The Irish American Partnership

Image of huge hand sculpture in front of a building

Founded in Ireland by business, political and education leaders, The Irish American Partnership aims to organize Irish American support on behalf of job creation, education and economic development in Ireland. In addition, the Partnership promotes tourism and sustainable economic development in Ireland (North and South) as well as the advancement of trustful business relations between the entire island and the United States. The Partnership also provides forums in the United States for visiting leaders from Ireland and Northern Ireland

Encouraged by an Irish Parliament grant of 50,000 Irish pounds in 1986, its purpose was to create a supportive partnership between Irish Americans and Ireland, and began its activities in Philadelphia and Boston in April 1988. Mr. Padraic White was elected the first Chairman. Mr. White was also the Director of Ireland’s Industrial Development Authority (IDA). Joseph F. Leary, former Gillette Co. executive, was hired to be President / CEO and remains in that position today. Chairman of the board is John P. Murray, retired Prudential executive from New Jersey and former Speaker of the House of Representatives.

A strong, persistent early supporter of the Partnership, the late Honorable Thomas P. "Tip" O'Neill, Jr. former Speaker of the House of Representatives, discussing Irish American Partnership membership said:

"I am convinced that the Partnership is on the right track. And after many years of observing Ireland, I believe that the best and surest way to resolve that country's problems is to help build a strong, dynamic Irish economy with opportunity for all. I urge you in the strongest terms to become a member of the Irish American Partnership."

Today as a non-profit corporation, the Partnership has 4000 active supporters throughout the United States. In the past 24 years Irish American supporters of the Partnership, throughout the United States, have provided over $20 million dollars in assistance to Ireland both in the North and South. Over 400 primary schools, higher educational institutions and hundreds of community organizations, North and South, have received assistance.

The Partnership has etched a place of honour for itself in the hearts and minds of its Irish constituency.

Both the Irish and British governments have endorsed the Partnership in Ireland. Education, business and political leaders throughout Ireland have applauded the Partnership for the non-partisan support it has provided to both the North and South of Ireland. For Irish Americans interested in supporting our Heritage, the Partnership is a sound investment in Ireland's future.