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Kathleen Sheerin - Tip O'Neill Irish Diaspora Awardee 2022

The Tip O’Neill Irish Diaspora Awards return for 2022, as part of the Donegal Connect Festival Series. The awards take place at the Inishowen Gateway Hotel in Buncrana on 23rd September 2022. It is with great pleasure that the first awardee for 2022, Kathleen Sheerin, is introduced.

Kathleen, who hails from Ardara, has dedicated much of her life to supporting and promoting Donegal as a valued member of the Donegal Association in Dublin since the early 1970s. When asked about what part of the work she enjoyed most, Kathleen said: “being part of the Donegal community and in particular the Donegal Association in Dublin has been one of the absolute joys of my life and I continue to enjoy every minute of it. I just love meeting, interacting and connecting Donegal people and have made life-long friendships and acquaintances as a result of my time with the Association”.

Kathleen is an amazing ambassador for the county of Donegal and it’s not difficult to tell how passionate she is about her home county, “Being a member of the Donegal Association Committee has allowed me a platform to promote all that is good about Donegal and I have tried to do that at every given opportunity. The people, the heritage, the natural unspoilt beauty, the culture and the local industries are second to none.

She adds “when I was manager of the Donegal Tweed Shop in St. Stephen’s Green customers from all over the world would leave not only with high quality hand-made garments, but also an understanding of the skill, craftsmanship and history that went into the making the cloth. They also learned about how the colours in the tweed captured the natural beauty in the local surroundings”.


Kathleen Sheerin

When asked Kathleen what it was like to be nominated for the Tip O’Neill Irish Diaspora Award, “I feel truly privileged and honoured to be nominated for a Tip O’Neill Irish Diaspora Award, and whilst I was the named nominee, I feel that this nomination is really a recognition of the long standing work of the Donegal Association in Dublin over many years. It is a tribute, in particular, to the dedication and commitment of all my fellow committee members past and present”.

Quizzed on three words to describe Donegal, Kathleen said it was more appropriate to use thirty-three words but after much debate the final three chosen were:

  1. Magnificent – the rugged beauty of the landscape and the Atlantic coastline
  2. Warm - the warmth of the people, their sense of humour, their welcome and hospitality and their community spirit.
  3. Home – Home is where the heart is and even after 50 years in Dublin, my heart is still in the Hills of Donegal and it will always be ‘home’ to me no matter where I am in the world.

 Tickets for the Tip O’Neill Irish Diaspora Awards are on sale now via EventBrite.

Book tickets now for Tip O'Neill Irish Diaspora Awards 2022

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