City Speaker Christine Quinn will honor NYPD commissioner Ray Kelly with the "Irish Man of the Year Award" in a ceremony in the city tonight.
Quinn and Kelly are the two most prominent Irish-American office holders in the city and both are seen as potential 2013 candidates for mayor (although Quinn currently seems like the more likely contender.)
Reading the tealeaves former mayor Ed Koch told the press this week that he was likely to back either of them for mayor in 2013.
The Irish Man of the Year Award is named after late Congressman Thomas Manton. Quinn said in a statement: "New York City is fortunate to have Ray Kelly as our police commissioner and we are proud to salute him with the Thomas Manton Irish Man of the Year award. Historic declines in violent crime began when Kelly first led the NYPD in the early 1990s. His return to the department after the attacks of September 11, 2001 helped restore New Yorkers' sense of safety and security when we needed it most. With his continuing efforts to keep our City, State, and Nation safe, Commissioner Kelly is an inspiring example of the great tradition of Irish American public service."
The Irish pub that became home base for 9/11 ground zero rescuers