The Riverdale Steakhouse was jam-packed with all 42 of the New York GAA’s clubs exercising their right to elect the Association’s Board of Officers. Dooley’s 55 to 27 victory will be seen as vindication for the Monaghan man after weeks of attacks from his challenger John Moore.
Moore’s attempts to portray Dooley as a slave to the “status quo” failed to sway the rank and file and in fact the challengers scorched earth tactics may have done his cause more harm than good.
Several delegates told the Irish Echo that Moore’s criticisms had crossed the line into the personal and turned them off.
Delegates also expressed satisfaction with Dooley’s track record during his year at the helm and others echoed Dooley’s concern that Moore hadn’t been involved enough with the Association in the last couple of years.
After the votes were tallied, Moore struck a conciliatory note. Addressing delegates and interested spectators alike the Westmeath man said that, “this is a positive day,” for the Association and he pledged to be Dooley’s “biggest supporter.”
An emotional Dooley, the last to speak, calling was clearly not ready to put the bitter campaign to rest despite declaring that the “past is the past.”
The chairman advised Moore to “stay around, and be seen around.” Dooley said that he does have a vision in both his personal life and in his position with the New York GAA. His voice rising, Dooley stated emphatically that he has “a vision for the GAA in Randall’s Island,” and he wants to see it happen in this his last year in the chair. Dooley, prohibited from running for a third consecutive time by the New York GAA rules, drew sustained applause when he counseled delegates, “the only way forward is to be united.”
The chairmanship was just one of several positions up for grabs on Sunday.
The biggest news from the preliminaries came in the 1st vice chairman’s contest where John Riordan ousted incumbent Paddy Gormely.
The winners of the other contests were — Brendan O’Sullivan, 2nd vice chairman; trustees: Tom Lilly, Tom Fahey and Paul Levins Danny Doohan: for alternate delegate to the GAA Convention; auditors: Peter McKiernan, Mark McAllister and Geraldine O’Brien.