The Ireland Funds honored John T. Lynch, Jr., General Manager of the San Francisco 49ers and Francis C. Mahoney, Vice Chair and US-West Region Managing Partner of Ernst & Young LLP (EY) in San Francisco at the San Francisco Gala Dinner on Friday, March 6.
John Lynch, Jr., was presented with The Ireland Funds Distinguished Leadership Award. He was joined by his wife Linda and members of the San Francisco 49ers family including Coach Kyle Shanahan, Al Guido (President), and 4-time Super Bowl Champ, Keena Turner. Lynch is one of the most respected players to ever play the game of football and was being recognized for his philanthropic and leadership contributions, including the establishment of the John Lynch Foundation which he and Linda founded to provide encouragement and positive alternatives to young people.
Francis C. Mahoney, Vice Chair and US-West Region Managing Partner of Ernst & Young LLP (EY) was presented with The Ireland Funds Corporate Philanthropy Award. Frank was joined by his wife Mary, son Frankie and daughter Lindsey along with other family members. Frank is a fourth-generation Irish American with roots in Cork and is a longtime supporter of The Ireland Funds. EY supports a range of projects in Ireland including numerous initiatives supported by The Ireland Funds.
“We are delighted to honor two great friends of Ireland,” said Marjorie Muldowney, Vice President of Development for The Ireland Funds. “Both of our honorees possess a deep-rooted spirit of Ireland (with ancestral ties to Cork) and have shown themselves to be dynamic in so many ways. We are proud to salute their many triumphs, underpinned by a tremendous sense of drive, decency and team spirit. By joining with us this evening, we have the opportunity to pay tribute to their successful careers and celebrate the importance of their philanthropic commitments to projects in Ireland and the United States.”
Over 400 guests from the spheres of business, the arts and politics attended the Gala at The Westin St. Francis Hotel, including Consul General Robert O’Driscoll, The Ireland Funds America President & CEO David Cronin, and Board Directors John Lynch Sr., Bill McKiernan & Bart Murphy. Key corporate supporters included Ernst & Young LLP, Kennedy Wilson, Goldman Sachs and Google as well as First Republic Bank, IDA Ireland, the San Francisco 49ers, Alice Phelan Sullivan Corporation, Deloitte, DCU (Dublin City University), Queen’s University Belfast, UCD and UCSF. The event was generously supported by Mary & Francis C. Mahoney, Joan & Dave O’Reilly, Maureen Sullivan, and EJ Tracy. Longtime supporters Jenny & Michael Caulfield, Mary & Tom Hunt, Candice & Ryan Murray, Mary & Joe Toboni, Kathleen Ryan, Mary & Steve Almassy, Mrs. Frank J. McGinnis, Ann King & Steve Murphy, and Kerri Murphy of Microsoft attended with a wonderful group of enthusiastic guests. Irish Tenor Anthony Kearns added a wonderful sound of Ireland with his magnificent Irish voice and the evening wrapped up with a fun-filled dance session with Dave Martin’s House Party.
Special thanks to Lisa Schwartz of Ernst & Young LLP and Mike Gonzalez of the San Francisco 49ers and to our sponsors who generously contributed to the exclusive auction & drawing: The Merrion Hotel, Ashford Castle, Dromoland Castle, Sheen Falls Lodge, Fitzpatrick’s Hotel New York, Cinta Salon, San Francisco 49ers, San Francisco Giants, and Mission Rock Resort.
The event marked the beginning of the St. Patrick’s Day season and raised key support for hundreds of Irish charities and causes. The Gala is the largest West Coast event of the 150+ events held globally by The Ireland Funds.
Photos: Elaine Lee