photo: John Lahey

John Lahey has been named the “Thomas Manton Person of the Year,” by New York’s City Council. Photo by Dominick Totino.

For the official press release, click here.

John Lahey, chair of the NYC St. Patrick’s Day Parade Board of Directors and president of Quinnipiac University has been named the “Thomas Manton Person of the Year,” by New York’s City Council.

The award will be presented at the 2016 Irish Heritage & Culture Celebration, which starts at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 15, at City Hall. The Manton Award recognizes an individual of Irish descent for their service to New York. It is named in honor of the late Thomas J. Manton, who served in the U.S. Congress and the New York City Council. Manton was the Grand Marshal of the New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade in 1994 and also had served on the Parade Board of Directors.

“It is a very moving honor to receive the Thomas Manton Award since I knew Tom Manton well and respected him greatly,” Dr. Lahey said. “Tom was a true champion of the Irish values and culture and the spirit of St. Patrick which we celebrate in this parade. This award is a challenge to me and my colleagues on the Board of Directors to live up to the standards Tom Manton set for us.” Dr. Lahey added “I’m also pleased to receive this award in 2016 as we celebrate the life of St. Patrick; the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising; and the most inclusive parade in our 255 year history.”

Former Sen. George Mitchell, the author of the Northern Ireland Peace Accord, the “Good Friday Accord,” will lead more than 200,000 people up Fifth Avenue on March 17, stepping off from 44th Street at 11 a.m.

The 255th St. Patrick’s Day Parade celebrates the 100th Anniversary of the Easter Rising, the birth of Irish Freedom. During this rebellion, brave Irish men and women stood on the steps of Dublin’s General Post Office and read The Proclamation of the Irish Republic. It is one of the most progressive declarations of human rights in history, promising a government “cherishing all the children of the nation equally.”

The Parade will be broadcast live on WNBC-TV 4, on Thursday, March 17 and live-streamed on For the first time ever, the parade will be broadcast live in Ireland and the United Kingdom on Irish TV.

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