On Friday, another name or names will be added to the illustrious list of those previously bestowed with the coveted title of the 2022 Cork Person(s) of the year during a gala bash at the Rochestown Park Hotel.
One of the highlights on Cork’s social calendar, the ceremony will see more than 200 specially invited guests will join MC’s Marty Morrissey and Anne Cassin in celebrating, in the words of awards founder Mallow native Manus O’Callaghan “all that is good about Cork and the people who make it such a special place to live and work in”.
Mr O’Callaghan said that this year’s ceremony was extra special as it formally marks 30-years since the establishment of the awards.
He recalled the quoting the words of the writer Alex Haley at the firsts Cork Person of the Years awards back in 1993 ‘find the good and praise it’.
“Those words inspired this awards scheme. People are inspired by other people. So, by honouring achievement and celebrating success, others may be inspired to follow,” said Mr O’Callaghan.
“As in previous year, the 2022 monthly winners epitomise the many admirable qualities that Cork people are renowned for – their warmth, creativity, generosity and willingness to go that extra mile to achieve their goals,” he added.
In addition to the unveiling of the 2022 Cork Person(s) of the Year, by The Mayor of county Cork Cllr Danny Collins and the Lord Mayor of Cork Cllr Deirdre Forde, a number of other awards will be handed out during Friday’s ceremony.
Special award winners will include Mary Crilly, founder and chief executive of the Cork Sexual Violence Centre, who will join a select band including the late Ted Crosbie of the Cork/Irish Examiner, journalist Fergal Keane, the late Fermoy businessman and philanthropist Dr Tom Cavanagh and Cork Penny Dinners stalwart Caitriona Twomey in the ‘Hall of Fame.
Veteran broadcaster and ‘man of many parts’ Mike Murphy and jockey Rachel Blackmore will join the list of ‘Honorary Corkonians’ that includes David and Patsy Putnam, Jeremy Irons, Michael Flatley, Joe Schmidt, John Bowman and Donovan and his wife Linda Lawrence.
Tenor Finbar Wright will receive a ‘Cork Supreme Award’ in recognition of his glittering career.
An award will also be presented to Barry Woods, retired director of the Irish Examiner, to mark his role as a founding member of the award scheme.
Appreciation Awards will also go to retiring members of RTE, who are long standing award partners of the Cork Person(s) of the Year awards scheme, RTÉ Director General Dee Forbes and RTE commercial director Geraldine O’Leary.
The 2022 Cork Person(s) of the Year nominees are:
Evelyn Grant for her contribution to music - Cork Pops Orchestra, Lyric FM, music education and music outreach programmes in the community for over 40-years.
Sanctuary Runners founders Graham Clifford and the late Tony Power for fostering solidarity, friendship and respect between Irish residents, refugees and asylum seekers through athletics.
Broadcast Journalist Brian O’Donovan for his lively and authoritative style as RTE’s Washington Correspondent and book “Four Years in the Cauldron” about modern America.
Deirdre Mortell for her work with Rethink Ireland and contribution to social entrepreneurship and facilitating cash grants and mentoring to Cork charities and non-profit organisations.
Keeping Small Traditional Cork Businesses alive and successful - Shandon Sweet Factory and Angela’s Shop - honours for owners Tony Linehan and Angela Cantwell, both serving generations of Corkonians.
Charleville Legend, Tenor Kevin Owens, spent decades entertaining through concerts, records, radio, TV, church choirs and in Croke Park before All-Ireland’s with the Artane Boys Band.
James Leonard and Timmy Long, The Two Norries. Their podcasts and shows help others to break the cycle of addiction and social problems, just like they have.
Mezzo-Soprano Niamh Caitriona O’Sullivan is a rising star of the opera world in Europe and America.
Founder Kate Jarvey and volunteer Terry O’Neill of Crann Centre for their work in providing solutions for people with neuro-physical disabilities and providing unique outdoor leisure facilities.
Dermot Collins of the Béal na Bláth Commemoration Committee for keeping the legacy of Michael Collins alive for future generations, especially in the centenary year.
Pearse Flynn has run some of the world’s biggest companies - now back in Cork setting up Green Energy Companies together with many enterprises in his home town of Ballycotton.
Charlie McCarthy was one of the greatest Cork hurlers of his era. After 40 years this gentleman of sport continues to be fondly remembered by Club and County.