By Harry Keaney
Celtic Tigers are prowling around Brooklyn and Queens. Now, an attempt is being made to round them up into a networking organization to be known as the Irish Business Group of New York.
That’s the objective of Mayo-born businessman Liam Groarke, who operates two stores, Village Irish Imports in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, and the Celtic Tiger in Middle Village, in Maspeth, Queens.
"Many young people who have immigrated in the last 10 years or more and have sorted out their legal status are becoming Celtic Tigers here in this great adopted city which many are now calling home," Groarke said. "Perhaps the time has come for us all to share what we have among our own."
Among those Groarke hopes will join the new organization are self-employed entrepreneurs, from lawyers to carpenters, business owners, plumbers, electricians, restaurant and bar owners and workers.
What spurred Groarke into action was an experience he recently had in running his own businesses. "I had difficulty in getting Irish craftsmen for jobs and in the end I had to job it out to other ethnic groups," Groarke said. "I would have much preferred to give the work to one of our own."
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Groarke said meetings of the new group will alternate between Brooklyn and Queens. The first meeting has yet to be announced.
"We are in the process of selecting the final committee," Groarke said, adding that leaflets about the new group are, at present, being distributed to Irish establishments. The leaflets have a section which prospective members may fill up and return to Irish Business Group, P.O. Box 790446, Middle Village, NY 11379.