The U.S. Department of State selected John O’Loughlin Kennedy, an Irish alumnus of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs’ (ECA) Fulbright Student Program, as February’s State Alumni Member of the Month.
O’Loughlin Kennedy’s participation in the Fulbright Student Program on the topic of business administration inspired him to launch the international charity Concern Worldwide. The confidence and skills he gained as a Fulbright student continue to serve him in his innovative entrepreneurial endeavors.
After his return to Ireland, O’Loughlin Kennedy put his can-do attitude to work when he founded AfricaConcern in response to the famine that was then ravaging Nigeria.
AfricaConcern has since become Concern Worldwide, a major international charity that raises approximately $260 million annually and employs over 3,000 people worldwide.
In partnership with fellow Fulbright alumnus Patrick Duffy, O’Loughlin Kennedy founded the award-winning company WINICabs. WINI, which stands for “When I Need It, Where I Need It,” is an automated taxi dispatch system that links taxis with customers using mobile phone technology.
At the 2011 Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, WINICabs was named winner of the prestigious Aepona/Neustar Developer Challenge. It is being tested in Dublin, Ireland, before its international launch later this year.
Beyond his extensive entrepreneurial endeavors, O’Loughlin Kennedy has served as a tireless advocate for the Irish Fulbright Alumni Association since its founding in 1993. He gave his support to the newly established Ireland - United States Alumni Association by participating in early planning meetings which led to the establishment of the interim board of directors in January 2011.
O’Loughlin Kennedy is an enthusiastic advocate for the new alumni association. He recently participated in a business panel discussion on the trade and investment relationship between Ireland and the United States.
Throughout February, O’Loughlin Kennedy’s leadership and dedication to affecting positive change in the world will be recognized on the State Alumni website, ECA’s official website for the more than one million Department-sponsored exchange alumni worldwide. Each month, the Bureau’s Office of Alumni Affairs, which supports alumni as they build on their exchange experiences, confers the award on an outstanding alumnus or alumna.
An interview with O’Loughlin Kennedy: