Presidential Distinguished Awards 2019
Speech21 November 2019
Ladies and Gentlemen,
We have heard many fitting words already this evening and as Minister with responsibility for the Diaspora, I would like to formally add my own congratulations to this year’s recipients of the Presidential Distinguished Service Award. You are a remarkable group of individuals. It is an honour for my wife, Niamh, and me to share your company here tonight. I feel humbled by your achievements and once again I want to thank you. As we look across the globe in these challenging times, the footprints you have left in so many fields, give us the inspiration and confidence to take on the challenges we face. You make us all stand proud. Go raibh míle maith agaibh go léir.
The future is also bright. We are very fortunate to have a young woman with an amazing voice give us a short performance here tonight. No doubt we will hear much more from her in the future.
I would like to introduce Sibéal Ní Chasaide and accompanying her, her father Odhrán. Odhrán, hailing from the beautiful Gweedore, is better known to many of you as a member of the famous traditional group, Na Casaidigh. Also accompanying Sibéal and her father is Eamonn de Barra on keyboard and bodhran; Mike Neilsen on guitar; and harpist, Helen Lawlor.
Ladies and gentlemen, can I have your attention please for Sibéal Ní Chasaide.