By Harry Keaney
The new president of the Irish Business Organization of New York is Jennifer Confrey, a senior associate with Today’s Technology Inc., a technical staffing firm specializing in the recruitment and placement of computer consultants and permanent professionals. At 29, Confrey is the youngest IBO president. She takes over from Galwayman Brian Nolan, who served two terms.
Before joining Today’s Technology, Confrey worked as development officer for Concern Worldwide, the Irish Third World relief and development organization. She also worked as a fund-raiser for other charities, including the C,J, Foundation for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and AmFAR (American Foundation for AIDS Research).
Confrey said her career change, from fund-raising to becoming a technical recruiter, came about as a result of contacts she made through the IBO.
"The power of networking and the IBO never ceases to amaze me," she said. "Every day I continue to get and give referrals both business and personal. There is a tremendous value in being linked to an organization with so many diverse members and contacts. If I need to send flowers to a client or a friend, or if I’m planning a vacation, or if I know someone looking for a job, or if I need a place for dinner, I go to the IBO. Heck, if I need my haircut, I can go to the IBO. It’s the oldest story in the book, people do business with people they know. The IBO provides that."
Confrey has served on the 1998 and 1999 IBO executive committee as first vice president and has been a member of the organization since 1996. In the last two years, she has been instrumental in expanding the social activities of the organization with such events as the UCD debate, wine tastings, theater nights and the gala ball, to name a few. In addition, she created a spin off to the monthly member profile, the monthly restaurant profile.
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Confrey graduated from Springfield College in Springfield, Mass., with a bachelor of science degree in health services administration. She is the younger of two children, and traces her Irish roots to Leitrim. Born and raised in Aberdeen, N.J., she is the granddaughter of ragtime and jazz musician Zez Confrey, who performed with legends such as George Gershwin and Paul Whiteman. His most famous works include "Kitten on the Keys" and "Stumbling."
Confrey now lives in Hoboken, N.J.
The other officers of the IBO are:
€ First vice president, Attracta Lyndon, vice president of sales for Dan Dooley Rent A Car. Lyndon is a native of County Dublin and immigrated to the United States in 1971.
€ Second vice president, Dennis O’Neill, division manager for Vertex Engineering Services, Inc., which provides environmental and construction consulting services for lending institutions, insurance companies and property-building owners. A native of Boston, O’Neill moved to New York in 1996. He is first generation Irish, both his parents are from County Kerry.
€ Treasurer, Kathleen Lagas, principal of Precious & Few Collections, online catalog providing retail and wholesale fine Irish heirlooms for christenings and weddings. Her primary focus is personalized linens. Lagas is second generation Irish, her grandmother came from County Kilkenny in 1902 and later met her grandfather, also a Kilkenny native.
€ Secretary, Kevin Tierney, marketing executive at Sumitomo Life Insurance Agency America Inc., which provides employee benefits brokerage and consulting services. Tierney is first-generation Irish. His mother is from Dublin and his father is second generation. His grandparents are from County Tipperary.