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New Irish Consul, Noel Kilkenny, is off to busy start

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Kilkenny also plans to ensure the government support for programs throughout the U.S., and “particularly the programs that support the welfare of the Irish immigrants” through continued funding from the Irish government.

“Liaising with the young Irish networks out there is also an integral part of my job. I will support them in their efforts,” he said.

Kilkenny also sees the need to highlight the presence of Irish culture in New York.  In the past few weeks he has attended various Irish plays and festivals and has thoroughly enjoyed them all.

“There is great work being done in the arts in New York in all aspects, and of course being from

Clare music is very close to my heart, so I’m looking forward to feeding into the image of Ireland as a place of culture and vibrancy through the arts,” he said.

Touching on the arts again, Kilkenny said the meeting of the Global Irish Network -- born out of the Irish government hosted meeting at Farmleigh in Dublin last year -- in New York this November will be an exciting time for the consulate.

“Often people think of this as just business, but there is also a huge cultural strand to it,” he said.

On the business end Kilkenny said, “There are so many Americans of Irish extraction and Irish-born Americans who are dedicated to supporting Ireland and working within various co-operations and law firms to advance the interest of Ireland, and we want that to continue, and for the arts too.”

Kilkenny also endeavors to extend the consulate's reach to Philadelphia and further afield in the coming months.

In the meantime, Kilkenny is busy this week accompanying Minister for Foreign Affairs Micheal Martin during his ministerial visit to New York as part of the ongoing UN meetings.

It’s a busy beginning, but Kilkenny is happy.  “It is New York, a great city for so many things, including for the Irish. How could you not want to jump right in!”

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