Honours for prominent Irish Americans of the twentieth century at a millennium ball in New York.
Some of the most influential Irish people in America have declared President John F Kennedy as the Irish American of the century. The award was accepted by his sister Jean Kennedy Smith. In her acceptance speech, she said,
In Ireland, I think you see something of what is so great about the United States and I must say that in the United States through millions of your sons and daughters and cousins, you see something of what is great about Ireland.
Irish America magazine named its top Irish Americans of the last hundred years at its Millennium Ball in New York. The event featured an all star cast of Irish Americans. Among those honoured was Senator George Mitchell who received a special peace award from the US First Lady Hillary Clinton.
The search for peace and reconciliation in the land of your heritage is a long and difficult history. I accept this award not as an individual but as a representative of the many men and women who devoted their lives to that cause.
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 9 December 1999. The reporter is Mark Little.