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G-Mac Foundation helps to raise $700K at the 2017 Best of Ireland Dinner

Graeme McDowell (right) speaks with Tom Coughlin during the January 19 event.

January 23, 2017

NEW YORK CITY – Over $700,000 was raised to benefit sick children at the 6th Annual Best of Ireland Dinner held at the New York City’s Pierre Hotel on Thursday, January 19th. Each year, Graeme McDowell, 2010 U.S. Open Champion and 4-time Ryder Cup golfer, has served as the event’s Honorary Patron. 

McDowell’s G-Mac Foundation partnered with the Children’s Medical Research Foundation (CMRF) and The Ireland Funds to bring the Best of Ireland event to New York City in 2012. The CMRF, established in Ireland in 1965, supports the needs of Ireland’s largest children’s hospital—Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital at Crumlin, Dublin. To date, the Best of Ireland Dinners have raised over $3.6 million, which has helped to fund the building of a new in-patient cardiac unit at Crumlin Hospital caring for over 550 seriously ill children each year. 

“The Best of Ireland Dinner is a very special night on my calendar each year,” says McDowell.  “I have seen first-hand how the funds raised each year have improved the facilities at Crumlin, and more importantly, helped the children and their families heal. I am so grateful for all of the generosity shown over these past six years.”

The Best of Ireland Dinner honors esteemed leaders in public service, business, sports and arts. This year’s honorees were two-time Super Bowl-winning head coach Tom Coughlin, Tony Award-winning actor, director and producer Gabriel Byrne and Executive Vice President of The Coca-Cola Company and President of Bottling Investments Irial Finan.  Prior recipients include Eli Manning (two-time Super Bowl-winning NFL Quarterback), Moya Doherty and John McColgan (Co-founders of Riverdance), Senator George Mitchell (primary architect of the 1998 Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland), Ray Kelly (longest serving NYPD Commissioner), Jim Clerkin (President & CEO of Moet Hennessy USA) and Brian Leetch (NHL Hall of Famer).

Each year, McDowell hosts a live Q&A with one of the evening’s honorees. This year, he led a lively chat with the legendary NFL Coach Tom Coughlin, who attended the event with his wife Judy and daughter Keli. They covered everything from Coughlin’s proudest achievements to his work as the President of the Tom Coughlin Jay Fund Foundation. “When you’ve been as blessed as I have been, you must give back,” encouraged Coughlin in talking about his work with his charity. 

In addition to supporting Crumlin Hospital, each year, the G-Mac Foundation brings children recovering from serious illnesses and their families from all over Ireland to Florida for a holiday of a lifetime. Ollie and his family were one of the many families who made the trip. To date, the G-Mac Foundation has raised $4 million to benefit sick children since it was established in 2011.

READ MORE ABOUT: Graeme McDowell , Youth/Children
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