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Irish Business Network Cleveland Launch

Irish Business Network Cleveland Launch
August 29, 2013
Rotunda of Cleveland City Hall

Cleveland is Open For Business!

That was the message delivered at the launch of the Cleveland Chapter of the Irish Business Network in the Rotunda of Cleveland City Hall.

Flag of Ireland in Cleveland City Hall

Flag of Ireland in Cleveland City Hall


The mission of the Irish Network Cleveland is to provide an inclusive environment that facilitates effective coordination and collaboration, on a global stage, of Irish and Irish Americans from all vocations, with the goal of strengthening the economic, social and cultural ties between the U.S. and Ireland; and communicating and coordinating with other, non Irish Network, groups, including the Irish and U.S. Governments and government bodies, long standing industry and philanthropic bodies, and any other groups as may be appropriate to facilitate a unified advancement for all.

Founder Jerry Hallissey invited people to be part of something new, something different. He said that "Our goal is to bring the Cleveland group to a whole new level of participation and success...We want Irish Network Cleveland to make all of the others stand up and take notice! Cleveland Irish is a force to be reckoned with."

Color Guard with US and Irish flags


A Color Guard marched into Cleveland City Hall Rotunda with the flags of the United States and Ireland. Jerry Hallissey introduced Mary Agnes Kennedy who sang the Irish national anthem followed by the American anthem. Thus began the inaugural gathering of the Cleveland Chapter of the Irish Network.

Mary Agnes Kennedy

Mary Agnes Kennedy




Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson welcomed the crowd to the Rotunda.

Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson

Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson




Then Jerry Hallissey welcomed the crowd to the inaugural gathering of the Cleveland Chapter of the Irish Network. He told of the symbolism of meeting in the Rotunda of Cleveland City Hall because of the Rotunda in Dublin.

Jerry Hallissey speaking

Jerry Hallissey


Jerry declared that Cleveland is open for business and then introduced Cleveland City Council President Martin Sweeney. Sweeney told of how his grandparents from Ireland somehow got together and stressed the family side of networking too.

Cleveland City Council President Martin Sweeney

Cleveland City Council President Martin Sweeney




Irish Vice Consul Nick Michael had his first official speaking engagement in the US (after his service in the Irish Embassy in Tanzania) at the inaugural gathering of the Cleveland Chapter of the Irish Network.

Irish Vice Consul Nick Michael

Irish Vice Consul Nick Michael

He told how Cleveland has always been a great Irish city and a great Mayo city and even further, Achill Island where he spent many summers. He described Jerry Hallissey as a force of nature.




Jerry Hallissey told how the network has already been established nationally. He introduced Steve Lenox, president of Irish Network in New Jersey and co-president of Irish Network USA, who told more about the mission.

Steve Lenox,  president of Irish Network in New Jersey and co-president of Irish Network USA

Steve Lenox, president of Irish Network in New Jersey
and co-president of Irish Network USA


The New Jersey mission is 'Connecting Irish, Irish Americans and 'friends of Ireland' across New Jersey through business, arts, sport, and social activities.' And it is now spread to Cleveland and throughout the US.




Jerry Hallissey then introduced Imelda Gallagher, President of the Chicago Chapter of the Irish Network who spoke about opportunities to collaborate between Chicago and Cleveland and all the other chapters.

Imelda Gallagher, President of the Chicago Chapter of the Irish Network

Imelda Gallagher, President of the Chicago Chapter of the Irish Network




Jerry Hallissey closed the inaugural gathering of the Cleveland Chapter of the Irish Network, by saying 'We're Irish and we want to do business.' Irish people doing business with other Irish people. Cleveland doing business with Ireland. Cleveland doing business with Chicago and the other cities in the Irish Network USA.





For more details on the Irish network Cleveland email Irishnetworkcleveland@gmail.com. If you are a business, interested in business, interested in Ireland or interested in Cleveland - you need to be involved.


Enjoy these images from the event.

Jerry Hallissey, Mayor Frank Jackson, Consul Nick Michael and Martin Sweeney

Jerry Hallissey, Mayor Frank Jackson,
Consul Nick Michael and Martin Sweeney


John Sweeney and Tom Maloney

John Sweeney and Tom Maloney


John and Mary Eileen Myers and Rick Foran

John and Mary Eileen Myers and Rick Foran


Westlake Mayor Dennis Clough and Tom Deegan

Westlake Mayor Dennis Clough and Tom Deegan


Jimmy Kilbane, Tom Deegan and JC Sullivan

Jimmy Kilbane, Tom Deegan and JC Sullivan


Jo Reppa and Jackie Kropp

Jo Reppa and Jackie Kropp


Joe Casey and Francis McGarry

Joe Casey and Francis McGarry


Jim O'Hare and Philomena and Bill O'Hare

Jim O'Hare and Philomena and Bill O'Hare


Jerry Hallissey and Erin Ryan

Jerry Hallissey and Erin Ryan


Joe Lardie and Gerry Quinn

Joe Lardie and Gerry Quinn


Vice Counsil Nick Michael, Tom Scanlon and Imelda Gallagher

Vice Counsil Nick Michael, Tom Scanlon and Imelda Gallagher


John O'Brien Sr. and Jr.

John O'Brien Sr. and Jr.


Martin Sweeney and Ellen Kelley

Martin Sweeney and Ellen Kelley


Sheila Murphy-Crawford and Deidre Woodburn

Sheila Murphy-Crawford and Deidre Woodburn


Seanna, Maureen and Neil Conway

Seanna, Maureen and Neil Conway


Sandy Coakley, Debbie and Chip Coakley

Sandy Coakley, Debbie and Chip Coakley


Mary and Alan Soirefman

Mary and Alan Soirefman


Pat Coyne and Steve Lenox

Pat Coyne and Steve Lenox


Marilyn Madigan, Mary Agnes Kennedy, David McGloughlin, Patricia Lavelle and Shannon Corcoran

Marilyn Madigan, Mary Agnes Kennedy, David McGloughlin,
Patricia Lavelle and Shannon Corcoran


Jose Feliciano Jr and Paul McAvinchey

Jose Feliciano Jr and Paul McAvinchey


Egan, Kathy and Brett Luengo

Egan, Kathy and Brett Luengo


Jerry Hallissey and Greg Harris

Jerry Hallissey and Greg Harris


Jonathan Petrea

Jonathan Petrea


Imelda Gallagher, Steve Lenox and Vice Consul Nick Michael

Imelda Gallagher, Steve Lenox and Vice Consul Nick Michael


Jerry Hallissey, Martin Sweeney, Maureen Patterson, Vice Consul Nick Michael, Deidre Woodburn and Steve Lenox

Jerry Hallissey, Martin Sweeney, Maureen Patterson,
Vice Consul Nick Michael, Deidre Woodburn and Steve Lenox


US and Irish flags in Cleveland City Hall


Congratulations to Jerry Hallissey and his team for a tremendous launch of the Irish Business Network in Cleveland.


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