Kernan Rafferty, Emily
Emily Kernan Rafferty, president of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, says she is “humbled” and “deeply touched” to have been nominated alongside her fellow Irish Americans for the Women of Influence award.
“I am humbled by such an award and in this instance I take great pride in having Irish roots. It’s an extraordinary tradition of people and just to step in their shadows is a wonderful honor,” she said.
Rafferty, who traces her Irish roots back to County Cavan - “I’m not yesterday’s Irish person but I do have the roots,” she says -- was elected president of the Met by the museum’s board of trustees in 2005 after a 29-year long career at the famed institution, where she rose through the ranks in the areas of development and external affairs.
Rafferty, who earned a bachelor’s degree cum laude from Boston University, is responsible for supervising more than 2,500 museum employees and works with a $190 million annual operating budget and an $80 million merchandising business.
Rafferty said that being Irish to her means “to be proud of an ancestry of a people of courage, faith, resourcefulness and perspicacity, and of course the love of life, laughter, family and the enduring beacon of hope.”
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