Loretta Brennan Glucksman, Grand Marshal for
the 2018 New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade
It's That Time Again!
by James A. McQuiston, FSAScot
Editor/Publisher, Celtic Guide
For a half dozen or more years, Hilary Beirne, Chairman of the St. Patrick's Day Foundation, and it's St. Patrick's Day Parade, has been sending me information and invitations to events surrounding that wonderful parade. He states that this event is, "the greatest symbol Ireland has outside of Ireland," and that is undoubtably true, since this is typically the largest parade in the world.
In the past few days I have received info on this year's Grand Marshall for the event, and she has quite the involvement in all things Irish.
Loretta Brennan Glucksman was raised in an Irish neighborhood in Allentown, Pennsylvania, the granddaughter of four Irish immigrants. Her maternal grandfather was a miner from County Leitrim, and was involved with the first unionizing efforts in Coaldale.
Glucksman has been involved in philanthropic endeavors for more than two decades, focusing on education, the arts, health care and peace initiatives in both the United States and Ireland, a passion she shared with her late husband Lew Glucksman. Lew was a Commissioner of the Port Authority for New York and New Jersey. They married in 1985 and lived in New York. In 1987, Lew took Loretta to Ireland for her first visit, and the Glucksman’s then bought a home near Cobh, in County Cork. In 2006, Lew sadly passed away in his beloved Emerald Isle.
Loretta is the Chairman Emeritus of The Ireland Funds America, where she served as its Chairman for 18 years before stepping down in December 2013. During that time, The Ireland Funds exceeded its initial goal of raising $100 million under the Promising Ireland Campaign and ultimately went on to exceed the revised target of $200 million.
Loretta is Co-Chair of Glucksman Ireland House founded in 1993, the center for Irish Studies at New York University, and she serves on the Board of Arts and Sciences at NYU. She also is Chairman of the University of Limerick Foundation. Loretta is also a long-time staunch supporter of FACES (Finding A Cure for Epilepsy and Seizures), which is affiliated with the NYU Langone Medical Center.
Lew and Loretta established the Glucksman Chair of English and American Letters at NYU, and the Glucksman Chair of Irish and Scottish Studies at the University of Aberdeen. In 2002, University College Cork officially opened the Lewis Glucksman Gallery; in 2001, Lew and Loretta established the Map Conservation Library at Trinity College, Dublin; and in 1998 they helped build the Glucksman Library at University Limerick.
In Ireland, Loretta served on numerous boards including IDA Ireland (national private sector economic development), The National Gallery of Ireland, The National Library, The National Concert Hall, The Abbey Theatre, Trinity College, University College Cork, The Royal College of Surgeons, Smurfit School of Business at the University of Dublin, and Cork Airport Authority.
In 2002, Loretta was conferred an Honorary Commander of the British Empire by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, the highest honor for a non-British citizen, for her work toward peace in Northern Ireland. She also received honorary degrees from the Universities of Scranton, Fairfield, Trinity, Cork and Queens University Belfast; she is an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Irish Academy, The Royal Dublin Society and the Royal Irish Academy of Music.
Loretta Brennan Glucksman has worked tirelessly to promote Irish culture and to establish strong ties between America and the island of Ireland. Loretta served as a strong advocate for Ireland at a pivotal and difficult time in Irish history, – increasing awareness and interest in Irish history and culture throughout the U.S., and rallying much-needed support for the country.
We, at the Celtic Guide, wish to congratulate Loretta, not only for being named Grand Marshal, but also for a life well-lived.
We added a recipe section led off by Alison MacRae, and we added a new episode of C.L. Smear, written by Craig Waltman. Check them out!
You may have noticed that we've been busy adjusting our website to create a searchable library of Celtic related information. By posting new articles and reposting older articles directly to this site, versus our former pdf format, we are creating a massive searchable library of Celtic culture. Meanwhile, our Facebook page is growing again, after our wee disaster of a year ago. Thank you to all who participate there.
The process has been a little slow since I was busy writing two books on the Oak Island mystery all through 2017, along with publishing another shorter work early in the year. For those interested, these book titles are – Oak Island 1632 (my first recommendation), Oak Island Missing Links (also packed full of good info).
I even created a new website just about Oak Island. For fans of that mystery, you can visited www.oakislandgold.com to catch up on my latest research.
My other, smaller book from 2017 is called Patrick's Run, my first historical fiction about a real life Irish hero of the War of 1812, and ultimately of the anti-death penalty community, being executed for a crime he didn't commit, while deaf, aging, and living a subsistence-level existence. This courageous Irishman changed the world! This book was under consideration as a Michigan Notable Book for 2018, and although we didn't win, when put up against some great contenders, we were still honored to be asked to submit it for consideration. It is a great and important story, none-the-less.
I also have the books, Captain Jack: Father of the Yukon, and Ebenezer Denny: First Mayor of Pittsburgh, both packed full of interesting history, including Scottish and Irish links. All are available on Amazon and elsewhere.
I have also posted a new link under the New Stuff! tab, which will become a series on Celtic music, and which I have called "Roots and Rhythms," and I just recently posted a fifth column on the song "Danny Boy."
Also, you may have notice that I've added the typical Social Media icons for emailing us and for getting to our Facebook page. They are at the right just below the search window. Replacing the Facebook tab across the top of the page will be an entirely new category helping the reader access what the experts have to say. In a few cases, we've had what might be considered the world's expert on subjects. In others, we've had substantial scientific professionals providing some amazing information. I've decided they need their own tab. Watch for additions here, as time allows.