Anne Anderson, Ireland’s Ambassador to the US, will celebrate North Carolina’s Irish heritage by leading the Charlotte St. Patrick’s Day parade on March 19.

Anderson, a native of Co. Tipperary, is Ireland’s 17th Ambassador to the United States and the first woman Ambassador. After serving as Ireland’s Ambassador to the UN, she took up duty in her current role in Washington DC in 2013.

The Charlotte St. Patrick’s Day Parade is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, lending the occasion special significance.

The parade kicks off at 11am in uptown Charlotte and will be followed by the all-day Charlotte Goes Green Festival, which will feature Irish music, Irish dancers, bagpipers, Irish/Celtic and other vendors, children’s amusements and food and beverages.

Charlotte marked its first St. Patrick’s Day parade in 1996, when a small group walked down Tryon Street with some bagpipers. It has since blossomed into a massive celebration, drawing upwards of 80,000 spectators.

Last year’s grand marshal was Dr. R. John Young, Honorary Consul of Ireland for North Carolina. Previous grand marshals have included Governor Pat McCrory; Bill Duffy, CFO of the Charlotte Bobcats; and Pat Terrell of the Carolina Panthers.

For more information about the parade and the Charlotte Goes Green Festival, visit