A LOUGHMACRORY man who emigrated from his native home nearly 50 years ago has been awarded the prestigious title of ‘Canadian Irish Person of the Year’.
Sean Harte said he felt ‘humbled and honoured’ at receiving the accolade, which was presented at a major function in Toronto last week attended by almost 500 people.
He received messages of congratulations from the Irish President, Michael D Higgins, the GAA at Croke Park, Ulster GAA and his local Loughmacrory St Teresa’s club.
Mr Harte was the eldest of a family of six children, four boys and two girls and attended school at St Teresa’s PS and then Dean Maguirc College. He qualified as a mechanical enginer and was initially employed by Finlays in Ballygawley before moving to Canada.
After emigrating, he was involved in sales and marketing roles and later became an industry leader in transportation.
Speaking to the UH this week, Mr Harte said, “It was a really humbling occasion to be honoured by so many people at the event in the Toronto Hilton Hotel.
“There were nearly 500 people in attendance, the dinner was lovely, and the organisers produced a fantastic commemorative programme.
“The messages of congratulations from Loughmacrory, the GAA and, of course, the President of Ireland, Michael D Higgins, will be treasured by both myself and my family.”
In his message, President Higgins said that Mr Harte’s contribution to Canada and his community had been ‘far-reaching and meaningful.’
“Well regarded – not just in Canada, but also globally, Sean is acknowledged as a champion for his commitment to encouraging participation in the GAA, particularly among the wider Toronto community,” he added.
“He has consistently fought for the rights of transportation workers in Ontario and is appreciated as a leader in his sector.”