Category: Archive

GAA return Maloney; Bermingham new VP

February 16, 2011

By Staff Reporter

By Mike Fitzpatrick

Monty Maloney, who has guided the New York GAA the last two years, was returned to a third term Sunday at a well-attended election at the Lansdowne Bar in the Bronx. But Maloney will take the GAA into the new millennium without the benefit of his vice president, John Moore, who was unseated by Liam Bermingham.

Maloney defeated former GAA president Terry Connaughton 55 votes to 44. His new understudy, Bermingham, who is Cork’s senior football manager, beat Westmeath man Moore by 57-42.

In the race for the position of second vice president, the Westmeath consortium suffered another defeat when it’s candidate, Tom Nugent, was beaten by Offaly’s Sean Guinan.

It had been quite a rough ride in the weeks leading up to the hotly contested elections, with many words being written and spoken by various candidates causing friction among their colleagues within the organization. Of particular concern was an issue of the GAA weekly, published three weeks after the season, that contained an article written by Moore critical of opponents of the now-outgoing regime. The 99 percent attendance rate at the election (one voter out of an eligible 100 failed to appear) attested to the high emotions surrounding the contests and the commitment New York Gaels have to the continued good health of their organization.

The mood in the Lansdowne prior to the vote counting was subdued at times, with whispered conversations, accompanied by winks and nods, floating through the air, although to many others, it was clearly a time for celebration, the dawning of a new century for New York’s GAA. The rival’s for each position up for contention were observed chatting, thereby almost rubbishing the claims of ill feeling within the organization’s ranks. Though perhaps that was the intention.

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Upon being sworn in as president, Maloney immediately paid tribute to defeated vice presidential candidate John Moore. "John Moore is probably one of those few individuals who have come into the association in my 35 years in the town that has so much to offer, and still has so much to offer . . . the brains, the brawn, everything that goes with it," Maloney said. "He’s in your future whether you like it or not."

Of the association’s new vice president, Maloney said: "The bottom line is, I will work with Liam. Liam has been up here as an excellent secretary. I had him in my first term and, obviously, he complemented me as well. I’ll be glad to work with Liam."

Perhaps referring to the recent spate of bad feelings, Maloney summed up the feelings of quite a number of those present when he went on to say: "There are bridges to be mended here, and we will go on. I think it’s great that people get together. . . . Maybe if Terry didn’t run we’d have only half the attendance here. We have an enormous amount of work to do."

The just-elected president then went on to set forth a number of his priorities for the coming year. The one taking precedence is no doubt the search for new playing facilities. Pointing out that it took the Boston GAA 15 years to develop their much-heralded new stadium, Maloney said he was confident New York had the skill and energy to achieve their goals.

"We will get together, we are together," Maloney said. " We are the strongest organization in the world outside of Ireland. We are New York. If we can’t do it, nobody can. I have all the faith in the world in these new officers who’ll be working with me, and I with them."

The immensely popular Liam Bermingham, bounced back from defeat at last year’s election to claim the position as first vice president.

"I think I know exactly how John and Terry feel right now," Bermingham said. "I stood up here at the same stage last year, having lost. You’ve two choices, you can go home and sulk, or you can stay involved and hope to move on. I took the last one, and it worked out today.

"There’s been a lot of stuff written, and a lot of stuff talked about in the last couple of weeks, and I think a lot of it was bad, and didn’t reflect any goodness, I think it’s time to put it all behind us now. We’re all united, we’re all delegates for the one association, so in the interests of the GAA, it’s time to move on"

For his part, Connaughton was gallant despite his loss, wishing Maloney the very best of luck, and drew a good response from the crowd when he informed them that the one person delighted with his defeat was his wife.

And so to the future. The partnership of Maloney, Bermingham and Guinan begins in earnest immediately, and will celebrate their first appearance at the helm of New York’s GAA at Thursday’s regular meeting in the Lansdowne.

Following in full is a list of the GAA’s elected board of officers:

President, Monty Maloney; Vice President, Liam Bermingham; Second Vice President, Sean Guinan; Registrar, Tom Cahill; Treasurer, Dermot Flynn; Recording Secretary, Bosco Walsh; Corresponding Secretary, Ann Marie Dowd; Financial Secretary, John Cox; Sergeant-at-Arms, Joe Prunty; Custodian, Seamus Dooley; Auditors, Pat Ryan, Pat Kiley and Peter McKiernan; Delegates to Congress, John O’Riordan, Ann Marie Dowd and Seamus Dooley; Trustees, Jimmy Naughton, Tom Fahey and Brendan O’Sullivan.

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