When Irish America magazine celebrates the inductees at the 2011 Irish America Hall of Fame awards luncheon on March 15, Fordham alumni and friends will be a big part of the proceedings.
The ceremony at the New York Yacht Club will honor bestselling author Mary Higgins Clark, FCLC ’79, grand marshal of this year’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Manhattan; William J. Flynn, GSAS ’51, chairman emeritus of Mutual of America, and champion of the Irish peace process in his role as chairman of the National Committee on American Foreign Policy; and diplomat Jean Kennedy Smith, who received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Fordham in 1995 (the same year Mary Robinson, then president of Ireland, delivered the commencement address).
Honorees Denis Kelleher, founder and CEO of Wall Street Access, and Chuck Feeney, Irish American billionaire philanthropist, also have close ties to the University. They are being honored along with James Watson, Ph.D., co-discoverer of the double helical structure of DNA (for which he received a Nobel Prize in 1962), and Michael Flatley, choreographer and dancer, and the creator of The Lord of the Dance.
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.” Irish America magazine has been in print for more than a quarter century, and is a leading publication of Irish interest in North America.