Paddy Fitzgerald, Dungarvan GAA Club, Co Waterford - Paddy played a key role in the acquisition of a 22-acre land bank at Clogherane in 1988 and in its subsequent development. He served for a time as club Vice Chairman before being elected Chairman, a position he remained in for 14 years.
Séamus Spaight, Meelick GAA Club, Co Clare - Seamus became Club Treasurer in 1976, a position he holds to this day. He spearheaded the purchase and development of the club grounds at Meelick, which included the land initially purchased in the early 1980s, the dressing rooms built in 1990 and a new sand-based pitch in 2003.
Jim McGiven, St Mary’s GAA Club, Burren, Co Down - Jim has given an enormous amount of his time in a voluntary capacity to ensure projects undertaken were delivered on time, under budget and to the highest standards. Jim has been a Club Committee member since 1975, represents the club on the County Committee and has held the position of Treasurer since 1999.
Patsy Forbes, O’Donovan Rossa GAA Club, Ardboe, Co Tyrone - Patsy has been at the centre of GAA affairs in his club since he was 16 years old and is currently a club trustee. He has been there in administration for over 30 years.
Jarlath Connolly, Milltown GAA Club, Co Galway - Jarlath became Club Chairman since 1993. During his tenure there have been many improvements to the cub’s facilities, such as the purchase of a new pitch and extended dressing rooms.
Billy Horan, Ballinrobe GAA Club, Co Mayo - Billy, a National school teacher and journalist, started writing for the Mayo News in 1951 and contributed to the now defunct Western Journal, the Connacht Tribune, the Western People and the Connacht Telegraph. Billy’s reports on games were highly acclaimed.
Tommy McLoughlin, Wolfe Tones GAA Club, Co Longford - Tommy became Club Secretary in 1969 through until 1976. During his term, he oversaw the development of the Club’s pitch and dressing rooms. He also resumed his previous role as county board delegate, which is a position he holds to this day.
Charlie McAllister, Newtown Blues GAA Club, Co Louth - For 39 years, Charlie had seen to it that Louth County teams of all levels were togged out to the very best standards. His standing in the world of the GAA has been perfectly demonstrated over the past 11 months during his battle with serious illness. It was with regret that Charlie had to give up his job as Louth kitman but his interest in Wee County teams remains strong.
Mary Donohue, Harps Camogie Club, Co Laois - The Harps Camogie Club was founded in 1995 and Mary has been with it every step of the way. As well as fulfilling officer roles, she is ceaseless in fundraising and seeking out sponsors.
Seán Clarke, Beragh Red Knight’s GAA Club, Co Tyrone - Séan was the pivotal figure in the amalgamation of the Handball Club into the Beragh Red Knights GAC in 2004. Part of that project has included the building of a state-of-the-art 40×20 handball court within the Club’s pavilion.
Christopher Hughes Snr, Limekiln Rounders GAA Club, Dublin - Christy has been involved with both GAA Rounders and the Community Games for over 30 years. The Limekiln Club has children and adults competing at all levels of competition with numerous successes.
Cathal Friel, Coolkenna GAA Club, Co Wicklow - Cathal recognised the need for a Ladies Gaelic Football Club in Coolkenna and became involved in setting up the first and became its Chairman. Cathal also heads up the fixtures making process for the Leinster Council.
John Hughes, Geevagh GAA Club, Co Sligo - For many years in Sligo, John Hughes has become renowned for his work in his home parish of Geevagh and the Cumann na mBunscol organisation in Sligo. He has been come to be known as ‘Mr. Cumann na mBunscol’ in the county.
Joe Roarke, Tara GAA Club, Warkickshire - Joe joined Tara Club in Warwickshire, where he was a player and Secretary. Joe was Provincial Secretary of Britain for 20 years and still serves on one of the council sub-committees.
Harry Mc Evoy, Carryduff GAC, Down - Harry was a founder member of Dumaness and Carryduff and also served as Secretary and Chairman of the East Down Divisional Committee. He has been deeply involved in the promotion and presentation of Scór at the county, provincial and central level.
Special 125 Award
Ballylanders GAA Club, Co Limerick - Ballylanders Shamrocks, as the Cub was then known, was founded in 1886. The Club’s 125 Anniversary celebrations focused of the enormous contribution made by the founder of the club, Frank B Dineen, in the emergence of the GAA. He is the only man to serve as both Secretary and President of the Association, and bought the site on Jones’s Road where Croke Park now stands.
- Lynn Publications